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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

M 312 and Jason Kenney: What Kind of Fuckery is This?

In the immortal words of Amy Winehouse, "What kind of fuckery is this?"

I don't think this blog has left any stone unturned in M312 Shenanigans, but since today is the vote, something must be said to mark the occasion.

We know that Stephen Harper uses the rights of women as a bargaining chip to speak to his base. This is clear. We know that the Conservatives say one thing and do another, and as my mother always told me, actions speak louder than words. Today, I'd like to concentrate on just one MP, the vitriolic Jason Kenney.

Jason Kenney will vote for Motion 312. This should come as no surprise given his history. He has been anti choice forever. He was involved in threats to sue his Catholic University in California for not being Catholic enough. That is actually one of my all time favourite things about Jason Kenney. He has an ego big enough that he thinks he can direct the Catholic Church. Un-fricking-believable. When I didn't like what the Church had to say, I left it. I didn't try to make it over in my own image.

But the Conservatives are all about makeovers. You will recall that Mr. Harper said we wouldn't recognize Canada when he was through with it. This has turned out to be true. My Canada was one where the government had no business in the bedrooms of the nation, and I liked it that way.

But in a democracy, the blame (or responsibility) for what government does lies as much with the voter as with the government because, at least for now, we are the government.

Anyway, to get back to my point, we all know that Mr. Harper has said that  a vote for this motion is a vote against the government. So Mr. Kenney will be voting against his government. Can we expect to see him demoted to the rank of back bencher? Highly unlikely. No, don't be fooled. Both he and Mr. Woodworth are doing Harper's dirty work for him. They are speaking to the base while Harper gets to pretend his hands are clean.

Meanwhile women get to be continually reminded that our rights are up for debate.

Tonight at 6:00 watch carefully for what your own MP does and remember this the next time you vote. See who shows up for women's rights and who stays away. See who represents you and who does not. Keep a list. Then check it twice when the next federal election comes up.

In my neck of the woods, a by-election in Calgary Centre will arrive soon. Remember the treachery. Remember who stood up for women.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Notable Canadian Women Oppose Motion 312

I'm one of a whack of "notable Canadian women" who have signed an open letter opposing Motion 312. You can see it here. I can't tell you how happy I am to be on the same list as women such as Maureen McTeer, Abby Lippman, Penny Kome, Judy Rebick, Heather Mallick and so many others who have inspired me for so many years. This made my day.

But we all know, any woman could sign that letter, and of course all women are encouraged to do so. Copy it, put your name on it. Send it to your MP. We are all notable Canadian women. Add your name to the list.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Misogynists: Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

That's how I feel about a certain segment of Americans and their misogynist blathering these days. It's too loud and it's too close. It hurts my ears, my head and my heart.

Their woman hating ways are bound to have an impact on Canada. It is still too soon to say what that impact is going to be. The impact might be positive, affirming of women's rights and equality. I think that Canadians will see the hatred being spewed at women and decide they don't much care for it. I think it will show us how important it is to be vigilant and make sure our politics don't turn into religion.
Speaking of which, Motion 312 is around the corner. I was delighted to see the Radical Handmaids come out with a drinking game for the debate. Good to treat it like the joke that it is. I think if I were to use this game watching the RNC, I would have had alcohol poisoning by the end of the night.

I'd also like to point you to a new and informative article by our friend Nick van der Graaf about how Canadian women won our exemplary right to abortion on demand, how Canada became the only country in the world where there are no legal restrictions on abortion at all, or in other words, how abortion came to be understood not as a legal matter, but as a medical matter, a matter between a woman and her doctor. Written for an American audience, I think this article could teach Canadians quite a bit as well.

And in the run up to the American election, many groups are doing what they can to educate and inform. Some are using The Abortion Monologues to get the word out and I couldn't be happier about that. Performances are being organized in Montana and New Hampshire. If you want details, stay tuned. I will post ticket information as it is made available to me.