Analysis by LettersToTheBeast
October 2, 2019
You know you’re getting somewhere when the sworn enemy of you and your followers is calling you dangerous. Apparently, this never occurred to a typist at The Toronto Star.
Shree Paradkar is The Star’s resident Race and Gender Columnist. How Paradkar has managed to survive the Star’s continuing budget cuts is unclear. Perhaps that title alone, Race and Gender Columnist, is the equivalent of holding a cross in front of Dracula every time a round of layoffs is announced.
Let’s go through this one-by-one.
Who draws the line in the sand between crazy and credible and who decides who is allowed to cross it?
Simple, Honey. The voters. Not you. Not the corporate media. Not the corporations who own the media. Not the politicians. If a politician goes too far, the voters will take care of that. You still haven’t gotten over yourself with Donald Trump and are likely to suffer a psychotic episode upon his inevitable re-election and FULL SERVICE of his second term.
People with power and people with power.
You, uh, mean, yourselves?
On Monday, Toronto Star journalists learned along with our online readers that People’s Party of Canada Leader Maxime Bernier was, like other leaders, invited for a chat with the editorial board, and it was to take place the next day.
Oh, my God! An opposing viewpoint! Unapproved speech! Quick! Everyone to the nearest Safe Space! Red Alert!
Bernier was the man who was once the Foreign Affairs Minister who had to quit over a national security compromise after he left a secret document at the home of a girlfriend.
Yeah, the man was a dumb ass. But that was over 11 years ago. Get over it and move on. This is 2019.
Then he was the chief contender to the leadership of the Conservative Party which he lost by a razor-thin margin.
Sounds like a lot of mainstream, regular Canadians liked this guy. But you would dismiss them because they were Conservatives. As for the “man” who beat Bernier, Andrew Scheer…well, in the opinion of your humble correspondent, this kid is as dumb as a box of rocks.
Now he’s the man who heads a party linked through its supporters to far-right bigots, white supremacists, and even a neo-Nazi as a founding member (since removed).
I was wondering when she was going to get around to “the far right”, “bigots,” “white supremacists and “neo-Nazis.” She doesn’t offer a single bit of proof, just, as Rush Limbaugh calls, a “drive-by smear.” Here in the United States, anyone to the right of Alexandria Occasional Cortex qualifies as right-wing extremist, racist, white supremacist, etc.
Perhaps not wishing to get sued, Paradkar is referring to Shaun Walker. Putting aside the fact that she is merely repeating unproven allegations from her compatriots in the corporate media, the fact is Walker (the alleged “neo-Nazi”) was removed from the People’s Party. By her own acknowledgment he was removed. So what is her problem?
Bernier is open about his views on multiculturalism — it should be banned as a policy. He demands that immigrants “integrate” — with whom? The “west” (read: white). He seeks a Canadian values test for new immigrants (add ominous music and “sharia law” here). Refugees — we can’t save the world, so let’s do very little. Climate change — not an emergency. (All quotations here are mine.)
Absolutely it should be banned as official government policy. The government has no business bringing people into the country, and then encouraging them to bring their language, and eventually their problems, with them. The fact is, the former governing Liberal Party, tried allow some “communities” to enforce Sharia law. We caught them, we stared them down, and they wisely backed down.
The Ontario government delayed responding to a report recommending that Muslims in the province be allowed to use sharia tribunals to settle family disputes after its women’s caucus voiced concerns, sources say.
The 17 Liberal MPPs who make up the women’s caucus urged the government this year to go slowly in deciding whether to permit Islamic law to be used in Ontario family arbitration cases.
The government was planning to respond last spring to the report by former Attorney-General Marion Boyd, who recommended that the province let Muslim tribunals apply Islamic law — known as sharia — in marital and inheritance disputes, provided both parties go into the process voluntarily and all decisions can be appealed in the courts.
But in response to concerns expressed by the women’s caucus, Attorney-General Michael Bryant decided to take more time studying the matter, government sources said.
—By Michael Valpy and Karen Howlett
Toronto Globe and Mail, September 8, 2005
View a .pdf copy here Female MPPs’ concerns delay sharia decision – The Globe and Mail
Bernier will also be platformed by the CBC next week.
Interesting word choice: Platforming. Paradkar would have her corporate media whorespondents give opposing viewpoints the same treatment her friends at Facebook, Twitter, Apple and YouTube give to conservatives. Here in the United States, we call it the Alex Jones treatment (and your humble correspondent is no fan of Jones, just to be clear, but I am fan of The First Amendment). Back in Canada, let’s call it the Faith Goldy treatment. And Shree, honey, you really should pat yourselves on the back for how you went to the mat to censor Faith. Now, you’re just pissed off because you can’t give Bernier the same treatment.
