Kelly McParland of the National Post today published an article oozing with sarcasm and weak humour, pillorying the opposition's ever so outrageous decision to raise questions about the Harper Government's decision to radically change a generation-old status quo in Canadian international development policy favoring modern reproductive practices, access to safe abortion services, sexual education and contraception.
There are times in life where a piece of writing, in tone, argument, substance and spirit is so intolerable one can't help but respond. One sarcastic ideological jape deserves another.
All are strongly encouraged to read the infuriating original here before reviewing an impromptu response below: http://network.nationalpost.com/NP/blogs/fullcomment/archive/2010/02/19/...
Please find below a respectful alternative response of behalf of the majority of Canadians who aren't - notwithstanding contentious moral debates on life - in some perverse puritannical way offended by their government distributing condoms:
The Conservative Government took another step in its characteristically balanced, intellectually honest and utterly non-ideological agenda on maternal health Thursday, confirming it will go ahead with plans to push for more money for health programs for mothers and infants in developing countries when it hosts an upcoming meeting of wealthy countries.
Bev Oda, the Minister for International Cooperation, said Ottawa will push for a package of health initiative when it hosts the G8 leaders in June.
The package disassociates entirely issues of maternal health from deeply intertwined issues of reproductive health and sexual practice. It will embrace essential measures no rational human being could reasonably oppose such as immunization, access to clean water, and better nutrition and medical training, but curiously exclude equally critical measures long incorporated in Canadian international development efforts such as access to safe abortion services, modern sexual education and even contraception.
Oda said that all measures endorsed by international consensus would be adopted save those which might offend the radical evangelical base of the Conservative Party and its openly professed aspiration to align Canadian Foreign policy - in the candid words of one Harper appointee - "with a gospel-oriented worldview."
"There are many ways that maternal and infant health can be improved without political risks for Stephen Harper and the Conservative Party," she said. "The reality is the PM and his political interests come first. The PM made it clear to the Canadian people when we won Government that we had no intention of regenerating any debate on abortion, while simultaneously making increasingly laughable promises to the far-right that he would do precisely the opposite. The incoherent bastard child of this wink-wink/nudge-nudge political duplicity is the present incoherent maternal health agenda which the G8 majority, including several moderate European conservatives, will embarrassingly eviscerate during 2010's historic Canadian G8 Presidency at great cost to our nation's reputation."
Harper and Oda decried with great sincerity and unreproachable credibility the sad decision of opposition leaders to raise questions about this fundamental change to the status quo of Canadian international development assistance. "Whatever one's view of the moral controversy surrounding abortion," Oda said "condoms are fundamentally divisive. It's not like we encourage Canadian kids to use them."
Harper added: "As a Western Reform Alliance Conservative and longtime activist evangelical Christian, I am shocked and saddened that the NDP and Liberals would dare inject partisanship or ideology into the abortion debate. I mean... ideology. Abortion. What next?"
The Prime Minister scoffed at comparisons with the Bush administration's catastrophic, deadly and universally condemned "ABC" development policy, whose flagship idea was the whimsical premise of effectively nullifying the human libido. "Why do these opposition types have to make everything about Bush?" he lamented, "sure, the policies are identical in substance, equally cynical in spirit, and motivated by the same crass domestic political considerations, but beyond that, what similarity at all is there?"
Visibly angered by any association of his ahistorical, indefensible and downright wacky modification of longstanding health policy with that of his disgraced republican counterpart, he went on: "besides, the ‘C' in Bushie's program stood for ‘use a condom'. We've gone further and stricken any reference to even the most basic contraception from Canada's. More of an ‘AB' approach. We thought about having the ‘C' stand for Power of Christ, but it didn't focus group well. That's why my friend George is increasingly viewed in some Conservative circles as a left wing fringe group. They got nothing on us." Glancing nervously to ensure the absence of cameras, he confessed: "Besides, we've run the nation's finances so far off a cliff it's not like we're going to be doing much abroad in the next century anyway."
So - as we`ve unwaveringly maintained at the Post even during this darkest winter of ideological Conservatism's discontent - Glory be to you in your benificence, Harper Government. Under Stephen Harper, the national Government won't make the mistake of trying to push Canada's ideology on the developing world. Rather, like a recent American President Tories fear being associated with but persistently emulate with great passion in every word and deed, they're content to push the far right's instead.
Because it's one thing to impose radical limits on the reproductive rights of women abroad and pull a KAIROS on existing partners who commit such moral outrages as condom distribution or provision of a safe, affordable alternative to horrific, often fatal back-alley procedures which take countless lives annually, but it's not like anyone within Harper's Conservative Party of Canada would ever want to see similar interference by the state in matters properly left between a woman and her doctor enacted here at home. Right?