Here's why we all hate politics

Lorrie Goldstein, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 2:26 PM ET

If you want to know why ordinary Canadians despise politics, look no further than the latest “controversy” now following its predictable path on Parliament Hill.

Tory Senator Pierre-Hugues Boisvenu is a long-time champion of crime victims’ rights in Quebec. He founded the Murdered or Missing Persons’ Families’ Association.

In 2002, his daughter was kidnapped, raped and killed by a repeat offender.

(Another daughter died in a car accident in 2005.) A member of the Senate committee that deals with justice legislation, including the Tories’ omnibus crime bill, Boisvenu was asked by the media Wednesday whether he believed in capital punishment. (In other words, he wasn’t giving a speech, making a presentation to the committee, or even raising the idea in a question or observation at the committee.) According to a CBC translation of his response, which was in French, he

replied: “No, I’m not in favour of the death penalty. I think people need to be given a chance. But other cases should be reconsidered.” Citing examples where there’s no hope of rehabilitation, such as the late serial killer Clifford Olson, he added: “Basically, I think that every murderer should have a rope in his cell and he can decide on his own life.

I’m against the death penalty.”

Cue the political outrage.

Interim NDP Leader Nycole Turmel accused Biosvenu of breaking the law by counselling people to commit suicide.

Interim Liberal Leader Bob Rae accused him of “suggesting that the prison system break the Criminal Code.” The BQ’s Veronique Hivon said Prime Minister Harper should drop him as Quebec’s spokesman on justice issues.

Potty-mouth New Democrat MP Pat Martin called Biosvenu “an a..hole” and other names.

Seriously, people? Seriously?

Back in the real world, as opposed to what passes for reality on Parliament Hill, does anyone really think Boisvenu was breaking the law by counselling murderers in the same league as Clifford Olson to kill themselves?

Or that there’s a chance in hell any of them would because of what he said?

Here’s how any reasonable Canadian would look at this, entire so-called “controversy.” First, Boisvenu shouldn’t have said what he did about putting ropes in murderers’ cells. Heaven knows, Canadians say a lot worse every day, but they’re not Senators sitting on the justice committee.

Second, while he shouldn’t have said it, it was understandable given the murder of his daughter and the circumstances in which she died.

Third, since he issued a statement shortly after apologizing for his remarks, case closed.

Besides, everyone knows the subtext of what was going on here, including media reports claiming Boisvenu’s remarks had kicked off a “firestorm”, which was in fact almost solely the creation of the media from start to finish.

It’s that the views of the opposition parties and most of the national media on crime and punishment are far to the left of those of ordinary Canadians.

That’s why this became a story.

To be sure, the Conservatives weren’t innocent, as Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his caucus manned the barricades, demanding the opposition apologize to Boisvenu specifically and to Canadians generally, for being soft on crime.

Then again, once the partisan idiocy starts, it’s hard to put it back in the bottle. And the problem in Ottawa is, it never stops.


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