Ronald S. Sullivan was dropped by Harvard for practicing law
Every accused is entitled to a defence. Those who are brought up on charges are innocent until proven guilty. Defence attorneys are tasked with the unpleasant job of working just as hard to gain acquittals for their guilty clients as their innocent ones, because what is at stake is more than one person’s freedom, but the successful execution of the law. At least, that was the idea.
In January, Harvard professor Ronald S. Sullivan Jr. took the job of defending media pilloried, me too’d, Harvey Weinstein. For this noble pursuit of defending a man in need of defence, Sullivan was protested and mobbed by Harvard students, and has since been removed from his post as faculty dean. Just as his client was tried and convicted by mob justice, so too has the attorney been tried and sentenced. The charge against Sullivan was that he was willing to “represent a person accused of abusing women.” Not lost in all of this was the fact that Sullivan and his wife, Stephanie Robinson, were the first African American faculty deans in Harvard’s history.
Accused of rape and harassment, Weinstein has already been tried and convicted in media, and his reputation in the entertainment industry, where he was once a darling and a mogul, has been destroyed. It is this spurious criterion that led Harvard students to condemn Sullivan for taking up Weinstein’s defence. To be clear, a trial has not yet begun. All that has happened is that a man has been accused, arrested, and his career ruined. Apparently, students at one of the most prestigious universities in the country are so ill-informed about American jurisprudence as to be unable to separate their emotional reaction to Weinstein’s alleged infractions from his right to a fair trial.
Criminal defence in the United States has a long and storied history of fine attorneys being willing and energized to form a defence for even the worst offenders. Clarence Darrow’s first big trial was the defence of “Big Bill” Haywood, a union boss who was found not-guilty of the murder of a former Idaho governor, Frank Steuneberg. He went on to defend perfect-crime obsessed child killers Leopold and Loeb, and because of his brilliant defence, while the two were convicted, neither was executed. His most famous case was the Scopes Monkey Trial, defended before the Supreme Court, which was a victory for the teaching of evolution in American schools. Darrow defended some absolutely miserable gentlemen, because what he was defending was the law.
Notorious anarchists and killers Sacco and Vanzetti were defended by Frank H. Moore, a prominent left-wing attorney at the time. Though they were convicted and eventually executed, the trial brought focus to the problem of unreliable witnesses, upon which so many prosecutors relied. This is why a good defence is so essential. If Sacco and Vanzetti were only able to offer a feeble defence, the prosecutorial practice of using unreliable witnesses would have gone untested.
Weinstein has been tried in media. The details of his alleged crimes, the faces and tears of his accusers, have been splashed across news sites and social media. Most people have already formed opinions on Weinstein’s presumed innocence, and presume it isn’t so. However, much of his treatment in the press is a direct result of the times, where guilt is determined based on who the public would more like to believe. In the case of Weinstein, the fact that so many high profile women have spoken out against him has damned his verdict before the trial has even begun. As much as the United States legal system has a tradition of law-centric ideology, it has a history of press trials usurping the real thing.
The trial of Bruno Richard Hauptmann, the man accused of kidnapping and murdering the Lindberg baby, bears the most similarity to the pending Weinstein case. Hauptmann was blasted in the press, tried in the pages of newspapers nationwide before the jury was even selected. The risk of a travesty of justice was so great that it prompted the American Bar Association to issue a call for legislation to strengthen the ability of judges to hold reporters in contempt.
It stated “The recognition by the judge that many newspapers, after all, seem to be giving the public what the public wants and that public sentiment has not yet come to realize what trial by newspaper really involves, in unfairness, both to the defendant and the prosecution and its potential dangers, its abuses, its endless confusion and controversy, and its sordid commercialism of the very home and spirit of justice.” (New York Times, August 21, 1936)
Hauptmann was convicted and sentenced to death. The stated reason for his appeals were that the trial had been unfair, because he had already been tried and convicted in media before the jurors had a chance to make up their own minds.
When Weinstein’s case goes to trial, Sullivan will be able to make a similar argument. Not only has Weinstein been fully prosecuted in the press, but so, too, has his attorney, and with the assistance of an Ivy League university. If an attorney cannot take up the cause of criminal justice without being sidelined for his client’s alleged crimes, there is no justice left in the American criminal justice system, not for those criminals who overcrowd the many prisons, nor for those high profile defendants who can afford the best defence.
The travesty of justice that began with press prosecution will not end with the demotion of criminal justice attorneys from their prestigious posts, but with the removal of the concept of justice across the board. Harvard should take a stand in defence of the right for an attorney to defend, not capitulate to students demands, based in emotion, not the upholding of law.
