Friday, June 02, 2006

Harper's Harpoon

Avast! Reason and comity ahead! After them!
Canadian PM Stephen Harper swears (again) that he's really going to do it, it being a campaign promise to call a free vote of MPs on whether to reopen the settled issue of same-sex marriage. Gall darn and dagnabit, he campaigned on it. So there.

Harper may be cynical enough to qualify as a U.S. politician. We seem to welcome our Northern singers, game-show hosts and athletes. Hey, why not some sleazy politician, who's not to honest to jerk arch-conservatives around to get elected.

Today's ploy was revisiting the SSM issue. He again promised a fall free vote (no instruction from party leadership). If his minority government were to get enough MPs, he would introduce a one-man/one-woman DOMA-style act.

Then in the remote possibility that this became law, it would conflict with the nation's Charter of Rights and Freedoms (as powerful a document to them as our Bill of Rights, maybe more so). It would also be in direct opposition to the laws and court decision of most provinces, as well as the edict of the highest Canadian court.

In other words, it's all bluster, all the time. In other words, this is DOA, but it lets him make kissy face with the most conservative of his Conservatives.

In addition, his opposition and many of his own Tory ministers and MPs know this is poison and divisive. The voters say leave it alone too. Yet, the PM said, "We committed to that in our platform."

We could pretend this shows honor, honesty and courage of conviction. We can pretend that eels make great ballerinas as well.

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