Ted Byfield: How the claptrap of Political Correctness is ruining political debate
Sticks and stones may break my bones,
but names will never hurt me.
I was delightfully surprised to discover last week that this aphorism, known to all children in my 1930s childhood, is still well known to children today. I stated the first line to two of my grandchildren who are in junior high school. and both provided the second line without hesitation. Which probably means that the entire Sixties generation absorbed it and passed it on to the post-modernists. and that the whole computer-television generation has failed to abolish it.
Everybody seems to know it, that is, with the possible exception of the government of Canada, one of whose ministers last week actually refuted it. Being called names, he said, is just as bad as being knocked senseless with a blood-spattered hockey stick. Plainly, the man’s mind has been totally Ottawashed.
Here is what happened. Mohammed Rafia and family, Syrian refugees, arriving in Canada 14 months ago, were interviewed by immigration officers and admitted. They settled in Fredericton. In some sort of family dispute, Mohammad beat his wife with a hockey stick for half an hour, leaving the stick spattered with her blood. He was sentenced to one year’s probation. What made the case a national incident, however, was Mr. Rafia’s defence. Nobody had told him when he arrived that it was illegal in Canada to beat your wife.
This unsurprisingly and very appropriately brought a response from Dr. Kellie Leitch, Conservative MP for Simcoe-Grey and a professor of orthopaedic surgery, who ran for the Tory leadership and dropped out on the ninth of the 13 ballots. In her campaign for the leadership, she advanced what would seem an eminently sensible idea — that refugee applicants be quizzed by immigration officers on their familiarity with Canadian law, particularly on points where it disaccords with the practices of the country they came from. When the Rebel Media disclosed the case. Dr. Leitch tweeted the obvious point: “A battered wife and a bloodied hockey stick. That’s the legacy of Trudeau’s Syria refugee program.”
Ahmed Hussen, Canada’s minister of immigration, was quick to respond in the Globe and Mail: Ms. Leitch’s comment was “as disgraceful as domestic violence itself,” he said. “Domestic violence is clearly something we abhor and condemn. What Ms. Leitch is doing is equally reprehensible because she’s tying a problem that exists everywhere — both in refugee countries and in our society. This is a problem that many societies grapple with. She’s tying that in with our refugee policy.” In short criticizing the Liberal governments refugee policy is just as “reprehensible” as whamming somebody with a bloodied hockey stick for half an hour.”
This article continues at [Ted Byfield Blog] How the claptrap of Political Correctness is ruining political debate