Sunday, June 04, 2006

Truth Half Told, by Janice Kennedy

Janice Kennedy has another disjointed column (subscriber only) in today's Ottawa Citizen in which she seems to have been tipped over the edge by some of the truths that have been emerging recently about her idol, Pierre Trudeau. The revelations of Mr. Trudeau's past as an anti-Semitic separatist seem to have upset Kennedy. Where PET is concerned, she is still a misty-eyed schoolgirl. Quite touching really.

She berates Canadians for wanting to knock The God Of Canadian Values off the pedestal on which she places him, and says that it's a too common Canadian trait to do this to our heroes. In the week when the home-grown terror suspects were arrested, I would say that Kennedy illustrates another, and far more insidious trait that Canadians - and especially the chattering classes like Kennedy - share. That trait is to deliberately distort, ignore, twist, spin and delete from history anything bad about anyone.

Yes Mr. Trudeau might have been anti-Semitic, says Kennedy, but that doesn't matter. What matters is that we mustn't say it. It's not nice. Yes, there were terror suspects arrested this weekend, but we mustn't say anything about Muslim extremism, we mustn't say that these are evil people. No, we should focus on how it might be Canada's fault, how we just haven't lived up to our fluffy soft Trudeau values enough.

Ms. Kennedy calls her views a glass half-full. What it actually is, is a truth half (if that) told. And that, in the end, is far more dangerous than any amount of pessimism.