It is too bad the Toronto School Board wants to switch Grade 12 literature from Shakespeare and Dickens to native Canadian writers. There will just be another demarcation in where we writers reach for a cliché. And would there be any effort to include Margaret Atwood?
What some writers do is use endless clichés to liven our prose. Take, for example, a recent opinion from the Toronto Star’s Bob Hepburn. Instead of giving us up-front reassurance that Mike Schreiner has the talent and persistence to lead Ontario liberals, we get a cliché about tides from Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar. Now that Mr. Hepburn has demonstrated that he paid attention in high school and is well educated, we might pay better attention to his blandishments in favour of Mr. Schreiner.
I suppose, now that Hepburn has got us thinking about it, that Mr. Schreiner might be qualified to lead at least a one-person party in the Ontario legislature. He has lent the legislature proceedings an air of intelligent criticism and polite decorum for a period of time. I, myself, would only be able to control myself for a period before referring to the premier once again as that horse’s ass.
But then Mr. Hepburn has worked for the Toronto Star for a very long time. He is almost as much of an institution as is the paper itself. He also makes some good points about Mr. Schreiner once he gets down to the real task at hand. I agree with him, for example, that Mike Schreiner is a progressive and appears interested in real change. I consider that to be very important in potential liberal leaders.
Bob Hepburn further notes that the federal liberals are in disarray and the Ontario breed are heading downhill. I am not at all sure the owners of the Toronto Star look on him kindly for exposing the liberals to such criticism but they probably feel a little balance encourages a broader readership of their paper.
But I do object strongly to the unstated declaration that only Mike Schreiner can bring the liberal party back from the brink. There are some other people who are actually liberals who might be interested. We should also consider them.
Copyright 2023 © Peter Lowry
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