I maybe should apologize to my mostly German readers for writing a lot about Canadian politics in the last months, but instead I’ll recommend not reading the news of your native country, for mental health reasons. Plus,
“Apology is a sign of weakness.”
Also, I could essentially argue exactly the same points about that German parliamentary commission who today austed their president, showing the same level of government “dignity” as liberals in the US now prominently do, but that’s pure politics, not society. If it were a politics problem, it could be solved by hanging a very, very few people whom nobody really likes, anyway. The Canadian event, though, shows how deep the societal problem has gone down over there – but fear not, my fellow Germans; we’re very adept at importing braindead ideas from across the Atlantic.
So, what happened in Canada?
Like every country with a “national” sport, like football for Germany (the real one, not the American one), the Canadians love their hockey (the real one, not the one played on lawns). Of course, this results in a very popular TV show with a very popular commentator on that sports. The guy, for the last 35 years or so,
is was a guy named Don Cherry. Don, sharing his first name with Donald Trump, was recently fired for being a racist, sexist xenophobe (he tends to dress like a weird mix between Karl Lagerfeld, KFC’s Colonel Sanders and a drag queen, so I guess the “homophobia” slur was dropped in a rare fresh air of reason).
This was three days ago, and, due to the real popularity of Don Cherry, there’s been a plethora of articles on the subject, most of which could have been written by any 16-years-old feminist with blue hair and 15 minutes of sophistry buzzwords education. Canada, unlike most countries, at least pretends to have an unbiased press, so there was one article that really, really wanted to say “Don Cherry did nothing wrong”, but preferred not to – I assume, for reasons of job security.
Well, the “unbiased press” thing is not true; Canada just has the Toronto Sun, just like the German-speaking countries have the Swiss NZZ and… well, the anglophones the Toronto Sun, obviously. But I wouldn’t be me if I were to ignore low-hanging fruit on the left – I’m just getting older and can only bend down that far. Luckily, there’s Vinay Menon from the Toronto Star.
Making Don Cherry a martyr for the ignorant is a bad idea
While calling everyone not thinking Don Cherry should be crucified for Wrongthink or at least put in Room 101 with a cage of hungry rats on his stomach ignorant is, of course, a brilliant idea. Sure.
(Honestly: Mr. Menon is the most “reasonable” leftist I found).
Is it too soon to say a few nice things about Donald S. Cherry?
I see what you did here, Vinay. Writing “Donald”, while he’s largely known as “Don”, or by the weird nickname “Grape”, because… Canadians obviously are really into fruits? – and inserting a middle initial, that likens him to Donald J. Trump, doesn’t it? Just mentioning that in case anyone thinks I cut short the “reasoning” for firing Don above.
Probably. Why don’t I just try to humanize Hitler, right?
Wow. Godwin’s law fulfilled in the second sentence. Alright, open season for Nazi comparisons. I love this already.
The headshaking that is taking place from coast to coast to coast after the man in the amazing technicolour dreamcoats self-immolated on live TV is beyond theatrical
Stop right here. You could, as Mr. Agar above (what’s wrong with all those people named after food?), at least use “laughable“. My suggestion would be “embarrassing”, but we’ll get to that later.
These were the rules of engagement with Coach’s Corner[Cherry’s TV show]: it was like going to a bake sale and knowing some of the cupcakes had salmonella.
Is that fetish for Nazi things, like casually dropping vermin in sentences about people you don’t like, an Indian thing – like that affection for Swastikas, just pointing the wrong way (left)?
