Canada's former prime minister Jean Chrétien has raised a red flag, warning the country's liberals that marriage equality laws are on current conservative leader Stephen Harper's chopping block. Are Chrétien's alarm bells being rung by reality or does it just amount to fundraising fuel for the opposition party?
“Unless we are bold. Unless we seize the moment. Everything we built will start being chipped away,” writes Chrétien in a letter included as part of a campaign to raise money for liberal causes. “The Conservatives have already ended gun control and Kyoto. Next may be a woman’s right to choose, or gay marriage. Then might come capital punishment. And one by one, the values we cherish as Canadians will be gone.”
Other former prime ministers agree with Chrétien, but in a less biting manner.
“Liberals stand for fairness, responsibility, and equality,” writes former PM Paul Martin in his part of the appeal for funds. “Liberals believe that individual freedom is only possible in a just society, and that good government can bring us together to build a more prosperous, more sustainable, more united Canada, one that leads by example on the world stage.”
Given Harper's Tea-Party like playbook of playing to the country's extreme conservatives, Chrétien could, unfortunately, be on to something. But it's interesting to see, however, a liberal, pro-gay party weaponize marriage equality into a wedge issue ahead of a big election year before the conservative party gives it much attention.
(Source and image source: The Globe and Mail)