October 12, 2010 Why Conservatives should help us defeat Fantino – FAQs
1. Who are you, why are you qualified to speak out on Fantino’s Caledonia record, and are you really Conservative Party supporters?
The leaders of this campaign are Gary McHale and Mark Vandermaas, two of the key activists involved in exposing and opposing racial policing in Caledonia that has victimized both native and non-natives for the past four years. We have 3.5 years experience of being targeted by Fantino and dealing with him and his lawyers through the courts, the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario, the Ontario Police Services Act complaint process and the media.
We provided extensive evidence and background information to aid Globe & Mail reporter Christie Blatchford’s research for her upcoming book, HELPLESS: Caledonia’s Nightmare of Fear and Anarchy, And How the Law Failed Us All, due on bookshelves Oct 26th.
“I’m sure a lot of people don’t give a damn about what happened to the residents of Caledonia. I’m wondering where the next lawless takeover might take place — maybe in my area? Maybe in yours? People don’t seem to care unless it affects them directly — that is, except for Gary McHale and Mark Vandermaas. People need to realize it could happen anywhere, and it would be nice to know you can count on the police to enforce the law. Hopefully Blatchford’s book will help ensure that.” Moose & Squirrel.ca
Gary (and wife, Christine) is acknowledged in the book for his contributions, and both the book and the photo montage in the promo video below include an iconic image of him being led away bleeding after he was viciously attacked by Six Nations smokeshack supporters Dec 01/07. While still in the hospital Fantino issued a press release blaming him and his supporters for the violence – before the investigation had begun – and ordered his officers to target McHale for a charge. Helpless tells how he fought back and won – without a lawyer.
“As it turns out, the front line officers of the OPP were sold down the river too, by their senior ranks, in particular by two commissioners of the force, Gwen Boniface and Julian Fantino, who either subjugated themselves to government will, held their tongues or respectively dreamed up the disastrous operational plan for Caledonia and then stubbornly held onto it for dear life.”
- Oct 10/10: Christie Blatchford in HELPLESS: Front line OPP officers ‘sold down the river’ by Fantino & Boniface
- ‘HelplessByBlatchford’ project: www.HelplessByBlatchford.ca
In the 2008 federal election 1,821 Caledonia voters chose Gary McHale as an independent candidate over Conservative cabinet minister Diane Finley and high-profile Liberal candidate Dr. Eric Hoskins (now Dalton McGuinty’s Minister of Citizenship and Immigration). Gary received 10% of the total vote in the riding, which included 39% of ballots cast in Caledonia.
Although we are not currently ‘card-carrying’ Conservative Party members, we are lifelong supporters. Mark was once a member of the original Reform Party when it was led by Preston Manning. Some of our strongest allies in Caledonia have actively campaigned for Diane Finley and donated money to the party.
You can read our ‘Caledonia resumes’ here:
2. Why is it so important that Julian Fantino not be elected as a Member of Parliament for the Conservative Party of Canada?
Julian Fantino is a symbol of the Race-Based Policing practices in Caledonia that saw innocent property owners victimized with illegal occupations while OPP officers stood guard for those committing the crimes. His candidacy for the Conservative Party would symbolize that the party has fully embraced racialized policing and the dangerous ideology that innocent victims should be controlled, silenced and targeted for arrest as an alternative to enforcing the law against extremist groups. Julian Fantino has shown scarcely believable bias in favour of native criminals all the while using the full weight of his office to try to intimidate peaceful, law-abiding non-natives into compliance.
Legendary Canadian journalist Peter Worthington, founder of the Toronto Sun, comments on Caledonia & Fantino…
“It is a horror story for ordinary people who were the victims of thuggery. But it’s a greater horror story for the OPP which behaved with negligence, dereliction of duty and, yes, cowardice. Officers on the job turned a blind eye to people being beaten, homes threatened, curfews imposed, road blocks established. On occasion, the OPP even refused to come to the aid of a fellow officer being beaten. And now Julian Fantino wants to be a federal MP and cabinet minister. Shame on him for Caledonia, and for his failure to lead.”
