February 21st, 2018

Trudeau should have been more decisive on pipeline spat

By Medicine Hat News Opinon on February 9, 2018.

Kudos to Premier Rachel Notley for her decision to ban B.C. wine imports to Alberta in retaliation for B.C. dragging its heels on the pipeline to be built through that province for our province’s oil to reach tidewater.

Dialogue and persuasion have been tried for years with no actual progress and it was time for something more decisive.

Notley’s decisive action is what we should have been seeing from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Simple affirming publicly that the pipeline must go ahead is just talk and talk is cheap.

Trudeau has the authority to put the matter of this pipeline fiasco with B.C. to rest. He could inform B.C. that the investigations and studies are over and work on the pipeline must begin.

So why is Trudeau choosing to fly around the country, and indeed the world, instead of standing with Notley on the pipeline issue?

There is the suggestion that a federal election around the corner, in 2019, perhaps has Trudeau guarding votes in B.C.

Trudeau’s current agenda/itinerary may suggest his attention is not focused on what matters to Canadians.

The political mileage normally garnered by a public relations campaign for Trudeau turned sour on the international stage recently. The British media seized on our prime minister’s focus to correct a women in an Edmonton audience about being politically correct. Rather than saying “mankind,” he corrected her; we should be saying “peoplekind,” he explained.

Rather than convert anyone to feminism, this sort of thing turns people completely off — it is so petty. The fact is most feminists are past this sort of politically correct wording. There are more important issues at hand.

There are many women and even men who consider the “#MeToo” movement one of the most important steps “mankind” has made in a long time.

For those who have been sexually assaulted the movement is liberating, vindicating and important.

There is also a very real danger, though, when anyone can claim to have been abused/assaulted/sexually offended and have that allegation take immediate effect. The perpetrator is named and loses a job and even a career. We set a precedent that the person is guilty without any due process and that is a dangerous path to tread that could backfire badly.

We are told women who have the courage to come forward with their personal stories of sexual assault do not lie — it simply would not be worth the embarrassment. For the vast majority this would be absolutely true. To say that there is no possibility of a woman coming forward with such an allegation for any other reason is probably naive though. People in general have ulterior motives for doing many things and this could be a powerful weapon indeed.

(Gillian Slade is a News reporter. To comment on this and other editorials, go to http://www.medicinehatnews.com/opinions, email her at gslade@medicinehatnews.com or call her at 403-528-8635.)

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