Saturday night, when Cherry somehow turned a good idea — why everyone should buy a poppy for Remembrance Day — into a grotesque attack on immigrants
Maybe, at this point, for everyone outside Canada, we should quote what Don literally said:
“You people love… You, they come here. Whatever it is. You love our way of life, you love our milk and honey,” he stated on Saturday. “At least you could pay a couple of bucks for poppies or something like that. These guys paid for your way of life that you enjoy in Canada…”
Oh, and we might clear up what a “poppy for Remembrance Day” is, just for all people not living in the (leftovers of the) British empire: To remember the proud
British Canadian soldiers defeating the evil Germans in WW1, on November 11, you wear a (usually fake) red poppy flower on your lapel to show respect for the (fallen) soldiers. This, meanwhile, extends to WW2, where the proud Russian British Canadian soldiers defeated the evil Germans again, plus a few wars you might or might not remember, and, of course, not to forget the one guy who managed to get killed by one of his brothers-in-arms trying to shoot at ISIL fighters – yes, we’re really holding up true humanitarian values like “you can’t weigh one person’s life against tens of thousands”, even though the latter faced gruesome deaths in the trenches of WW1″ – that’s state TV; of course the one guy gets equal screentime.
Back to topic:
a grotesque attack on immigrants
See – this is why I choose Vijay’s article: He at least tries to reason that point, something many of his fellow Canadian journalists totally suck at.
Cherry’s “you people” rant against newcomers was one big dog whistle.
Now, if you aren’t a member of some obscure neo-Nazi group or Antifa (if either, please kill yourself), you might not know what “dog-whistle” is supposed to mean. I’ll borrow from urban dictionary:
to make an innocuous statement … that the general population will take a certain meaning from, but a certain group that is “in the know” will take away the secret, intended message. Often involves code words.
In other words, “dogwhistle” is an essentially leftist conspiracy theory (cf.: patriarchy, microagression, privilege) to take perfectly innocuous statements and turning the speaker into Satan himself by insinuating the worst possible intention of the usually reasonable – and, to mention innocuous, again – person.
So, Don Cherry’s crime is “othering”, another leftist – well, it’s not a conspiracy theory, it’s plain lunacy. “Othering” is – well, a dog-whistle for leftists, implying that differentiation between groups of people is, in any (unspecified) way, wrong. Now, in a diverse and open society as most western countries – and Canada very much – claim to be, it’s totally fine to hold even the most stupid of opinions, but differentiating between individual people – and groups of people – is essentially how not-crazy people can tell Donald, for example, Trump and Donald, for example, Cherry apart – something leftists tend to have problems with, because they don’t really reason very well.
So, to show the completely and perfectly innocuousness, and, in any of the accusations effective innocence, of Don Cherry, let’s illustrate this with a more controversial example:
We should deport those criminal Niggers.
Luckily for me, I’m not a Canadian TV host; I’m sure I’d go to court for murder one because of all the heart attacks this would have caused, but let’s see what’s “wrong” with that:
In politics, it’s necessary to be able to express yourself in short, easily understandable sentences. So, instead of leftist idiotic malevolence, let’s put the opposing position in politically correct language: “No, we should open our borders to [whatever PC term for black is currently fashionable] rapists and murderers”.
Sure, there are some on the lunatic left that would approve of that, but even those aren’t stupid enough to not know they are a borderline mad fringe minority. As every western society likes to write in their constitutions, human beings are born with the ability to reason, so… you can’t reasonably argue this counter-argument, so you use what might be reasonably called a dog-whistle: use a “bad” word (“Nazi”), and all dogs jump and attack. Saves you the intellectual stress of arguing your point, which – well, you can’t even really say, because nobody would agree with anything you can say that has any real-life content and consequences (if you’re a leftist, that is).
So, what – and who – could take offense from that? Criminal Niggers? I honestly think they are despicable people and should be deported. I don’t really see anyone reasonably arguing against that, so fuck them. Non-criminal black people, for my word usage? Why? Don’t they think criminals are despicable? Well – deport them, too; fuck them. Do they? Then: Why are they offended? I was not talking about them. PC journalists not even personally affected by my statement? For what reason? Do they like criminals who could be deported? If so: Can we deport them, too? If not: can we change deportation laws? Any case: fuck them.
If you can’t follow my line of thought, please read it again. If you really, really don’t want to use your brain on an actually quite easy thing as this: Take five minutes to reflect on your life. If you can actually make a counter-point: I do have a very open comments section, feel free to compare me with Hitler. I’d love to hear a reasonable counter-argument not just relying on emotions – “oh look, those criminal negro murderer has so cute eyes, do you really want to see him die in a Nigerian Coltan mine?” (No, but I don’t have to, and – fuck him)
Back to topic. What was Don Cherry’s problem, again?
