OK, kiddo! Here are all the fantastically amazing posts tagged with John Baird

Tories Condemn Nigerian Anti-Gay Bill

December 12th, 2011

John Baird thinks to himself: "What's the least I can do here?"

The federal Conservative Party—who re-affirmed an official party policy to ban same-sex marriage in Canada only 6 months ago—has issued a strong condemnation toward Nigeria for a draconian law that punishes same-sex wedding participants with up to 14 years in jail.

Well, that’s a tad severe of Nigeria, wouldn’t you say? I may have to cancel all my planned vacations to Maiduguri and Ogbomoso in protest.

A condemnation was undoubtedly the right thing to do on the part of the Tories (and specifically John Baird), but it doesn’t seem particularly meaningful when their own party policy only differs in the punishment, not attitude toward the law itself.

Nigeria’s proposed bill is also a very easy thing to condemn, since the punishment is about as proportionate to the crime as women MPs are to the rest of the Conservative party.

But, hey. Baby steps, right?

Saying It Gets Better Isn’t Enough

October 31st, 2011

A man is being filmed while misreading an "It Gets Better" cue card as "It gets butter."

Canada’s own Rick Mercer posted a particularly good Rick Mercer Rant last week, prompted in part by the Conservative Party’s ill-thought-out and poorly timed contribution to the It Gets Better project.

The rant quickly gained viral status online with its simple message: It’s not enough to just say “It gets better” and leave it at that. Actions need to be taken, and—in particular—GLBT youth need visible role models as proof. (Rick’s looking at you, John Baird.)

This message—that things need to get better sooner through action—is the most important part of the It Gets Better project, but it’s overlooked far too often as the Tory video aptly demonstrates. Repeating via script that things get better isn’t much consolation for tortured youth. Without action, telling kids to hang tough through several years of constant harassment dismisses homophobia and bullying as being some unameliorable aspect of school life.

Make things get better; action doesn’t have to be difficult. Challenge homophobia wherever you witness it. Write to your MLA and local school boards to encourage anti-homophobia policies. Vote against ignorant groups that try to keep GLBT students invisible. Support and encourage GSAs. If you’re a gay adult, be open and honest in all aspects of your life so that you and your accomplishments can serve as a visible example for others.

Things already get better—but lets help ensure it never starts off bad in the first place.