What exactly does Paradkar mean, anyway, when she complains Bernier will be “platformed by the CBC next week?” Are they giving him a job? Is he going to read the news? Oh, he’s going to be in a debate. Well, we can’t have that. We liberals are the natural governing party. We are correct on everything. It is not open for debate. If you disagree with us, you belong in jail. Listen, Shree, seriously. You’ve got to stop hanging out with David Suzuki.
Of course many journalists of colour — there are not that many of us in the newsroom — felt let down by our employers’ decision. It stopped us in our tracks, forcing us to change gears from the regular demands of the job. We didn’t have the luxury of shrugging or rolling our eyes. Many of us had deadlines, yet we had to take on the emotionally exhausting task of organizing and speaking up to explain to our management why this impacted us so viscerally.
Oh, you poor thing. Having to live in the real world, subjected to us peons and philistines. And I don’t know what the make-up of coloureds (hey, your word, honey) vs. whites are in your typing pool, but here in Realville, people are hired and retained based on qualifications, merit and experience. Identity politics don’t work here and you can be damned sure you and your colleagues would have been out on their asses at least 15 years ago if the Toronto Star were actually a viable, operating concern. It is only because it is backed up by a multi-billion-dollar corporation that is willing to lose millions of dollars annually just to have the power of the press that you have the luxury of telling your dozens of readers how much you hate Whitey.
When I go into work tomorrow, I’m going to “speak up” to my boss and tell him how the hedge fund who owns us and their ill-advised policies are impacting me so viscerally. I’ll let you know how that goes.
Columnists have wide latitude to express their opinions. This is my privilege. It means I don’t feel professionally compromised when I voice an opinion. Indeed, it is my job to do so. But my colleagues who spoke up are not in the same position. Would voicing their protest risk their reputations? Be seen not as a demand for justice but a lack of that much-vaunted objectivity? Their positions are made more precarious by many of them being at entry-level ranks.
Is Paradkar seriously telling us the same editorializing that occurs in a piece labeled “opinion” is not found in purportedly-objective news reporting? She’s kidding, right? Editorializing from the newsroom went into overdrive the day Donald Trump came down that escalator.
If one of Paradkar’s colleagues in the newsroom REALLY wanted to get into trouble, he or she could start by writing one, some or all of the following sentences:
There was no evidence, not even a hint, of any “collusion” between Donald Trump, the Trump campaign, or the Trump family and the government of Russia.
The charges leveled by Democrats of illegal acts of Trump, his campaign and family are merely projection by the Democratic Party and the Clintons of real crimes, some bordering on treason, committed by themselves.
Hillary Clinton. Uranium One.
Hunter Biden received $50,000 per month from a Ukranian oligarch for doing absolutely nothing. His father, Joe Biden, then the vice-president, bragged of getting a Ukranian prosecutor fired for investigating Hunter.
Israel meddles in American politics.
Donald Trump is popular amongst working Americans. His derision is confined to small pockets of the coastal United States, mainly New York City, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco and Los Angeles, as well as Chicago.
San Diego and Miami have Republican mayors.
Hillary Clinton is a liar and a fraud.
The Clinton foundation has stolen billions of dollars and, among other things, cheated the entire nation of Haiti.
Okay, Shree. Let’s see where that little expression of free-speech rebellion would get one of your colleagues. But just keep on “reporting” on President Trump that way you people have been, and you’ll do just fine. Well, until the newspaper goes out of business. But seriously, what are the odds of that happening?
“Would we do this with a flat-earther?” one of my colleagues asked our editor-in-chief in an email the evening before the chat.
This is a common Democrat talking point, apparently imported for use in Canada. They disagree with the man. So he must be a flat-earther. Or thinks the moon landing was a hoax. Usual nonsense when they have nothing of substance to offer. The global warming types are actually quite fond of this. Next….
At the Star, the newsroom is separate from the editorial board (which means the decision to invite or disinvite Bernier wasn’t the editor’s to make). From a reader perspective that’s a distinction without a difference. Stories from both the board and the newsroom appear on the same platforms and editors of both ultimately report to the same publisher.
Platforming does not defeat ideas. If there is anything U.S. President Donald Trump is a shining example of, it is the danger of free-speech arguments that validate hate speech, and the failure of the concept of “sunlight as a great disinfectant” of bad ideas.
