The decline of free societies is rooted in these two words from Justin Trudeau
On February 24, 2020, a former Justice of the Supreme Court of India, Justice Deepak Gupta, gave a lecture before the bar saying that “the right to dissent is the most important right granted by the Constitution”.
Gupta took the old idea of defying authority and gave it dignity: “To question, to challenge, to verify, to hold the government to account is the right of every citizen under the constitution,” he said. declared. “These rights must never be taken away from us, otherwise we will become an unconditionally moribund society, which can no longer develop.”
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau would have done well to study Gupta’s speech. When he responded to truckers protesting vaccination mandates by saying they had “unacceptable views”, he was undermining the fundamental right to dissent. He said, in essence: you have no right to think This way.
He could have argued against the unacceptable Shares, insofar as these existed. But instead, he uttered two words that more than any other corrode free societies: “unacceptable views.”
We now see where this thinking can lead. Because Trudeau believed the protesters had opinions that only deserved to be rejected, he rejected and slandered them. Instead of engaging, he dug in his heels. Eventually, when he saw things were not going his way, he became draconian and invoked the Emergencies Act.
The only other times a Canadian leader felt compelled to declare such an emergency was during both World Wars and when terrorists kidnapped and killed the Deputy Premier of Quebec. I was a teenage student in Montreal during this crisis, and I will never forget the soldiers and army convoys that patrolled the park where I walked on my way to school.
The Prime Minister who invoked these emergency measures was Justin’s father, Pierre Elliot Trudeau. He did it because he sensed a real and significant threat to the security of Quebec. What urgent threat to the safety of his son Justin felt from truckers frustrated with endless and ever-changing vaccination mandates?
As Steven McGuire wrote in the National Post, “Essentially, truckers are mobilizing against what they see as unacceptable uses of government power. So what is Trudeau doing? It asserts even more power.
It’s a direct line between treating viewpoints as “unacceptable” and calling the troops. Trudeau did not see a contestation with dissidents; he saw a battle that had to be won.
It’s a direct line between treating viewpoints as “unacceptable” and calling the troops. Trudeau did not see a contestation with dissidents; he saw a battle that had to be won. Compromise be damned.
“Trudeau fails to realize that he is part of the legitimacy crisis of Western democracies,” McGuire wrote. “He thinks he can deal with democratic dissent with insults and repression. But politics is about compromise – even with “deplorables” who have unacceptable views.
Of course, with viewpoints considered “unacceptable,” there is little room for compromise. In today’s identity politics, people whose views diverge from the politically correct mainstream must be demonized, shunned, and shamed.
I can understand such angry feelings coming from a crowd on Twitter, but from the leader of a free country?
The irony is that by letting his self-righteous awakening get the better of him, Trudeau failed to see that the “battle” would soon become a moot point.
The irony is that by letting his self-righteous awakening get the better of him, Trudeau failed to see that the “battle” would soon become a moot point. As the Omicron wave recedes, more countries are lifting the very restrictions Canadian truckers are protesting against. Truckers’ demands seem more reasonable by the day, while Trudeau’s heavy hand seems more authoritarian. The man looks like a leader trapped by his intolerant thoughts.
When we take away people’s basic right to dissent, as Justice Gupta reminds us, we become “an unconditionally moribund society, which will no longer be able to develop.”
It is this unconditionally moribund society that is truly unacceptable.