Sunday, February 22, 2015

Stephen Harper and the Foul Flames of Bigotry

In his more than nine years in power Stephen Harper has done many foul and disgusting things. But he has never stooped lower than he has now.

And he has never been more dangerous.

So I'm glad to see that some in the MSM are finally waking up to what he is trying to do.

And criticizing the way he is so blatantly and so shamelessly fanning the flames of ignorance and bigotry.

On Feb. 10, the town council in Shawinigan, a Quebec city of 50,000 people in the woods north of Trois-Rivières, voted to reject a zoning application for a mosque.

Two days later, Prime Minister Stephen Harper was in Victoriaville, a city of 40,000 in the woods south of Trois-Rivières. Mr. Harper announced he will appeal a federal-court decision that found that Pakistani-Canadian Zunera Ishaq has the right to take her citizenship oath while wearing a niqab, a veil that some Muslim women wear as a sign of their faith.

Criticizing him for pandering to ignorant bigots like André Drouin.

Mr. Harper’s comments and Shawinigan’s decision were applauded by André Drouin, a municipal councillor from Hérouxville, a village of 1,340 near Shawinigan. In 2007, Mr. Drouin drafted a code of conduct that outlawed stoning and bride burning, neither of which had ever been reported in the area.

And starting to worry about where the crazed and increasingly desperate Stephen Harper might lead us...

Mr. Harper’s back is to the wall. If he loses the next election, or even fails to win it convincingly, his career is likely over. Since oil prices collapsed, the economy is not the political winner it once was, leaving fear as his best issue. Things could get ugly between now and the election.

And all I can say is it's about time. Because no other leader in modern Canadian history has ever stooped so low. 

And as Don Lenihan points out, Harper's comments about the niqab ruling, at such a time and in such a place, was no accident or coincidence.

Harper’s comment was crudely calculated to push some hot buttons, especially in Quebec, by singling out these Muslims and labeling them as un-Canadian. Similarly, his jihadist-like rhetoric about the terrorists having declared war on us, hating our way of life or wanting to kill us has no deeper point than to create a climate of fear and mistrust among Canadians, as though we had suddenly been transported back into the Middle Ages.

It was an act of calculated bigotry.

And his criminally irresponsible behaviour is both outrageous and dangerous.

This is not only worrying, it is dangerous. Demagoguery and xenophobia play right into the hands of the terrorists. They raise tensions between Canadians, ghettoize Muslims and help radicalize youth. In short, they not only provide the oxygen terrorists need to carry out their business; they begin to extend the terrorists’ reach into our own communities.

As is the behaviour of all the other Cons like Jason Kenney, Peter MacKay, and Chris Alexander who are all doing their part to whip up xenophobia for crass political purposes.

For can you imagine what this country might be left looking like should their criminal strategy succeed?

And Lenihan is right, the opposition parties should be working together to nip that  bigotry in the bud, before its poison spreads further.

By working together as a team, the opposition leaders would motivate Canadians to inform themselves, exchange views with one another and, ultimately, help them see Harper’s demagoguery for what it is.

But of course even that won't be enough.

For those who would threaten the social fabric of this country so blatantly and so shamelessly, must not only be removed from power as soon as is humanly possible, and by all legal means necessary.

They must be held accountable for their crimes against Canada.

And be made to answer for what they have done...

And our mission couldn't be simpler or more sacred.

First we must defeat them.

And then we must jail them...

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  1. Anonymous10:54 AM

    The Bill is now being called the Harper/Trudeau Bill on twitter, as it should be.

    1. hi it really? Well I'm not surprised. But it doesn't really matter since the only way that will will be changed or scrapped is if we defeat the Cons. So the Liberals and the NDP will end up working together to kill it...

  2. As a woman, I abhor the idea that anyone anywhere would willingly wear a niqab...never mind in Canada, where immigrants like me come supposedly to live free of such male-imposed cloth prisons...and BTW there is nothing in the Koran that tells women to wear any sort of face covering, it is a secular, culturally-endorsed form of male dominance and control, and, as such, has no place in this or any democratic society..
    Of course, if a woman chooses, out of fear or ignorance, to wear a niqab here in Canada, yes, it is her 'right' and since this particular woman has agreed to show her face to the judge at the swearing ceremony, I would grudgingly say that was none of Harper's business...
    It is not a sign of bigotry to outlaw stoning and is a sign of a healthy democracy where such insanity is never acceptable.....

    1. I believe you have completely missed the point. Do you really feel that in a 'healthy democracy' any municipality would have a need to outlaw stoning or bride-burning. This gesture was made purely to raise the spectre of a foreign atrocity, and was clearly a sign of bigotry.

      I even question your proclaimed "immigrant status", as you seem to seem to see the whole 'niqab' issue from your own narrow point of view. No where in Canadian Charter or Law is anyone being forced to where any form of secular garb. However, as Canadians, we have decided by Charter to defend the rights of those who CHOOSE to do so. Any first or second generation immigrant would understand this concept.

    2. hi mizdarlin...I'm afraid you're falling into Harper's trap. You and I may hate the niqab, but our feelings are irrelevant, for the 100 or so women in the whole of Canada who wear one, do have the right to do that. And Harper is just trying to create a wedge issue and inflame xenophobia to try to win the next election. Which should not be a referendum on the niqab. As for that councillor in Quebec, you don't seem to get that either. The fact is that nobody is being stoned or burned to death, and in a town with no Muslims it is both ridiculous and bigoted to suggest that those in this country are capable of that...

    3. I fall into no traps when i say that I agree that women have the right to wear a niqab...but you have to ask yourself whether a man wearing a niqab to a citizenship ceremony would have the same rights..or any of us. As, probably, the only person responding to this who actually has stood and been sworn in at a Canadian citizenship ceremony who commented here, I can tell you that people turn up in all sorts of ways..
      I just think that it is a rather sad truth that much is being made of her right to be oppressed. If you ever read the Guardian, as I do, you would know that in the UK, FGM (female genital mutilation) is still being practiced there, despite rules to the contrary...this is the sort of thing that makes me assume that no such horrors are being perpetrated on women here is naive at best..that is why I have no problem with the rules being enacted, whether or not this particular councils agenda was racist or whatever...

  3. Harper has made Canada a target with his foreign policy and lack of diplomacy. Now he tells us to be afraid and that he can only protect us if we give up our freedom and live under constant surveillance. Just like an abusive spouse.

    1. hi got it, it is both obscene and absurd. But the good news is I don't think it will work. It is a product of desperation, and it's a little or a lot too obvious. Canadians will see through him and reject his foul strategy. A normal man would understand that, but Harper is a clinical psychopath, so he lacks the receptors to make him know when to draw the line. He's already overplayed his hand, and it will come back to haunt him....

  4. e.a.f.7:56 PM

    If Stevie and his Cons continue along these lines I can see the Cons et al in front of an International Human Rights tribunal one of these days. It will be so fun.

    stevie boy and his Cons are fermenting hatred of Muslims. I never thought I'd see the day I was defending the niqab but now I am. Its called freedom of religion. Its not stevie's religion which is the only one, its all religions. Stevie may think its "not how its done here", well there is some place stevie might feel more at home: the middle east. they have a lot of those closed minded guys there.