Having an opinion is normal. Voicing your opinion is normal. Your opinion will offend someone. No matter what big tech, politicians, teachers, or those in any other influential sphere tells you, offensive speech does not equate to hate speech and self-censorship is the true enemy. So-called “hate speech” when it does not incite harm to an individual, is a good thing for society and the individuals within it, a lesson my generation needs to learn.
Differing opinions challenge our intellect to grow, to develop, to explore different routes of reasoning and help us relate to others on a deeper level. Heck, they even help us challenge others within our own sphere of influence, which causes them to dig deeper, which causes them to challenge others in their own spheres, and so on and so forth.
Millennials have been taught that if a differing opinion is presented to them that it is justifiable for them to equate it to hate, or if your feelings tilt from positive to negative, or your utopian safe space is poked by someone’s personal opinion that happens to differ from yours (go figure), that you can attack their character, threaten their livelihood or try to have them discounted as a reputable member of our world. This would have once been incomprehensible but has now become the norm in this culture of rage.
As a millennial, I’ve seen how my generation has been weaponized through one avenue that absorbs a great deal of our youth’s time: the “education” system. Educators are teaching that that rage culture is somehow virtuous: to label, and be labelled, is the peak of personal achievement and if anyone challenges the label you choose to wear, we are allowed to explode into a fury of—you got it—rage. This has helped in the creation of a culture of selfishness, absurdity and childish tweens living in adult bodies … did that statement offend you? Good! Learn from it, reflect on it and ask questions of yourself and of others.
Here’s just a small example of how rage culture forms: In several middle schools across Canada the “buddy bench system” has been implemented on playgrounds. This “system” teaches our kids to sit on a bench when they are upset in order to tell everyone how they are feeling instead of them being taught how to work through their emotions in order to gain a more favourable result for themselves, they are projecting to the world that those around them need to know their negative feelings and their friends need to change their actions to correct the situation.
Now let’s take a look at Boris Kizenko, Founder of High Schoolers for Freedom, he was attacked by pro-choice protestors for just trying to have a conversation in a public space. “It’s no surprise I was attacked because our schools push such radicalism. When students are trained to hate conservatives, they attack them,” said Kizenko. I will add that it’s not just conservatives being attacked, but those possessing any viewpoints opposite those who openly display their rage.
This is a disturbing trend that is becoming far too common in our society because of the seeds sown through our education system where feelings are the foundation that form our children’s “curriculum” instead of scientific facts firmly established in biology. Children come out of their classrooms without the knowledge to lead them further into life but indoctrinated by a code of feelings that leaves them confused, with the need to lash out and traumatized. As this way of teaching has progressed in our society, that your feelings are the compass to which your life is to be lived and others are to be perceived, you end up with what we are seeing on college campuses. It is becoming the norm for students to disinvite or violently protest speakers whose viewpoints do not match their own.
Let’s use Dr. Jordan Peterson as an example; he is a clinical psychologist, best selling author and a professor at the University of Toronto. When Peterson sought to discuss with students the idea that free speech is a good thing for all people and that Bill C-16 (a piece of legislation that would force the public to use specific language) would be detrimental to civil society, students screamed derogatory names, knocked over his speaker and openly condemned him for his conduct in taking part in what they call “hate speech.”
Another example is that of political commentator, Ben Shapiro who was disinvited to the University of California Berkeley (and then invited back after Shapiro threatened legal action). “Disinvitations” have become a steady trend within the college and university world over the last 15 years according to the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education. They are a way for students and faculty to channel their immense disdain for those who do not hold fast to their ideals in order to block others from hearing the point of view they see as outrageous or dangerous to their worldviews.
