I had another one of my horrific dreams recently. It ranged somewhere in between a nightmare and watching a reality show.
There were the headlines in the Toronto Star: “HARPER WINS IN LANDSLIDE – ONLY PRO-LIFE LIBERALS SURVIVE.” “MARTIN LOSES SAFE LIBERAL SEAT AND RESIGNS AS LEADER OF LIBERAL PARTY.” “CONSERVATIVES TAKE ALL WESTERN SEATS – DEFEATED NDP LEADER JACK LAYTON SAYS HE WILL WRITE A BOOK ON HISTORY OF LOST CAUSES.” “NDP ELECTS ENOUGH MEMBERS FOR TENNIS FOURSOME.”
I was awestruck! There was a picture of Prime Minister Stephen Harper looking like the proverbial Cheshire cat that has just swallowed the biggest mouse it has ever seen. In the ensuing article, Harper thanks God a few hundred times. His wife thanks her hairdresser and their bored children demand that they be allowed to go back to school.
On the next page was a picture of defeated PM Paul Martin looking angry, with the screaming headline: “MARTIN CHARGES CHRISTIAN FUNDAMENTALISTS WITH BIGOTRY AND COSTING HIM THE ELECTION.” The article read: “Martin charges Christian fundamentalists with not fighting the election on the important issues of health and education. Martin said it wasn’t fair. The fundamentalists, he charged, ignored what the mainline political parties and the media said were important and fought it only on the issue of what they thought was important: same-sex ‘marriages.'”
Martin denied charges that it was his involvement in the sponsorship program that hurt him, along with the billion-dollar gun registry boondoggle and rumours that all the Crouton Liberals were too busy cutting their grass to vote on election day. He also denied that Dalton McGuinty’s health premium tax sword in his back hurt him at all (What’s another knife in your back?). Dispatching loyal Liberals like Sheila Copps and Art Eggleton, Martin insisted, was only necessary to clear the decks for his new government. Charges that he starved the provinces to balance the federal books, Martin insisted, were an outright lie, but had the possibility of some truth.
The gut issue that dragged out people who hadn’t voted in years was the same-sex “marriage” issue, Martin kept repeating. Jack Layton agreed, saying: “I never knew that so many people thought that marriage was between a man and a woman. It sure was a shocking revelation to me. Even my mother voted against me! She said: ‘Listen, Jackie, if you didn’t realize that marriage has always been between a man and a woman you should go back to school – right now.”
Martin charged Canadian Cardinal Hector Sylvanis Von Hegestrom with leading the campaign against same-sex “marriages.” He accused the Cardinal of putting together a coalition of churches that were only concerned with that one issue. Those fundamentalists, Martin insisted, were trying to destroy the fabric of society. Were they not aware, he asked, that former prime minister Pierre Trudeau established sodomy as one of the inalienable rights of all Canadian citizens?
The Toronto Star was unable to contact His Excellency Cardinal Von Hegestrom for a response. Just then, I heard the phone ring and a familiar voice was on the phone: “Frank, it’s Hector.”
“Your Excellency, how are you?!”
“I could say ‘Fine’ but I’d be lying. I just phoned to say how grateful I am for you contacting me and getting me to set up this alliance of like-minded people to fight the federal election on the same-sex ‘marriage’ issue. A brilliant idea! It’s certainly been a success beyond my wildest expectations.”
“I want to congratulate you, Your Excellency,” I said.
“It was not me. It was you. I have another problem, Frank. The media’s here in force. I took your advice and I’ve already said that I’ve nothing more to say to them. I’m under siege here. There’s an unruly crowd out in front of my house wearing rainbow sashes and led by somebody named Layton. I think he might be related to that NDP guy. They tried to storm my house, but the police held them off. I want you to know, Frank, that there’s a Cardinal’s hat waiting for you for all that you’ve done.”
“A Cardinal’s hat!” I exclaimed.
I woke up with a big smile on my face. It’s a nice to have a happy ending to a nightmare.