He turned a call for unity into an us-and-them snit steeped in stupidity.
“Us” and “them”. I see. Now, Vijay, again, there are different groups of people. I’m sure you love the intersectional feminists’ 500 genderqueer furry-planes, so… are they all the same? Or not? Could it be you are a bigot? Could it be, that, when immigrating to Canada, some people’s forefathers were able to spell the name of a random food like Mr. Cherry’s or Mr. Agar’s, and there’s a group of people who couldn’t spell melon correctly, Mr. Menon? Why is that, in any way, stupid?
the three words that came out of my mouth … was “go” and the last one was “yourself.”
Fuck. Welcome to the internet.
Yes, for the first time in my life, I told Don Cherry, a man for whom I will always have a soft spot, to do something that is anatomically impossible.
See… I haven’t heard from Don Cherry in all my life (until three days ago), and I’m just using his name for cheap clickbait from an international audience, but I’m quite sure that it’s illegal in Canada to question someone’s gender, and I’m not so sure that doesn’t extend to dildos, so I’m very sure that Mr. Cherry is able to fuck himself. You also probably never spent a thought on the etymology of this English expression which, unfortunately, has made it’s way into the German language. The Brother’s Grimm would have used “Go (have a) shit”, the more vulgar Turkish expression would involve either a goat, pig or your mother.
And seconds later, I felt blinding shame.
That’s the reasonable part of your brain screaming to be noticed. Unfortunately, we’re only 30% through this article, and you ignored it. But we can skip a lot.
“The only time I’ve ever really been mad is when I get criticized for honouring the troops,” he told me in 2011, …“I can’t understand it. I guess it’s not the thing to do. But you tell me why I’m wrong.”
See – that’s a very Canadian thing to say. As a German, the answer would be a lot easier.
But this idea — it’s not the thing to do — is why I’m now second-guessing my own visceral reaction to his appalling commentary on Saturday.
See – that’s why this article is so intriguing for me. Those are essentially easy questions to answer. I’m not a German-born Canadian, but neither am I a leftist or female, so I can empathize. Canada prides itself on being an immigrant country – and Canada was an Entente country in WW1, while Turkey was on the opposing side. What if you’re a now 3rd generation Canadian whose grandmother came to Canada after she lost her husband to Allied forces? What about the Kurdish people, who were essentially genocided, and nobody gave a fuck?
See – this would be a very interesting topic to talk about, but this would go far too far. If I, personally, were to emigrate to Canada, I’d feel very weird to wear a soldier-honoring poppy on Remembrance Day. Not that I’m not grateful for the Allied forces not killing both my granddads, but I’d feel like a total bigot if I’d publicly pay respect to soldiers my ancestors (probably) tried to kill (German granddads don’t tell much in terms of war stories).
The more important point, though, is “wearing a militaristic emblem”, because – well, that’s what the Nazis did, and I’m pretty convinced that wearing a militaristic symbol might be far more problematic in itself than – well, criticizing illoyal immigrants for (alleged) disloyalty to their country of choice. Can one wear a poppy honoring the fallen soldiers of the Great Wars while opposing the failed idiocy in Afghanistan? Questions after questions.
But this “that’s what the Nazis did” thing is the more important point: if you criticize “othering” in any resemblance of an honest way, Don Cherry would, like Hitler, whom you compared him to immediately, have to have called for “foreigners” to wear a different symbol than what “real Canadians” wear. Hitler didn’t request Jews to wear a Swastika to show loyalty to the Deutsches Reich. He required them to wear yellow Stars of David – for easier deportation to concentration camps.
To insinuate any parallels here is not only dishonest and insulting, but despicable. Indulging in this modus operandi of not being the least bit self-critical – well, never losing a war might do that to a country, I wouldn’t know. I don’t even need to go down to the low bar of internet trolls writing “well, I hope one of those ‘welcome’ refugees rapes you” to make my point, which you’d probably, again, find too offensive to think about for even a second, so: just think about the largely successful Afghanistan endeavor. It was, and rightfully so, a veritable scandal when Germany sent soldiers to Afghanistan, even though they essentially did fuck-all, because the majority of public opinion here is: War is bad.