A sizeable sector of the Canadian sports bureaucracy has recently decided that it is acceptable to allow a biological male to compete against female athletes. Clearly inspired by Bill C16, it is an interpretation of this amendment to the Canadian Human Rights Act that requires scrutiny.
Take, for example, U SPORTS (Canadian Interuniversity Sport). They introduced a policy in 2018 making it permissible for anyone to compete in the category with which they “identify.” A person could be on the men’s team one semester, then self-declare as a “woman” and immediately compete on the women’s team the next semester without being expected to undergo any form of pharmaceutical or surgical intervention.
Those of us coaching every day at ground level are dumbfounded by this development and we strongly disagree. In no way can this be fair to female athletes!
Now, I have played and worked in the sports sector for over 40 years across the globe: in South America, North America, Europe, Africa, Asia and the Caribbean. As an athlete in track and field I won national championships, set national records, achieved NCAA “All American” accolades and proudly represented Canada on many national teams. As a leader, I have coached hundreds of athletes across the development spectrum—beginner to professional—in at least seventeen different sports and even assisted a pair of figure skaters to Olympic Gold (2002). And now I also represent some 3500 people, having been elected as president of the board at Athletics Alberta.
In all these years, after many a scandal, I have NEVER seen anything as preposterous as this “inclusion” doctrine.
Anecdotes accumulate across media platforms about male cyclists, weightlifters and track athletes establishing dominance on female podiums. More alarming, still, are the true stories about female bodies being crushed by impact with male contenders in the contact sports of handball, rugby and MMA fights.
Any policy forbidding us to make a distinction between the sexes is sure to impact athletes and competition officials, alike. Parents have already informed me that they will remove their daughters from sports if their girls are compelled to compete with males and/or share private spaces with them in locker rooms and hotel rooms. And if sports officials become worried about volunteering for fear of being labelled “hateful” in awkward situations where a participant’s identity must be resolved, we will have no ability to conduct competitions at all.
The situation as it applies to Canada seems ironic in the extreme. Even as we launch a national campaign to emphasize “safe sport,” this particular doctrine of “inclusion” is being promoted that will make female athletes more vulnerable than they have ever been in the history of sports!
Perhaps a better word might be “hypocrisy.” What other word could be used when we see the Government of Canada virtue-signaling about investing heavily in gender equity even as it privileges an ideology that threatens to push girls out of sports completely:
“In Budget 2018, the Government of Canada announced a target to achieve gender equity in sport at every level by 2035. This included an initial commitment of $30 million over three years to support data and research into innovative practices to promote women and girls’ participation in sport, and to support national sports organizations in promoting greater inclusion of women and girls in all facets of sport.”
For someone like me with an advanced degree in human biological sciences, the situation is perplexing, indeed. It has long been established that biological sex is permanent and that male athletes enjoy all the benefits their genetic category provides: bigger heart, larger lungs, stronger bones, larger body, greater muscle mass, more blood volume, greater size of tubes bringing air into the lungs, and an exaggerated level of aggressiveness, to list just a fraction of the vast array of physical advantages.
So, when I am coaching a young girl who has all the hopes and dreams of sporting success in her heart, what do I tell her? Am I supposed to lie? Am I supposed to pretend like she has any chance at making a team or a final when I look down the road at an ever-increasing number of male bodies who will be self-identifying into her category?
This situation begs so many more questions: How did we arrive at a point where Canadian sports leaders are formulating and promoting policies that completely ignore the existence of sexual dimorphism (physical differences between sexes)? Was a GBA undertaken? If so, was the impact on female athletes considered?
And what do we do now? How in the world do female athletes in Canada seek redress when everyone is afraid of running afoul of the law? Who is going to listen even if we can find a way to discuss this matter?
It is worthy of note that the very entity that was established to advocate on behalf of female athletes in Canada—the Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women in Sports (CAAWS)—is the one sending speakers to various sports association meetings across the country promoting 100% acceptance of “transwomen” athletes into female sports (presumably at the behest of those eager to promote an agenda using Bill C16). A quick check online reveals the following Position Statement:
“Consistent with existing human rights legislation and CAAWS’s ongoing commitment to achieving equity for girls and women, CAAWS supports the full participation of all individuals in sport and physical activity in the gender in which they identify.”
They claim this is an effort to promote “inclusion” and “safety” in sports. Common sense tells us that it does no such thing. It cannot be “inclusive,” when the very presence of the biological male athlete serves to exclude a female athlete from a lane in a final race or from a position on a team! It is not “safe” when the legislation offers no mechanism to screen for ill intent and when the resulting physical injuries are bound to happen in only one direction.
