Michael Lightstone, Chronicle Herald (Halifax, Nova Scotia), Jan. 18, 2007
The man at the centre of a venomous anti-racism protest in Halifax on Tuesday says freedom of speech was squelched by a bunch of “louts” who refused to consider his opinion on racial diversity.
Jared Taylor said Wednesday he should have been allowed to deliver his prepared remarks to a public meeting at the Lord Nelson hotel.
“These people are terrified of a dissenting view,” he told CTV news, referring to young foul-mouthed demonstrators who shouted him down at a raucous event inside a hotel meeting room.
“I think it’s contemptible,” said Mr. Taylor, an American writer and speaker who holds controversial views on race relations.
He said the audience was denied the chance to listen to a talk he asserts was not about racism, but an opinion on why racial integration doesn’t work.
Mr. Taylor said people who angrily shut down his lecture “seemed to think that what I had to say was perhaps so dangerous it shouldn’t even be heard,” he told CTV. “You can’t run a country in which debate takes that form.”
At one point in the noisy protest, Mr. Taylor was roughed up by activists wearing bandanas or balaclavas to hide their identities. An attendee, who is Jewish and was there to see if Mr. Taylor was going to talk about Jews, intervened and helped the man free himself from a couple of the demonstrators.
“I was hoping to have a civilized debate,” said Mr. Taylor. He acknowledged he was shocked when he was “surrounded by louts who then forced me physically . . . out of the room.”
Editor of a publication called American Renaissance, Mr. Taylor is a Yale-educated journalist and author who believes in freedom of association. But he maintains blacks are happier living and working with blacks, and whites are happier with whites.
He told CTV that racial diversity is a failure in North America and other regions.
Mr. Taylor provided The Chronicle Herald with a copy of the speech that was suppressed on Tuesday. Originally, he was to debate a black scholar, David Devine, at Dalhousie University but Dal dropped him from the program.
In his remarks that were to be presented at the Lord Nelson, Mr. Taylor cites examples “of how diversity is failing to work in Canada.”
Among his views is the contention that “racial diversity in Canada, just as it is in the United States, is an ordeal — an agonizing, never-ending ordeal.”