Another Democrat talking point. “Hate Speech.” I.e. speech (read ideas or policies) the left hates. They can never point to shred of evidence that President Trump has ever said anything racist in his life. He has pointed to bad acts by citizens of other countries. And he has been correct. That’s not racist. That’s fact. Reality.
It’s actually rather funny that Paradkar should bring up the “danger” of free speech. Because the Toronto Star actually ran an op-ed piece opposing free speech and dismissing it as an American ideal which had no place in Canada.
Inciting violence is where Canadian law draws the line on free expression. As Kevin Metcalf of Canadian Journalists for Free Expression points out, absolute free speech is an American concept. Metcalf’s suggestion is not merely his private opinion: it is a legal fact. According to Section 1 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, free expression in Canada, like all other Charter rights, is limited by “such reasonable limits prescribed by law as can be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society.” The question we should be asking is where those reasonable limits lie.
—Darko Prodanovic and Essa Abdool-Kareem, The Toronto Star, August 8, 2017
The only problem is that expressing any idea that runs contrary to approved liberal thought is guaranteed to incite violence. Violence on the part of the antiFA types.
So we have the irony here of a newspaper writer (three, in fact) opposing free speech. Absolutely un-flippin’-believable.
All platforming does is legitimize the speaker. And when that speaker is polished or perceived by the audience as authentic, the platform elevates their stature.
Well, yeah! And if the audience has two brain cells to rub together, that audience will instantly research what that candidate has to say. And if he makes sense to a lot of people, you know what? He’s going to get elected. Coverage of Donald Trump has and still is 98 per cent negative. Yet he was elected. And continues to serve, despite The Left’s best efforts. That, right there should demonstrate just how little corporate media has on our lives. And it should set off alarm bells for advertisers. If the corporate media can’t even tell us whom to vote for (or against), what possible hope to you think it has of convincing us to buy your hamburger? Or coffee table? Or psychoactive drug? Or pick-up truck?
In his conversation with the Star’s editorial board, Bernier denied his ideology was anti-Muslim. He said things like, “I’m not against diversity, I’m against more and more and more diversity.” He fended off in the softest terms his churlish attack on 16-year-old climate change activist Greta Thunberg in which he called her “mentally unstable,” saying on Tuesday: “First of all two days after that I tweeted and said she is a courageous girl … Other people were bringing in the discussion her health and I did that and that was a mistake.”
But she IS mentally unstable. However, despite that, she is just as polished and just as telegenic as Nayirah al-Sabah, the (then) 15-year-old-girl who sold us the tale about babies and incubators back on October 10, 1990. Millions of lives and trillions of dollars have been wasted ever since. We’re not falling for this crap any longer and if Paradkar and her liberal elitist ilk don’t like that, she can pound sand.
The event was open to anyone in the newsroom. We know how these discussions unfold. This is why many of us journalists of colour decided not to participate in any capacity — neither to question Bernier nor to work behind the scenes to produce the live video.
“Journalists of colour…” More identity politics.
“…decided not to participate in any capacity…work behind the scenes to produce the live video.” Where I come from (Canada), we call that insubordination.
You know, a thought occurs. Maybe the next time an unapproved voice comes into the newsroom, The Star should just outsource the work and cut Paradkar’s union drones out of the action. In fact, what even needs to be “produced?” Just put up a webcam or a cellphone and put it out on The Star’s corporate Facebook and YouTube feeds. Provided of course the dateless wonders down in San Jose and San Francisco don’t censor it exactly because it is unapproved.
We know that racism is instituted with or without Bernier. We work despite it. Racism exists among “mainstream” politicians — it exists in the structures and policies and institutions around us. But we didn’t want to be part of a discussion that Bernier could, and did, frame in “agree to disagree” terms. Bernier’s ideologies are not abstract level ideas for us, not mere disagreements that can be debated in a civilized fashion. “Let’s debate, then have a drink, old chap.” They have real-world consequences.
Yes, what a racists, intolerant world we live in here. The third world trash is fighting to get into the United States, Britain and – to a much lesser extent – Canada. The waiting list to immigrate to the U.S. is decades long, in some instances. But yet, we are racist. Racist Americans elected a black man as president. Twice.
