We’ve reached a point in Degrassi’s history where it’s gone beyond just being a relatable teen drama, or a show that’s just ripping stories from the headlines. Last year, Degrassi’s team sat down to create a story about people being welcoming toward a group of others fleeing terrors we could never imagine.

We watched those stories earlier this month, as Degrassi opened its doors to Syrian refugees with open arms. This weekend we watched as President Trump’s Executive Order denied citizens from seven Muslim majority nations (including Syria) entry into America.

Linda Schuyler and Stephen Stohn have released the following statement:

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My personal thoughts…

There have been so many responses to this situation that echo Linda and Stephen’s thoughts that anything I could say on it has already been said. However, I feel like there’s no better time for a message directed toward Degrassi’s own fandom and the trend of behavior within the community over the past several years.

Now more than ever, fandom is full of young people who are not only socially aware, but willing to speak out without hesitation. While it’s great that you want to be “woke” and vocal about social issues, don’t ever forget that it all starts with the basics. It’s about more than just pointing out other people’s wrongdoings and calling them out on it. We must always be aware of our own actions, and demand from ourselves that we treat fellow individuals, in real life AND online, with kindness and respect.

Degrassi’s fandom should be a place where people can have fun and enjoy a show they love without getting harassed, and they should never feel like they aren’t welcome. People shouldn’t want to leave fandom because they’re afraid of getting bullied by their peers; enough of us deal with that in our real lives as it is. It’s disheartening to see people say Degrassi’s community is a hateful place.

We can’t sit here outraged over Trump’s behavior, spouting off how awful he is and that he’s #NotMyPresident, then turn around and attack other fans over Triles/Zaya/any of the ships or characters that you love OR hate. Regardless of your position, bullying others for their preferences simply shouldn’t happen.

Two major themes in Next Class Season 3 were 1) It’s OKAY for people to do things differently and 2) kindness and acceptance. The Degrassi writers have now stated multiple times what their agenda is:

Degrassi’s fandom should never be known for being such a toxic community, not when its creators are adamant about pushing messages of love and tolerance. Someone recently asked why everyone on the show was able to get away with treating Esme so horribly in Season 3…there’s no difference between what those characters did, and the endless instances of us trashing each other in the fandom of a TV show that constantly tells us that we should be better than that.

As people, we are better than that. What you say and how you treat people online affects real-life people, whether you realize it or not, and we should always be striving to be better people. We’re seeing right now what happens when hate tries to prevail in the world. It’s not just up to Degrassi to teach us love, respect and acceptance; we should be teaching that to each other in every single aspect of our lives.

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Posted by Kary

5 Comments

  1. Maybe they missed the part where it’s a 3 month moratorium on 7 nations, nothing in it said anything about Muslim, nothing says a permanent ban. Apparently the USA isn’t allowed to restrict who enters it and becomes citizens, for some reason According to people in other countries who don’t live in the USA. I guess because you write a tv show that makes you a foreign policy expert who knows we are less safe now.

    So when president Obama banned Iraqi immigrants a few years ago for 6 months, he was legitimizing intolerance and violence. I missed the degrassi statement released on that.

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    1. Very well said statement Kary. Something we all need to hear. and how ironic you wrote about tolerating others beliefs and the first commenter makes me want to go off lol

      Hey Brian, you must have also missed trumps campaign when he did say he will enforce a muslim ban. Or when he asked Rudy Giuliani how to do a muslim ban but legally? You missed that too?

      Have you done any research on this topic or even looked at the news lately? Or do you only watch conservative news sources? Obama never banned green card holders that have gone through the difficult process of residency and have possibly lived here for years.

      Obamas administration also never detained refugees and searched there social medias and asked them what are their views on the president. Something only a dictator would do.

      And it dosent make you a political genius to understand that, if you ban a country, multiple countries, it will only incite more hatred to USA. For example, how would you feel if France banned all US citizens for 3 months. Do you love France now?

      Anyone with a half a brain could understand that, even you Brian. But obviously not your president. But hey I guess because you executive produced “The apprentice” makes you an expert on foreign policy right?

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      1. Show me where in this order the word Muslim is mentioned. And if france wants to ban USA residents for any period of time, that is their right to do it. Countries can make their own laws, many French people are dead from terrorist attacks which is what this 3 month moratorium is trying to prevent.

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  2. Of course I cannot point out where the order mentions the word “Muslim”… And do you know why that is? Because that would be highly illegal. and Thats why Trump called Rudy Giuliani and asked him how to do this legally, which Giuliani foolishly admitted to on the news! Look it up!

    and what I meant to say with my France analogy is this… How do you think americans would feel if France banned our citizens ? Im sure you wouldn’t mind, neither would I. But there would be backlash against all things french; and from Trump loving americans who might be less then smart, it might even incite violence towards french people..

    Now, knowing that, you can imagine how banning other countries could incite more violence and hatred towards Americans and USA. and we already have years of history against us that give us a bad name. Such as invading other countries for our own benefit, stationing our military in countries we dont belong, stealing from other countries ect.

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  3. Perhaps relevant to their reply is the fact that after the ban in the USA. A crazy Trump loving anti-immigrant alt-right guy took a gun to a mosque in Quebec city and shot 6 innocent people during a service. All of Canada has been showing solidarity with its muslims citizens since that heinous terrorist attack. At this point more muslims have been killed by anti-muslim terrorist attacks in Canada than have been killed by Muslim terrorists (and the only two cases of such in Canada have been Canadian born converts and not immigrants).

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