EXTRA, EXTRA: Reporter evokes Old Testament, asks Scheer if homosexuality a sin, belabouring non-issue
Politics in Canada and media’s coverage of it bear little resemblance to the real-world street these days, and Parliament Hill is a great example of this troubling and widening divide.
On Wednesday, rookie and returning Conservative MPs who voters sent to Ottawa gathered with senators for a caucus at West Block to discuss the federal party’s future and its leadership in the aftermath of a losing, Liberal minority government finish on Oct. 21.
Under the shadow of petroleum icon EnCana’s HQ exodus last week to Denver, Colorado, a nationalized $4.5 billion “leaky pipeline” that cannot get twinned, soured relations with China and uncertain USMCA trade deal ratification stateside, some reporters remained fixated by embattled party leader Andrew Scheer’s position on gay sex.
I use the term “gay sex”, because one reporter’s combative entrée and followup question during Scheer’s scrum, after he survived his first leadership test at caucus, was phrased in rather Biblical terms: “Do you believe that being gay is a sin?”
And the reporter did not stop:
This line of questioning is inspired by a facile notion that if Scheer won’t march in a Pride parade, which he hasn’t, then the public is left with no other option than to believe the Conservative leader would roll back LGBT rights to the Age of Antiquity.
As Scheer attempted to reiterate his party’s inclusiveness–something he’s repeated ad nauseam since longtime Liberal minister Ralph Goodale (defeated this election) tweeted a 15-year-old speech against gay marriage Scheer made as a backbencher –the reporter interjected:
“But you’re not giving your personal opinion,” demanding that he come clean.
Scheer: “My personal opinion is that I respect the rights of every single Canadian… and to always fight for the rights of every single Canadian, including the LGBT community.”
Goodale’s August 22nd Tweet, boosted a day later by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Svengali of divisiveness, Gerald Butts (no longer available on Twitter), triggered media who in the moment, conveniently forgot that like Scheer, and on two occasions himself Goodale also voted against the notion of same sex unions in the Commons.
Goodale’s bit of craven hypocrisy was ably noted by National Post‘s Chris Selley in the same 24-hour news cycle, but the media remained hellbent on the subject, pestering Scheer about it prior to the official election period and throughout, tossing in abortion too because why not – all Christians hate that, too, right?
Even the U.S. Democratic Party took a similar anti-gay marriage position up until the end of President Barack Obama’s second term in 2012.
But besides the mainstream media’s selective application of its religiosity matrix that lit the firestorm over Scheer and Pride, America’s first black POTUS’ endorsement of Trudeau in the 11th-hour of a campaign blighted by #TrudeauBlackface was ironic in itself, on top of a gleeful reception of it by Butts and Co.
On the matter of Old Testament crime and punishment, affixing it Scheer’s Christianity and employing conjecture that he would impose “God’s law” on Canadians were he ever PM, it’s worth taking some time to unpack this to understand the level of cockamamie logic it took to arrive at such an idea.
So come on a journey back through time to a relatively lawless period about 1,000 years after the invention of soap, and some 3,100 years before the discovery of penicillin, when Genesis was written.
Interpretations differ on what actually happened between Noah and his son Ham in the Old Testament’s first chapter, when God populates the Earth, gives humans free will, then gets very angry when they misbehave.
Some believe Ham sodomized his father, others insist Noah walked in on Ham railing one of Noah’s wives.
Regardless, Ham’s fate for his transgression leaves his son Canaan “cursed”; his descendants known as Canaanites are enslaved by the Israelites, who later murder them all after God commanded the children of Ham be annihilated.
Harsh punishment indeed, and similar incidents pepper the Bible for all types of sexual sinning including God’s destruction of the twin dens of iniquity, Sodom and Gomorrah. Leviticus edicts set down around the 6th century BCE–Babylonian times–have been interpreted as injunctions on incest and homosexuality; citations later weaponized by the Church to persecute gays well into the 20th century.
Though the issue of gay marriage rights in Canada is settled in law, and has been since 2005 when we became the first country outside of Europe to legalize such unions, a largely esoteric debate about Old Testament scripture and “God’s word” on homosexuality continues in theological circles and online forums.
But by and large, anti-gay interpretations profited by those clamouring for the gay marriage law to be reversed, have largely been reduced to fringe views in wider Canadian society.
Unfortunately, outside the castle walls of places like Canada in which hate crimes are pursued and prosecuted, the body count continues to rise for scores of unwitting LGBT victims of Islamic State, Iran, Putin’s Russia and myriad global backwaters where life is cheap and human rights codes, non-existent.
