I am a constituent, and more important - like most of us - the descendant of immigrants.
I am also Jewish.
My family was fortunate in that they largely escaped the horrors of Europe before the Holocaust.
There are storm clouds gathering again, this time with the active leadership and promotion of the United States. President Donald Trump has ordered his administration to ban Muslim refugees from certain countries based on nothing more than their religion.
I've also been a dedicated public servant, and a teacher of future public servants, for a generation.
I can tell you this: This is not policy. This is bigotry, pure and simple. It is hatred dressed up as security.
Jews like to say, in reference to the Holocaust, "Never again." And when we say never again, we mean to anyone.
I was moved by the words of my friend Sameer Vasta, as I hope you will be:
"Not here. Not now. Not anywhere. Not ever.
I am calling on the leaders of Canada to speak out against this practice and this sentiment, not through vague generalities about multiculturalism and acceptance, but through the explicit denouncing of the refugee/Muslim ban and of the people who are responsible for the ban.
I am calling on the leaders of Canada to commit to providing safe harbour for those who have lost their families, homes, livelihoods, and lives because of the impetuousness of this ban, and to allow those who have been displaced to receive sanctuary in our country.
I am calling on the leaders of Canada to recognize that this populist sentiment is not unique to our southern neighbours, and to publicly admit that our country also grapples with similar issues and that ignoring the problems here will lead to the same kind of rhetoric that is now de rigueur in the United States.
Most of all, I am calling on our country’s leaders to be vocal in their opposition to bigotry, misogyny, and hatred of all kinds, and to not rest on the platitudes that we so often repeat."