The shootings in Ottawa today prompted many Canadians across the country to turn to Twitter to voice their thoughts.
But a series of tweets by Stars singer Torquil Campbell, sent while parts of Ottawa were still on lockdown, caused considerable outrage as he called Prime Minister Stephen Harper a "fascist," implied that his policies were indirectly responsible for the attack and predicted "this terrible event will be used by @pmharper to further his authoritarian agenda."
UPDATE: Campbell tweeted Friday that he was quitting Twitter, according to the Globe and Mail, which captured the tweets before his account was deleted. Among other reasons, he cited " i'm not really into receiving death threats."
He also claimed "this government has made this country the kind of place where these things are more likely to happen" and added "tell the lies, foment the fear, watch the people fall in line. it's a good day to reread 1984."
It all began with this tweet that Campbell sent this morning this morning:
.@pmharper well, you've succeeded in making us a target; congratulations! now it's time to pass that "anti terrorism" bill, right? fascist.— blue john (@torquilcampbell) October 22, 2014
The negative response came fast and furious, with Campbell engaging and retweeting, including getting into it with Harper's former communications director Andrew MacDougall, a Stars fan with whom he has previously tussled with on Twitter
Campbell then tweeted a YouTube clip from a 2003 docudrama entitled "George Orwell — A Life In Pictures." The two-minute clip contains a scene where an actor portraying the late "1984" author George Orwell speaks about the future.
"I think that allowing for the book being after all a parody, something like '1984' could actually happen," the actor portraying Orwell says. "This is the direction the world is going in at the present time. In our world, there will be no emotions except fear, rage, triumph and self-abasement."
The speech concludes: "don't let it happen. It depends on you."
Campbell then added the following:
everyone shut up and fall in line. it's us versus whoever they are now. self reflection will not be tolerated. cause and effect be damned.— blue john (@torquilcampbell) October 22, 2014
if i could lose weight the way i'm losing followers, i would look fucking fabulous.— blue john (@torquilcampbell) October 22, 2014