Native people are also victims of OPP race-based policing
It should be noted that native citizens were also being victimized by the refusal of the OPP under Fantino to police the lawless ‘homefree zone’ (as residents refer to the occupation site) that is called the Douglas Creek Estates, a reality that we have repeatedly spoken out about in public, including at the 2010 New Directions in Aboriginal Policy forum at Mount Royal University in Calgary:
- Caledonia Victims Project presentation to 2010 New Directions in Aboriginal Policy forum, May 05/10: Listening to Victims: A Fresh Approach to Healing and Reconciliation [PDF, 21p, 8.5MB] (includes slides, reference citations for Fantino/OPP intimidation of non-natives; Fantino bias against non-native victims; natives are victims, too.)
Fantino’s Caledonia record
It would be impossible to detail all of the outrageous conduct of Julian Fantino here, but this is a list of the more egregious examples in no particular order of importance. Please note that we have documentation to support these statements:
1. Under Fantino’s watch four non-native Canadians were arrested for ‘crime’ of holding a Canadian flag or trying to raise one on public property across from the occupation site. OPP officers repeatedly lined up to prevent non-natives from walking down the road with flags. In the case of Mark Vandermaas, Fantino’s lawyer told the Ontario Human Rights Commission he was prevented from putting up a flag to protect him from an “extreme element” who might want to harm him. This policy of arresting victims instead of protecting their rights continued until July 2009 when non-natives were finally permitted to put a flag on the spot where a resident was first arrested for the same ‘offence’ in 2006.
2. Threatened Haldimand Council in order to intimidate them into not showing support for non-native activists via an email which eventually resulted in a Superior Court judge issuing process for a criminal charge of Influencing Municipal Official against him.
3. Intimidated Haldimand’s Mayor Trainer a second time via email after she spoke out publicly against OPP policies on behalf of residents.
4. Two of Fantino’s most senior officers were ordered by a court to face charges for Obstructing Justice after they followed his orders – at the outset of an investigation – to get Gary McHale charged with something so they could obtain bail restrictions to keep him out of Caledonia. Fantino told them not to “get bogged down with legal nuances” while doing it. Fantino’s order resulted in a charge which was eventually dropped after the Obstructing Justice charges were certified. Disclosure revealed that Fantino was communicating with the Deputy Minister of Community Safety & Correctional Services about the charge.
5. Set in motion, when he was first appointed, a plan to arrest Gary McHale that eventually involved numerous officers and government lawyers even though he had committed no crime. The plan resulted in McHale being held overnight without a charge until a judge ordered his release. Fortunately, a Crown Attorney refused to go along with an OPP request that he lay a false Mischief charge so the police could get bail restrictions to keep him out of Caledonia.
6. Filed a police conduct complaint with the Hamilton Police Service after a Caledonia resident who happens to be a Hamilton police officer criticized the OPP and the Premier. The complaint was initiated when the Ontario government’s senior negotiator contacted the OPP. It was eventually dismissed.
7. Defamed non-native activists in the media with false accusations of being violent racists who want a Pakistani-style dictatorship.
8. Falsely accused non-native activists of being responsible for injuring his officers when he knew they were injured by native protesters.
9. After peaceful non-natives (and police) were sent to hospital after being assaulted at an illegal smokeshack by Six Nations people Fantino issued a press release falsely blaming the victims for the violence, and ordered his officers to target Gary McHale for charges – before the investigation had even begun. Fantino asked his officers in an email if there was any way to hurry up with a charge against McHale.
10. Wrote a letter of reference to the Court for the native man who led the violence against Gary McHale in which he blamed the violence on McHale – the victim.
11. A charge of Assault Police vs. the same native man who attacked Gary McHale disappeared within one hour of Fantino being notified. Fantino sends out email confirming the new list of charges.
12. Testified that he repeatedly meets with native protesters, but does not meet with non-natives.
13. Was photographed sharing a joke with one of the leaders of illegal occupations in Haldimand and the man who led the swarming attack that put Gary McHale in the hospital, but he refused Mayor Trainer’s request that he meet with non-native residents most traumatized by the lawlessness in Caledonia.
