P.S. I have used some strong language in this post, so read at your own risk. I’m furious with Stephen Harper. He is a bigoted radical. I grieve for the Canada I was taught to believe in: one in which intellectualism was more important than some nebulous idea of freedom associated with hockey and beer (for fuck sakes). You’ve been warned.
The Stephen Harper Government (I recently found out that Prime Minister Harper long ago began insisting that the government officially be called “The Stephen Harper Government” instead of “The Government of Canada) has put up a website advertising its new Memorial to Victims of Communism.
Sometimes I want to scream. What (the fuck) are we doing building a memorial like this? What a (really) stupid idea! Never mind the multimillion dollar cost of the land alone. This memorial is not a memorial at all; it’s a propaganda ploy –a very expensive one.
A memorial to victims of communism? Really? First of all, communism is an ideology, not an evil. But okay, let’s pretend for a moment that Communism is evil.
A memorial should not commemorate an evil; a memorial should commemorate an event. For example, a memorial may commemorate a particular event in a war, like the failed raid on Dieppe in World War II, in which many Canadians were dispatched to tried to penetrate the Nazi German stronghold, and were slaughtered.
The Dieppe memorial reminds us of many important things: the horror of war, the heroism of young people who stand against tyranny, the dangers of ill-conceived strategy, of thoughtless command, the importance of soldiering on in the face of adversity, the distressing reality of what humans are capable of doing to one another. In this way a Dieppe memorial is effective. It promotes thoughtful contemplation. Ultimately, it demands that we examine our own hearts, and ask of ourselves how we ourselves contribute to the state of our world.
On the other hand, this memorial that the Stephen Harper Government proposes is a memorial to nothing. Communism is not an event.
What the “memorial” will attempt to do is convince people that the horrors it depicts are caused by economic ideologies different from those of Canada’s current government. This memorial will promote closed-minded rejection of ideas, and not open minded contemplation of the human spirit. It will evoke sloppy sentimentalism juxtaposed against an uncritical mantra: “Communism is bad.”
If you actually believe that communism is “bad”, ask yourself if you actually can define in words what communism is. And if so, what exactly is “bad” about it? Come on! I dare ya!
This memorial is a disgracefully sanctimonious permanent scare tactic against a political ideology. It is not AT ALL what a memorial should be. It’s an insult –a travesty!
Welcome to Harper’s Canada, where intellect will be spied on where it lives, where case files will be kept against any infidel who dares to question the status quo (looking at you unionists), and where the uncritical masses will be seduced into suspicion of any new ideas.
Canada! Fuck yeah!