I’m surprised by the number of fallacies and misinterpretations written by this professor of political science, and would like to take a moment to make some corrections and clarifications for Mr. Redekop (Chilliwack Progress Letters, Oct. 15, 2020).
1. The advertisement is not remotely the only thing that Laurie Throness’s detractors are concerned with. Other points of disgust include:
Attending and speaking at events put together by the Association for Reformed Political Action (ARPA), a conservative religious group that believes government should follow biblical principles;
His views that women shouldn’t have the right to bodily autonomy;
His advocacy for the abusive practice of “conversion therapy”;
His public stand in the B.C. Legislature against SOGI-123 and his views that public schools’ accepting of and teaching of children to respect those who may be LGBT may leave school children with “mental health issues” and other “long-term unintended consequences”;
His support of anti-SOGI protestors at an event run by Culture Guard, and claiming them as “good, loving, and tolerant”;
His failure to support a Bill proposing B.C. add “gender identity or expression” to the human rights code;
And, his failure to separate his religious beliefs from his secular position in government.
2. Chilliwack-based voters and allies of the LGBTQ community didn’t petition for the removal of Laurie Throness on the basis of his religion, but on the basis of his fight against the rights of the LGBTQ community and his dangerous views and public utterances to that effect. If other candidates (or MLAs) of any religious or non-religious leaning held and made public similar anti-human rights beliefs, they would be equally held to account.
3. Freedom of expression is freedom to speak your mind and freedom to criticize the government without fine or imprisonment. It is not freedom to spew hatred. It is not freedom from public opinion or disputation.
4. Repeating his own words and actions, and debating his publicly stated beliefs is not slander; it is not discrimination; it is not bigotry. It is intolerance of his intolerance, and that we will not apologize for.
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