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Openly Gay NS Liberal MP Scott Brison's Christmas card slammed

CougarKing

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On the bright side, at least it wasn't like a certain music video posted in the World's Worst Music videos thread.  ;D

From the Canadian Press via Yahoo News

Homophobic remarks slam gay MP's Christmas card

Thu Dec 17, 5:16 PM


By Sonya Bell, The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - It has all the hallmarks of a politician's glossy Christmas card.


Pastoral setting? Check.


Doe-eyed golden retriever? Check.


Handsome couple dressed in smart casual? Check.


Same-sex couple?


That was too much for "a handful of bigots" who objected to Scott Brison's holiday greeting card depicting him and spouse Maxime St. Pierre, according to the Nova Scotia Liberal MP.


"The overwhelming response has been very positive," Brison said from Windsor, N.S. "There's always a very, very tiny minority of bigots. It's their problem, it's not my problem."



At least one news website had to shut down its comments section running under a story about the card. The Globe and Mail web editor said the section was shut down because of "hateful and homophobic remarks."


Toronto Star blogger Susan Delacourt tried a pre-emptive approach: she closed off comments before any vitriol could be posted.


"So crazy hateful people should probably just walk away from the keyboard now," she wrote. "Yes, backward, just like that, slowly, hands in the air. There you go. Get outdoors; it'll be good for you."


But Matt Mills, editorial director of the gay news group Pink Triangle Press, said it's a mistake to block homophobes.


"Gay and lesbian people do know that homophobia exists and is expressed all the time," he said.


"Our approach is that shutting down comments when there are homophobic remarks that come out really just drives that homophobia underground and out of the public eye. It is an exercise, in some ways, in denial. And I don't think that's constructive ... We can't fight it if we can't see it."


Brison is one of the few openly gay members of Parliament. He married his partner in 2007, two years after same-sex marriage became legal in Canada. He easily won re-election last year.


The card features the two men standing in a field separated by their golden retriever, Simba, in Brison's rural riding of King-Hants.


It's the first time the couple have sent out a Christmas card together. The picture came from a photoshoot they were given as a wedding gift.


He and St. Pierre are warmly received wherever they go, he said.

"I guess the people who would post homophobic comments on a blog would not have the courage to do so directly to me."

Since word began to spread about the card, calls have come into Brison's office to ask for copies. Supporters have told him they shared a link to the post with friends and family in the United States to boast about Canada's progressive attitude to same-sex marriage.

Brison insists there was no political message behind the holiday greeting.

"It's a personal card," he said. "I'm not the first politician to have a family picture on a Christmas card ... I'm looking forward to the day when this is seen as no big deal."
 

vonGarvin

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At least one news website had to shut down its comments section running under a story about the card. The Globe and Mail web editor said the section was shut down because of "hateful and homophobic remarks."
Toronto Star blogger Susan Delacourt tried a pre-emptive approach: she closed off comments before any vitriol could be posted.
"So crazy hateful people should probably just walk away from the keyboard now," she wrote. "Yes, backward, just like that, slowly, hands in the air. There you go. Get outdoors; it'll be good for you."
But Matt Mills, editorial director of the gay news group Pink Triangle Press, said it's a mistake to block homophobes

I saw the part above (in yellow), and it fried my eggs.  Then I saw the part above (in bold) and said "You're so right!"
Yes, that's it, Susan Delacourt, people who disagree with you are crazy and hateful.  I make no bones about my position on marriage (I believe it should be restricted to one man and one woman, who are of sound mind, who enter the marriage of their own choice, who are not related, etc.).  I guess that means certain cultures and groups out there (Polygamists, proponents of arranged marriages and of same-sex marriage) think that I'm both crazy and hateful.  Still, irrespective of my opinion, I see no reason to post anything against Mr. Brison's card.  I saw it, and it's a nice card.  But, if you want free speech, even the "crazies" and "hateful" must also have their day.  As Mr Mills stated, it's an exercise in denial.  (EDIT TO ADD: though I object to the term "homophobe", but that's another topic for another day).
 

Jarnhamar

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So this guy is gay and makes a holiday card of him and his husband and people are flipping out over it?
Who cares?
 

vonGarvin

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Flawed Design said:
So this guy is gay and makes a holiday card of him and his husband and people are flipping out over it?
Who cares?
Have you even read most media comment forums?  There are comments made when soldiers die in combat, some of which proclaim "victory to the oppressed of Afghanistan", etc.  (Not those words verbatim, but close enough).  Yes, it boils my skin to read that, but that's free press.

