Thursday, March 25, 2010

Idiocy? Banning Religion.

It's just the stupidest thing you could possibly do. You can't get rid of a religion or a culture by banning it. You'd think that people in Quebec would realize that all that does is drive it underground, romanticize it and make it stronger.

But the Quebec government is going to ban the niqab on government premises. It's the worst possible thing.

First of all, the women who wear these things are supposedly the victims of the a male-dominated religion. Let's just grant that for the sake of argument. So what are you doing to these victims? You're forcing them to choose between government services and the wraths of their evil husbands. Brilliant!

Second, it's a cultural thing. These women are acclimatized to feel naked if they don't cover their faces. I can't speak on their behalves directly, but it might just be like walking around topless for them. Do you know what the cure is for that feeling? Education. It may in fact be the case that certain women will never, despite everything our society offers, get used to the idea of baring their faces in public. So what? I doubt their daughters will feel the same.

What is logically necessary?

If a woman wants a government service that requires identification, she must be able to prove her identity. That's it. If that means showing your face, temporarily, then that's what they'll have to do.

Women who want a credit for a course involving public speaking must be willing to engage in public speaking. Otherwise they don't get the credit.

But to tell a woman to drop her culture and walk around naked (from her point of view) is simply ridiculous. I don't care how frightened you are of Muslims or brown people or people with funny accents, you don't get to run their lives like that. It's just not how we do things here.

I'll be perfectly honest. As an atheist, I feel that pretty much every religion is a curse on the human race. The subject of enlightening people is always a matter of concern. But this isn't the way. This just won't work and we should know better than to try.

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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Coulter: Confusing Dissent and Censorship

So the bile-spewing Ann Coulter arrived in Ottawa yesterday and got so frightened by people who were legally disagreeing with her that she ran away and is filing a human rights complaint.

There's nothing in what I've read that suggests anyone threatened violence. Okay, nothing except a quote from Ezra Levant that protesters were "swarming", whatever that means. Since there's no sign that the police arrested anyone, as they are wont to do at the least provocation, I'm going to ignore Ezra and wait for a less biased report.

Here's how it works, Ann. I know that, in your Fox News Bubble, you don't often encounter disagreement. You, O'Reilly, Hannity and Beck spew all the hatred and nonsense you want and nobody talks back. Canada isn't that big on protesting either, really, but we're a little better than the sheep you're used to.

Here in Canada, we have free speech. So you're permitted to come here and, as you did, tell a Muslim girl to "Take a camel" because "Muslims shouldn't be allowed on planes". Ignorant, but you can say it. You weren't arrested, were you? No, didn't think so.

But here's the thing. Free speech isn't just for you. It's also for all of the people who disagree with you. Get it? People are allowed to disagree with you. They're allowed to hold up signs and chant nasty things about you. They're allowed to be quite loud and vocal in disagreeing with you. That's part of free speech. It's called dissent.

I know. I know. You're not used to it. That circle jerk thing you have going inside Fox just reinforces your notion that nobody ever thinks you're wrong. But you came to Canada and were shocked to find people loudly disagreeing with you.

Oh noes!

So you and Ezra decided, instead of facing a disagreeable crowd who would shout down your ignorance and laugh at your stupidity, to make a big deal out of filing a human rights complaint. Good luck with that. When I see protesters arrested for threatening violence, you might have a case.

Until then, I'm going to just assume you're another cowardly, right wing blowhard.

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