A social media firestorm erupted over the weekend after photos surfaced of what many are calling a racist parade float.
In a since-deleted Facebook post in response to the float, the Sundre Pro Rodeo stated that the rodeo does not approve floats for the parade and that responsibility falls to the parade committee.
The parade float that participated in the Saturday morning parade in Sundre had a tractor pulling an individual dressed in a fake beard, with a turban and a suit. The words "The Liberal" were printed on the side of the trailer being pulled by the tractor.
Social media responses from provincial officials were swift in condemnation. Alberta's Finance Minister, Jason Nixon, wrote on his Twitter that he strongly opposed the float.
"I strongly condemn the racist float that appeared in the Sundre parade. Discrimination has no place in Sundre or anywhere in AB. I have been assured by parade organizers this float was not approved, & that they are putting measures in place so this does not happen in the future."
Two Members of Parliament for Calgary also expressed disgust and shock at what transpired. Conservative Member of Parliament for Calgary Forest Lawn, Jasraj Singh Hallan, wrote on his Twitter: "This is absolutely disgusting. These kinds of acts have no place in Canada. This should be condemned in strongest terms by all."
George Chahal, the Liberal Member of Parliament for Calgary Skyview wrote in a tweet, stating, "The Sikh community in Canada, of which I am a proud member, has a wide diversity of political perspectives. More importantly, Sikhs have been a steadfast force for good in Alberta and across the country. Shame on those responsible for this despicable display of racism."
The Sundre Pro Rodeo was not available for comment at the time of publication.