I'm not disturbed by Mr. Brison's card.  I'm disturbed that people are so afraid to voice their opinions, and others are afraid of others' opinions on this matter that they will, in some cases, pre-empt their opinions by locking out comments.  Yet allow other "contraversial" comments on other topics.  To me, that is the disturbing part.
 

observor 69

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Just to keep things in order, Susan Delacourt's blog from the Star:

December 16, 2009
Don we now our gay apparel. Or maybe not.
The good news: It's 2009, and Liberal MP Scott Brison proudly sent out a Christmas card, featuring his (same-sex) spouse in the picture. 

The bad news: The Globe put the photo on its Politics blog and had to shut down comments to the site. The explanation was given thus: "Editor's Note: This thread has been closed due to hateful, homophobic comments."

We'll do the same here, by the way, so crazy hateful people should probably just walk away from the keyboard now. Yes, backward, just like that, slowly, hands in the air. There you go. Get outdoors; it'll be good for you.


December 16, 2009 at 04:31 PM | Permalink | Comments (17) | TrackBack (0)

http://thestar.blogs.com/politics/2009/12/index.html
 

vonGarvin

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Baden Guy
I read that, and with interest, I also read the comments.
This one was just odd:
We need more people like Brison in politics -- people who are open and honest rather than people who are just presenting a facade based on what they think will win them an election.
 
I don't know Mr. Brison from Adam (pardon the biblical reference), but I dont' really understand what this person was saying.  I guess if you're gay your open and honest?  I'm fairly certain that homosexuals are like heterosexuals and bisexuals, in that some of them can be closed and dishonest.  Anyway...
Just as the backwards thinking of yesteryear kept civil rights away from women and blacks, the gay community, especially those that desire to wed or are already wed will fight through it and end up seeing real equality and the vitriolic haters will be the tiny, minor, lunatic fringe that are still upset about women voters and a black U.S. president. Time is on sensibility's side.
Ah, yes, just because I think that marriage is reserved for SOME men and SOME women, I want to keep women in the kitchen and out of the ballot boxes, and apparently I'm racist too.  Nice.
I'm sorry, in a way, that their innocent and mutual greeting has become an issue to those whose minds and values are still locked in the 19th century! But the fact that a normal gay couple feel free to express themselves without fear is just another reason why I'm so thankful to live in Canada!
It's too bad there isn't so time-machine to send the bigots back to some time B.C. as slaves to some tyrant who would regard their lives as worthless and expendible as I regard their opinions. Just a thought.
Ah, sweet irony.  You are indeed sweet.  I guess it's ok for some to feel free "...to express themselves without fear", while others should be sent off into slavery, or, in other words, NOT feel free "...to express themselves without fear."
Some people reject the homosexual lifestyle, and reject the homosexual agenda. To some, homosexuality is as objectionable as paedophilia, incest, or bestiality. These people are not "crazy hateful" (wait - aren't newspapers supposed to be objective? When did THAT go out the window?), they simply have a broader definition of perverse sexual preferences/acts. Oh, and throughout the whole world - these people are the majority.
Now, just because the majority think a certain way doesn't mean that they are right (witness the minaret ban in Switzerland.  Yes, the majority voted that way; however, I think it's wrong.)  But I do think that this poster hit the nail on the head re: newspapers supposing to be objective.

For those who haven't seen the card, here it is:
6a00d8341bf8f353ef0128765c5953970c-pi


Nice card.
 

Nauticus

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Technoviking said:
I saw the part above (in yellow), and it fried my eggs.  Then I saw the part above (in bold) and said "You're so right!"
Yes, that's it, Susan Delacourt, people who disagree with you are crazy and hateful.  I make no bones about my position on marriage (I believe it should be restricted to one man and one woman, who are of sound mind, who enter the marriage of their own choice, who are not related, etc.).  I guess that means certain cultures and groups out there (Polygamists, proponents of arranged marriages and of same-sex marriage) think that I'm both crazy and hateful.  Still, irrespective of my opinion, I see no reason to post anything against Mr. Brison's card.  I saw it, and it's a nice card.  But, if you want free speech, even the "crazies" and "hateful" must also have their day.  As Mr Mills stated, it's an exercise in denial.  (EDIT TO ADD: though I object to the term "homophobe", but that's another topic for another day).
I don't think the point has anything to do with being against same-sex marriages or gay people, but the way people say it.

