Last night a Facebook video of Naheed Nenshi reaching out to Calgary’s Pakistani community came to my attention.
There is utterly nothing wrong with campaigning directly to identifiable groups. It is natural and politicians will always campaign strongly in areas where they have cultural ties or strengths.
The problem came when Nenshi began implying that his opponents are organizing a vote base of “haters and racists” in order to set the city back. That was pure, crass, bullshit identity politics and it is well worth calling Nenshi out on it.
Within an hour or two of tweeting links to this controversial video, it suddenly was deleted along with tweets from the originator of the video.
I asked what happened to the video and got this reply:
Nothing to hide. That was a message for a specific community. I don’t want that message to be dragged for no reason. Sorry.
— Mashhood Qazi (@QaziMashhood) October 9, 2017
A message to a specific community? Um OK. So what then? Why does that mean it needs to be deleted in a rush along with all references to it?
What likely really happened was that as the video was quickly going viral on twitter, Nenshi campaigners saw the complete backfiring of this callow race baiting and asked Mashhood to pull the video ASAP.
Alas, it was too late. The video was recorded by multiple news outlets and remains out there for public consumption.
This video reeks of desperation. Nenshi is no fool but he is on the ropes politically and will try anything to keep his hold on the Mayor’s chair. This apparently includes accusing his opponents of being racists. Pathetic.
If this giant segment of racists was so active in Calgary’s political circles, how on earth did Nenshi get elected not once, but twice? The bottom line is that Nenshi is full of shit as usual and wont hesitate to take any tact to smear his opponents. Such a sad ending for what had been such a popular political figure.
Polls are indicating that people in pretty much every measurable category are beginning to reject Nenshi. That means non white folks are rejecting Nenshi too and in great numbers.
Identity politics are disgusting and they lead to the cultural divisions that we are all battling with today. From the white nationalists in Charlottesville to Nenshi and his supporters (who have demanded that white people must atone by voting for Nenshi) this gross style of politics must come to an end.
There is only a week remaining in the campaign. While multiple polls indicate that Naheed Nenshi is going to lose the election, many things can happen before then so those of us hoping for a better mayor can’t count our chickens yet.
One thing we can be sure of though is that Nenshi won’t go out with dignity. He will leave office with the same petulance and propensity for spreading bullshit that he had while sitting on the mayoral throne.