Hey, Paradkar, tell us about the caste system in India. Then get back to us about racism in your little world in Canada. Tell us about liberal icon Margaret Sanger setting up Planned Parenthood so she could perfect racial purity. Tell us about millions of black babies being slaughtered in the womb every year. Tell us about abortion clinics in every black neighborhood in the United States, funded by white liberal elitists, then get back to us about racism.
And here’s another great idea. Paradkar, please tell us how beautifully women are treated in Muslim countries. Tell us about how highly educated women are in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Somalia. Tell us about all the female doctors and even the female politicians. Tell us what happens to a woman who “gets out of line” in Saudi Arabia.
I’m not afraid to say it. Thank CHRIST I live in the United States. Thank CHRIST I live in a civilized WESTERN country. What happened to Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) when the “whites” were kicked out? What’s happening to South Africa now? Why are all the illegal aliens coming north to the United States when there is a whole, Spanish-speaking continent to their south? We must be doing something right. And, last but not least, thank CHRIST I live in a country where I won’t be hunted down by some low-life Canadian “human rights” tribunal for saying what I just said.
Just for the record, I happen to live in an almost-exclusively black neighborhood in Orlando, Florida. My wife and I get along just fine with our neighbors and we sure as hell don’t need troublemakers coming in and screwing things up for us. Our neighborhood has nice, well kept lawns with newer-model cars. As the houses are being remodeled and re-built – and most now have – the bars are coming down. And I can guaran-damn-tee you none of us will let social agitators come in to cause trouble.
TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/NSF) – Florida’s unemployment rate held at 3.3 percent in August — and was down slightly from a year ago, according to numbers released Friday by the state Department of Economic Opportunity.
The Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford area held at 3.2 percent, followed by the Gainesville area, at 3.3 percent. The state’s overall unemployment rate is seasonally adjusted, while the regional rates are not.
This is us, our children, our fathers and mothers and sisters and brothers being threatened by people who feel emboldened by Bernier’s rhetoric, whether or not he intends it. The non-Muslims among us may not be the primary targets — but there is no scope for complacence; the laser pointer swings fast.
Fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers. Ooooh, boy. Ooops. Oooh, mxxxxx. Your friends in the “trans” community aren’t going to like that one. But good on you for employing the emotional family symbolism, even if you are vehemently opposed to the very concept.
The laser pointer swings fast.” What the hell are you talking about?
We’ve seen time and again individual white supremacists attacking Sikhs and Hindus, mistaking them for being Muslim. We have seen hate crimes against Black people. We know what Bernier followers — the Soldiers of Odin and PEGIDA, for instance — say about our skin colours, our cultures. We know that while he says he isn’t racist (and touts the meaningless idea of having people of colour in his party as proof), his words continue to be a clarion call to those seeking to bridge the far-right and the “mainstream.” (And if he truly believes they don’t represent his views, he might find it worth reflecting upon why they’re so attracted to his party.)
“…white supremacists attacking Sikhs and Hindus, mistaking them for being Muslim.” Perhaps she could cite a single instance. There isn’t one.
“Hate crimes against Black (capital ‘B’ of course) people.” What sort of crimes is she referring to? Back in 2001…well, I can’t top the CBC for coverage, so here goes…
Hedy Fry has apologized to the people of Prince George, B.C. The Minister of State for Multiculturalism caused a storm in the House of Commons on Wednesday when she said racist cross burnings take place on lawns in the city.
Opposition MPs demanded a retraction, an apology even a resignation from Fry. On Thursday, they got a retraction and an apology but no resignation.
On Wednesday, Fry said, “Mr. Speaker, we can just go to British Columbia, in Prince George, where crosses are being burned on lawns as we speak.”
MP Richard Harris represents the riding of Prince George-Bulkley Valley. He’s lived in Prince George for 40 years. He was astonished at the reference.
“I believe that it is revolting that this minister would cast such vicious and mean-spirited aspersions on the people of Prince George, British Columbia,” said Harris.
Jay Hill’s B.C. riding also includes part of Prince George. “It can’t be substantiated. There were no crosses being burned and certainly not as she spoke in the House of Commons.”
Fry originally stuck to her guns. She returned to the House later Wednesday afternoon to amend her comments to say “recently” rather than “as we speak.”
—CBC, March 22, 2001
Listen, Shree, just a word of advice. Hate crime hoaxes don’t count as hate crimes. A Muslim girl who cuts off her own hair and says a dirty, rotten honky did it because he hates Muslims doesn’t count as a hate crime. Rabbis spraypainting swastikas on their synagoges don’t count as hate crimes. Jewish kids knocking over headstones of Jewish deceased don’t count as hate crimes.