Since the intent of Bill C16 was to address “discrimination”, I cannot help but ask: Which entity is experiencing discrimination here? When “gender identity” and “gender expression” were added to the Human Rights Act, was “sex” removed? Is it possible that as sports bureaucrats in Canada spend so much time promoting the shiny new rule, they have forgotten that “discrimination on the basis of biological sex” is ALSO still a possibility? Because for me and so many of my colleagues, it seems clear that including a male person in female competition inevitably results in “discrimination on the basis of sex.”
As a person with mentorship status in Canadian sport, I do not recall having been consulted about this doctrine and its impact. When I ask female colleagues, young and old, if they were consulted, nobody has answered in the affirmative. It is fair to say that female athletes across Canada were not consulted.
Apparently, the one person who WAS consulted happens to be a medical doctor who specializes in the hormonal and surgical transitioning of children. He was the key expert on an ad hoc working group assembled by the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport (CCES) in 2012 to consider “trans inclusion” in sports. The document of recommendations (2016) resulting from this one working group is now being foisted upon sports associations across Canada as the unassailable authority on “gender inclusion.”
Take a moment to absorb the irony, once again. A bureaucratic entity (CCES) whose sole purpose is to advocate for NO CHEATING and NO HARM in Canadian sports now makes it a priority to convince the entire sports sector that biological males should be welcome to compete against female athletes with no questions asked. In what way is this ethical or appropriate?
Those of us who conduct sports at ground level have a duty to sound the alarm. Members of parliament MUST understand the crisis that is about to unfold due to this faulty, ill-advised legislation.
Surely, the demise of women’s sports was not the intent of Bill C16?
On the bright side, I believe there are ways that a compromise can be achieved. Looking to our friends across the pond in the UK, their version of Bill C16 has built-in exemptions in law to protect female persons in specific contexts, including in sports. At ground level in Canadian sports, it might even be possible to include a third category in some instances to accommodate self-ID athletes.
Whatever the case may be, it is impossible to arrive at a happy consensus if we are offered no safe forum to meet and speak on this topic. It is beyond time that we are permitted to have this conversation about “inclusion” in Canadian sports without fear of reprisal.
This is Mike Bloomberg’s voice. Damning footage of billionaire Democratic presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg surfaced tonight, detailing the former New York mayor’s support for the state’s controversial “stop and frisk” law enforcement policy.
Speaking before a crowd of 400 people at the Aspen Institute on February 5, 2015, Bloomberg said that to prevent violent crimes, police should seize guns from minorities. Bloomberg specifically noted that 95 percent of murders—both murderers and murder victims—in New York and “virtually every city” were committed by individuals fitting the same profile. “Male, minorities, 16 to 25,” he said.
The speech was redacted in its entirety at Bloomberg’s request, barring videographers who attended the event from everreleasing the footage. According to the Aspen Times, both the Aspen Institute and GrassRoots TV, which filmed the event, confirmed that they would not broadcast the footage online or on television as planned.
However, political podcaster Benjamin Dixon got ahold of the footage and released a portion of Bloomberg’s monologue tonight. The video of the speech is unavailable.
“95 percent of your murders—murderers and murder victims fit one M.O. You can just take the description. Xerox it and pass it out to all the cops. They are male, minorities, sixteen to twenty-five. That’s true in New York, that’s true in virtually every city. And that’s where the real crime is,” he said
“You’ve got to get the guns out of the hands of the people that are getting killed,” continued Bloomberg. “You want to spend the money on a lot of cops in the streets. Put the cops where the crime is, which means minority neighborhoods. So one of the unintended consequences is, people say, ‘Oh my God, you are arresting kids for marijuana that are all minorities.’”
“Yes, that’s true. Why? Because we put all the cops in minority neighborhoods,” said Bloomberg. “Yes. That’s true. Why do we do it? Because that’s where all the crime is. And the way you get the guns out of the kids’ hands is to throw them up against the walls and frisk them. And they start saying ‘Oh I don’t want to get caught.’ So they don’t bring the gun. They still have a gun, but they leave it at home.”
Since launching his bid for the Oval Office, Bloomberg has spent an astounding $300 million on his campaign, going so far as to pay an army of Instagram influencers to express support for his candidacy. The 12th richest man in the world, who is worth over $61.5 billion dollars, has made significant efforts to winning over minority voters by touring across the United States to meet with black elected officials. He even paid a visit to an African-American history museum in Georgia, per the Wall Street Journal.
He may have spent more money than most people will ever see in their lives—but a single video may be enough to sink his entire campaign.