We have abandoned moral absolutes and have started to look at life and the situations that impact us on a personal level through the lens of our feelings. Through the lens of our feelings, we funnel the truth, instead of considering the truth and figuring out why our feelings are counter to that of what absolute truth tells us. Did my stating “objective truth” instead of “your truth” offend you? Good! If it did offend you, that should be proof that you have been affected by our culture’s blueprint of “appease everyone and if that fails don’t speak at all.” Don’t take this all upon yourself, however, because there is an immense problem within our educational systems; they have prioritized touchy-feely agendas over the growth and enablement of minds through solid truths.
So, I ask you, if we truly value people and the ideas that have contributed to solving issues within our society for generations, then we need to start respecting others opinions and seeing them as possessing equal value as our own. While treating individuals who hold those opposing views with the same amount of respect as we would desire others to treat us with can be challenging, but it is an absolute necessity.
But, young people are waking up! As they are exposed to the truths that their educators sorely neglected to present to them, they are finding value in dialogue over rage. As I continue to see people choose to explore differing viewpoints than those force-fed to them throughout their time in institutions, they are like pockets of light that will help lead the way forward.
Shortly after Don Cherry’s comments emerged and the leftist elites started ginning up controversy about it, I pointed out that the vast silent majority of Canadians agree with the sentiments Cherry was expressing.
Cherry himself pointed that out himself when he spoke to some of the media following his firing.
And it became very clear how much support Cherry had as social media exploded with expressions of backing for Cherry, and outrage towards his totally unjustified firing.
Yet, that explosion was also matched by the massive nationwide outrage towards Jess Allen of The Social, who made clearly bigoted remarks about hockey fans and players being “white boys” who “weren’t very nice.”
Then, instead of doing the right thing and firing Allen, CTV made clear that she would stay in her job, even as the family of a Humboldt Broncos crash survivor said they would boycott the network.
Allen even doubled down, refusing to retract her comments.
For a long-time, patriotic Canadians have been saying there is a double-standard, where anyone who upsets the tiny (but loud) far-left outrage mob gets silenced and cancelled, while those who attack the very foundation of Canada (like insulting hockey, accusing Canada of genocide, denigrating Canadian patriotism), get to stay in their jobs and even get rewarded.
Some dismissed complaints of a double-standard as the usual partisan disagreements, and the silent majority remained silent.
But now, it’s clear something is happening in this country.
The silent majority is waking up and speaking up.
In the last few days, the reaction to Jess Allen’s comments has been unlike anything seen before in this country. Canadians of all backgrounds have finally had enough of the corrupt elites tearing down everything we love about Canada, and regular Canadians are pushing back like never before.
This has the feeling of a lasting change, with millions of Canadians really seeing for the first time how deeply corrupted and biased the establishment press has become.
We have seen that those in power in the media will listen to a tiny politically-correct outrage mob and fire Don Cherry, yet won’t listen to millions of hockey fans, hockey families, and patriotic Canadians when we demand that Allen be fired.
The hypocrisy and double standard are undeniable.
Now, there is no going back.
With the elites exposed like never before, with the anti-Canadian agenda and rhetoric of the far-left no longer even hidden behind any kind of pretense, Canada is descending into a full-blown culture war.
And that’s exactly what the far-left fears the most because until now, the culture war was one-sided, with only the left fighting and winning over and over again.
Now, the tables have turned, and it’s a real battle for the soul of our country.
For trans ideology to truly spread, it needs to become an inherent part of our core belief system. As natural as the sky being blue, and the earth being round, we must all have the truth of trans as a foundational element of our understanding about the world for it to thrive. Convincing adults is one thing, but to really make this wash, it’s children that need to taught the dogma of multiple gender identities and the ability of humans to swap their sex for its opposite. The purported goal behind teaching children that male and female are nothing more than feelings is compassion, empathy, and anti-bias.
The work to bring children into the trans fold is pervasive and growing, and we’ve seen it in the US and Canada. In Sweden, the government is pouring money into an educational program for drag queens to read to children with disabilities. Meanwhile, in the UK, where trans advocates have a major head start, the BBC is airing educational programming to teach children that there are as many genders as stars in the sky. Both of these programs bring new dictates on gender to young kids. And kids, malleable as they are, typically believe what adults tell them.
