December 5, 2014 at 10:09 am  •  Posted in Dave's Blog, Featured by  •  2 Comments

It’s the Friday morning after the Thursday afternoon “pause” as I write this, and shortly, I’ll be leaving for work.  Today, work is anything but.  It’s Pledge Day on NewsTalk 770, so I will be joining Bruce Kenyon, Roger and Rob, Angela Kokott and an amazing supporting cast of guests, greeters, runners, pledge-takers, and entertainers — including just about everybody who works at the radio station and a good chunk of the staff at the Westin Hotel — to raise money for the Calgary Children’s Foundation.  It is a day full of positive vibes, because it does so much good.

So that’s where most of my head is at right now.  But like a forensic pathologist at a crime scene, a part of my brain is still puzzling over the boiling wreckage of Jim Prentice’s meddling in the Gay-Straight Alliance issue.  “Finesse” is not the first word that comes to mind to describe his handling of it.

Let’s be clear.

Prentice deserves a minimal amount of credit for pulling his ill-considered, antediluvian, segregationist (as amended), and unconscionable (whether as amended or not) Bill 10 from debate before it got to Third and Final Reading in the Alberta Legislature.  As in, “Well, Mr. Premier, the alternative — not pulling the bill — would’ve been worse, so thanks for that.”

But it took a popular uprising — a raft of talk shows like mine, rallies, petitions with thousands of signatures, critical commentary on radio, television and in print, heartfelt interviews with gay people or their loved ones about the pain and isolation they felt growing up, and a social media s***storm — along with an internal revolt inside the PC Party to get him to do that much.  So to the people of Alberta goes the bulk of the credit.  (Don’t credit the media.  On our best days, we give focus to an issue, a voice to people, and we reflect the mood of the people.  But the media don’t set or change the agenda;  the people do that.)

To the Premier goes the blame, for taking a hot potato, drenching it in lighter fluid, tossing it on the barbecue, moving the barbecue next to the vinyl siding and damn near burning down the house.

Over the next couple of days I will work my sources and ponder this further, and when I next write, I hope I will be able to shed at least some plausible light on why Jim Prentice put all the people of Alberta — straight, gay, bi, trans, or undecided — through this.  Because it was unnecessary, ill-conceived, and hasn’t made any Albertan’s life better or safer — least of all, the life of an LGBTQ kid.


  1. Janet / December 5, 2014 at 11:23 am / Reply

    Based on your intro, I have to ask: “what makes people give?” Almost every day I’m surrounded by the amazing work of charities in Calgary and I wish people had a better understanding of how people with passion are strengthening our city! So here is a snippet from my world – I met with Making Changes, who empower women buy getting them dressed for success. Last Wednesday, thru were working hard in their receiving bay to pull out suitable business attire and then find appropriate homes for leftover clothes, which get transferred to other locations like the ‘reserves’, Servants Anonymous Society, Diabetes Association, etc. Making Changes is a one-stop destination for all women who have ‘excess’ clothing in their closet (yup – it happens), but they don’t just stop with clothing.., they provide employment skills training to assist immigrant women as they strive to land a career in Canada. Fortunately corporate Canada appreciates this empowering service model and even a local company (Albi Homes) stepped up to help with the renovation of their store as they settled near Chinook LRT station.

  2. Robert Leddy / December 5, 2014 at 11:34 am / Reply

    Worst part of Bill #10 was delaying Bill #202 from being debated. At this time our youth in the LGBTQ community are still at risk with no guarantee of support from their schools.

    If the Prentice government can issue new school portables in the middle of a by-election stating it was desperately needed for that school I am sure they can pass a law to protect the human rights of our vulnerable youth in both the private and public education systems.

    How many more kids need to be bullied, harassed and discriminated before our government decides to do the right thing?

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