"Opposes Canadian values": Fight over Jordan Peterson event heats up in BC

May 11 2023, 10:34 pm

Thousands of people are gearing up to show their condemnation, or their support, for an upcoming event in BC’s Okanagan for controversial speaker Jordan Peterson.

Peterson is coming to Prospera Place in Kelowna at the end of the month, and at least two protests are planned to call on the mayor and officials to stop the event. A petition announcing the protests has reached 1,200 signatures as of Thursday morning.

“Peterson actually uses his platform to oppose Canadian values such as free speech, multi-culturalism, and justice for oppressed people like BIPOC and 2SLGBTQIA+ people,” the petition reads in part.

However, on the other side of the coin, a pro-Peterson petition is also gaining traction among his fans who want to hear Peterson in person.

“Peterson’s message has resonated with millions of people worldwide, and his popularity is a testament to the importance of his ideas,” the “I support Jordan Peterson Speaking In Kelowna” petition reads in part.

This is something the anti-Peterson folks suggest is a result of “his barbaric, manipulative behavior creates an anti-intellectual echo chamber for disinformation and the inflaming of bigotry.”

It’s unclear if there will be traffic impacts due to the protests, with the first set to happen at Kelowna City Hall in the busy downtown area on the afternoon of May 19.

The second protest is planned on May 26 but is subject to cancellation if the mayor does cancel the event, the organizer says online.

“Mayor Tom Dyas has the power to stand up to Mr. Peterson’s menacing campaign of bigotry and help protect the safety and inclusion of all Kelowna community members. I urge the city to stop this event which is being held at a civic venue operated by the City of Kelowna!”

In the meantime, Peterson took to Twitter to respond to the Summerland Review (a publication in that region) and said, “I’ve been cancelled by better people than this sorry lot. Virtue-signaling censorious narcissists.”

Claire FentonClaire Fenton

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