And your leftist (!) politicians would have a really, really hard time arguing any resemblance of reason for defending Canada’s freedom at the Hindu Kush. Ours did, for sure.
Back to topic.
Is turning Don Cherry into a martyr really the smart path to take, Canada?
That’s an interesting question you should, maybe, have asked your “thinking” side of your brain before you went into all-out hysteria – again, about something completely innocuous.
Wouldn’t it be wiser to find a teachable moment here?
Oh, it would be a very wise teaching moment. Don Cherry offered an incredible message to immigrants: Canada welcome you, as long as you accept our values – which include a weird military fetish. Compared to public stonings, that’s an incredibly tolerant message and something you won’t find in most parts of the world. It’s essentially asking for nothing. But you, Canada, decided to pander to grievance-mongers instead. I’m sure petty grievances is what made Canada great. Focus on your core values and strengths. That’s the way to go.
There are a lot of Canadians who are not appalled by what Cherry said, but appalled that he was fired for speaking his mind, which he was paid to do
Also, he was, for being the (afaik) Canadian TV personality, not even paid that much. But that’s not the important point: It’s freedom of speech. You’re really, really taking a wrong turn here, as the internationally most famous Canadian of today, Jordan Peterson, has told half the world. You’re curtaining freedom of speech for made-up “human rights” – as opposed to unalienable rights, like – freedom of thought. You’re essentially firing someone for uttering his wrongthink. You’re very, very deep in leftist, post-structuralist, neo-marxist (think Derrida, Foucault, Habermas; I just skipped Vijay’s namedropping) – inspired “reality follows thought” school of idiocy. The British are indoctrinating children in “gender equal” bullshit that they’ll hit their noses on so hard when they hit puberty, which involves making fairytales gender-neutral.
It’s really, really good to hear that “a lot” of Canadians are not “appalled” (why would they?) by what Don said. But it’s disingenuous to now insinuate that you’re making a martyr; you’re setting an example to deter people from voicing their honest opinion. Don Cherry, obviously, was for standing up for essential Canadian values (so far, freedom of speech and a weird military fetish), and keen on showing respect for the people who gave their lives doing exactly that.
Cherry also gives a startling amount of his time and money to charity without PR. He gives in stealth.
Oh – that makes Don seem like what decent people tend to consider a “good” human being, as contrasted to do-nothing virtue-signalling bigots. How did the editor miss that?
What jumped out at me when Cherry waxed historically, sometimes while tearing up, was that he cared deeply about Canada and this world.
His critics, who are now dancing on his professional grave, will shrug off that last paragraph as total garbage.
I guess that’s what his critics do with every empirically justifiable “opinion”. There’s no surprise for me in this – except that Vijay Melon is now “othering” himself from other, but not less stupid, leftists.
They will say Cherry is an anachronism who has done untold harm to Canada’s reputation.
I can assure you, with Germany ranking #7 on the (ice) hockey world ranking list, nobody would have given a fuck if he called for a genocide, except maybe your stupid southern neighbors, who are too stupid to realize that, and maybe the Russians, who don’t exactly like you, anyway. Well, the Swedes and the Finnish would probably have a heart attack, too, if you hadn’t fired him, but they’re currently too busy being raped by immigrants not respecting the state forces.
They will call him terrible names.
No, they won’t. They’ll use the very limited vocabulary they have: “*ist, Hitler, -phobe”, maybe “dinosaur” and something with “past”. The more important point is: He – which is what makes me really respect him – doesn’t give a fuck.
His critics are dead wrong. Cherry made a horrendous mistake on Saturday night. I’m not disputing that his poppy commentary was disgusting.
(1) I think Don did something terribly wrong. (2) I also think Don’s critics are dead wrong. Conclusion: (3) I don’t really think about if what I’m writing contradicts itself in a single paragraph. Also, (4), I’m a bigot.