And you know what else doesn’t count as a hate crime? Pointing out the criminal element in “minority” communities.
Even among those of us who want to “integrate” (in other words, adhere to standards of whiteness, not Indigeneity), we can change our clothes, we can change our lifestyles, we can change our accents.
We cannot peel off our skins.
Here in the United States, immigrants were expected to integrate into American society for over two hundred years. The world sent its best workers to Ellis Island. They may have been poor, but as long as the men had strong backs that could earn him enough to support his family, he was in. And was his family. So long as they were all healthy. And contrary to popular belief, immigrants were rarely held for more than a day at Ellis Island. The place just wasn’t big enough.
Okay. Enough history. America was the melting pot. Canada promoted multiculturalism and “diversity” apparently for no better reason that it gave Pierre Trudeau another means of distinguishing “Canadian culture” from American culture. That really plays big in Liberal circles.
With regards to the purported demand that Paradkar “peel off (her skin).”
And this is just a minor example. But recent past governors of Louisiana and South Carolina – two southern states that Canadians love to ridicule as redneck backwaters – were both Indian American. Indian. As in, uh, India. And…you’re really going to hate this, Shree…they are both Republicans.
By platforming Bernier, all the Star and other media do is further bridge the gap between the far-right and the mainstream. Are these the Canadian values we are proud of?
Ah, yes. Canadian values. What are “Canadian values?” Well, basically look up any Liberal Party of Canada policy manual. You’ve got to love paying taxes. You’ve got to hate Americans. That’s a big one. You have to enjoy paying four times as much for your poultry and dairy products as your American friends. And twice as much for your gas. If a Republican is president, you have to absolutely HATE him. And if that Republican president is named Trump, then that irrational hatred should consume your every waking – and sleeping – day.
What else? Let’s see. You have to enjoy being disarmed because only those dastardly Americans would even think about defending their own homes. If someone breaks into your home, merely smile at the intruder, walk out into the street and dutifully wait for the police. They’ll be along eventually.
Another big Canadian value is you have to not only be opposed to free speech, as Paradkar is, but must be a proponent of compelled speech. For example, our friends in the disoriented community demand your show your reverence for them by your supporting the homosexual education of your five year old. And if your little boy thinks he’s a little girl (or vice versa), then you are to encourage it. And demand medical funding to make it official.
And speaking of medical, that’s another big Canadian value. Canada’s endless free health care system. Not like those Americans who die in the streets.
And Let’s not forget. As part of our Canadian values, we must worship the CBC and cherish the stories it tells us of one another, from coast to coast to coast. And Peter Mansbridge truly is a national treasure.
Canada! We’re Number Two! We’re Number Two!
Did I get ’em all?
Ooops, forgot one. Toronto sucks. Hatred of Toronto is Canadian Value Number One.
Shree Paradkar, a columnist covering issues around race and gender, is the 2018-2019 recipient of the Atkinson Fellowship in Public Policy. She is based in Toronto. Follow her on Twitter: @ShreeParadkar
Even her description at the end deserves comment. Years ago, The Star, in addition to identifying a particular writer as a recipient of the Atkinson Fellowship, would describe the fellowship’s aim to “advance traditional liberal journalism.”
From “The Atkinson at 30”
In 1995, when called upon to review the first years of the Atkinson Fellowship, John Honderich (then Toronto Star publisher) specifically addressed the fellowship’s aims in relation to the “Atkinson Principles.” “While the fellowship selection committee was charged with looking for proposals that fit within the tradition of liberal journalism, the committee was not limited to only those subjects dealt with by Atkinson,” he wrote in a report. “In other words, we felt we had to be relevant in our choice. Consequently, most of the winning entries reflect modern-day concerns rather than traditional ‘liberal’ topics.”
It kills your humble correspondent to admit this, but in the Honderich days, Liberal as it was – it was and is known as The Red Star – it had credible journalism and at least put on the pretense of offering objectivity. Those days are long past.
I don’t know what Shree Paradkar and the rest of her fellow whorespondents and presstitutes in the corporate media – and the liberal universe in general – are going to do when President Trump is re-elected.
I know what I would like to see happen.
I wonder if hundreds of millions of liberal heads around the world exploding all at once on the evening of Tuesday, November 3, 2020, would have any effect on global warming?
Your humble correspondent’s absentee-ballot vote for Alex Taylor, the People’s Party of Canada candidate in Niagara Falls, Ontario
DMCA: Editorial Response