Monday, October 5, 2015

Intolerance, Hatred, and Fear

Here we are just two weeks from the election and the Conservatives are pulling ahead. Why? Intolerance, hatred, and fear (also: racism, bigotry, ignorance, prejudice, and xenophobia).

Less than a month ago Stephen Harper hired Lynton Crosby (possibly illegally). Lynton is a political strategist known for identifying "wedge issues" and getting politicians to leverage them  on the road to electoral success. Since he was hired we have heard about:
  • "Old stock" Canadians
  • Niqabs
  • Barbaric cultural practices
And guess what? It's been working. The message is clear: you should be afraid. Fear those who have different skin colour. Fear those who worship differently that you; whose faith you don't understand. Fear those from different parts of the world. Fear those that are new.

Old Stock Canadians

You know, those who have been in Canada since the beginning. No, not the First Nations. Pay no attention to them. Not even 1000+ missing or murdered aboriginal women are worth talking about. What Stephen Harper means by that is old, rich white people.

Niqabs

There has been lots of talk about these. So much that it's erupted into a maelstrom that no one could have predicted. Well, Lynton did. A dozen or so women a year request to be allowed to wear the niqab at the citizenship ceremony. There's an easy solution to this that was looking the Conservatives in the face, but they chose a different tactic.

Barbaric Cultural Practices

There's already a law passed (in November 2014) that makes certain cultural acts illegal (child, forced, or polygamous marriages and gender-based family violence). More illegal? I thought Canada's laws on these sorts of things were already pretty clear. Now we need an entirely separate law just to highlight our collective displeasure of these things? More laws are the answer? Seriously? Further to that, if the Conservatives get elected they'll staff a tip line where Canadians can call in if they see any barbaric cultural practices taking place.

The message is clear: you should be afraid.

You should fear those from afar who will stop at nothing to get into Canada, marry off their daughters, steal your culture, and bomb your church.

Intolerance, hatred, and fear. If you're a Conservative politician these are your most valuable tools. Lynton Crosby knows it, Stephen Harper knows it, and according to the latest polls a large number of Canadian voters have been caught up in it. Hook, line, and sinker.

If you're a Conservative voter, at best, you're accepting of the use of these tools as electoral tactics. At worst, well, you find fear mongering to be an admirable quality instead of something that should be eliminated from this election, every one after that, and from our society as a whole.

If you even have the slightest inclination toward racism, bigotry, ignorance, prejudice, or xenophobia Stephen Harper is playing to your fears and wants you to know that the only protection around is the Conservative Party of Canada.

Here's the truth:

  • The only "old stock" Canadians are the First Nations. 
  • There is a perfectly reasonable solution for the Niqab at citizenship ceremonies. 
  • There are already laws in place for the crime of practicing of something culturally barbaric. 

It's all just a distraction to keep you from realizing that you have nothing to fear and you really don't need Stephen Harper at all.

http://votetogether.ca

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~ Andrew

(Note: the views expressed here are my own and are in no way affiliated with any other individual or organisation)

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