Frederick Blair

Canadian civil servant

Frederick Charles Blair was the director of the Government of Canada's Immigration Branch of the Department of Mines and Resources from 1936 to 1943.

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Quotes edit

  • Why don't you people learn to live with your neighbours wherever you are? Why are you hated?
    • year unknown, purportedly in letter sent to Toronto businessman Saul Sigler, reported in 1982 by CBC

Disputed edit

  • None is too many
    • see #About below, sometimes attributed this to him or not. For example, the original quote on page xix of the eponymous book in 1983 was:
      • Why Canada was closed to the Jews of Europe is the subject of this book. It is the story summed up best in the words of an anonymous senior Canadian official who, in the midst of rambling, off-the-record discussion with journalists in early 1945, was asked how many Jews would be allowed into Canada after the war. His response seems to reflect the prevailing view of a substantial number of his fellow citizens: “None he said, “is too many." Canada did not stand alone. Arguments still rage over whether more Jews might have been saved, or for how long rescue was possible.
    • "anonymous senior Canadian official" has been interpreted as "a civil servant" in 1982, "Fred Blair, Canada's top immigration official" in 2009, or "an immigration agent" in 2011

About edit

  • the luckless Jewish passengers encountered the anti-Semitic Frederick Blair, director of the immigration branch of the Department of Mines and Resources, who not only refused the refugees entry, but later bragged about keeping Jews out of Canada (it was Blair's infamous "none is too many" stance on Jewish immigration that was to metastasize into government policy).
  • Canada did not want the refugees traveling on the vessel either — “none is too many,” an immigration agent would say of Jews such as those aboard the ship in May, 1939.
    Mr. Farber explained that the congress has never asked Ottawa to apologize for the wrongdoings of those in power at the time — most notably Frederick Charles Blair, the head of immigration, and Vincent Massey, Canada’s high commissioner to Great Britain (and later Governor-General) who, according to the 1982 book None Is Too Many, “worked through External Affairs to keep Jews out of Canada.”
  • Both of Belle Jarniewski's parents survived the Holocaust, but each endured tragedy because Canada refused to open its doors to Jews fleeing Nazis, she told CBC. She says her parents experienced "great difficulty" entering Canada, even when the war was over. Belle Jarniewski's parents survived the Holocaust, although she says they were victims of tragedy because of restrictive immigration policies held by Canada at the time. "In Mackenzie King's government, the director of immigration was called Frederick Blair. When asked how many Jews Canada could accept, his infamous statement was, 'None is too many,'" she said.
  • Blair was the official to whom historians Irving Abella and Harold Troper attributed the comment “none is too many” in reference to Jewish refugees.

External links edit

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