Tropical punch weather hitting the west coast and the deep freeze getting everything east of Calgary. To top it off the rising of the second coming of Bush is tomorrow. Could this be the end of the world as we know it. Was I having a nightmare?
Today the Catholic's brought out their biggest bird, the Cardinal Aloysius Ambrozic in Toronto and did he ever deliver for them. His delivery was latest in what appears to be a coordinated attack with those opposed to same-sex marriage gradually fanning the ashes of defeat, in a desperate attempt to build a small fire they can heap more garbage on.
It started in early December the Supreme Court of Canada gave it's opinion that there was nothing stopping the government from proposing a new law permitting same-sex marriage when Alberta's folksy homophobic Premier, Ralph Klein spun a few ball bearings, screaming, it will never happen in Alberta.The federal conservative party entered the battle with some proposed amendments to a piece of legislation it had not even seen yet. The Conservative leader, Stephen Harper trying desperately to hold onto his Christian and social conservative support proposed what he hoped would be a safe compromise.
Harper's amendments focused on declaring marriage as being between a man and a woman. Second that a separate catagory (same-sex union) be established granting gay and lesbian couples all the rights and priviledges of marriage other than a marriage certificate.
He thought he was onto something and might even be able to succeed if some Liberal MP's joined him. He was lost before he could start.
Klein and Harper, both conservatives from Alberta, were at each others throat, Klein calling for the feds to use the constitutional "Nuke" rights clause and Harper saying its not needed. Harper is in a spot as he had tried time and again to state he would not use the Nuke clause during the last election, in order to appeal to moderate conservatives in Ontario.
The next shot in the coordinated plan was Bishop Henry in Alberta. Premier Klein was doing his best to fan the flames and it was the Bishop's turn to add to the fuel. He unloaded yesterday saying the Government should use the coeicive force of government to fight gay marriage and gay rights.
Today Harper's Conservatives launched a series of newspaper ads in select ridings across the country with a major focus on ethnic media. The ads ask in large block letters, "Where do you draw the line", show a picture of Mr. Martin with a caption saying he intends to impose gay marriage on Canadians and a photo of Mr. Harper saying he believes in traditional marriage. You can expect these ads to run in some Liberal ridings where the Conservatives think they can win next election.
We're not done yet, remember the Cardinal at the beginning. Cardinal Ambrozic came out with the strongest statement made by any Catholic representitive in Canada todate against same-sex marriage in an open letter to Prime Minister Martin calling on him to use the notwithstanding clause.
The Venerable Cardinal added that "Parliament's passing same-sex marriage legislation would affect the fabric of the country's social institutions, including schools, where children would have to be taught about same-sex relationships, and that it would teach society that same-sex relationships are "morally equivalent" to heterosexual ones."
By now I was beginning to think I had woke up and George Bush had declared Canada a threat to the security of the United States and had occupied us overnight.Saner voices however began to appear by the end of the day much to my relief. A Catholic group, Challenge the Church, accused Cardinal of fearmongering and being out of touch with reality. The group speaks for progressive change on human rights within the Catholic Church and it's spokesperson, Helen Kennedy called Cardinal's letter "Draconian".
"He's living in a cocoon if he thinks that Catholics don't support same-sex marriage," she told the Globe and Mail, "57 per cent of Canadian Catholics are in favour of allowing such unions according to an Environics poll (August 2004).
The last bit of news was an announcement by the Canadian Military today that it has now put in place a policy allowing gay or lesbian Armed Forces members to be married on Canadian Forces bases.
With a big sigh of relief I can now rest assured the Americans did not take over last night.
Tomorrow more on why Harper and his coalition of religious groups and social conservatives can never be trusted with the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
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