Brad Wall’s Saskatchewan: Fetus Fetishists In, Entrepreneurs Out

I’m working on a story for the upcoming prairie dog about the Saskatchewan Motion Picture Association’s press conference earlier this afternoon, in which its president — or Fearless Leader, or Grand Pooh-Bah — Ron Goetz, says his organization is calling for Bill Hutchinson’s head (Hutch, the Sask. Party MLA for Regina South, is the minister responsible for tourism and culture, for which the Sask. Film industry is his domain). If you’re looking for the story, maybe CBC or CJME has something posted about the press conference, but you’ll have to wait until next week for full blanket prairie dog coverage or whatever passes for it.

Meanwhile, there was an anti-abortion rally at the Legislature, which was also held today. According to PD’s John Cameron, seven Sask. Party MLAs showed up for the rally.

I didn’t see anybody from the Sask. Party at the SMPIA thing. Then again, the pro-lifers weren’t calling for one of their friends to get canned.

What does the Sask. Party have against entrepreneurs, anyway?

Author: Stephen LaRose

2006 winner of the Canadian Association of University Teachers's Award of Excellence in Journalism for a bunch of prairie dog stuff. Invited into the best homes in Regina. Once.

24 thoughts on “Brad Wall’s Saskatchewan: Fetus Fetishists In, Entrepreneurs Out”

  1. Hey you at least mentioned the anti-abortion protest a few more guts than a number of left wing papers give you credit for that

  2. I don’t see anything in the article that’s critical of any particular group and its right to freedom of assembly. Please clarify.

  3. If you read Mr. LaRose’s post above, especially paragraphs 2 and 3, maybe you’ll get the drift, anonymusses.

  4. Barb: I’ve read and reread the OP and am not sure what you’re getting at re: freedom of assembly.

    I think Stephen is just pointing out how, on the one hand, the Sask Party has just publicly yanked support for a local industry while, on the other, its MLAs are publicly showing their support for a particular social issue.

    Keeping track of which rallies and protests politicians decide to get behind is pretty important as it gives some indication of what to expect from them.

  5. At your suggestion, I did re-read. I note an observation of seven Sask. Party MLAs attending one rally and speculation as to why they might attend one over the other, but again I fail to see where the writer specifically calls into question the right of demonstrators, SMPIA members, or MLAs to assemble. Whether I am obtuse on your point, or it’s a mere semantic quibble, I simply don’t see what you see. Which, obviously, is not a big deal in this particular context. Enjoy the sunshine and have a good weekend!

  6. Paul: let the MLAs show up where they will, and if you have a problem with that, express your displeasure at the ballot box.
    anonymusses: the writer doesn’t need to be specific when he can imply. You have a good weekend, too.

  7. Ah, in your direct answer to Paul’s comment, now I see what you’re getting at, Barb.

    I didn’t read it an implication that the MLAs should not be there; I read it as, the MLAs picked their priority and the journalist dutifully observed as such. No implication read that they shouldn’t be free to assemble where they wish. Cheers.

  8. Barb, I’m not following, either. I agree that the OP is suggesting that the politicians’ priorities are screwed up, but…so? Criticizing how politicians prioritize their time, including which rallies they show up to, has nothing to do with objecting to their right to freedom of assembly. And at #10, are you also suggesting that if someone has a problem with something a politician is doing, that voting is an acceptable means of expressing that, but writing about their displeasure isn’t?

  9. Re: #10, not at all, JB; Mr. LaRose and you and others have the right to deplore (or support) the appearance/non-appearance of politicians at any event, keeping in mind that the politicians have the right to attend (or not) any event they wish. If you want to pay them out for that because you disagree with their choices, you have the vote.
    As to the right of assembly, PD has a history of inflammatory posts in re: the supporters of the anti-abortion/pro-life movement, attacking their right to expression of beliefs and right of assembly. In that context, I argue that the implication in the above post is quite clear.

  10. Further to my comment some papers and TV stations refused to cover the March for Life march yesterday in Ottwa. While I am pro-choice I do not think censoring an alternative protest is professional

  11. I get it now. You’re thanking Stephen for no longer attacking the supporters of the anti-abortion/pro-life movement’s right of assembly, as he allegedly did in previous articles. At least, this is the implication I’m taking from what you’ve written.

