Having said that, I no longer work for the FSWC and don`t owe them anything. So taking all that into account, I`m going to tell you about the gala they put on Sunday night at the Wychwood Barns to launch their "Tour for Humanity" bus, which is their big genocide-awareness and education mobile. The bus will travel to schools and public events throughout Ontario.
|This is the sight to which|
I entered the FSWC gala
But that aside, there were some very good aspects and a somewhat troublesome one to the FSWC event last night.
Ontario's Minister for Economic Development and the local MPP, Eric Hoskins, gave a fine speech in which he extolled the Ontario and Canadian governments' close relationship with Israel, lavishing praise upon the middle east's lone liberal democracy.
|Tim Uppal speaks at|
the FSWC gala
When Max Eisen recounted that unfortunate part of Canadian history, I turned to Tim Uppal, the federal government's Minister of State for Multiculturalism, who was standing beside me, getting ready to deliver the next speech. "You better remind them that Mackenzie King was a Liberal," I quipped.
That cracked Tim up a bit.
Tim delivered a brief, thoughtful talk about the importance of the work FSWC does and the need for Holocaust education. What was implicit in Tim's speech but not said was the way that hateful bigots in our society, particularly among those laying claim to being advocates of "Social Justice," would like the whole association of Jews, The Holocaust and Israel to just go away.
|Another sexy FSWC Go-Go girl|
Tim Uppal is a great reminder of how deep the benches of Stephen Harper's Conservative government remain. It's filled with extremely bright, capable people of whom Uppal is but one example among many.
Which leads us to the next person to take the podium at the FSWC gala. I've read much from former Liberal Justice Minister and current Mount Royal MP Irwin Cotler, but never heard him speak in person before. Cotler is considered one of the intellectual eminences among the federal Liberal party. But with a Leader of the light caliber of Justin Trudeau, that distinction is a pretty low hurdle to achieve.
Last night I learned how low.
Though obviously a decent, well-intentioned man, he remains a proponent of censorship laws that flout some of the basic principles of free speech and are rife with potential for abuse.
Building himself up to a crescendo of hyperbole, Cotler got to the point in his speech that extolled hate speech laws, screaming "The Holocaust began with words!"
Well, Irwin, so did The Enlightenment and the American Revolution.
But no, the Holocaust didn't really begin with words. It began, like other genocides began, when a government decided to restrict what people can do and say, and that they can be imprisoned and abused based on their beliefs. Which, though not with the same intent, pretty much describes the type of laws for which Cotler advocates.
|For reasons unknown, a lovely acrobat|
performed contortions in a bubble
Cotler seems to have forgotten that most of us who are opposed to censorship laws aren't in favor of hate speech, but believe that the best way to combat lies is with truth, and by exposing the liars as fools. One aspect of his ideas that Cotler conveniently omitted was, just who gets to decide which words are OK and which words aren`t? Irwin Cotler and Justin Trudeau? Or maybe the Supreme Court? Unless someone is calling for violence or lawbreaking, I think I'd prefer to take my chances with unfettered free speech.
So after all the speeches, I made one of my frequent trips back to the bar to chat up a beautiful bartender named Kelsey. Handing me a glass of white wine, she asked me what I was doing at the gala. Even though I was dolled up in a nice suit and a rather snazzy tie I picked up from Stollery's a few months ago, I suppose I didn't seem like the typical sort for that type of thing. When I told her "media" she asked me what angle I was going to take on the night.
Thinking for a moment, I responded, "Well, I guess 'The Holocaust and Hot Babes' just about sums it up for me."
One thing I immediately noticed when entering the FSWC gala was how many very attractive women were working the event. Not just the volunteers and serving staff were gorgeous, but there were strategically placed, sexy go-go dancers and a lovely, extremely flexible acrobat in a flimsy outfit doing some interesting contortions inside a transparent plastic bubble.
|That's Kelsey on the right|
I sure had fun. Given the very good work done by the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center, which is one of the few major Jewish groups in Canada that hasn't succumbed to the infection of vapid moral relativism promoted by halfwits like those at JSpace, I was pleased to be there, for all the aforementioned reasons.
|The best of all possible worlds: delicious cake dispensed by delectable women|