12/09/2012 04:26 EST | Updated 12/09/2012 04:40 EST

Alderman John Mar Called 'Banana' In Calgary Shark Fin Bylaw Forum

Twitter, aldjohnmar

The debate over a shark fin ban in Calgary which is under review got ugly when Calgary Ald. John Mar was called a "banana," a derogatory term for Chinese people seen as "too white."

Mar along with Ald. Brian Pincott were invited to a forum where Calgary's Chinese community had a chance to voice their opinion about a proposed bylaw banning the sale of shark fins in the city, CBC reported.

Mar changed his Twitter profile picture to showing him with a banana for a head and holding one in his hand.

"Who is the banana-head & what have you done with my alderman?" asked Twitter user carfreeyyc.

To which Mar responded:

This is not the first time the derogatory term has been used in the shark fin debate.

Last month, Vancouver councillor Kerry Jang was called a "banana" by a Richmond restaurateur.

Shark fin use has become highly controversial because of the way the fins are harvested, with advocates warning overfishing is putting shark species at risk of extinction.

A handful of Canadian cities also have bans in place, while Vancouver and Calgary are both debating their own bylaws on shark fins.

With files from the Canadian Press

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