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UPDATE: Newfoundland lawyer calls for burning of churches

Dozens of churches in BC, Alberta and the Northwest Territories, mainly Catholic, have been the victims of arson and vandalism.




Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this story said Caitlin Urquhart was the chair of the Newfoundland and Labrador branch of the Canadian Bar Association. We have since learned that is incorrect. Urquhart was a former volunteer of the woman’s branch of the organization. The Standard apologizes the error.

Lawyer in Newfoundland is the latest legal professional to support Catholic churches to be burned to the ground.

Caitlin Urquhart was commenting on Twitter on reports of churches being destroyed in the wake of hundreds of bodies on the grounds of former residential schools in BC and Saskatchewan.

Dozens of mainly Catholic churches in BC, Alberta and the Northwest Territories have been the victims of arson and vandalism.

“Burn it all down,” she tweeted last month.

In a later tweet, Urquhart wrote: “The Catholic Church in Newfoundland and Labrador has a lot to answer to. Many stories of the horrors of their schools and orphanages. Will they acknowledge the blood on their hands?”

Urquhart tweet

Her statement drew swift condemnation on social media.

“I feel sorry for you people who can’t control yourselves. God, I get tired of listening to you. Destroy Canada; that is all most of you care about. If you feel such rage against Canada lots of other countries would be happy to have you (maybe),” said Donna Simpkin on Twitter.

“Please stop encouraging crime, division and hatred,” said @Bergerstroni·

Urquhart is not the first lawyer to call for the mass destruction of churches.

An indigenous Alberta lawyer said she would help burn down Catholic churches across the country.

And Naomi Sayers said she would be glad to defend anyone charged with arson after setting fire to a church.

Her comments prompted at least one complaint to the provincial law society.

And the executive director of the BC Civil Liberties Association called for more Christian churches to be burned to the ground.

Harsha Walia made the comment in a June 30 tweet in response to news reports of two more Catholic churches being burning down.

“Burn it all down,” Walia tweeted.

She was publically backed by her BCCLA board of governors.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard and the Vice-President: News Division of Western Standard New Media Corp. He has served as the City Editor of the Calgary Sun and has covered Alberta news for nearly 40 years. dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com

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  1. Claudette Leece

    July 12, 2021 at 11:31 am

    USGUDDIN so being a criminal justifies criminal acts. Easy words to throw around genocide and killing. Manu died of disease, TB killed thousands of fn ,, so if you think these actions lead to understanding of what went on your wrong. Would it be acceptable to take out one of your family because you did a crime against that other person. We were not around and had no say in the decisions made hundreds years ago, so don’t make us pay the price for these terrible deeds

  2. GS Uddin

    July 12, 2021 at 11:13 am

    Well, 500 years of genocide against Natives and support for global crusades of colonialism and invasions up to today justify petty acts of vandalism, at very least.

    Considering how conservative Albertans attack mosques and Muslim women in hijabs, they don’t have a leg to stand on! How you like it?

  3. Alex

    July 12, 2021 at 8:09 am

    If I still had a Twitter account I would be reporting her. Please do so, for those of you who do.

  4. Steven

    July 11, 2021 at 3:41 pm

    The problem with lighting someone’s else’s house on fire is that your house might burndown in the same manner.

    She appears to be another entitled liberal who hasn’t the slightest idea on how the world really works.

  5. Baron Not Baron

    July 11, 2021 at 12:55 pm

    Lee Morrison,

    I am talking about the “grinning clown Urquhart”, only.

  6. francis witzel

    July 11, 2021 at 10:13 am

    Anyone notice no one is blaming the government of the day, I don’t see that happening as we would have to blame Trudeau and company . oh no can’t do that , it election season again so he everywhere. But before that the varmit was holed up in Ottawa. There’s plenty of blame to go around , how about the institutions of the day , church and government, because they knew , they all knew .

  7. Josh

    July 10, 2021 at 6:59 pm

    So arson is okay if you feel justified?
    I feel bad for these churches. How many of the attendance are native to Canada.
    Now they have to pick up the pieces caused by people that were trying to “help them”.

  8. Lee Morrison

    July 10, 2021 at 1:43 pm

    Baron: Why Godless? This atheist is as eager as any law-abiding Canadian to see the arsonist thugs caught and jailed for long periods. Arsonist has long been considered one of the more serious and dangerous crimes. As for the grinning clown Urquhart: Why has there been no serious effort among her peers to have her disbarred?

  9. Shepherdess

    July 10, 2021 at 12:27 pm

  10. Face Palm 2

    July 10, 2021 at 10:41 am

    Sigh… Any millennials interested in explaining the expression “burn it all down” to this boomer?

