Sorry Not Sorry: Unapologetically Working for Social Justice – New Venue Announcement and Response to Criticism
Time: 7pm (Doors open at 6pm). After dinner refreshments will be served
Date: April 26th, 2019
Venue: The Ukrainian Labour Temple, 591 Pritchard Avenue. Please note as renovations are pending, this venue is not fully accessible. There are 5 steps up to the main doors. Washrooms are located in the lower level and that is a flight of 14 stairs. Washrooms are not accessible in terms of fixtures, clearances, etc. There is a door at Pritchard and McGregor that could be used. The threshold is about 2 inches above grade. Once inside, it is only 3 stairs to the foyer level. Please contact email@example.com for more details. ASL interpretation will be provided.
All tickets sold for the original venue will be honoured at the door.
Please see our full media release here.
Our original venue cancelled our booking due to reaction to one of our panel speakers, Linda Sarsour. We have delayed our further response to ensure we took the time to listen to concerns raised. We’d like to thank those who have approached us in the spirit of civil discourse. We understand that the situation in the Middle East is an emotional issue for many, however, it was never to be the focus of our event.
Please Note Guiding questions/themes for the panel:
- Organizing across communities/cultures
- The role of education in movement building
- Intergenerational communication
- How to survive and grow through controversy
Unfortunately, much of the negative reaction we received was hateful, violent, misogynistic and/or Islamophobic. We are expecting that the announcement of our new venue will engender much the same. We have added new links below to add to the discussion. For anyone who simply wants to know more, as always, please consider the source of any links (including ours!) for explicit, complicit, conscious or unconscious bias and, most importantly, please read past the headlines. There is a great deal of media coverage both critical and supportive of Ms. Sarsour. We will not engage further by listing more and more links. The ones we have chosen to share offer perspective and/or context on the most prevalent criticisms of Ms. Sarsour. While we will maintain a space for constructive dialogue, offensive, violent content will be blocked, deleted and reported.
We also heard the concerns around polarizing or dividing Winnipeg. The best way to avoid division is to commit to the relationship in which we all share as Winnipeggers. The best way to remain in relationship is through respectful and caring dialogue.
In the spirit of achieving better mutual understanding, we would like to clarify three points:
- Our initial statement referenced colonialism playing a role in the establishment of Israel. This refers to how the world powers at the time, all with colonial histories, eager to absolve themselves of not doing all they could to prevent the Holocaust, forced a settlement of one people and the displacement of another. In 1948, people living in the region, who also claim rights to the region, were dispossessed of their property and possessions. Much harm to all has been the lasting legacy.
- Sorry Not Sorry was never a fundraiser. We wanted to mark our 100 years by looking forward, not back. We kept our ticket prices comparatively low as we wanted it to be as accessible as possible. The $60 ticket with partial tax receipt is to offset the low-income ticket of $15.
- Our date was chosen as it relates to the founding of our organization in 1919 and other General Strike commemoration events that we knew were in the planning stages. That there was a synagogue across the street did not resonate with us given that our intended discussion was not to be about the conflict in the Middle East. In hindsight, it should have. Our oversight has given the impression to some that we were intending to be offensive. This was not the case. However, we wholeheartedly apologize for that impression.
We invite you once again to this discussion about working together to create a truly just society. This amazing panel of activists will share their successes and perspectives on making the changes that challenge the status quo and addresses bias. A moderated question and answer session is scheduled to allow the conversation to be community based.
We are very grateful to the Bear Clan, due to their commitment to community safety, for helping us out at this event.
Tickets are available for purchase at the Social Planning Council of Winnipeg (432 Ellice Ave) and Canadian Muslim Women’s Institute (201-61 Juno St.) or online via Eventbrite.
For those interested in learning more, we offer these for your information:
- Judaism Unbound Episode 122: Let’s Talk About Israel – Sharon Kleinbaum
- Linda Sarsour under fire for suggesting Jewish progressives have divided loyalties
- Palestinian activist Rasmieh Odeh’s immigration fraud conviction vacated
- Linda Sarsour is a friend to Jews
- Colorado Jewish cemetery receives money from Linda Sarsour’s fundraising campaign
- Muslim Fundraisers Falsely Accused of Not Handing Over Money to Jewish Victims of Pittsburgh Shooting
- On day of Women’s March, Linda Sarsour rejects Farrakhan’s anti-Semitism and defends BDS
- Can You Be a Zionist Feminist? Linda Sarsour Says No
- “Unapologetically Muslim” – ISNA 55th Annual Convention – Houston,TX with Linda Sarsour
- Linda Sarsour Apologizes to Woman’s March Jewish Members for Slow Response to anti-Semitism
- Eight of Linda Sarsour’s Most Controversial Tweets
- 7 Facts About Linda Sarsour You Probably Didn’t Know
- Canada’s right-wing rage machine vs. Nora Loreto
Download full event poster – PDF