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Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Navigating Progressive Cant

by Tim Murray

Kathleen Wynne veiled in mosque
Premier Kathleen Wynne, feminist and gay rights activist, forced to sit like a third class citizen in the corner of a mosque in Toronto, while the men prayed.

We are not different. We are the same. We are all Canadians
— says Kathleen Wynne everyday.
We are a nation of diverse people, and diversity is our strength
— says Justin Trudeau everyday.


Hmm. We are diverse but we are the same. But if we are the same, then we are not diverse. And if we are not diverse, we are not strong. So if we are the same, we must be all weak because we are not different. But if we are not different then we can't be all Canadians because Canada is a nation of diverse people who underneath it all happen to be the same. Or is that we are the same people who are always diverse? That's what makes us strong, or weak, as the case may be. We are diverse in the same way as everybody else which makes our nation so unique. And strong — despite our differences — which are non-existent because we are the same.

I think I'm getting it now. I think am now fully fluent in diversity-speak. I feel stronger already. It must be the same for you too, because you are a Canadian just like me, despite our strong differences, which makes us more Canadian. And it is the same story across this diverse nation, which when you look at it, is the same everywhere.

Having just undergone this cognitive re-structuring, I am now able to say with ambivalent confidence that while just yesterday I promised to push for electoral reform to accurately reflect our differences, I now have done an about-face, because since we are all the same then by definition we are all on the same political page. So there is no need to calibrate votes accurately or implement proportional representation. I am also able to say that despite my concerted efforts to showboat my simulated commitment to climate change action, I now approve of the Kinder Morgan pipeline after I initially opposed it because I am a man of diverse opinions, the same as you, and because, after all, we are all Canadians, strong and indifferent from sea to shining sea.

I also understand that we must be tolerant of our differences, which makes everyone strong, except those who are not different. Just ask Canadians. Any one will do because we are the same, especially the more diverse. And we all subscribe to Canadian core values because we are the same but don't ask anyone agree to them because that would be intolerant of different people who are all strong Canadians notwithstanding their sameness.

Comforted by this catechism, I now feel empowered to express my diversity by transitioning from my arbitrarily assigned gender identity to any one of the now 65 alternative models that do not necessarily align with my male genitalia. So don't be surprised to see me sitting in a dark corner of a mosque in women's clothing behind men safely removed from any possibility that I might invalidate their prayers. I won't be bothered by the imam's abuse because I know that as a Canadian he will understand that under my dress I am just the same as he, despite our superficial differences — which only make us stronger. And since Justin Trudeau has asserted that ours is a propositional state, perhaps he might proposition me after the service. Unless of course he is covertly female — like some of the praying men on their knees before him, no doubt.

Armed with my newfound understanding of what defines Canada and the strong tolerant open inclusive caring diverse uniform people that inhabit it, I now feel fit to take a run for the office of Premier for the propositional province of Ontario, pending sexual re-assignment surgery. Oh, and did I tell you that I am taking lessons in Arabic?

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