’We most certainly hope and expect that this does not in any way reflect reality’

The Prime Minister gets some mail.

More than 180 Canadian organizations and public figures have signed a letter to Prime Minister Stephen Harper calling on him to repatriate Omar Khadr — one of the largest efforts yet in a growing campaign to bring the detained Canadian home. 

“We believe that your inaction with regards to this important case, compared to your active involvement in other cases (such as the repatriation of Brenda Martin from Mexico), has been, rightly or wrongly, interpreted by the Muslim community as indicative that your government considers Canadian Muslims to be second-class citizens,” the letter, released by the Council on American-Islamic Relations Canada, reads. “While we most certainly hope and expect that this does not in any way reflect reality, it is nonetheless crucial that you understand that this is a growing perception within the Muslim community.”

The letter’s signatories include virtually every major Muslim group in Canada, as well as several Jewish and human-rights organizations. Among the individuals who attached their names to the plea are former NDP leader Alexa McDonough, Naomi Klein and Maher Arar. Former Progressive Conservative MP Flora MacDonald, who served as secretary of state for external affairs under Joe Clark, also signed the letter.

The support of Ms. MacDonald is probably not to be too easily dismissed.