December 07, 2016

Are we getting stupider, or just being duped?

By Hendrik van der Breggen
The Carillon, December 8, 2016

Are we getting stupider, or just being duped?

Maybe I'm getting crankier as I get older, but there's an awful lot of stupid going on. Here are some examples.

Our Prime Minister praises Fidel Castro by saying Castro was a “remarkable” person who “served” and “had tremendous dedication and love for” the Cuban people. Really?

Only if “serve” and “dedication” and “love” include murdering thousands of political dissenters by firing squad, putting additional thousands of dissenters into inhumane prison cells, forcing thousands upon thousands of men, women, and children to flee in rickety boats in shark-infested waters while soldiers shoot at them, impoverishing the millions who don't escape, and being willing to sacrifice Cuba by initiating nuclear war.

My goodness. Castro was a murderous tyrant. But our PM says a murderous tyrant “served” his people? Our. PM. Says. A. Murderous. Tyrant. SERVED. His. People.

Let that sink in—and shudder.

Also, consider this: Our federal government is avoiding due process in its efforts to pass Bill C-16 which protects all gender identities and expressions. Bill C-16 seems innocent enough. But think.

All. Gender. Identities. And. Expressions.

Facebook, which had 58 gender identities, now has “unlimited” gender identities. What does the bill mean? Does it include the 52-year-old man who identifies as a 6-year-old girl?

It's also not at all clear that critics of gender identity will not be considered purveyors of hate speech. Will dissenters be prosecuted?

Where is the robust, truth-seeking debate? Why haven't dissenting expert witnesses been invited to parliament’s committee process?

And why, by discussing Bill C-16 openly, is University of Toronto psychology professor Jordan Peterson risking his job? Risking. His. Job.

Is a gender identity ideology, now almost enshrined in law, choking freedom of speech? Once C-16 is passed, will Trudeau's government squelch dissenting opinion and thereby “serve” Canadians as Castro “served” Cubans?

Speaking of dissenting opinions, and getting closer to home, this summer local gay pride organizer Michelle McHale said to those who disagree with pro-gay ideology: “No! No! You don't have a right to your opinion.” No. Right. To. (Dissenting.) Opinion.

Let that sink in. Is this Castro-style “tolerance”? Why aren't local media all over this?

Alarmingly, this ideology is on a long march through all our institutions, including public schools.

Also, Canada's criminal code doesn't recognize unborn children as human beings. Huh? Clearly our law is 100% out of touch with contemporary science that tells us the unborn are in fact human beings.

What are they, if not human beings? Kittens? Puppies? This is beyond stupid.

Yet over 100,000 prenatal children are killed annually in Canada (most killed without medical necessity). But political dissent, especially in Canada's ruling party, is squelched. This is pro-abortion ideology at work.

Also, a while back Manitoba's college of physicians and surgeons asked for public feedback on physician-assisted killing but called it “physician-assisted dying.” Physician. Assisted. Dying.

Of course we all want medical assistance when we die: we all want clean bandages, food, and morphine as death takes its course.

But by “physician-assisted dying” our college of physicians and surgeons means to kill us, not care for us. This. Is. Orwellian. Why weren't the media all over this, too?

About physician-assisted killing: it's now the law of the land in Canada, so present concerns have to do with conscientious objection.

University of Manitoba ethicist Arthur Schafer tells us that all hospitals should perform such killing because rights to conscientious objection belong not to institutions but to individual doctors and nurses. But in another interview this same ethicist tells us that if doctors have moral qualms about physician-assisted killing, they should choose another profession or branch of medicine.

So, on the one hand, doctors have a right to conscientious objection, and, on the other hand, they don't. This. Is. Absurd.

It's also pro-death ideology at work.

Maybe I am getting crankier as I get older. Nevertheless, there is a whole lotta stupid going on. And we're getting duped by it.

Think, folks. Vigilance against ideological tyranny requires it.

(Hendrik van der Breggen, PhD, is associate professor of philosophy at Providence University College. The views expressed in this column do not always reflect the views of Providence.)

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