Commentary – On Shania and Suzuki

Jeff Burgar

There are so many exciting things these days. Outraged folks will picket a shop because they don’t like a sign in the window.

Meanwhile, I’m wondering where the outrage is over one of our favourite country singers, Shania Twain.

She says she was caught off-guard by an interview question a few days ago. The question was asked if she would have voted for American President Donald Trump.

Twain says, “Yes. Even though he is sometimes offensive, I think he is honest.”

This brought a predictable storm on your favourite social media. Basically, “How dare you!”

Twain, a country winger, quickly apologized. Her main base runs straight through the middle of Canada and America. Saskatchewan, Wyoming, Nashville, Nebraska, Texas, Alberta and Northern Ontario, to name only a few.

Mostly, exactly the same people who think Trump is the bestest!

Her apology is a slap in the face to her biggest fans. I think she should apologize for apologizing! And ignore the mob.

We also have David Suzuki and his upcoming honourary degree [and speech he might give!] from the University of Alberta.

Sure, Suzuki is a nationally and internationally known figure. One supposes the U of A is just as interested in liberal arts and education, as it is in engineering.

But this is like an ultra-liberal college in California giving a degree to the president of Suncor. It will never happen.

Engineering, science and business make up the biggest departments in the entire U of A. Most of the people in those schools are, or will be, in oil and gas, petroleum engineering or research in some way.

Suzuki hates oil.

His entire, mostly distinguished career, is also littered with attacks on fossil fuels and a fair share of outright quackery and hypocrisy.

Two months ago in Calgary, he said oilsands should be shut down. Period!

Suzuki’s end game is basically, the destruction of the Alberta economy and with it, pretty well the end of the U of A as known today.

The head of the quite rich David Suzuki Foundation says, “This is not a blind endorsement of Dr. Suzuki’s perspectives on any given issue – it’s a tribute to Dr. Suzuki’s incredible career.”

President of the University David Turpin says, “The U of A is home to many contradictory and conflicting modes of inquiry, research, and teaching. Each year, that diversity is reflected in the nomination and selection of honourary degree recipients.”

So really? Let’s also give an award to serial sex molester Harvey Weinstein for his great movies. Bill Cosby for the joy he brought as America’s Dad.

Pierre Elliott Trudeau for being a bold politician with the National Energy Program. You know, to show everybody how we value conflicting modes of inquiry and diverse opinions.

Twain should never have backed down. The U of A must.

 

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