Presumably, both the Swedish government and the BBC believe they are doing the right thing, a good thing, taking a positive step in the education of their nations’ children. But why does the Swedish federal government and the BBC want children open to the idea that gender and biological sex are different entities, and that biological sex differences are not meaningful with regard to anything at all?
The Swedish program, implemented on a federal level, is funded by a cache of cash left behind by those Swedes who died without any heirs, and is administered by Kulturforenigen Mums, which has brought in drag storytelling outfit Among Dragons and Drag Queens to create the curriculum. Among Dragons and Drag Queens’ plans is to rewrite those staid, boring, cis heteronormative fairy tales and replace them with stories where perhaps damsels rescue themselves, and handsome princes realize they’d rather fight for their right to be princesses than aspire to true love and responsibility.
The idea behind drag story hour is that children’s concepts of gender are uprooted and questioned by having grown men dressed fantastically and comically as women. While they’re at it, Among Dragons and Drag Queens should bring in some women and men and who have truly bucked gender stereotypes, like dads who prioritize raising their kids over a full-time career, or women who build bridges. Wardrobe is fashion, but life choices are what actually matter.
In the BBC video, children read questions about gender, such as “What are the different gender identities?” The answer is that this is a “that’s a really, really, exciting question to ask.” And another specialist tells children, in a voice rich with wonder and discovery, “do you know there are so many gender identities. So we know we’ve got male and female, but there are over a hundred, if not more, gender identities now. So we know that some people might think they are two different genders, so people might think they are bigender, and then you’ve got some people who might call themselves genderqueer, who are just like I don’t really want to be anything, in particular, I’m just going to be me.”
If this is all so innate, as male and female were considered to be only a few short minutes ago, why do kids need specialized education to understand it? If the goal is compassion, empathy, and instilling an egalitarian mindset, drag story hour and blatant televised lies about there being over 100 genders are not the answer.
So why do the BBC and the Swedish federal government want to make sure children know that men who don’t feel like adhering to male stereotypes and women who don’t want to adhere to female stereotypes are necessarily something other than male and female?
Is this about making sure kids are not prejudiced against people who present and act differently from the expected stereotype? Is the goal to make sure that kids know that they personally do not have to adhere to these stereotypes? Maybe the goal is to break down sex-based stereotypes altogether so that kids know that their capabilities are not limited by their sex?
What these educational programs actually do is solidify and entrench different expectations other than the traditional ones. While these programs have the tinge of compassion, consideration, and inclusiveness, that is actually an illusion. Instead of breaking down the limiting factors of socially constructed sex-based stereotypes and leaving that space open, it fills it with new rules about how not adhering to stereotypes means you are the opposite gender from that which your sex determines you are.
The message behind telling children there are people who are bigender, or multi-gender, or people who “just want to be me,” is that children must choose their gender, not that some people do, but that everyone must. Affirming these delusions is confirming them. What child doesn’t want to “just be me?” And if the way to “just be me” is to say “I’m different from my body,” then that’s what kids will do. These are guidelines to rebellion against the body, they are not telling children “here are some paths,” they are saying “this is the path, walk down it.”
The reason for indoctrinating children early in the ways of society is to make sure they know exactly what concepts and constructs cannot be questioned and must be adhered to, both in thought and action. If trans ideology were about acceptance, something more along the lines of “people are different, don’t judge people for those things about themselves that they can’t control,” we would be in the realm of anti-bias initiatives. If the message were “you don’t have to be limited by traditional gender roles,” that would be about breaking down stereotypes.
In the current merry multi-gender climate, the way that gender stereotypes are bucked is by showing men in dresses, and women speaking up for themselves. This is a strange dichotomy where what male gender warriors are fighting against is wardrobe, and female gender fighters are railing against traditional gender roles. But the thing is, those roles have already been turned on their heads. Women and men have far more freedom than they used to and are free live as they choose. The fact that adults want to transition and live as the opposite sex, or perform drag shows for other adults, has been pretty well accepted. The problem here is that children are being told lies to uphold adult desires.
