Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Love is hate

Nice front page of The Globe and Mail today. A headline announces that Prime Minister Harper, to my surprise and delight, denounced the idea of cutting immigration, claiming it to be one of our salient national strengths, a view with which I accord. But just as the man's stock was rising with me, I made the mistake of actually reading the article.

Why is there strength in our diversity? Well, according to the PM, because it makes people hate us, of course!...

"It is true that somewhere, in some communities, we will find . . . apostles of terror, who use the symbols of culture and faith to justify crimes of violence... They hate open, diverse, democratic societies like ours, because they want the exact opposite," Mr. Harper declared.

That's right, folks. You heard it here first. We're strong because our welcome inspires... hatred! God almighty. You know, even when the man sets out to make sense, he just can't resist the urge to put on his ass and wear it for a hat, can he? Never miss a chance to put a negative spin on a positive item, or use it to stir fear in the people. What next? Vegetables are good for you! ...Except when they cause cancer. Oh, you didn't know...?

And can someone, anyone, please tell me why Stephen Harper has apparently thrown his hat into the ring to go toe-to-toe with George Bush as "North America's Most Brainless Rhetoricist"? This is one crown I would happily leave to that republic down south.


James said...

Harper's always loved the GWB School of Political Rhetoric, though I have no idea why.

Lone Primate said...

He's conservative. That's how they think, that's how they talk. Short, feel-good sound bites; highly portable, junk food for the mind.

Cold Cut said...

I can't figure out how you came to that. I read the speech and felt perfectly at ease with it. I live in Toronto and know what the PM was talking about. The same kind of strife you see in other big cities doesn't happen here because we all live together without the walls and segregation of communities in other countries.

What the PM was referring to were those people from each ethnic group that don't believe in diversity. Believe it or not there are many Muslims, Chinese, Indian, Jewish, catholic, protestant, etc, etc, who don't want members of their community to co-mingle with outsiders. These people are not welcome even by their own communities in Toronto. It would destroy the openness we all benefit from.

Like it or not, there are people abroad who do hate that. They want the walled communities and hate us for not wanting them too. I have read the Koran and it is quite clear that Muslims must not deal with non-believers. Thankfully my many Muslim friends don’t believe in those particular passages. The PM wants us to keep our openness, but just remember we are going to be hated by some for being open.

Lone Primate said...

I can't figure out how you came to that.

I can't figure out how he came to that. It's an utter non sequitur. On the one hand, we have "Canada's diversity is a positive thing", followed immediately by the caveat "people hate us for it". How is that a positive thing? How does casting that aspect of our nation in that light equate to a positive thing? Does linking a supposed urge to destroy us to our immigration policy really serve to strengthen that policy or make it seem wise? Is it going to reassure the Canadians who see our immigration policy as a negative thing in the first place? Let's not mince words here. If the man set out to buttress our immigration policy, he immediately undermined it by suggesting it's a cause of terrorism... soft-peddled, but the implication is there. Frankly, I have the sneaking suspicion he did it deliberately, and precisely to damn Canadian immigration with feint praise.

The notion that anyone ever hated anyone else just for who they are, as repeatedly espoused by Bush, Blair, and now Harper, is absurd. People grow to hate other people based on their actions and injuries to them. We have simply turned a deaf ear to the criticisms of others and carried on without a blind bit of notice.