  12. Sarcasm has to have at least a modicum of wit about it, to be effective. Sorry, anonymusses: fail.

  13. Barb: Okay. So it’s not so much this post, but the context? Can you help me out with understanding that–where are the other posts that have attacked anti-choicers right to freedom of assembly?

    I think the reason your initial post in this thread has been met with raised eyebrows also has to do with context, coincidentally! It’s become pretty common (in general, and especially online) for criticism to be “mistaken” for a call for censorship. You know–someone points out that a comment was objectionable or harmful, and then come the cries of “FREE SPEECH!” etc., as if critiquing speech is the same as asking for people to be thrown in jail.

  14. This one? In which Whitworth mocks an anti-choice protest, calls anti-choicers “pompous moralizing dipshits,” asks readers to not ignore the anti-choice movement in Canada, points to what’s happening in the US, posts a comedy video about women’s rights in the US, and… doesn’t say that anti-choicers don’t or shouldn’t have the right to assemble publicly?

    Attacking, or mocking, a person’s beliefs is hardly the same thing as attacking a person’s right to express those beliefs. For instance, there’s a big difference between someone arguing that the Quebec student protest is BS because students are stupid and wrong and spoiled, and someone arguing that student protest should be immediately shut down by police.

  15. Whenever I come to this post, I think, “As soon as I have a second I’ll put up a response Barb.”

    Then when I have that second, I come back to find JB has pretty much said what I was going to say.

    And… tag closed.

  16. No problem, JB. OK, so here’s how the game goes, as illustrated by that post, but part of a pattern: Mr. Whitworth writes one of his renowned vitriolic posts. He gets the predictable responses from folks who, jesting or not, advocate what could be considered reactive damage, aiming at punishing pro-life/anti-abortion supporters for the public expression of their convictions. Mr. Whitworth then pulls in his horns, advocating more socially responsible responses. The thread peters out; no harm done. Really?

    You keep looking for what you call specific attacks on the right to assembly. The implication that those holding opposing views to yours should shut up and stay home is all that’s necessary. The anti-Semitic newspapers in France in the 19th and 20th centuries didn’t have to come right out and say “Gas the Jews”: they just published demeaning cartoons, used insulting language (“Blum, the gentle yid”, the “Cretin-Talmud cabinet”), and wrote editorials and articles on the worldwide “Jewish conspiracy” year after year, decade after decade, pandering to that segment of French society that gained the upper hand with the Vichy government and heartily approved of and cooperated with the “final solution”. That’s where inflammatory language leads.

  17. I like asking for specifics because it helps to ensure we’re all talking about the same thing. In this case, I now feel like I have a better understanding of what you’re getting at.

    I have a personal policy against participating in Godwinning on weekends, but leaving the Holocaust aside, I take your point that inflammatory or insulting language can get people fired up in an unproductive or even dangerous direction. I get irritated with the joking about violence, too (and yes, I’m counting throwing eggs/condoms as violence, because it is), though I understand it as a frustration release. If those kind of jokes are what this is about, then I think we agree, though I’m less inclined to think we’re really on a slippery slope to real violence here (on this particular issue, it’s the anti-choice movement whose inflammatory language/imagery is frequently the backdrop to real violence). If you’re saying that counter-protest in general is an attack on the right to assemble, or that critique or counter-protest is a problem because it punishes those being critiqued, then we disagree.

    Either way, with the blog, I don’t know. People really should be fired up about this stuff, and I want the writers to do that. When reading about a topic this terrifying, I’m okay with a mix of straight-up facts and mocking. And I think the topic is inflammatory by nature, anyway, so I’m not sure if dialing back the snideness would make much difference in how people respond. Anyway, we’re the only one reading this now so I’m okay with it if you want to agree to disagree and enjoy the beautiful Sunday we’re getting. I’m going to walk around the lake.

  18. Calling anti-choicers, who attack others freedoms ceaselessly and, in the U.S., effectively, mean names is comparable to anti-Semitism? Really?


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