Don Cherry was trying to make a point about patriotism, loving our country, and honouring those who sacrificed everything so we could be free.
Cherry had clearly seen a lot of people not wearing poppies, and as the public figure who has perhaps done more than any other to show support for our troops and encourage respect for Veterans, Cherry was obviously pissed off.
In remarks that—if people weren’t afraid of offending the cancel culture cops—most Canadians would admit to agreeing with, Cherry said that people who enjoy the freedom of coming here and living in Canada (enjoying freedom not enjoyed in many other nations) should at the very least wear a poppy to show respect for Canadians who fell in war.
Of course, any hint of patriotism or nationalism makes the elites go absolutely crazy, and that’s what happened.
The outrage mobs and cancel culture cops went into overdrive, and Sportsnet (a company that is apparently fine with letting communist China-controlled Huawei sponsor Hockey Night in Canada) fired Cherry.
And they fired him on Remembrance Day of all days, which is a huge insult and totally disrespectful to Cherry considering how much he has fought to stand up for Veterans and those who lost their lives for Canada.
By giving in to the outrage mobs, Sportsnet has disgraced themselves.
Cherry’s colleague Ron MacLean also threw Cherry under the bus, after nodding along with Cherry and giving a thumbs up to his remarks, he then acted like he didn’t really get Cherry’s comments.
Peter Mansbridge also wrote an article for CBC with the subheading, “The notion that Canada’s veterans were all white is dangerously wrong and an insult to thousands.”
Yeah, bro, that would be “wrong” and “offensive,” if Cherry had actually brought up race.
But he didn’t.
Cherry didn’t mention race at all.
So CBC pushes an article by Mansbridge that skews the facts to make it look like Cherry was talking about race?
Also, how about the loyalty of CBC throwing Cherry under the bus after all he’s done for them – including the millions of Canadians who only watched CBC for Hockey Night in Canada?
So now, this is where Canada is:
The Prime Minister wore blackface so many times he can’t even remember how often, and he’s still in power (after getting a big assist from the media), while Don Cherry—a man who does everything he can to bring attention to our veterans and honour our troops—gets fired for saying people should wear poppies.
It’s total hypocrisy, as the examples below make clear:
“Kellie Leitch: “Values Test”
Quebec Government: “Values Test”
Cherry: “Wear Poppies”
Elites: REMOVE HIM!!”
What the hell is going on?
This is a disgrace, and it shows once again why the establishment media and political elites need to be defeated. Their priorities and judgement are broken beyond repair.
A prolific Title IX activist and former Ph.D. student at the University of Southern California (USC) alleges that his school retaliated against him for his activism and that they “did all they could to sabotage” his chance of earning a Ph.D.
Now, he’s fighting back.
Kursat Pekgoz, 31, was relatively unknown until about two years ago. He studied Molecular Biology and English in Turkey and worked as a translator for some time. Five years ago he applied to USC in hopes of earning a Ph.D. in English.
By all accounts, Pekgoz was a standout candidate.
USC was smitten. Though Pekgoz received offers of admission from Tufts University and Rice University, USC wooed him away with an offer of the highly coveted Provost’s Fellowship, which covered his tuition and gave him a living stipend.
“Everything seemed fine during my first few years,” Pekgoz told TPM from his apartment in Los Angeles earlier this year. He conducted research, presented at conferences, and even taught one class a semester for three years.
But by 2017, Pekgoz noticed that his fellow male students had fewer scholarship opportunities than women. He wasn’t concerned for himself— Pekgoz received a full scholarship from USC—but for other male students.
“The injustice is obvious,” he told me.