Six adorable, daring puppies and their whiz kid leader, ten-year-old Ryder, rescue people in the community of Adventure Bay. You would have to be a fool to not love Paw Patrol. And that’s where the Canadian state broadcaster CBC comes in!
A new article by Rebecca Zandbergen explores the groundbreaking new theory by Canadian university professor Liam Kennedy that loveable Nickelodeon show Paw Patrol is an insidious tool of capitalism. Kennedy, from King’s University College, has penned a vital new piece of research called “Whenever there’s trouble. Just yelp for help”: Crime, Conservation and Corporatization in Paw Patrol” in the peer-reviewed journal Crime Media Culture. His child isn’t allowed to watch the show, but Kennedy spent countless hours watching it in his office.
In the show, Ryder is the ring-leader of the pups, each of whom has a job to do as part of their team. There’s Chase, the police dog, Marshall, the fire chief dog who can never quite get control of his hose, Rubble, the builder, Skye, who flies a plane for some reason and is the girl pup, Everest, the extreme outdoor adventuring pup, Rocky, the rescue dog, and Zuma, the pup who drives a boat.
Together, they are the Paw Patrol, and they even have a headquarters, because all kids love a home base. Inexplicably, the grown-ups in town depend on Ryder and the pups to help them when they’re in a jam. Probably because it’s a show for kids, so it’s kid-centric. Kids like that.
Kennedy posits that “Paw Patrol, as a private corporation, is used to help provide basic social services in the Adventure Bay community. That’s problematic in that the Paw Patrol creators are sending this message that we can’t depend on the state to provide these services.”
Kennedy was angry that elected officials are not portrayed as heroes: “Mayor Humdinger and Mayor Goodway—kind of the representatives of the state or the government—are portrayed negatively,” Kennedy argued.
Kennedy also pointed out that, at the age of ten, Ryder should be in school, not saving the world. CBC did not bother to ask Kennedy how he feels about real-life school-skipper and saviour Greta Thunberg. We guess some do-gooders are more equal than others.
He rails against the Paw Patrol’s message that “no job is too big, no pup is too small.” “To me that’s an individualist message,” Kennedy claimed. “Pull up your bootstraps, you can do it if you just try hard enough. That kind of message ignores structural barriers in our society and not everyone can do it.”
Since Kennedy teaches at a university level and not in early childhood education, he can be forgiven for not realizing that learning about the self is a primary developmental stage for very young children. They have to identify their own bodies and place in their family before they can organize their thoughts to encompass the broader electoral system and its responsibilities. Paw Patrol shows each characters’ differences, without judgement, and young children tend to relate to one over the other, clamouring for character-specific merch.
For Kennedy and the CBC, this is apparently serious business. We can’t have a children’s television show spreading messages that elected officials can be corrupt or incompetent; we can’t have a children’s show that suggests that you can take responsibility for your community instead of foisting it all off on the state; we can’t have a children’s show where individualism and positivity are promoted. This is the way Kennedy sees Paw Patrol through his Marxist goggles.
At its heart, Paw Patrol is about community, forging friendships and bonds that bring you together to tackle tough situations. It’s a show about a network of friends, some of them puppies, who can work as a team to solve local problems. Ryder, Chase, and the other pups, each of whom has their own civil service discipline and associated vehicle (which can be bought separately), have complementary strengths that help them figure out how to cooperatively find solutions. For kids, the lessons learned would be more about being able to velcro their own shoes, or pop the straw through their own juice box, than creating an independent fire brigade because they can’t rely on government help.
Many of the problems on Paw Patrol are the kind of problems that, should a person call emergency services for them, would never be sorted (cats up trees). The state is a large tool that is poorly suited to small problems, and where individuals can work together to sort out their troubles, they should. This leftist penchant for relying on the state for solutions, for assuming that you’re not the one responsible to help your neighbour because someone who has already been delegated for that job is better able to handle it, belies the very notion of community.
Paw Patrol was created by Keith Chapman, who was also the creator of Bob the Builder, another wildly popular children’s television show. His primary intentions were to entertain children, and to teach lessons about teamwork, confidence, and capability. The most important lessons we teach our kids are those that ensure they can take care of themselves and look out for the people they love when they grow up.
If anything, this ragtag collective of pups and a kid who looks after them is a statement on what you can do if you face your fears, count on your friends, and tackle life’s problems together. Chapman also created a show called Fifi and the Flowertots, and there’s no telling how problematic Kennedy would find that.