14. When shown a video of an OPP site commander justifying his refusal to protect a non-native landowner from an illegal occupation because he believed that Land Title deeds were not sufficient proof of ownership for law enforcement purposes, Fantino testified he supported the officer completely even though a Superior Court judge had already rebuked the OPP for abusing its authority and discretion when it refused to assist the owner, and threatened to arrest him should he exercise his right under the Criminal Code to remove trespassers himself with reasonable force. (CANACE c-founder Gary McHale provided sufficient evidence to the Court to issue 9 charges of Extortion, Mischief and Intimidation against the two ringleaders, all of which where dropped by the Crown.)
15: Refused Mayor Trainer’s request to meet with most aggrieved victims in Caledonia.
1. Caledonia Victims Project, Sept 17/10: Message for federal Conservatives: Fantino as candidate = slap in the face to Caledonia victims
2. Caledonia Victims Project, Oct 07/10: Toronto Star gets critical facts wrong on Fantino Caledonia charge
3. Caledonia Victims Project, Oct 10/10: Christie Blatchford in HELPLESS: Front line OPP officers ‘sold down the river’ by Fantino & Boniface
4. Caledonia Victims Project: Caledonia Resources
5. Canadian Advocates for Charter Equality: Race-Based Policing
6. Canadian Advocates for Charter Equality: Journalist’s Quick Reference Guide (summaries of sworn testimony by Fantino & other officers at McHale trial, incl. Const. Jeff Bird who confirmed racial policing)
7. CANACE report, Dec 2007: The Human Costs of Illegal Occupations [PDF, 101p]
8. CANACE report, May 2008: Legalized MYTHS of Illegal Occupations [PDF, 56p]
9. Regional News series, Feb 18-25/09: McGuinty’s Ipperwash Cover-up: the Caledonia Legacy [PDF, 10p]
10. Caledonia Victims Project, April 13/10: Caledonia’s youngest hero: 14 year old Pam ‘Dancer’ Dudych
11. CANACE News, July 13/08: OPP tell CANACE: Land Title deeds do NOT prove ownership (see video of OPP site commander; Fantino later testifed he fully supported Sgt. Michaud’s position, and denigrated Mr. McHale for trying to obtain an explanation for the OPP’s refusal to aid the property owner. A Superior Court judge issued an injunction, saying the OPP had abused its authority and power in its treatment of the victims)
12. Human Rights complaint forces Fantino to tell truth (Part 1) (prevented from raising Canadian flag to “protect him” and followers from harm from “extreme element”)
14. McHale/Vandermaas v. Fantino (statement of claim for slander w/comprehensive account of Fantino campaign to arrest/defame non-native activists, 49 pages.)
15. EXPOSED: How the McGuinty gov’t refused to investigate criminal allegations against Fantino (contains links to 71 page complaint to Minister re alleged Fantino criminal conduct & related docs showing repeated refusal to investigate, let alone ask for evidence. Separate courts would later order Fantino and two of his officers to face criminal charges that include Influencing Municipal Official and Obstructing Justice related to events cited in this doc. All charges dropped before trial by Attorney General of Ontario.
16. Caledonia Victims Project, Caledonia Lawsuits & Court Actions: R. v. Gary McHale (Counselling Mischief Not Committed)
- YouTube video channel – ‘Vaughantino’: Julian Fantino betrays the victims of Caledonia? [3:22] (Christie Blatchford re targeting of Gary McHale)
18. Randy Fleming arrest re Cdn flag – VoiceofCanada, June 03/09: Randy Fleming arrest photos: OPP race-based policing alive and well
20. OPP Professional Standards Division: Investigation into Dec 16/06 McHale arrest, Dec 16/08 (Fantino ordered McHale targeted; McHale held overnight w/out charge; OPP asked Crown to lay phony Mischief charge (refused); OPP didn’t know if what it did was even legal, but investigators say OPP did nothing wrong)
21. Bo Chausse arrest re Cdn flag: Lawyer’s letter, Jan 12/07
22. Bo Chausse arrest re Cdn flag – The Sachem, Dec 15/06: Caledonia man seeks public apology from OPP
2. Why campaign or vote against the Conservative party – how does that help the party?
The Harper government and Diane Finley have been virtually silent for four years while innocent people were being traumatized by OPP/Liberal racial policing and native extremism.
