Baptist schools told to stop being a dick; say “no”

The poor persecuted Christians are in the news again. After a lengthy investigation conducted against the two Baptist schools who refused to follow Bill 10, a Progressive Conservative law that obligated all schools to permit the formation of a gay-straight alliance should the students request one, the Education Minister has finally issued a “Ministerial Order” to comply with the law.

The schools, of course, said no.

Society chair Rev. Brian Coldwell admitted last year in an interview with a social conservative publication he had worked behind the scenes with representatives of both opposition parties. He is also member of the board of Parents for Choice in Education, a supposedly non-partisan group that advocates home schooling and private schools and enjoys loud support from the Opposition parties.

So it is hard to believe there is no political side to Rev. Coldwell’s insistence the schools will never comply with the law’s requirement students be allowed to form GSAs.

Determined to proceed cautiously, even at the risk of leaving LGBTQ students vulnerable, Eggen appointed Edmonton lawyer Dan Scott in September last year to inquire into the activities of the two schools. Mr. Scott handed his report to the government in November 2016 and nothing much happened until yesterday, when the report was released to the public and Mr. Eggen ordered the schools to comply with the law.

Now, this is a rural Baptist school with little political clout other than its convenience for conservative martyrdom. The bigger problem will be what we do about the constitutionally-protected Catholics (yes, we are talking about Canada) when they, too, disclose that they intend to inject psychological abuse and misinformation into their curriculum. Politically, it would be effective self-sabotage–and yet, the only Catholic school board to have met all human rights requirements was Red Deer.

Clearly it is possible for Albertan Catholics to enjoy their special snowflake status without violating human rights laws as a matter of policy. It’s just that most are choosing not to.


Yes. Please. Go.

For once, the Christians have produced an idea I can get behind.

Following my cover-to-cover read, my takeaway is that he wants Christians — by which he means only those who share his conservative sexual ethics (i.e. not you, you moralistic therapeutic deist, you) — to withdraw from society and form cult-like communes for the sole purpose of rejecting queer people and “the toxins of modern secularism” (i.e. me).

I don’t have much to add except a massive yes.

Fuck off already. Separate. Disappear into obscurity. Buy your own island and never build a port.

Read more about The Benedict Opinion here.


“In violation of duties as a Catholic School Trustee”

Patricia Grell, a board member of the Edmonton Catholic School Board, has been at the centre of every Catholic controversy concerning the civil and human rights of queer and trans Albertans. However, it’s for a more palatable reason than usual–she’s the trustee gunning for inclusion and equality. Amidst a climate where the ECSB is hitting the news every other week over spending scandals and self-incriminating lawsuits, Grell has disclosed at great risk to her career an email she received for supporting gay marriage.

Remember, as you read this, these are all employees of the Province’s public education.

Whether I seek re-election or not, I remain dedicated to standing up for social justice in Christ’s example and loving my gay and lesbian neighbours as myself. I am willing to leave other matters such as the superintendents contract or getting to the bottom of why the ACSTA and catholic superintendents are targeting an Academic at the U of A but I will never be silent when it comes to human rights and equal marriage and the love that we must model for our most vulnerable youth. My faith demands nothing less of me.

Here is an email that I received from one of my colleagues February 19th:


Sent: Sunday, February 19, 2017 7:28 PM

Subject: Retweet of support of gay marriage

Dear Trustee Grell,

As per our Organizational Bylaw 13.2(a) this is to notify you of “first contact.”   This pertains to the retweet of your support of gay marriage as attached.

It is my intent to bring this to the attention of the Board  Chair as per Organizational Bylaw  13.2(b) that you are in violation of duties as a Catholic School Trustee (public representative of the Catholic Church) as you are  openly defying teachings of The Catholic Church regarding gay marriage.  Therefore I will be asking the Chair to start the sanction and censure process.

Patricia, it goes without saying, that I am most disappointed in you.  I wish you would keep your personal opinions to yourself until you step down as Catholic school trustee or are removed as a Catholic school trustee.

