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Sunday, April 28, 2013

Does the media "bully" Conservatives?

The word bully has lost all meaning - now it simply is used to describe someone you don't like.

Think of how, during the 1972 federal election, the media published an unflattering photo of Progressive Conservative leader Robert Stanfield dropping a football.

Many consider it one of the top “gaffes” in Canadian political history.

But was it also a case of the media subconsciously planting doubts in the minds of voters as to Stanfield’s masculinity?

If he can’t catch a football he must be a nerd, nerds are weak, weak people are bad leaders.

Or how about the time the CBC’s Rick Mercer launched a petition during the 2000 federal election to get Canadian Alliance Leader Stockwell Day to change his first name to “Doris?

Was that funny or was it bullying? Was the subtext of Mercer's "joke" that Day was something less than a man?

Certainly it got voters laughing at Day.

Nor is Prime Minister Stephen Harper immune. Remember the mockery over his cowboy outfit? And the Huffington Post and journalists on Twitter once got a real “chuckle” over how Harper wore a hat.

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