What stands out most (besides the complete batshittery that is Kennedy’s critical analysis of a harmless kids’ show) is the fact that this basically confirms the widely-held assumption that academia is dead. When a prof spends hours in his office watching pre-school television, there’s a problem with not only what’s being taught but what’s being thought about. Chapman wasn’t going into the writing room for Paw Patrol trying to figure out how to indoctrinate kids into conceiving of themselves as proponents of the capitalist hierarchy, and despite what Kennedy may believe about Chapman’s unconscious bias, this is a ridiculous place to create a system of study.
We’re sure that Kennedy’s woke colleagues applaud this kind of scholarship. After all, we need to dismantle these oppressive children’s shows if we ever hope to establish a brave new world of kids’ television featuring new, “progressive” shows like Bobby and Bureaucracy Buddies and The Snitch Squad.
Don’t do anything for yourself that the government can do for you. That’s the insidious message behind what seems to be, upon first glance, just a silly example of useless university research. It is indeed utterly stupid and laughable, but it is also quite scary when you take a moment to identify the authoritarian impulse behind it all.
We’re sure that Kennedy will have a long and fruitful career explaining to students and colleagues that Blue’s Clues is heterosexist metanarrative about the patriarchy and how Lunar Jim is thinly veiled advocacy for anthropocentric space colonialism. But for those of us who are not insane, it would be nice to see institutions like CBC and King’s College University stop their cultural regression and do much better.
Dr. Jordan B. Peterson’s personal troubles are celebrated by his detractors. After his daughter, Mikhaila Peterson, opened up about the difficulties her father faced during this past year, a torrent of ill-wishes were released to social media.
A data scientist, engineer and social justice activist had this to say: “do I think he deserves sympathy despite him not extending it to others? Also no.”
Peterson’s legacy is evident in just how many people have been helped by his work. His message is simple, to take charge of yourself and your life, to avoid being controlled by aimless desire, and if you don’t know where to start, begin by cleaning your room.
A professor of law and medicine at the University of Ottawa also prefers to show no sympathy. Here’s hoping he doesn’t teach ethics.
Peterson’s message is one that so many who hear it can relate to, and he’s travelled the world speaking to sold-out audiences. His views are rooted in western ideas, stem from our most ancient myths and legends, and embrace the Christian hero story of self-sacrifice as the ultimate strength.
A writer for the Toronto Guardian had this to say.
Some guy with the Twitter username “im nice” who fancies himself a comedian had this to say:
Peterson has been vilified by detractors in media and the public at large about as much as he has been praised. The reasons behind this are that people don’t like to hear that relativism is not the best way to live life. People who are mired in our contemporary driving philosophy of meaninglessness, that no one way to live is better than any other, that no one choice is a better or worse choice than another, don’t want to listen to someone who says that the hard work of life is worth doing.
Yet a podcaster, community organizer, and author from Quebec City wishes eternal damnation on Jordan Peterson.
Peterson says that the idea that we should accept ourselves as we are is misguided, because at our core, we’re all probably monsters. He brings up the genocides and massacres of the 20th century as proof, invoking the memoirs of concentration camp guards to show that any of us are capable of the most horrific of human actions. None of us are safe from our own worst, or best, impulses. He holds us all accountable to ourselves, to each other, and to the people we love. He speaks about marriage as a relationship that must be nurtured and tended, not abandoned. Peterson recommends that you don’t let your kids turn into unlikeable children.
Not everyone wished him harm, and some pushed back.
Through podcasts, books, speaking engagements, interviews, and YouTube videos, he talks about how essential it is that we each take on our own hero’s journey. He brings up the legend of King Arthur’s knights, recommending that we must seek our journey in the dark place—meaning we must face our fears, not so that we can overcome them, but so that we can know that we are afraid and act bravely in the face of those fears. One very real place where this approach can be made is in the face of addiction. There is perhaps nothing more difficult than kicking an addiction that has you in its teeth.
On addiction and physical dependence, Peterson can speak from experience. That he has this understanding makes his message that much stronger. How trite it is to hear from a teetotaller who has never touched a drop that we should give up the hard stuff. Where it has more power is coming from someone who has been there before us, whether they’ve beaten the addiction or not.
The calls for Peterson’s head on a spike came from the contemporary left, which is a movement that mirrors the heavy-handed vitriol that we used to see with the late 20th century right. This moralistic grandstanding on a foundation based entirely on narcissistic pleasure principles is eating itself. An ideology that purports to care for others only cares for those who adhere to the ideology. There is a growing intolerance for disagreement.
Peterson’s struggle to overcome benzodiazepines is so incredibly humanizing and real. It shows us that, in many ways, he is right. We are all capable of losing control, even those among us who are so great at guiding us how not to. Peterson’s all too human struggle can give the rest of us strength to know that we are not alone in ours. The identitarian, intolerant left could do well to face its demons, just as Peterson is facing his.