  11. Left Coast

    July 10, 2021 at 9:59 am

    This grinning Idiot is the head of the Newfound and Labrador branch Bar Association?

    She must have worked her way up like Kamelhoe Harris, Senile Joe’s clueless VP.

  12. Penny4YourThouhts

    July 10, 2021 at 8:25 am

    A lawyer – and one who is a head of a bar association – who encourages people to break the law. Fascinating. And people wonder why this country is in shambles?

    The convid situation has caused more people to seek refuge in God and church numbers are increasing. This is the opposite of what they wanted so now, in the true machiavellian form, they are digging up a part of the past, painting it in a specific color, and further manipulating the people they’ve terrorized for months into burning churches to the ground. They’ll learn. God can’t be canceled and neither can Christianity.

  13. Face Palm

    July 10, 2021 at 6:25 am

    Sigh… Any millennials interested explaining the expression “burn it all down” to this boomer?

  14. Baron Not Baron

    July 9, 2021 at 9:38 pm

    Has this individual really contributed SOMETHING to make the society better? Now.. ooohh, now she’s got SOMETHING to work on! What a way of living your crapy life! The people that live here today have nothing to do with the people from 300 years ago, of even at the time when these events have (allegedly) happened..
    Get a positive attitude and get real! What if these favours are returned to you the same way, by some lunatics that think the way you think? And that is not impossible, as the left can’t wait to downplay both sides..
    You, the reader, understand these imbeciles make their way to public ears because it is allowed and encouraged, to create division – specially in the West? Can you smell the leftist Ottawa? They really don’t give a shit about the natives – just use them like they always have – to create division, turmoil, death in this part of the country. This is what happens when unexperienced people let themselves entangled in these dangerous games – which never served them and never will! Why do it? To get popular for standing up for getting savage? Karma will have its say – it is God’s rule.

  15. Baron Not Baron

    July 9, 2021 at 8:57 pm

    BTW, this is another Godless bitch..

  16. Baron Not Baron

    July 9, 2021 at 1:14 pm

    That is easier to do than having the natives off the Oxy, off of taxpayer money and becoming valuable members of society. Cause why would anyone want them to be clear headed and make decisions for themselves when they can be weaponized according to the elite’s wish? After all “White man came/Across the sea/Bringing pain and misery” LOLS

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BC removes capacity limits in some areas, but only if you’re double vaccinated

The change comes into effect October 25, and it applies to indoor sporting events, concerts, theatres, weddings, funeral receptions outside of a funeral home, and organized parties.




British Columbia will be seeing some restrictions eased for those who have can prove two doses of vaccination against COVID-19.

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced Tuesday that capacity limits for events and gatherings throughout much of the province — where proof-of-vaccination is required — will be lifted.

The change comes into effect October 25, and it applies to indoor sporting events, concerts, theatres, weddings, funeral receptions outside of a funeral home, and organized parties.

Health officials will also be removing the requirement to stay seated at restaurants.

The changes do not apply to regional restrictions in effect in Interior Health, Northern Health, and eastern Fraser Valley.

Personal gatherings, both indoor and outdoor, are restricted to fully vaccinated people throughout the Northern Health region, with the exception of Terrace, Kitimat, Haida Gwaii, Prince Rupert, Stikine, and the Nisga’a areas.

Indoor mask requirements remain in effect for all indoor gatherings and events.

Reid Small is a BC correspondent for the Western Standard

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WORLD WATCH: U.K. warns of new COVID variant as cases rise yet Japan numbers plummet

Experts are taking a close look at AY.4.2. to see how much of a threat it may pose, but say it is not yet considered a “variant of concern”.




News reports out of the U.K. are linking an uptick in cases to a new variant that “could be 10 times more infectious than Delta,” yet Japan is seeing some of their lowest case counts since this time last year.

According to the latest official data out of the U.K., an increase in COVID-19 cases includes a genetically sequenced variant labelled AY.4.2 accounting for 6% of new cases.

Graph courtesy worldometers.info

The new strain, some call “Delta Plus”, is said to contain mutations that could give the virus “survival advantages” and could make it more contagious.

Experts are taking a close look at AY.4.2. to see how much of a threat it may pose, but say it is not yet considered a “variant of concern”.

Meanwhile, reports from Japan say a very different narrative where cases have mysteriously plummeted over the last two months.

Low case rates have not been the norm in Japan throughout the pandemic. However, despite the 2020 Summer Olympics being postponed to the summer of 2021 and Japan seeing some of the highest COVID-19 case rates in the world at times, the country has never implemented any full lockdowns.

Over the last two months, rates in Japan went from over 26,121 new cases recorded on August 22 to 494 new cases as of Monday.

