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Local People’s Party of Canada candidate Mark Paralovos told The Post on Saturday he is concerned after a local group posted a graphic depicting a red knife stabbing a dark Nazi symbol in reference to his party.
Promoting an anti-fascist rally taking place on Friday, the graphic, in part, reads “Maxime Bernier and his racist goons are enemies to working-class people!”
The image was posted by the Revolutionary Communist Party of Guelph Facebook page. It was also shared by the Revolutionary Student Movement Guelph.
Paralovos told The Post that he has contacted the police and the PPC riding association is taking the situation seriously.
In response to the accusations detailed on the graphic, Paralovos defended himself, saying “I’m not racist or sexist or any of the ghastly allegations that page makes. And neither is the People’s Party of Canada.”
The rally the poster is advertising will be taking place outside the Guelph Youth Music Centre, or GYMC, where PPC Leader Maxime Bernier will be holding a town hall with Paralovos at the same time.
The Post has reached out to the Revolutionary Communist page that posted the graphic for comment. A press release from Paralovos is expected later on Saturday.
An organizer of the rally, young activist Kate Nixon, disputed the use of the word “violent” in this story’s headline, saying that it is not a “violent action” but rather symbolic for “eliminating Nazi ideals, which I believe the PPC upholds.”
A Change.org petition has also been started by local activists calling on the GYMC’s board of directors to “nullify its plan to host Maxime Bernier and the People’s Party of Canada”.
Jamie Gibson, who created the petition, told The Post that the letter was not from one party and is only partisan insofar that signees believe the People’s Party is a home for bigotry and “should not be welcome in our community.”\
The initial version of the petition apparently insinuated the idea that the Guelph Youth Music Centre invited Bernier to its facility for the event, and the organization had to put out a tweet to clarify this was untrue.
Gibson called Paralovos’ denial that the PCC was racist or sexist an “absurd” claim.
He added that he expects the incoming press release to be an “oppourtunistic attempt to distract Guelphites from Bernier’s documented history and past actions.”
Bernier and Paralovos will hold a town hall-style event called “Vision for Canada” starting at 7 p.m. on July 19.