N.S. NDP candidate resigns over sexist material posted online
A second Nova Scotia election candidate has resigned due to his online conduct.
Dartmouth East New Democrat Bill McEwen admits to publishing sexist content to a website he hosted and using rude language to describe people who are gay.
McEwen started a website in 2011 called The Bullpen, which states it is an online magazine for men and not women. It goes on to say, “In a world of breast implants, fast food, and cheap beer, what's not to love about being a man?”
The website was made to celebrate being a man and “mock the d-bags of this world.”
McEwen issued a statement Monday night saying he will resign from his position immediately.
“I apologize for my past actions and believe that I must be accountable to my community and the residents of Dartmouth East for inappropriate statements I made and supported in the past,” the statement reads.
McEwen also acknowledged some Facebook posts from 2012 and 2013, in which he uses offensive slang to describe people who are gay.
“I am very, very sorry about that,” says McEwen. “I know that this is a really terrible thing to have published and I apologize to everyone affected by it. The misogynistic stuff, the stuff about the LGBTQ communities, I am very supportive of equal rights and so that was really poor judgment.”
McEwen says he took down the website because he was uncomfortable with the content. He admits he deleted the Facebook comments.
McEwen’s candidate profile says he is a former naval officer, award-winning journalist, and is professional.
Nova Scotia NDP Leader Gary Burrill did not return call from CTV News Monday, but he did tweet the following statement Monday evening:
"Our Party continues to be deeply committed to combatting sexism, misogyny, homophobia, and all forms of discrimination and oppression."
Our Party continues to be deeply committed to combatting sexism, misogyny, homophobia, and all forms of discrimination and oppression.— Gary Burrill (@GaryBurrill) May 16, 2017
Earlier in the campaign, the Liberals fired candidate Matt MacKnight due to a similar issue. At the time, Burrill didn't mince words.
“When a person runs for office, people have a right to expect some standard of conduct and of character, and the Liberal Party has found that their candidate in Pictou East is not of that standard of conduct and character and they have insisted that he withdraw himself,” Burrill said following MacKnight’s firing. “This seems like the right course of action for them to take and what people would wish to see them do.”
As for McEwen, he says sexism, misogyny and homophobia are “pervasive within our culture” and “we must work hard to combat these, and other forms of oppression within our communities, and within ourselves.”
Since nominations are now closed, the NDP cannot replace McEwen. This leaves Dartmouth East with Liberal candidate Edgar Burns and PC candidate Tim Halman. Independent Andrew Younger withdrew earlier.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Sarah Ritchie and Kelland Sundahl.