If you take a second and actually look at what kind of comments are posted on the average comments section, it isn't intelligent argument that causes them to close these comment areas down. There's a difference between being against same sex marriage, and being a hateful bigot, which I suspect is more of what would have been written on these comment areas.
 

vonGarvin

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Nauticus said:
I don't think the point has anything to do with being against same-sex marriages or gay people, but the way people say it.
Probably right; however, if they moderated those comments, then the truly hateful and bigoted ones could be filtered.  Instead, they just shut it down.  Of course, they could leave them up, and let them expose themselves for what they are.
Nauticus said:
If you take a second and actually look at what kind of comments are posted on the average comments section, it isn't intelligent argument that causes them to close these comment areas down. There's a difference between being against same sex marriage, and being a hateful bigot, which I suspect is more of what would have been written on these comment areas.
Some of the posts I've made personally haven't been intelligent, but then again, I know what you're getting at.  But they did let the comments like this one:
I'm sorry, in a way, that their innocent and mutual greeting has become an issue to those whose minds and values are still locked in the 19th century! But the fact that a normal gay couple feel free to express themselves without fear is just another reason why I'm so thankful to live in Canada!
It's too bad there isn't so time-machine to send the bigots back to some time B.C. as slaves to some tyrant who would regard their lives as worthless and expendible as I regard their opinions. Just a thought.
As pointed out earlier by me (a couple of posts up): irony is so sweet!    Express yourself freely, so long as your expression fits the cause du jour.
 

Jarnhamar

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Oh my god, they look gay!
And, his name
Garey Pridham
GAreY PRIDham

GAY PRID(e)

It's an unholy attempt to corrupt our Christian way of life  ;D

Just kidding.
Technoviking I completely disagree with you and I think if two people want to get married good for them.
Role Models like Tiger Woods show ups how important Man and Woman marrages vows can be in this day and age.

While I disagree about the marriage thing I totally agree with you about not being able to have an opinion without someone labeling you a monster, a nazi racist homophobe gay hater bla bla bla JUST because you have a personal opinion and disagree about homosexuals getting hitched.
That's standard internet stuff. You disagree with someone WELLLLL their a nazi. Or you're a hater.
If someone doesn't see things YOUR way then their wrong wrong wrong, and subject to dehumanization like what Miss Susan Delacourt does.

You don't like the idea of Gays marrying that's your business who am I to tell you that you're wrong? I think gays should marry who are you to tell me I'm wrong?

No Technoviking I think you brought up a very good observation.

LOTS of the posts you find on those forums ARE infact pure stupidity though.
 

vonGarvin

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Flawed Design said:
Oh my god, they look gay!
And, his name
Garey Pridham
GAreY PRIDham

GAY PRID(e)
:rofl:
Flawed Design said:
Role Models like Tiger Woods show ups how important Man and Woman marrages vows can be in this day and age.
That's a squat argument, I must say.  Yes, marriages have failed, and for those I have the same opinion as I do of same-sex marriage.  Now, perhas this is my religion interfering with logic,  but to me it's a sacrament, a promise (a holy one at that), if you will.  If you can't keep your word, then your word is useless.  (I hope you know what I mean...it IS getting late here).  I just think that marriage, secular or religious, isn't taken seriously anymore, and I find that a crying shame.  For me, I see the "traditional, one man, one wife, 2.5 kids and a dog" family to be the "traditional" cornerstone or building block of our society.  Yes, I understand that societies evolve, but I don't agree with legislated evolution.  But, I'm drifting off topic, because the topic here isn't whether or not marriage is as I see it, or if it can also include man/man or woman/woman marriages, or man/woman/woman/woman, or arranged, or whatever.  The topic, and I may be stretching things, is the PC-ness of "think and talk like us, or else!" attitude that some of the press has shown here. 
 

DirtyDog

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Technoviking said:
Have you even read most media comment forums?  There are comments made when soldiers die in combat, some of which proclaim "victory to the oppressed of Afghanistan", etc.  (Not those words verbatim, but close enough).  Yes, it boils my skin to read that, but that's free press.
How often have you ever seen them shut down for that?