The 20th century is littered with state sanctioned and monitored behaviour regimes, ideological impositions–religious or irreligious–that ended with the murder of millions in places like China, where this very moment the regime rounds up Uiyger Muslim men for re-education camps, Uiyger women left to be raped by the local Chinese.
These parallel applications of guilt-by-association or non-association, in the extreme–and that’s what we’re talking about here, the extreme application of ideology whatever that happens to be–are reduced to trifling footnotes whenever next year’s pride roll call is taken by some of the more militant Pride committees.
While Scheer’s attendance at such an event is demanded to prove his “solidarity” with LGBT, conversely some Pride organizers prevent community police officers from marching in solidarity, or put caveats on their attire; either anathema to the original Pride mantra of inclusiveness and love, regrettably lost as well in this fog of cognitive dissonance.
It’s so predictable in a way, and even used as comedic device in a 1990s Seinfeld episode, where Kramer’s attendance at an NYC March for AIDS is insufficient and he’s beset upon to “wear the ribbon”.
But these contradictions never seem to bother reporters too much, except when the aim is to smear, as Vice magazine did when it “outed” then-Conservative Foreign Affairs Minister John “Rusty” Baird in 2013.
In this abject bit of gibberish–Is Canada Run by a Gay Mafia?–the author remains seemingly oblivious to the fact that if Baird is gay, he likely wanted it kept a secret whilst travelling to commit statecraft in backwaters that still handed out cruel and unusual punishment for homosexuality.
If you can stomach the snark, it is insightful reading for a taste of the mainstream’s paragon of virtue mindset, considering that outside of Western and westernized nations, it’s a hard time whatsoever finding a Pride event, let alone getting any sort of LGBT rights, particularly in the Old Testament’s cradle.
Unless of course, you happen to reside in modern day Jerusalem for example.
In the Holy Land and not far from Jerusalem Pride, LGBT rights are pretty much non-existent. The political strife in Egypt has seen LGBT there harassed and arrested, Syria is in ruin following civil war and Islamic State infestation, and in nearby Ramallah or Gaza Strip, forget about it.
Asylum seeker John Calvin–a Christian convert and grandson of Palestinian terror group Hamas’ co-founder–told CNN in 2015 as much, before his asylum claim was denied by Canadian authorities and Calvin sought refuge in New York City.
Yet Scheer’s Pride avoidance–perhaps a national record of some kind, like his claim he won the “strongest majority government in Canada’s history” in #elxn43–remains a constant source of aggravation for members of the press gallery, despite plenty of issues arguably more worthy of asking Opposition members’ to opine upon.
Our country is on the brink of total Balkanization. There is no doubt about that. It’s spurred by separatist sentiments in the West, a resurgence of separatists Bloc Québecois and Indigenous leaders, like Treaty 8 chiefs caught in the middle who are speaking out. The situation only becomes more contentious with Bloc MPs holding a go-to power balance in the Commons.
When this East-West divide couldn’t get any worse, we remain a doormat for illegal migrants making bogus asylum claims that further burden an already overloaded immigration system.
Given this totally unnecessary, quasi-domestic/foreign affairs baggage and presented with former Immigration critic for Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition, Calgary Nose Hill MP Michelle Rempel, media still required a few minutes from her to opine on Scheer’s Pride no-shows.
Here is a two-minute exchange on the issue that occurred during Conservatives’ Wednesday confab, when MPs slip out to fill news slots and talk politics without divulging any specifics about ongoing caucus deliberations. In this context, without anything else to talk about, reporters were primed and so was Rempel.
But how many will pay any mind or attention to other aspects of Rempel’s response–a laundry list of real discrimination LGBT folks in Canada still face and how her party is committed to addressing them.
For G.T. Lem–who bills himself on Twitter as “1 Source For Videos That Cut Through The Right-Wing Noise & Counters The Anti-Liberal Bias Narrative With FACTS”–his takeaway is that Rempel “DEFENDS” Scheer’s choice, while downplaying her (rather accurate) description of what’s become a “symbolic” political litmus test.
Forget that there are LGBT people who do not go to Pride, for whatever reason and non-LGBT folks, who love it. Having freedom of choice and rights also means the right not to participate or being kowtowed to do so, but if you’re Scheer or anyone who takes a position contrary to supposed mainstream progressivism, then look out.
If you had just arrived from another planet, or were transported by time machine from Ancient Babylon, you’d probably think the entirety of Planet Earth had gone mad; mankind’s inhabitants anyways, or as Trudeau calls us: Peoplekind.
Whatever the collective mental state of the nation, CBC’s Rosemary Barton is also under the spell of Scheer’s take on LGBT rights and took to Twitter to punctuate his response to the low-rent ‘is being gay a sin’ query.
