HAMILTON: A Punjab-origin city councillor says voice mails from a resident who threatened violence against Black people after far-right rioters stormed the U.S. Capitol is a reminder that Hamilton isn’t immune to racism.
Hamilton city councillor Nrinder Nann (Ward 3) revealed details of the hateful messages during a council meeting on Wednesday — the same day Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were sworn in as U.S. President and Vice President respectively.
“I share this today for anybody in our city who is wilfully ignorant to how deep hate runs in our city, in our country founded on colonialism,” Coun. Nrinder Nann said.
Nann, the only woman of colour on council, told members the voicemail from a “disgruntled white resident” came days after pro-Trump extremists stormed the U.S. Capitol during a chaotic protest aimed at thwarting a peaceful transfer of power to Biden.
The man threatened to buy a machete, hand cuffs, zip ties and acquire a shipping container “to f—ing arrest these guys,” referring to “Black people down here” who are “f—ing drug dealers.”
He also said he’d contacted the Proud Boys, Oath Keepers and Sons of Odin, far-right and white-nationalist groups.
“You’re going to see a rebellion here soon. What happened in the States, that’s going to f—ing happen here,” he added, according to a partial transcript Nann’s office provided.
Nann told council it wasn’t long after Trump’s inauguration in 2017 that local residents saw “hate emboldened” in Hamilton.
The Punjab-origin councillor said she was sharing the messages for “anybody who chooses to ignore facts and believe the falsehood that Canada is somehow exceptional, that we are not subject to the same degrees of social and systemic ills as the U.S. simply because you don’t experience it.”
Jackie Penman, spokesperson with the Hamilton Police Service said, “Hamilton Police continue to investigate and the report has been referred to COAST and Hate Crime for follow up.”