I’m also not sure how Canada gains by burying a national treasure and, perhaps inadvertently, turning him into cause célèbre that will inspire future jackasses.
Oh, Canadians seem too busy honoring their military (or not) for having time for learning about history, which only reasonable people like Don “Grapes” Cherry do. Or Jordan Peterson. So, short history from Germany: Calling Hitler horrendous, disgusting, even putting him in jail – totally worked for the opposition parties.
No, I’m not comparing Don Cherry to Hitler. I’m, of course, comparing the people who fired him to the Nazis; that’s what the Nazis did with the Jews after they came to power – getting people out of business for their “wrong” beliefs.
I’ll do a suitable Nazi comparison: When Germans, quite late, decided to abolish aristocracy, that failed (Germans aren’t good at revolutions – or wars, for that matter) – but there was a very popular folk song: Thoughts are free. Of course, that was prohibited (not just English prohibited, German verboten, of course) – which totally didn’t help. I’ll just quote one stanza:
And if I am thrown into the darkest dungeon,
all these are futile works,
because my thoughts tear all gates
and walls apart: Thoughts are free!
Almost a hundred years after it was written, and the first dissidents were put in concentration camps, Hitler visited one of those (not death camps, yet) places. The inmates were ordered to sing a song. That’s what they performed.
Everyone mentioned didn’t live past 1945, but I don’t think it’s difficult for you to decide which position won – again.
I really wish Cherry had just apologized
Yeah, and this is where my initial quote is from: Apologizing is a weakness, said Don Cherry his dad told him. This is only a reasonable thing if his dad also told him not to say stupid things you’re not convinced of and need to write 10 pages to weasel around it, and don’t take a moral stance you’re not willing to die for.
Vijay Melon is very keen on essentially apologizing for his own stance half the article, which only shows he doesn’t even think he’s in the right himself. Now, this doesn’t make the opposite true, you can be very convinced that you need to kill random infidels to get into paradise with 72 virgins – but that doesn’t make you right; it could also be a transcription error and what awaits you in afterlife is one virgin, who’s 72 (kudos).
But in the Don Cherry affair, this is painted as “freedom of speech” vs. “values”, which, with not even looking at the values, makes “values” lose (because it doesn’t include inalienable rights – like freedom of speech. You need to kill people for that, and most of them. Communists tried that in about 70 countries so far, the most recent example being Venezuela. Works every single time).
But he never apologizes.
Oh, Adolf Eichmann wrote a 700-page-“apology” before he was hung after his trial in Jerusalem. Didn’t help him much, did it? You started the Nazi comparison, Vijay, but Don Cherry is a few million dead short of the crimes of Eichmann, isn’t he? Shall we rather compare him to the “non-violent, intellectual resistance” group White Rose who opposed totalitarianism? Just because you “wish” he apologized? The White Rose movement didn’t apologzie, either – and was guillotined for handing out leaflets – after a show trial, just as was Eichmann. See – Nazi comparisons are really, really difficult, aren’t they?
In the great game of life, Grapes [Don’s nickname] just got a lifetime suspension for high-sticking [an illegal move in hockey] our values.
Your “values”, Vijay, are nicely expressed in your final judgement: Don Cherry is a “jackass”, a “monster”, “ugly” and “screwed up, royally”. For that, he should, I guess, be guillotined.
This makes me need to apologize, Vinjay Menon, including you being too unworthy to really remember your not-even-fruity name. and comparing you to Nazis, too. I accused you of the crime of pretending to be able to judge people by ascribing bad words to them – and compared you to the Nazis, for that reason. You, though, need five emotion-laden words to ascribe any pretend-blame to Don Cherry for voicing his opinion.
Nazi “judge” Roland Freisler famously needed only two to sentence a person committing the same crime – righteously criticizing systemic grievances – to death: calling him what’s best translated as “sleazy scallywag”. Comparing you to Nazis is unfair to Nazis.
What’s happening this week will only create new Don Cherrys.
And we really, really all hope there will be enough decent people willing to die for his ideals.