To try to fix this, Pekgoz filed a federal complaint against USC in 2017, arguing that USC’s “women only” programs violate Title IX, a federal law that threatens to penalize schools if they fail to treat men and women fairly.
Women are the majority of undergraduate students, graduate students, and academic employees today. Despite this imbalance, many colleges offer massive scholarship opportunities and exclusive programs to promote their success.
The complaint was unprecedented. The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) agreed the concerns might be legitimate, as I reported last January.
Noting his success, Pekgoz filed complaints against other colleges. Some nonprofits and attorneys followed his approach; 15 other colleges are now under federal review, according to exclusive documents provided to The Post Millennial.
Pekgoz’s unorthodox strategy catapulted him into the spotlight; both on campus and nationally. Outlets including NBC News, The Daily Wire, Refinery 29, The Chronicle of Higher Education, FOX News, USA TODAY, covered his activism efforts.
As fame graced Pekgoz, USC soon caught wind of his activism efforts. It is impossible to pinpoint exactly when his professors, dissertation committee, and fellow students started to catch on to Pekgoz’s activism.
But it caused him trouble, fast.
“I was on friendly terms with professors before they began shunning me for my stance on gender politics,” said Pekgoz. Two professors—Hilary Schor and Margaret Russett—“sabotaged my dissertation,” Pekgoz claimed.
“Hilary Schor vetoed my dissertation in secret right after she discovered about my Title IX activism, even though she gave me an A and praised my writing before.”
“Margaret Russett, a feminist professor who went to Yale, terminated my Ph.D. student status even though it was her pressure which led me to turn down offers of admission from Tufts and Rice” he added.
Neither professor responded to a request for comment.
In February 2019, Professor Emily Anderson emailed Pekgoz recommending “continuous enrollment for year 6” and noted that “that [USC] can absolutely provide a tuition/health award” if Pekgoz wanted to stay in the Ph.D. program.
But just one day before his sixth year, his dissertation committee changed course.
“I am writing in my role as Director of Graduate Studies to inform you that you will be dismissed from the Ph.D. program in English Language and Literature and the University of Southern California, effective immediately,” wrote Anderson on August 28.
She claimed Pekgoz failed to make “satisfactory progress” towards his Ph.D.
However, Pekgoz disputes the assessment and is fighting to get back to USC.
In an appeal letter submitted on September 27, Pekgoz claims USC officials singled him out, refused to grant his leave of absence request, and gave him an “arbitrary deadline” to submit his first thesis chapter which he claims no other student was subject to.
He also argued that there was “no formal precedent” for the deadline and that the stipulation that the thesis chapter be “viable” was “too vague and arbitrary.” Further, other students routinely take up to eight or nine years to finish their Ph.D., he wrote.
Pekgoz submitted an appeal on September 27. The process is ongoing.
“They were willing to honour me with distinctions before I started my advocacy, but they singled me out for persecution after my advocacy became public,” said Pekgoz. “This has a chilling effect on academic freedom and political discourse.”
“There’s no doubt my expulsion was politically motivated,” he added.
Thankfully, Pekgoz is currently employed. While he says he loves his work, he still hopes to return to USC and finish his Ph.D. Whether that will happen remains to be seen. USC offers three stages of appeal for dismissed graduate students.
The first stage, which involves a meeting with the Chair of the English Department, was denied. The second stage—which involves an appeal letter to Dean Finkle—was scheduled for November 4, but Pekgoz hasn’t heard back.
The last stage involves a formal hearing with Provost Sally Pratt. There is no date set for this hearing as of right now. “There is no date scheduled for this phase as of today. Still, [the situation] involves University employees, so I am going through the motions before taking it to Court.”
Toni Airaksinen is a columnist for PJ Media, The Post Millennial, and a digital strategist for kosher restaurants in Brooklyn, NYC. She graduated from Barnard College, Columbia University, and has also contributed to Quillette, USA TODAY, and The Daily Caller. Follow the author on Twitter: @Toni Airaksinen.