Personally, I never have.  Nor have I ever seen that situation become a national headline.

I guess they just aren't  "hateful" or "crazy" enough.

 

Nauticus

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But you've actually got to be mentally disabled if you're going to believe that stopping people from calling this guy a "f@g" is censorship. We get that you don't agree with same-sex marriage - thats fine. I'm in favor of same sex marriage. But that's irrelevant - the discussion is whether or not people should be allowed to anonymously post hate based on sexual orientation.

I think they shouldn't be able to.
 

mariomike

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If interested in polls:
"CNN poll: Generations disagree on same-sex marriage":
http://www.cnn.com/2009/US/05/04/samesex.marriage.poll/index.html
 

brihard

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Nauticus said:
But you've actually got to be mentally disabled if you're going to believe that stopping people from calling this guy a "f@g" is censorship. We get that you don't agree with same-sex marriage - thats fine. I'm in favor of same sex marriage. But that's irrelevant - the discussion is whether or not people should be allowed to anonymously post hate based on sexual orientation.

I think they shouldn't be able to.

Fine line to be drawn here. Our laws, appropriately, are that the government cannot through legal methods censor our free expression unless it should extend to the point of specifically inciting hate against other people. We've got a series of Supreme Court decisions that affirm this; only in the most severe cases of incitement can the state restrict our speech or expression, and rightly so. There is no right not to be offended.

That said, it is well within the rights of the owner or operator of a website to shut down discussions if they see fit. This is not any sort of legal sanction with adverse effects on the participants. Indeed, it is the very ability of the social discourse to moderate itself through the castigation of extreme or offensive viewpoints that allows the court to take such a liberal view of the freedom of expression. It's generally held that it's better for this kind of expression to be legally unrestricted so that it can be confronted publicly by society as a whole. Society itself has an ability to recognize what is merely an unpopular or fringe view (e.g., gays shouldn't marry) and what is truly repugnant (e.g., there was no holocaust).

Essentially the courts have granted us the right as free people to both spout off like tools, and to say to each other, "No, that's wrong, you're three fingers left of right the f*** out of 'er." To paraphrase Ezra Levant (with whose politics I'm often in disagreement,  but who is also a hero to me in the defense of free speech rights), "The best way to protect the rights of any is to protect the rights of all".

Society can feel free to censor itself in an unofficial manner, so long as the power of the state is restricted to truly necessary instances.
 

vonGarvin

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Wonderbread said:
I just can't help but notice how well dressed they are.
6a00d8341bf8f353ef0128765c5953970c-pi

But...that photo is just wrong.  SO WRONG. 












I mean....where's the snow?  It's supposed to be Christmas, instead it looks like Thanksgiving!

Sheesh, wtf do those two think they are doing?  ;D

 

vonGarvin

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Nauticus said:
But you've actually got to be mentally disabled if you're going to believe that stopping people from calling this guy a "f@g" is censorship. We get that you don't agree with same-sex marriage - thats fine. I'm in favor of same sex marriage. But that's irrelevant - the discussion is whether or not people should be allowed to anonymously post hate based on sexual orientation.

I think they shouldn't be able to.
Calling someone a fag, breeder, whatever, is just that: name calling.  "Sticks and stones" and all that.  Advocating sending people off into slavery, well, that's a bit different, but apparently ok according to that one blog.  And people can hate based on any discriminatory reason.  After all, do we believe in freedom of expression or not?

Now, saying hateful things is one thing; however, inciting violence etc is another.  For example:

"Blue eyed people should not be allowed to carry walking sticks," is ok to say.  "Blue eyed people carrying walking sticks should be beat with a bigger stick" is another.  A fine line, perhaps, but there it is.  I don't think anyone could 100% accurately describe that line, but I also think that most people would recognise it when they saw it.

 

observor 69

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I live in the Greater Toronto Area and have my WASP comfort zone stretched on a daily bases.
Hell these guys don't even come close.  :christmas happy:
 

George Wallace

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Baden  Guy said:
I live in the Greater Toronto Area and have my WASP comfort zone stretched on a daily bases.
Hell these guys don't even come close.  :christmas happy:


;D

My spouse feels the same.  She thinks 90% of Ottawa's population is "Gay".
 
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