Ideology can make for some strange bedfellows
Many Canadians still remember the embarrassing debacle surrounding Heather Mallick and her her comments about the Palin family during the recent US Presidential Elections.
The extremely anti-feminist undertones of Mallick's comments -- joining the chorus of Sarah Palin's left-wing detractors who proved utterly delighted to denounce her daughter as a tramp -- only served to further reinforce the image of Mallick as someone not altogether comfortable with the principles she espouses, or with reality.
Her most recent piece of commentary to appear on CBC only further demonstrates precisely how out of touch Mallick really is.
In a column entitled "Let Gorgeous George Speak", Mallick gushes enthusiastically over George Galloway, who was recently denied entry into Canada over his financial links to Hamas.
"I could listen to Galloway all night," Mallick writes. "He's practically Shakespearean in his fierceness and perfect phrasing. He's like Tony Benn (another troublesome British politician of the left) whose oratory was so valued that it was actually released on CD with an ambient soundtrack."
"Another clever Brit, the polymath Stephen Fry, calls them the QIs. It stands for Quite Interesting," Mallick continues. "It is a category that includes The Literate, The Talkers, the people with a sense of humour who add gaiety to our increasingly grunted national discussion."
Apparently, in Malick's mind, Galloway's barring from the country has nothing to do with his actions, and it has everything to do with jealousy at "Gorgeous" George Galloway.
"Banning this argumentative, energizing Scot will make Canada look even more like what we are rapidly becoming: a hamster of a country, petting and fattening its dullness, silencing dissent, mocking artists, musicians and anyone who's creative, or odd, or not entirely mainstream," Mallick insists.
Only a resevoir of visine and the lack of sense of most of Mallick's supporters could deaden the sound of 60 million rolling eyes.
Mallick even tries to counter the fact that Galloway donated money to Hamas, listed as a terrorist organization in Canada, by citing Hamas' status as the elected government of Gaza, and by echoing Galloway's claim that he had donated that money for aid purposes.
But by the same token, Galloway could have donated that money to the Red Cross or the Red Crescent and enjoyed further assurances that the money would have actually been used for aid purposes, as opposed to being used to purchase weapons that would be stored in hospitals and schools.
Not to mention Galloway's extremely questionable financial links to Saddam Hussein.
"Free speech does not exist in this hamster country," Mallick complains. "I, for instance, cannot speak about the value of English literature at a university campus in Alberta because anti-abortionists dislike my pro-choice views and promise to riot over my presence, harming donations."
Of course, where Mallick chooses to use the word "riot", anti-abortion advocates had actually promised to protest.
If one could miss the irony of Mallick whining about her freedom of speech being impugned by other people exercising their freedom of speech, it would be difficult to see how.
"Free speech is no longer a cause," Mallick muses. "It is a weapon used against those who wish to speak by those who don't wish to let others hear it."
"I wish to hear Galloway speak and not only because he speaks so well," she continues. "I am ashamed of what this country is turning into, a humourless place that celebrates unreason and the subtraction of ancient freedoms."
It's unsurprising that Mallick would be so desparate to make this issue about freedom of speech. Many Canadians continue -- wrongly -- to insist that Mallick's freedom of speech was curtailed when the CBC removed her atrocious "Mighty Wind" from its website.
Freedom of speech doesn't equate the right to be published by any media outlet -- just as freedom of speech doesn't guarantee freedom of entry.
It isn't surprising Mallick would try to transform Galloway's barring from Canada as a free speech canard. It's just strange that she would do this in a column on the very same day Galloway gave his speech through a video link.
Galloway was clearly no threat to Canadian security. But the law is the law.
No self-respecting Canadian would actually want Galloway in the country. Only someone as out-of-touch with reality as Heather Mallick could actually want him here.