Posters from a group called “Students for Western Civilization” were put up across the University of Toronto Mississauga last week, advocating for the preservation of “European values”. The posters had been promptly taken down, from the UTM campus after they were found on Monday, November 13th.
The posters depicted animated white males standing against various backdrops of Toronto and various statues of European soldiers. The posters were captioned with phrases such as “Europa forever,” “Europe Eternal,” and “For today and Perpetuity.”
According to SWC’s site, the group is based out of Toronto and claims to be made up of students and alumni from Toronto universities. It advocates that Canadian universities “are corrupt” and “have become subverted by an overwhelming leftist bias.” The group also believes that universities perpetuate “an extreme antagonism and hostility towards white people.”
“We are aware that many, if not most, if not the vast majority of European-Canadians support maintaining these symbols, but are afraid to speak up due to an intellectual climate wherein assertions of “white” or European identity are heavily policed and oppressed, and that those who dare to object face great social, financial, and even legal risk in doing so,” the group’s site states.
“This is why European-Canadians require formal institutions and representatives to speak on our behalf. Students For Western Civilisation aspires to fulfill that need by continuing to advocate for the cultural and political interests of European-Canadians and European Civilisation wherever it exists,” it adds.
As stated on SWC’s Facebook page, the posters are part of the group’s 2017 poster campaign, with one image featuring the word “Enlist.”
Their recent campaign states that “Students for Western Civilisation’s latest poster campaign is a protest against recent threats—some of them realized—to remove or tear down a number of symbols of European-Canadian history, culture and identity.”
The post refers to recent debates over the removal and renaming of statues and buildings that were named after controversial Canadian figures, such as renaming schools named after Canada’s first prime minister, John A. MacDonald.
“We see these attacks as among the first of many in what will become an ongoing process of ethnocide against European-Canadian culture. Ethnocide is defined as ‘the deliberate destruction of the culture of a people,’” a post on their website reads.
“In each case, the perpetrators provide their rationales, usually by citing notions of ‘diversity,’ ‘inclusion,’ or the idea that the land does not, or did not always, belong to European-Canadians. But we feel no obligation to engage with the arguments of those who aspire to destroy us, because our destruction is not debatable,” the post continues.
SWC outlines three main goals on their website: promoting Western Civilizations, advancing the “interests of European peoples,” and to discuss ethnic and cultural politics in an open forum.
UTM’s principal Ulrich Krull responded in an email to The Medium saying, that all posters have been removed and an investigation has been launched by Campus Police and that Peel Regional Police have been informed.
“As a general rule, posters that do not comply with procedures regarding postering on campus are removed by caretaking and grounds staff,” Krull stated. “Repugnant messages like this are part of campaigns around North America that are antithetical to the University’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, which are among our core values.”
“Actions in response to this incident may appear low key. While there will be work behind the scenes, our response will be measured so that we do not give this group the publicity they crave,” Krull concluded.
In March of 2017 similar instances occurred on the UTM campus with swastikas being drawn inside the Davis elevators, which had been removed by campus police. A similar incident took place at the St. George campus on November 2nd, where “white supremacist” posters were found.
A representative from the SWC group did not respond to The Medium’s request for comment, as of press time.