One ex-Canadian Cabinet Minister Counters Writer’s “Hate Speech” with Offer of Hospitality


When one Canadian-American writer went ballistic on Greece and Greeks, calling them crybabies and deadbeats and advocating for a military dictatorship to bring “morality and discipline” to the unruly Greeks who dared to expressed themselves in a democratic way, hundreds of Greek Canadians responded.

Diane Francis was relentless, Tweeting constantly her disapproval of the Greeks’ unruly behavior.

Many Greek Canadians tweeted angry responses and tried educating Diane Francis, an editor-at-large for one of Canada’s biggest newspapers. Others, like the Hellenic Canadian Congress wrote Francis a response letter telling them how they feel and another— Nick Galanopoulos, a Greek Canadian lawyer from Vancouver threatened legal action.

But the response of responses— the mother of all responses— has to go to an ex-cabinet member of Ontario government and former parliamentarian named Dr. Marie Bountrogianni, who invited Francis to visit her in her parents’ native Hania, on the island of Crete.

Dr. Bountrogianni, who is active on Twitter here, took to social media to issue an open letter to Francis.

Bountrogianni tweeted to Francis an open invitation, asking her to come and see for herself the beauty and experience the philoxenia— or hospitality of the Greeks, while simultaneously meeting the 275 members of her extended Greek family.

Bountrogianni, who is the Dean at the Chang School at Ryerson University and was formerly the president of the Royal Ontario Museum— Canada’s biggest— also gave Francis a lesson on what a military dictatorship is.

“Many of them have survived more than one military dictatorship,” Bountrogianni wrote. “Other families were not so lucky. Hundreds were killed in the last dictatorship in the late sixties and early seventies— killed for nothing more than speaking out against the government!”

No word yet from Francis if she’ll take Bountrogianni up on her offer and give some good old fashioned Cretan food and hospitality a try. One thing for sure, it will make for a great selfie.


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