I am open to discussing this with you.



It seems that ECSB’s management is not only incompetent and likely corrupt, but is actively working to undermine Alberta human rights laws.

The question remains, of course, whether the NDP will do something about it, or let non-government organizations and Patricia Grell take the heat for doing what they won’t.


Silver-lining-in-genocide Senator Lynn Beyak strikes again

Apparently not satisfied with the concentration of garbage water that is her existence, Lynn Beyak decided to one-up her prior remarks about calling on the survivors of colonial genocide to seek out the silver lining from their circumstances, by insisting the LGBT Community wouldn’t have to suffer discrimination if only we stuffed ourselves back in the closet.

During a debate over a trans human rights law.

Last week, Beyak, during a debate on C-16, the transgender rights bill, went on a bizarre rant bemoaning that the radicals of the gay movement expect “all of Canada to be their closet.”

I–what? What? I can’t.

She continued to pine for a happier time when folks like her simply didn’t have to acknowledge the uncomfortable truth that gay people exist because they weren’t flaunting their homosexuality in her face.

“By living in quiet dignity, they have never had to face any kind of discrimination or uncomfortable feelings,” she said, without a hint of irony. “I would assert that is how the vast majority of the LGBT community feels.”

“Quiet dignity.” That’s some real good Christian doublespeak you’ve got going there.

Fuck me. When did we start importing neanderthals from Texas? Get this lady all the chairs so she can sit the fuck down.


Good news Thursday: Bats!

Hurray! Local biologists discovered the hibernation location of an endangered cutie-patootie Albertan bat species (undisclosed, obviously). The team that discovered the location say that this will help them pre-empt aid for the bat colony should it be infected with white nose disease, which wakes up bats during their hibernation and results in their starvation before spring.

The discovery of a large population of hibernating bats in a cave in Alberta’s boreal forest is a breakthrough for biologists, says one of the people who discovered the cave.

The cave — in an undisclosed location — is home to the largest hibernating bat colony discovered in Alberta outside of the Rockies.

“It demonstrates that this kind of bat habitat may well exist in other non-mountainous areas throughout the boreal forest,” said David Critchley, co-coordinator of Wildlife Conservation Society Canada’s BatCaver program in the province.

The cave is home to more than 200 endangered little brown myotis bats, Critchley told CBC’s Radio Active on Monday.

While First Nations people and Alberta Environment officials have known about the narrow, muddy cave for decades, it was never visited in winter until a four-member crew entered it last month to check for bats.

The crew collected DNA and guano samples and placed monitors to record temperature and humidity and bat vocalizations.

Finding hibernation spots has become urgent in Western Canada since the discovery in Washington State last year of white-nose syndrome.

The fungal infection awakens the bats during hibernation, forcing them to burn through their stored winter fat long before the return of insect season.

The disease spreads through hibernation sites and can kill more than 90 per cent of resident bats.

Critchley said understanding where Alberta’s bat species are living is crucial in protecting habitats and preventing the spread of white-nose syndrome.

“If they end up having white-nose syndrome, which they don’t at this stage in Alberta, then we need to know where they are,” he said.

Kill the skeeters, you adorable flying rat things!


Jason Kenney is official

It’s official: My all-time best friend and favourite politician ever Jason “I don’t get caught up in the details” Kenney has been elected as the leader of Alberta’s currently defunct Progressive Conservative party. Now, in case you need a refresher for what this might mean for Texas North, here’s a list of Jason Kenney’s votes and political positions in no particular order:

And many, many more!

How many crimes can he commit before the police finally get off their arse? Who knows! Do any of the Albertan conservatives care that their messiah is an addled mess of corruption? Probably not! Will the PCs have a single rally without at least one jackass chanting “lock her up” referring to Premier Rachel Notley? I wouldn’t bet my boots on it!

Trump has officially come to Alberta.


I’m not the only one who notices this shit, right?

Ralph Shortey.

Political positions: Forced birther, pro-Christian theocracy, “family values.”