In welcoming Fantino as a candidate, the Conservative Party is putting short term political gain ahead of fundamental principles of respect for the Charter while slapping the victims of Caledonia squarely in the face. It is sending a message that the party will embrace a future that includes racial policing directed against innocent victims of extremism as an alternative to protecting those victims. We want no part of any party that embraces such views. As one prominent Conservative supporter in Haldimand who understands the issues better than most told us privately, “This is just wrong.”
As one very conservative blogger wrote:
“If this story is even a little bit true, the Conservative Party of Canada deserves to be blasted to political oblivion for at least a generation. [...] If Julian “Caledonia” Fantino is the Conservative’s idea of “most eligible bachelor”, they have no business wrapping themselves in the fake mantle of “law and order” they have been assuming of late. The bigger question I have, is why Fantino wouldn’t run to be MP of Haldimand County? Hmmm?”
- The Lasso of Truth, Oct 07/10: I’d rather vote for Jack Layton
(For other news and opinions, check out our News feature page.)
We are under no illusion that the Liberals or NDP will do ‘the right thing’ either, but the only way to force the Conservative Party to become conservative is to deny it the thing they value most: power. We need to teach the party that it will pay a serious price for ignoring its principles. Canada doesn’t need another Liberal Party, it needs a strong Conservative Party that stands for true equality and justice irregardless of race or grievance. If denying them power today contributes to that goal, then the short term pain is worth the price.
3. Are you actually going to vote Liberal or NDP and campaign for them?
Yes – as much as the thought offends us, if Fantino is nominated we will actively work to defeat both him in Vaughan and Diane Finley in Haldimand Norfolk by campaigning and voting for the strongest runner-up who has the best chance of defeating them, be it NDP or Liberal.
4. What could you possibly do that would make a difference in the election – what’s your strategy?
We have registered with Elections Canada as a third party (without a candidate) in order to be able to spend money on campaigning during the election:
- Conservatives Against Fantino news release, Nov 16/10: Elections Canada registration
- Elections Canada registration, Nov 16/10
- National Post, Nov 17/10: Anti-Fantino group changes name, registers as third party [PDF]
If we can convince the 5,000 voters in Haldimand who cast a ballot for Gary last time to switch their votes to the Liberals it would count as a 2 for 1 loss for Diane Finley. In other words, not only would the Conservatives go down 5,000 votes, the Liberals would also go up 5,000 votes for a total loss to Finley of 10,000 votes. In a riding where there was already so much anger towards the Conservatives long before Fantino was nominated and long before McHale had the credibility he has today 10,000 votes would very likely mean defeat for Finley.
5. Why not work behind the scenes and try to talk to the party?
We have been trying to work behind the scenes, but cannot reveal the full extent of our efforts to make them aware of our concerns. You can assume from the creation of this site that we have no confirmation they are taking our concerns seriously.
6. What do you want?
We want the Conservative Party of Canada to immediately put any movement to nominate Julian Fantino on hold until the party has fully reviewed the evidence of his conduct in Caledonia and fully understands the consequences of his nomination for the party. We are prepared to assist the party in every way possible as we did Christie Blatchford.
7. What can I do to help?
- Protest with us every Saturday and Sunday at 1pm at Fantino’s campaign HQ until the election. We have 60,000 professionally-printed 2-page 8.5×11″ brochures to get our message out, so after a half hour protest we will be distributing our brochures in the riding. Details here.
- Write a letter to the editor.
- Call the Conservative Party and tell them you no longer support the party because of Fantino’s candidacy. If you are a donor, tell them you are stopping donations so long as Fantino and Finley are elected members.