LONDON, ONTARIO – About six months ago through a link that came up (I think) on the Small Dead Animals blog, I answered a Liberal Party of Canada questionnaire about what I felt were the really important issues that our federal government should be addressing as priorities.
Rejecting all of the usual concerns so beloved by that irredeemably squishy tribe – fiscal cesspits like diversity programs and anti-global warming strategies that are only good for the immolation of billions of nonexistent dollars – I made my way to the bottom of each proffered list to that little box marked ‘other’ and wrote in helpful suggestions and imprecations of my own.
“How be we look for ways that Canadians can pull together instead of being divided into groups of oppressors and oppressed?” was one. And another was “For the sake of Canadians’ self-respect, could you ask our Prime Minister to stop making public apologies for the long ago deeds of others whose situations and motivations he doesn’t comprehend and then crying because he is so moved by his own moral superiority? It really is quite unseemly.”
Needless to say, my suggestions were not taken up or even responded to but I did somehow get placed on a Liberal Party e-mail list for the solicitation of funds. And over the Easter weekend as their first quarter fundraising drive for 2018 drew to its disappointing climax, I received nine increasingly strident requests to fork over some moolah; three of them sporting personalized return addresses of such big cheeses as the Prime Minister himself, his hugely talented songstress of a wife (who passed her children into the care of state-funded nannies so that she could take up her pen to ask me for more money) and Azam Ishmael, National Director of the Liberal Party of Canada.
I decided to respond to Mr. Ishmael. Then, remembering a recent directive from the federal government to all Service Canada employees to avoid oppressive forms of address which may not be an accurate reflection of a client’s current gender identity, I dropped the ‘Mr.’ and substituted the more gender-sensitive honorific of ‘Sponger’. “Dear Sponger Ishmael,” I wrote. “I’d like nothing more than to give you 15 dollars but the problem is, I identify as pro-life and I don’t see how, in all good conscience, you could bring yourself to accept any payment from such a despicable reprobate as me.”
In taking part in this less than civil exchange, I was breaking a pact I had made with myself. Back in the fall of 2015 when The London Yodeller was still flying its freak flag high, I wrote (some would say) an intemperate column bemoaning the ascension of Justin Trudeau to the office of Prime Minister of the Dominion of Canada. The late Bob McKenzie of 1,000 Words or Less fame (dear me, but I miss him and his unfailingly cantankerous ways) pointed out that my harping on about this part-time drama teacher’s utter lack of qualifications and experience for the job he’d just landed was a little like someone assailing my right to pontificate on public affairs in print because of my early employment as a dishwasher.
I thought Bob’s analogy was only so-so (for one, my capacity for destruction as a mere pundit was pretty small potatoes compared to the sort of havoc this air-headed Dauphin could wreak) but I took Bob’s words to heart in the spirit of ‘Oh, give the young lad a chance’. The Tories had enjoyed a good long run under Stephen Harper’s leadership and what a treat it had been for almost a decade to feel that responsible adults had their hands on the steering wheel of the state. It was somebody else's turn now and it was actually a kind of relief to devote my attention to other infinitely more rewarding subjects like books, music, art, theology and the cultivation of orchids and let the dismal, sniping world of politics go hang itself for a while.
But the problem with turning your back in disgust on politics for a stretch, is that the bastards get it into their heads that they can get away with anything. Sure, sure, decimate the economy because of your starry-eyed delusion that a national budget is something that “will balance itself”. We expected no less from Prime Minister Selfie. Though only 27% of Liberal MPs are women, appoint them to 50% of your cabinet posts and when someone asks you why you’d do something so suicidally stupid, put on your especially smug face and say, “Because it’s 2015”. Well, that’s business as usual when a self-proclaimed male feminist has more regard for diversity quotas than qualifications for the job.
And hold a town hall meeting so your Canadian subjects can have a little face time with their prince and then interrupt your interlocutor who is so gauche as to use the word ‘mankind’ and tell her that ‘we’ (the Royal We, of course) prefer to use the word ‘peoplekind’. Yeh, like that’s a word. Sheesh. I guess he couldn’t use the somewhat more excusable ‘humankind’ because it’s still got a smelly old ‘man’ in it.
All that is the kind of stuff that falls under the purview of a ruling prime minister and can be dialed back if a majority of Canadians ever get it into their heads that maybe having their affairs managed by a jumped-up social justice warrior isn’t such a great idea after all. But one area of mismanagement where Justin and his acolytes in subsidiary government offices warrant some pushback right now is when they install and promote policies that run clear against Canadian law. And interestingly enough – though he, like his father before him, frequently identifies himself as Catholic – the areas where he’s running afoul of the law all have to do with restricting the rights of free speech, religion and assembly of Catholics, Christians and Canadians generally, especially those who happen to be pro-life.
Consider the need to re-route the 21st March for Life in Ottawa this May because of a bumped-up bubble zone law that now forbids this annual assembly of silent pro-life marchers to even walk down the block of Bank Street where a Morgentaler abortuary is located.
And then call to mind the two campaigns being waged in many churches: one of them to retain the right of Christian doctors to not be compelled to refer their patients to “euthanasia-friendly” doctors at the risk of losing their jobs; and the other to not compel Christian charities and community groups to tick a box asserting that they’re cool with abortion (in other words, to deny their beliefs or to lie) if they want to continue to receive taxpayer funding from the Canada Summer Jobs program.
Christians have sensed for some time that they are barely tolerated in this country but have taken reassurance that at least freedom of religion and speech are enshrined as rights in the Canadian Charter. But the animosity, particularly towards Christians of pro-life convictions, has been dangerously ramped up since Trudeau became leader of the Liberal Party and then prime minister. Once he became party leader he announced that no pro-lifer would be allowed to stand as a Liberal MP or Liberal candidate, and in his speeches he’s forever banging on about abortion as an enshrined Charter right — which it is not.
As an underqualified newbie who clearly rode into office on his father’s exalted coattails, you’d think Trudeau would have some regard for what his own father said on this matter when crafting our much ballyhooed Charter. But the national president of Campaign Life Coalition has a far better understanding of what is and isn’t in our Charter than our current Prime Minister. As Jim Hughes wrote in a November column in The Catholic Register: “In a letter dated July 6, 1981, the senior Trudeau told Archbishop Joseph MacNeil of Edmonton, the president of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops that an amendment to the Charter was unnecessary. ‘The arguments advanced to show that the Charter will create an entitlement to abortion on demand have been clearly refuted in the opinion given by the Department of Justice. In my view, the need of an amendment has not been clearly demonstrated,’ Trudeau wrote.
“A month earlier,” Hughes tells us, “the prime minister stated: ‘Because the public is evenly divided on the subject of abortion it was the government’s ‘considered view’ that a position favouring one side should not be enshrined in the Charter. The Government feels the issue is not one which should be defended by the Constitution.”
In point of fact, not only is abortion not an enshrined Charter right, Canada is the only Western nation that has no law regulating abortion at all. So for the sake of burnishing his feminist credentials, Justin Trudeau is making the whole thing up and seeking to deny a substantial number of Canadians their actual Charter-enshrined rights in the process. What a piece of work this male feminist is.
most recent books
Three Artists: Kurelek, Chambers & Curnoe
and his essay collection
No Continuing City
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