And liberal thinkers need not apply?

This needs to be clarified. Nobody owns your body but you. A true liberal recognizes the right of men and women everywhere to the freedom of control of their bodies. It is why a liberal sees abortion, prostitution and euthanasia as moral issues but not legal issues. A liberal decries the efforts of narrow minded people to try to use the state to resolve issues of conscience and personal choice.

But at the same time, nobody has the right to tell you how to think. We all have the right to our own set of principles. At the same time as we stand firmly for the rights of the others, we cannot deny ourselves our own feelings and our own choice on the issues.

And that means Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau is wrong. You cannot tell people how to think. You cannot tell a potential Liberal Party candidate, for example, that they cannot be a devout Catholic. That does not mean they can use parliament or party platforms to proselytize for the Roman Church. The church might be an anachronism but it has also done much good in helping people and raising standards of decency around the world.

Nor is the attitude of many of the more rigid churches, synagogues, temples and mosques about same-sex marriage a deterrent to their members participating in liberal dialogue, membership and candidacy. We cannot be guilty of some form of reverse discrimination because of what liberals might wish to believe in for themselves.

As liberals, we will have a major problem with the Conservatives’ ignorant and ill-considered answer to the Supreme Court on prostitution. Sometime in the first four years of the new Liberal government, the Supreme Court will be throwing the Conservative solution back at parliament for repair. It is a non-answer. If anything, the Conservative law makes matters worse. It drives prostitution into the back alleys and into the hands of less savoury elements in our society. Nobody believes that prostitutes are criminals. Nor are their customers criminals. As liberals, we have a responsibility to keep these people out of the hands of criminals.

As for Justin Trudeau, he needs to use his very good brain before he opens his handsome mouth. Leadership is very much a team effort. It helps to think of others before saying what you think.


Copyright 2014 © Peter Lowry

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