“United” use of Gaetz – MTG “logic” difficult to understand in Lumsden Town Hall fracas

As I stated in last week’s column, former Conservative MP Gerry Ritz should have stayed “retired” if all he intends to do on the hustings is plagiarize the tactics of Matt Gaetz and Marjorie Taylor Greene.

Ritz is inserting his new party into an acrimonious and American-orchestrated debate involving culture, sexuality, human rights and the future course to be taken by Canada’s educational system. When we add Saskatchewan “United” Party leader Nadine Wilson to this farce, we’re merely adding the instability of a politician whose word we will never be able to trust due to her unfettered contempt for accountability by having wrapped herself in a veil of nondisclosure agreements. 

By using what can only be described as “greaseball” political tactics, these “United” leaders have somehow managed to turn an “orderly” but serious concern of some Lumsden parents into a political football, one that now threatens to undermine our appreciation for the progress being made in codifying human rights while wondering whether our children will ever harvest the fruit of our legislative efforts.

Readers may recall that on June 23rd, Minister of Education Dustin Duncan temporarily banned Planned Parenthood from conducting sexual education workshops because one of its APPROVED presenters brought “age inappropriate” materials to supplement the Grade 9 presentation in Lumsden. While many conservative groups despise Planned Parenthood’s policies respecting birth control and counselling of young women seeking abortion advice – including Sask Party members, Duncan’s edict was an honest response to parental concerns echoing in Lumsden over the incident, with the assurance that the government would give it further scrutiny when children return to school in the Fall.

“United” party members, however, felt that this issue provided sufficient red meat to enable them to score points in the anticipation of the government calling a by-election for Lumsden – Morse, and organized a seemingly “spontaneous” “Protecting Parents’ Rights Town Hall” to be held on July 5th in Lumsden itself. More than 250 people showed up, just in time to watch Ritz and Wilson turn the town hall into a parody of the American right’s standard rallies citing governmental abuse of the educational system and usurping parental “rights”.

Ritz immediately went for the jugular, invoking the beliefs of MTG in slandering Democrats by calling all Planned Parenthood workers “groomers”, while maintaining that “Our families are under attack…”. Adding her “Amen”, Wilson pledged party support to the parents’ “cause”, noting that as “a grandmother of 10…we’re going to fight for you.”

We have also noted that MTG has defended the usage of “groomer” in describing her political opponents, maintaining that “Democrats support…children being sexualized, having transgender surgeries…[it’s]what pedophiles do to children.”

Stunned political observers note that her colleague, Florida Republican Matt Gaetz, still under investigation for allegedly transporting underage women, might better fit such description. Politicians blaming progressives for the abuses they now perceive preying upon their children may be a hard one for the public to get one’s mind around. However, it isn’t that our so-called “conservatives” aren’t trying to perform a feat that in conventional political circles might seem politically “impossible”.

This backwards journey started the moment statistics started showing that the political right were apoplectic with rage when a majority supported the entrenching of rights of LGBTQ2+, transgender citizens and allowing same-sex marriages to be universally legalized. We know that American “progressives” made similar assumptions when they declared that “race” was no longer a “dividing issue” in the U.S. because they’d now elected Barack Obama president – twice. 

However, we should have realized that by their constant campaigning to overturn Roe v Wade the fringe right and religious zealots will NEVER accept any law or social movement that sees progressives advocating for greater rights and freedoms, and having them enshrined in law. Thus, as we now see their tactics now being unfolded in full public view seeking ways to change and reverse public opinion and return control of the “rights” agenda to their camp.

It should have become obvious by now to our political campaign organizers that this charade created by the United Party is merely a “first step” in sewing the seeds of doubt. Parents, in the past, have accepted the educational agenda as one in which parents and government could work as “equal” in the creation and provision of common curriculum. However, now that they’ve allegedly been “shown” by the orchestrators of this “United” disinformation campaign that a government has marginalized their role to play in the education of their children, it’s only too obvious that they are reacting skeptically to the suggestion that the role of parent is soon to be overtaken by some “deep state” political entity.

Reality rather suggests that parents have become more vulnerable to this ploy of deceit by observing what has happened to the mental psyche of their children. After almost three years swaying to the winds of inappropriate Covid-10 policy designed to accommodate Donald Trump’s original contempt shown for the virus’s potential danger, they are STILL reflecting negatively and with great hostility as to the seeming decline of their own self-worth, identity and even sexuality. This in turn has resulted in children almost unanimously making the decision to remake themselves in a manner that provides them with a more secure sense of identity – and thereby embracing the very lifestyles that their more conservative parents seek to resist. 

By labeling these children “unprotected” within a society autocratically granting new lifestyle “rights” without first seeking acceptance from their parents, the religious right hopes that this tactic will eventually succeed in driving members of the LGBTQ2+ community back into the closets of victimization.

This phenomenon is not the creation of a parallel and controlling educational paradigm populated by Planned Parenthood, or left-leaning “influencers” but rather a trend having established in our schools called “accommodation”, wherein without exception the school no longer has any control of curriculum learned, what is taught in class and to what degree of difficulty, and parents explaining what “standards” are to be expected of them before they can call themselves “successes”.  Parents are increasingly having to be reconvinced that the eventual objectives of school and home are one and the same – and that following these upcoming by-elections and the 2024 campaign, this must become their focus for renewal and accommodation of assuring parents that their role within the classroom is still valued, no matter to what political persuasion you might subscribe.