Shooting from the hip: rapid responses on recent events


Shooting from the hip, top-of-my-head, free shots — whatever metaphor you prefer, here are some quick opinions on a range of topics.

Local doctor’s lawsuit

While many locals seem to support the four Alberta doctors, including Ponoka’s Dr. Gregory Chan, in their lawsuit against the province opposing mandate vaccination for Alberta Health Services employees, keep in mind that doesn’t mean they are anti-vax. It seems to me, they are more anti-government control and pro prudent caution.

So don’t twist it to support your own views or mischaracterize what they are trying to do by piggybacking onto their efforts with your own conspiracy theories or pandemic-denying nonsense.

While that doesn’t necessarily mean I support the lawsuit, I can understand it and wanting to stand on principal. However, at some point, the greater good needs to come into play. Whatever your opinions on the matter, if you’re going to support them, support them for the right reasons, with an understanding of what they’re actually trying to accomplish.

Affordable childcare repercussions

While I think it’s great that licensed child care will soon be more affordable for all parents in Canada, no matter their income, it does make me concerned for unlicensed child care providers.

When fees cut in half in early 2022, and to $10 a day by 2026, private day home providers won’t be able to compete. There are plenty of private day home providers who have years of experience with children and are caring, patient and wonderful providers. They just might not have the education or other certification to be approved with an agency.

This new federal deal will leave them behind and it seems this, along with other cuts the United Conservative Party made to child care subsidies such as the Kin Care Program, are a push to institutionalize child care. A cookie-cutter approach doesn’t work for all families.

Banning conversion therapy

On Dec. 1, Parliament passed a motion to fast-track the passage of a bill to ban conversion therapy in Canada.

While no one with a conscience can deny that conversion therapy has included some barbaric practices, and no one should be subjected to such traumatic experiences such as shock therapy, shaming or other negative reinforcement ‘treatments’ in an attempt to change one’s sexual orientation or gender identity, “conversion therapy” has historically been very ill defined.

Just a few months ago, socially Conservative MPs voted down supporting an earlier version of the bill they felt had overly broad wording, which could criminalize conversations about sexuality between children and their parents or with religious leaders.

Now, instead of holding a new, free vote on the new bill, the Conservatives simply made a motion to fast track the process so there was no vote.

Was the wording changed to include clearer definitions, or did the Conservatives simply cave to political pressure?

There is a big difference between coerced torture, and a person seeking religious solace and counsel while trying to reconcile their identity with their spiritual beliefs.

Those kinds of differentiation deserve some attention and conversation rather than just shoving them under the rug in an attempt to value signal how progressive a party is, or to avoid being on the public record as against the bill.

Legislation should never dictate one’s own conscience, to the extent no harm is being done to others.

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