Graph courtesy worldometers.info

Some are crediting the incredible turnaround to a late but rapid uptake in vaccinations. Others say it could have something to do with bad August weather in the latter part of the month that kept people home.

Officials are still trying to determine the cause of the huge decline in cases and experts are warning Japan could face another surge with the gradual waning of vaccine efficacy as well as heading into the colder winter months.

Melanie Risdon is a reporter with the Western Standard

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EXCLUSIVE: Chu vows not to resign, apologizes and speaks out on allegations

Chu speaks out after allegations against him come to light.




Embattled Calgary Councillor Sean Chu says he has no intention of resigning, but has apologized to a woman he had a sexual encounter with 24 years ago.

“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean any harm,” Chu told the Western Standard in an exclusive interview on Tuesday.

City of Calgary officials confirmed Chu won the election race in Ward 4 by a mere 52 votes after allegations surfaced last week of his involvement in August of 1997 with a girl who was just 16 at the time.

“This was nothing but a political assassination,” said Chu.

Chu, who has represented Ward 4 since 2013, also fired back at some media reports which he claims were completely wrong.

Chu said he met the unidentified girl at a pub near Macleod Tr. and 94 Ave. S and not the Husky House restaurant downtown that some media had reported.

“Because it was a licensed establishment I thought the girl was at least 18 years old,” said Chu, who was in uniform with his partner at the time.

“I was single at the time and I thought some girl liked me.”

The Western Standard cannot confirm at this time if there is documentary evidence the encounter was at the Husky House or at the pub on Macleod Tr.

At some point in their interaction, Chu caressed the girl’s leg, an incident that later earned him a letter of reprimand on his file.

Chu said the girl seemed interested in him so when he was off duty he changed into civilian clothes and went back to the pub to meet the girl.

The evening continued with Chu and the girl eventually heading to his home.

Once there, the pair “started kissing and hugging, but there was no intercourse,” said Chu.

Chu admits there was “some touching underneath clothes”.

“She then said she wanted to go home and I drove her straight there.”

Chu denied media reports that a gun was produced during the evening at his home. He said he checked his service weapon in at the police’s traffic office when he signed off duty.

At one point Chu said he owned a shotgun, but denied that weapon was ever produced or shown in any way that night.

“If there had been a gun involved there would have been charges,” said Chu.

The Western Standard has not seen any documents that indicate the presence or absence of a firearm on the evening in question.

Chu said he does not drink alcohol, but added he didn’t know if the girl had been drinking.

After the incident, the girl reported the case to city police claiming she was sexually assaulted. That lead to nine years of investigations, court battles and appeals, with news of the case only leaking last week, days before the civil election.

There were never any sexual assault or weapons charges laid, and Chu says the letter of reprimand was the only discipline that came out of the entire process.

Documents obtained by the Western Standard and other media indicate that the woman claimed the whole process was a “cover-up.”

Chu served as a Calgary police officer from 1992 until he was elected in 2013.

Chu is now at the centre of a political storm with friends and supporters deserting him.

Premier Jason Kenney described the allegations as “appalling” but said he didn’t think there was any way for the province to remove a councillor who han’t been convicted under the Criminal Code.

He said he would be happy to meet with Mayor-Elect Jyoti Gondek to discuss the situation.

Kenney said as much of the legal documents are under seal, it’s up to Chu to prove his innocence.

Calgary-Nose Hill MP Michelle Rempel Garner tweeted her disgust at the incident.

“I have supported Mr. Chu in the past, but firmly withdraw all such support in light of these reports. Believing women means walking the talk,” she tweeted.

“In light of the disciplinary action, as a result of inappropriate contact with a minor which has been reported by CBC Calgary, MP Rempel Garner is formally withdrawing her endorsement of Councillor Sean Chu and he is no longer a member of her Constituency Association.”

Rempel Garner tweet

Now Chu said he is looking at his legal options and a possible defamation suit over some of what he called the false reporting.

“I have always told the truth. My reputation is important to me and now my family is hurting,” said Chu.

Chu said he wouldn’t comment on remarks made by Gondek that she will try and remove him from council.

“I will continue to tell the truth at council and will be a fiscal hawk,” he said.

“The most important thing is I told the truth and the truth will prevail.”

It appears any bid to try and remove Chu would fail because he was not charged or convicted criminally.

Calgary police released a statement Monday about its investigation in 1997. It states:

“We want to reassure Calgarians that when this matter came to light in 1997 it was taken seriously by the Service and managed in accordance with the Police Act. This has been a complex legal matter with multiple complaints and investigations as well as appeals to the Alberta Law Enforcement Review Board. One of those decisions was overturned by the Alberta Court of Appeal. Ultimately, one allegation of misconduct was sustained through our internal disciplinary process.”

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard

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