Unfolding in Alberta right now is the full reveal of what happens when a seemingly conservative populist economic reform type party takes power.
Their attacks on all things public commence immediately; healthcare, education, the front lines in public service. But what comes next can knock the underpinning of a progressive society.
The UCP government is backing a private member’s bill that is literally going to reopen women’s health issues in Canada.
Technically, it’s not an official government position. But, conveniently enough, a regiment of hard right social conservative MLA’s just happen to agree with this private member’s bill, and it’s effect may be profound.
How does this affect the Greens you may ask?
Because the two narratives of the “I’m personally opposed to [issue] but would never impose that on women” and “I cannot tell or force my MPs how to vote” are not compatible.
Either you stand up for human rights or you don’t.
The Greens went bizerk at a handout the federal NDP launched in the south Vancouver Island region that outlined Elizabeth May and the Green Party ambiguity on social issues. What the NDP did was to quote directly from May and some of her candidates.
What the Greens pride themselves on is this utopian vision of “no whipped votes”, and the new found culture wars proves this ideal to be dangerously naive.
Except for environmentally conscious social conservatives. They love this right to vote their social conservative views while hiding in a party that pretends to be progressive.
These positions are incompatible for the left. In our view, social justice and environmental justice are inextricably linked, and there is no room in this movement for those who would take away from women.
But the Greens have made them welcome. That’s inexcusable.
In a federal parliament that is now sitting in a minority govt situation, the even harder-right conservative party is spoiling for a fight on social issues too. They sought out social conservatives at the grassroots level and they installed Andrew Scheer as leader.
As Alberta is showing, despite an official promise not to reopen such issues by “The Government”, the caucus is more than happy to unanimously endorse the proposal when offered as a private member’s bill.
Imagine now a strengthened Green Party with its “do not whip votes” greets such an issue.
So to those now call for a merger between the Greens and NDP can probably go pound sand.
Social conservatives and related libertarians have no place in a progressive party.
One thought on “It wasn’t politics as usual to call out the ambiguity of Elizabeth May’s social policy flubs”
I dont believe this members bill would stand at the supreme court level, but it will surely further entrench Con Men Oilberta on its course towards wexit. Luckily 75% of Albertans agree with universal access to health services that include abortion and contraception. Thia makes me think we are witnessing the death throws of the right wing reform movement. Its height was the single Harper majority term at the end of his ten years in power. And I believe its decent to madness has already begun in earnest. Whenever the next election happens, there is no way it can be as badly run by the liberals as the last 18 months. As an aside, all of the Liberal strategists I talked to during the campaign seemed to think when Liz May retired as party leader generally the green party will do better. The consensus in the war room was she was not helping her party in this election or for some time before it now. Mistakes and mistakes steps are clearly still going on today in the green party strategists circles. Once again a good read Peter, thanks for the work you put in!