The Foodbenders restaurant in the Bloordale neighborhood of Toronto posts anti-Semitic tropes and pro-terrorist content on its social media pages and B’nai Brith Canada is calling on the Jewish community in Toronto to protest.
The restaurant posted on its Instagram page: “#zionistsnotwelcome” and “Zionists are Nazis” and praised Leila Khaled, a terrorist member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), who hijacked two planes in 1969-1970. The PFLP has been declared a terrorist entity in Canada.
Foodbenders also referred to a Canadian Jewish group by stating: “These people control your media and elected officials.” The owner of Foodbenders also wrote on her personal Facebook page that Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is a “Zionist puppet.”
Ironically, Foodbenders deems itself as the: “Little store against racism and against police” on its Instagram page.
B’nai Brith Canada has called on members of the Toronto Jewish community to take action against the restaurant by requesting from Uber Eats and Doordash to halt delivery of Foodbender products until the restaurant renounces its behavior; contacting the City of Toronto to request an investigation of Foodbender’s business license; and emailing local City Councillor Ana Bailão, MPP Marit Stiles and MP Julie Dzerowiczt to speak out against Foodbenders.
B’nai Brith noted that according to Canadian law, specifically section 27 of By-law No. 574-2000, the use of a licensed business to “discriminate against any member of the public on grounds of race, color, or creed” is illegal.
“The sentiments expressed by Foodbenders and its owner are hateful and deplorable, and have no place in the Canadian food industry,” said Michael Mostyn, CEO of B’nai Brith Canada.
“Together, acting within the boundaries of the law, we can ensure that there are real consequences for this behavior.”
Kimberly Hawkins, owner of Foodbenders responded to the criticism by saying that Jewish people and Zionists are definitely welcome in her business.
“I’m not anti-Semitic,” she was quoted as saying by blogTO.com. “That would go against all the other principles that I’ve been standing up for the past few weeks. I believe that Palestinians should be free and have the same equal human rights as everyone and that’s not a stance I will apologize for.”
“When I’m making a statement about Zionism, I am not referring to Jewish people… It’s about the state government,” she stated.
Hawkin’s latest post on Instagram on Sunday night featured a photo of a large blue and white Magen David (presumably meant to be an image of an Israeli flag). The post stated: “Zionists like to appear bigger than they are. The Israeli flag is white for supremacy and blue for cop.”
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)