And so the inordinate amount of time spent on Scheer’s Pride record, apparent harbinger for low information voters and media types who believe a Conservative Scheer government would quash all and sunder rights for our LGBT neighbours, friends and colleagues. Nobody credible seriously believes this garbage, yet media remain transfixed it’s a totally real possibility and one the day’s most pressing issue.
Unfortunately, or fortunately–depending on one’s political persuasion or adherence to social mores–the Q&A moment about alleged gay sinners competed against what was perhaps Scheer’s finest stump speech hour, given in fewer than seven minutes to reporters, and seven weeks too late.
With a nod to “a frank discussion (in caucus) about the last election campaign”, acknowledging his disappointment and desire “to get it right the next time”, Scheer launched into a rebuke of Trudeau that rings as true today, as it was when the campaign began on September 11.
“The sad truth is, Trudeau has left this country more divided than ever before,” said Scheer. “Picking fights with premiers, pitting region against region, Trudeau has set the stage for a national unity crisis… this is Trudeau’s mess but Conservatives are here to clear it up.
Though it’s never too late for Scheer to attend one of Canada’s smorgasbord of annual Pride events, even in a far flung place like Inuvik, Northwest Territories, for Conservatives’ governing fortunes, their leader’s newfound gumption isn’t going to re-order the planets or turn back the clock to August 22.
That’s when Scheer and his advisors should have hit this head on. But they didn’t and here we are in this parallel universe of litmus tests and virtue signalling, heading into the 44th federal government frame, a minority government no less, as serious national challenges boil in realpolitik, both domestic and foreign.
After his caucus voted down a change to the party’s constitution enabling it to toss their captain–a mandate that still remains within party’s membership purview–Scheer emerged swinging for the fences promising to restore “ethics and accountability” and getting “the energy sector back to work.”
As Trudeau spent the last few days at his favourite surfing spot in Tofino, B.C., home of Pacific Rim National Park, Scheer demanded the PM return to Ottawa and blasted our G7 surfer dude for “stok(ing) the revival of the separatist Bloc Quebecois and has sown the seeds of disunity in the West”.
“These are pressing issues of national importance that need to be addressed so I am calling on Justin Trudeau to reconvene Parliament as soon as possible, to do so.”
So will Canadian voters give Scheer a second chance and will media extract the same pound of flesh from Trudeau for his perceived shortcomings? That remains to be seen. Conservative Party members will have the first say anyways, at a mandatory leadership review set for their April convention next year.
As for Trudeau, his immediate future will depend on the confidence of the House, pretty much a sure-thing given he can tack right or left for support without having to compromise with Conservatives.
And as for Scheer and the LGBT issue, stay tuned for Pride Month June 2020, if he even lasts that long. In the interim, Scheer said that Baird has been tapped to conduct “a thorough and external review of the campaign”.
The Democratic debates took that place in Iowa saw a heavy moderator bias against Bernie Sanders, prompting many Democrat voters to trend #CNNisTrash and #NeverWarren.
A few days ago, “sources” told CNN that Bernie expressed doubt to Elizabeth Warren on whether a woman can win the Presidency.
Bernie Sanders called the allegations “ludicrous,” saying “it’s sad that, three weeks before the Iowa caucus and a year after that private conversation, staff who weren’t in the room are lying about what happened.”
He added, “Do I believe a woman can win in 2020? Of course! After all, Hillary Clinton beat Donald Trump by 3 million votes in 2016.”
But Warren’s campaign refused to respond.
Elizabeth Warren later said confirmed that Bernie had told her this, but refused to go into details.
This spar between a socialist and a seemingly-progressive candidate was weaponized by CNN when during the debates on January 14th.
Moderators asked Bernie whether he said a woman couldn’t win. He, again, denied it and added that, in fact, he had asked Elizabeth Warren to run against Hillary Clinton and he only ran because Warren refused.
The moderators, then, asked him the same question again. He denied these allegations again.
However, then the moderators went on to asked Elizabeth Warren if she “agrees with Bernie’s claim that a woman can’t win”, to which Bernie and the audience laughed.
Elizabeth Warren responded with, “I disagree” and changed the topic.
But that wasn’t all. CNN also spent a major portion of the debate on whether US troops should stay in the Middle-East. Bernie Sanders was the only one who said they should be pulled out.
However, when it came to the question of healthcare, the moderators kept asking Bernie “how he was going to pay for it.”
If the bias against Bernie Sanders couldn’t be more clear, CNN framed questions and headlines with an explicit anti-Bernie tone.