Latest headline: Sex, drug allegations part of investigation of Oklahoma Sen. Ralph Shortey

MOORE — An Oklahoma state senator offered money to a teenage boy for “sexual stuff” and was found with him in a hotel room that reeked of “raw marijuana,” authorities said.

Surely this must be a space on Republican bingo or something.


Public asshole discovers public assholery has consequences

Poor Persecuted Patrick Fucking McCrory is back in the news again, whinging about how no one wants to work with him after engineering one of the most scientifically illiterate, unenforceable pieces of hot garbage that has ever hit a law book:

Former Gov. Pat McCrory says the backlash against House Bill 2 is making some employers reluctant to hire him but he’s currently doing consulting and advisory board work.

Yes, well, if I babysit for a neighbour and burn their house down, I don’t bloody well expect a glowing fucking review from them, do I.

McCrory has been appearing frequently in interviews with national media outlets to defend the controversial LGBT law, but he hasn’t announced what’s next for his career. In a podcast interview recently with WORLD, an Asheville-based evangelical Christian news website, McCrory talked about his challenges on the job market.

The former Republican governor says HB2 “has impacted me to this day, even after I left office. People are reluctant to hire me, because, ‘oh my gosh, he’s a bigot’ – which is the last thing I am.”

People are reluctant to hire you? I wonder what that feels like.

McCrory explained more about his current situation in an interview Monday evening with The News & Observer.

“I’ve currently accepted several opportunities in business to do work that I’d done prior to becoming governor in consulting and advisory board positions, and I’ve also been exploring other opportunities in academia, nonprofits and government,” he said. “And I’ll hopefully be making some of those decisions in the near future.”

McCrory declined to name the companies he’s working for. But the former governor said that he’s been considered for part-time university teaching positions – he wouldn’t say where – but that academic leaders “have shown reluctance because of student protests.”

“That’s not the way our American system should operate – having people purged due to political thought,” he told The N&O.

Ah–I see. When it happens to trans people, it’s “business freedom” and “common sense.” But when it happens to you, you’re being “purged.”

McCrory said he’s also “had ongoing discussions with the Trump administration, but at this point in time nothing has come to fruition.”

In the earlier podcast interview with WORLD, McCrory said the liberal groups opposing HB2 have harmed his reputation. “If you disagree with the politically correct thought police on this new definition of gender, you’re a bigot, you’re the worst of evil,” he said. “It’s almost as if I broke a law.”

You probably did, judging by the prevailing legal opinions on Title XI. But I digress.

McCrory made the case that the core of the HB2 debate is an attempt to redefine gender. “You ask the doctor if it’s a boy or a girl; you don’t ask the baby,” he said.

HB2 struck down local nondiscrimination ordinances and requires transgender people to use the bathroom that corresponds to the gender on their birth certificate while they are in schools and other government facilities.

You ask the right doctor if it’s a boy or a girl, because the wrong doctor is going to point out you’re full of shit.

Feel free to continue presenting your foot for shooting. I’d be happy to oblige.




A few days ago, I came upon a Nature summary of the astrophysics research of Helene Courtois and R. Brent Tully in their attempts to describe the universe. As it turns out, despite the enormous distances between galaxies, many celestial bodies “near” the Milky Way are all being sucked in to the same location, which for Courtois and Tully defines a superstructure of galaxies. See more about it here:


The Netherlands shows us how it’s done

In Canada’s last election, a voter turnout of 68% was considered astonishing. Then the Netherlands has their election and cranks out a whopping 81%.

There were some murmurings worried about Geert Wilders’ potential success, but it looks like the impending government will be a centrist (relative to Dutch politics) coalition.

I don’t know much else other than, “the Dutch fascists lost.” So hurray! Plus there’s this… delightful interview from an exit poll:

If other parties would offer, for example, an approach against groups of youths showing disrespectful behaviour, they could lure away a lot of PVV voters. It’s not that hard: more money for 24/7 police surveillance and social work, for example. People need anything that shows that the government cares.

Try not to have existential crises every time you glimpse into the mind of an authoritarian.