On Jan. 20, the National Post reported that the Women’s Secretariat, an agency of the federal government that focuses on women’s issues, has called for scholarly papers on the effects of polygamy on women and children which it says could become a legal reality now that Canada is on the verge of approving same-sex “marriage.” Later that day, Stephen Harper suggests that one reason to oppose same-sex “marriage” is that it could lead to polygamy being legalized. The Liberals respond by attacking Harper for bringing up polygamy. The next day editorialists joined the Liberal chorus and complained that Harper was bringing up issues that have no bearing on the same-sex “marriage” issue. What strange times.
The indignation of Liberal cabinet ministers at Harper’s polygamy remarks were something to behold. Prime Minister Paul Martin and Justice Minister Irwin Cotler noted that polygamy was illegal and always will be; there is no reason to fear that legalizing same-sex “marriage” will begin the slide down the slippery slope, they reassure us. Of course, it was Cotler’s predecessor Anne McLellan who in 1999 told Parliament that the law of the land was clear, marriage is the union of a man and woman to the exclusion of all others. Six years later …
For the record, here’s what then Justice Minister Anne McLellan said on June 8, 1999 in the House of Commons about same-sex “marriage”: “Let me state again for the record that the government has no intention of changing the definition of marriage or of legislating same-sex marriages. No jurisdiction worldwide defines a legal marriage as existing between same-sex partners … Although a same-sex relationship may have many of the same needs, the Norwegian government clarified that it, the same-sex partnership, can never be the same as marriage, neither socially nor from a religious point of view. … I fundamentally do not believe that it is necessary to change the definition of marriage in order to accommodate the equality issues around same-sex partners which now face us as Canadians.”
And for the record this is what Prime Minister Paul Martin told reporters on Jan. 22, 2005 about polygamy: “Polygamy is against the law and, as far as I’m concerned, it will always be against the law.”
So how long until a government in Ottawa, responding to the judicial direction provided by activist courts, puts forward a bill recognizing polygamous marriages?
I was recently in Ottawa promoting my book Jean Chretien: A Legacy of Scandal and I met with numerous Conservative staffers. Many of them said that the same-sex “marriage” issue is not resonating with the Canadian public. One MP’s assistant had agreed with that idea despite the fact that moments earlier she told me that she received correspondence a foot high in the previous week alone in opposition to Paul Martin’s determination to impose his definition of marriage on Canada.
Many MPs staffers repeated the media mantra that “urban Canadians” are turned off of Conservative policies, rhetoric and tactics on same-sex “marriage.” I may have grown up in the southwestern Ontario town of Woodstock, but I know implied bigotry when I see it. Journalists and politicians who celebrate the urban vote are suggesting that city dwellers are more intelligent, sophisticated and tolerant than the yokels from rural Ontario and Western Canada. This bigotry was taken to an extreme when I joked with one Conservative MP’s assistant when he was blathering on about urban voters in Toronto and Vancouver becoming disgusted with his party’s opposition to C-38, that it would be nice if we could trade a dozen Alberta MPs for two or three Toronto MPs. The staffer agreed. Just disgusting.
Bremerhaven Zoo, a zoo in Bremen Germany, brought in several female penguins from Sweden when zoo-keepers discovered that three of five Humboldt penguin pairs in their flock consisted of two males that attempted to mate together for nearly two years but without success, biology being what is and all. The zoo hoped that the new pairings of the endangered species would produce several chicks. However, zoo director Heike Kueck announced that plans to cure the penguins of their homosexuality were abruptly dropped after gay activists complained about the reparative therapy. In an open letter to Bremen mayor Joerg Schulz, gay activists protested “the organised and forced harassment through female seductresses.” Kueck said that “Everyone can live here as they please.” Gay rights for penguins? As I’ve said in this space before, we live in an age in which satire is not possible.
– Paul Tuns