Many on the left and right were furious at the utter lack of objectivity from CNN, causing a spike in the hashtag #CNNisTrash.
At the end of the debate, Bernie reached out to Elizabeth Warren for a handshake, which she explicitly refused. Hence, Bernie supporters also began trending the #NeverWarren hashtag.
On Google, CNN promoted explicitly promoted Warren to undermine Bernie.
Many in other mainstream media outlets such as MSNBC and the Hill, were also confused by this explicit anti-Bernie bias by CNN.
Conservative Party Leader Andrew Scheer blamed “Iranian Regime alone” for the downing of a Ukrainian passenger flight 752 Tuesday, only one day after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau put blame on increased tensions.
Scheer’s tweets revealed that Trudeau briefed Scheer on the situation with the downed flight. “We must always remember the Iranian Regime’s actions that led to this horrible atrocity,” the tweet reads.
Scheer then goes on to give a call to action to the Trudeau Liberals to proceed as follows:
1. Immediately implement the Conservative motion passed by Parliament in 2018 to list Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as a terrorist organization.
2. Demand Iran compensate all victims of the crash, repatriate their remains, and hold the perpetrators of this atrocity accountable.
3. Be prepared to impose Magnitsky Sanctions on Iran if they don’t fully cooperate with the international investigation.”
Scheer calls the demands an “appropriate response” that would move to help the families of victims. “The Iranian Regime can not get a free pass after killing 57 Canadians.”
Iran has begun investigating the incident, as two Canadian Transportation Safety Board investigators make way to the region, with two more on the way. The crew will be sent to analyze black box data.
Several Conservative Party figures have reacted online to the news that Canadian Flight 752 was downed by an Iranian missile.
Conservative MP, Canadian Armed Forces veteran, and potential party leadership hopeful Erin O’Toole commented on the situation on Twitter.
The comments posted only hours after Prime Minister Trudeau addressed media confirming that intelligence from allies showed the flight was taken down by an Iranian missile.
O’Toole stated that Iran shooting down a civilian aircraft “is nothing short of madness,” directly condemning Iran and their regime.
“Whether it was intentional or not, it was an incomprehensibly reckless act that has forever scarred Canadian families and communities,” O’Toole said on Twitter. “Canada must work with our allies to apply pressure on the Iranian regime to submit to a complete investigation so that Canadian families can find justice and closure.”
Other responses from the Conservatives included reaction from Calgary Nose Hill MP Michelle Rempel Garner, who brought up questions about the crash site and it’s security.
“How is the crash site being secured? What is Canada doing to ensure that it won’t be compromised? What will the process be for repatriating the remains of Canadian citizens? All questions that the government need to answer.”
Others, including former Harper cabinet member and MP Pierre Poilievre and CPC leader Andrew Scheer, gave direct condolences to those who lost their lives.
Ontario Premier Doug Ford also called for an investigation to be conducted into the plane being shot down.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also gave his sincerest condolences, telling Canadians that his government “will not rest” until answers are found.
“The families of the victims, and all Canadians want answers. I want answers. That means closure, transparency, accountability, and justice. And this government will not rest until we get that,” stressed Trudeau to the media.
The majority of the 176 victims were connecting to Canada, including 63 Canadian citizens. The victims included students, families, professors and newlyweds.
Dragons’ Den star, Vincenzo Guzzo, is running to be leader of the Conservative Party of Canada.
Speaking to The Post Millennial, David Tjordman, who was a federal Conservative candidate in Montreal in the last election, stated that “[Guzzo] made it clear he was going to be running … to me, and to a few other people as well.”
“He said he was going to declare after he came back from his holiday, and the reason why is that he feels he has the background in terms of, not necessarily political experience, but definitely business, leadership, and life experience, and he believes he’s the right man to lead the party and defeat the Liberals.”
A couple weeks ago there were media reports that Guzzo was seriously considering running.
As well as this, three separate sources who are close to Guzzo, confirmed to The Post Millennial that Guzzo was intending to run.
Guzzo made his fortune as an entertainment mogul: running and operating Cinemas Guzzo, which is the largest cinema operator in Quebec and the third largest movie exhibitor in Canada.
Due to his success in the cinema industry, Guzzo was welcomed onto Dragon’s Den where he was know for his flamboyant investment strategy.
CPC candidates will have to pay $300,000 and will have to gather 3,000 signatures—effectively limiting the competition to affluent Conservative supporters or party officials with an already established support base. Last Friday the party announced would-be candidates have ten more days to register to run in the CPC leadership race.
Guzzo is the second Dragons’ Den star to run for the CPC leadership race, the first being Kevin O’Leary in the last race, where he dropped out midway through and backed Maxime Bernier.