OTTAWA – The Liberal Party on Saturday promised to keep secret the details of any talks between NDP leader Jagmeet Singh and Justin Trudeau about the blackface scandal that rocked the federal election campaign last week.
Trudeau vowed to personally apologize to Singh, the first visible minority member to lead a federal party, after his reelection candidacy was shaken by the surface of images showing that he chose to wear black or brown as part of the costume. events.
Trudeau has repeatedly apologized, calling the act of darkening his skin racist, and said he remains committed to fighting racism and continuing to lead liberals.
A Liberal spokesman said his office was still discussing the details of when the conversation would take place, and the spokesman said liberals would not be disclosing her details.
Singh said on Saturday he was still awaiting news from Trudeau about whether the liberal leader is willing to meet his discussion condition on the issue – observations that occurred during a full day of campaigning on Saturday while Trudeau paused.
Trudeau was not campaigning on Saturday nor was conservative leader Andrew Scheer giving his first breaks since the federal election on September 11. Taking Saturdays off is common in federal elections.
Meanwhile, Singh held two events, including a roundtable on racism with Toronto community leaders. Many of the participants criticized Trudeau's apology, while some expressed the opinion that they did not want their behavior to encourage white supremacists.
Singh reiterated to reporters after the meeting that he would be willing to talk to Trudeau, but that he wanted their conversation to be private and out of the media glare.
"I don't want to be used as a tool to exonerate Mr. Trudeau. I don't want to be part of a public relations process to say that he checked these boxes and, see, he made that call and that's fine," Singh said.
"It's important to have dialogue, but I made it a private conversation."
Campaigning in Winnipeg, Green Party leader Elizabeth May was drawn to a discussion of the controversy that seemed to overshadow a major campaign announcement about the opioid crisis – decriminalizing possession of all illicit drugs. She said it was part of an emergency measure to remove the opioid from the criminal justice field and treat it as a "national health crisis".
But she spent more time talking about the blackface issue, saying she was still struggling with Trudeau's images and reflecting on the pain they inflicted on visible minority communities.
As for a high-level candidate running for the Greens in Newfoundland and Labrador, who exposed his own blackface skeleton the day before, May seemed far more tolerant.
Greg Malone, who runs Avalon, said on Friday he painted the skin to play Mahatma Gandhi in a sketch broadcast on the CBC CODCO comedy series, which took place in the 1980s and 1990s. He discussed this in a report on the website. CBC, where he said whites need to do a better job to put themselves in the shoes of visible minorities.
May said she applauded Malone for making progress.
"Greg Malone is a brilliant comic, satirical and actor, and very well respected. And he advanced. The blackface activity he got involved in was broadcast on CBC. So he regrets. That was many, many, many years ago . ", said May.
"I'm grateful to have someone of your character and integrity running for the Green Party of Canada in Avalon."
Singh said he wants to attend a broader public discussion about racism in Canada, emphasizing that the issue is larger than one person.
"I'm worried because, as some people here have said, the conversation was about Trudeau and not about the impact on people," Singh said after his roundtable.
This means that people "have faced violence, physical, words, barriers, economic injustice because of the color of their skin, because they are indigenous, because they are racialized. If we do not do this to people, it could easily be forgotten."
Trudeau had to face global mockery on Friday, including late-night American comedians, as images of the three times he chose to wear black or brown as part of costume events continued to sparkle around the world. US President Donald Trump said he was surprised by Trudeau's images.
Liberal cabinet minister Catherine McKenna said Canada still has credibility on the world stage as a champion of climate change despite controversy.
"The measure of one person and one party must be based on what you have done, and whether it is an action we are taking internationally to combat climate change and provide a leading role at the table, or is it an action to combat racism or our announcement yesterday that we would eliminate assault weapons, "he said.
McKenna, the environment minister, tried to push the violent federal election campaign into more familiar territory for her and her troubled party, framing the fight against climate change as the central issue for voters.
"This election could not be more important," noting that issues like climate change are at stake, she said.
"We have Conservative Party and conservative politicians who don't believe in action on climate change."
McKenna vowed to advocate a ban on disposable plastics of federal government buildings, museums and parks at an event on the banks of the Ottawa River, west of Parliament Hill. The pledge was part of his local Ottawa Center parliamentary campaign and was not a plank on his party's federal platform.
May criticized liberals for not sending Trudeau to a UN leaders climate meeting on Monday in New York, which is being held as part of the UN General Assembly. She also reiterated her view that the liberal government's goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions is too low, calling it a "false goal."
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