Nice Valentine’s Day card, guy

No, not this one.

FaggotYou are not getting shifts for a reason

You are not getting shifts for a reason

That one was given to Degas Sikorski, who is gay and was working in a party store in Edmonton, Canada. That card is vile and disheartening, and not exactly designed to inspire a party mood.

But then he got this valentine.


It’s a supportive message from Justin Trudeau and various members of the Canadian parliament.

But let’s try to be cynical for a moment. Maybe this is simply blatant pandering by Trudeau, trying to appeal to the Canadian public by weaseling his way into their hearts by acting all liberal and inclusive and open. He could be a devious wretched demagogue who’s playing a long game here.

But then I thought…wait a moment, the way to win over the Canadian people is not by demonizing the Other and threatening to deport them or arrest them or shoot them, but by embracing diversity and supporting your citizens and being kind to them? I’m not used to that.

And then my heart grew two sizes that day, and I died of cardiomegaly and acute pericarditis.


  1. wzrd1 says

    As one who has mild/moderate left cardiomyopathy, secondary to longstanding occult hyperthyroidism that recently decompensated in a spectacular manner, I’ll say, I loved the cardiomegaly and acute pericarditis. :)
    While my cardiomyopathy will eventually resolve with the resolution of the hyperthyroidism, your condition will likely be lasting and much to the salutary effects of it upon your life.
    So, I believe that you are right in your choice to ignore the output of the incompetent, myopic, anencephalic arboreal misanthropes. For, their way is stress and scat flinging and in their world, everyone is covered in scat and stressed to disease.

  2. dianne says

    At the very least, it’s nice to see a politician pandering to the positive side of humanity. Not something I’ve been seeing lately, following US-American and German politics.

  3. chris61 says

    In this regard at least, Justin is obviously his father’s son. (His father said back in the 60s that the state has no place in the bedrooms of the nation.)

  4. Thomathy, Mandatory Long-Form Homo says

    It’s hard to be cynical about this. This Prime Minister is a genuinely nice guy, it seems. And everyone does seem heartened by this very nice gesture, even The National Post. If this is pandering, I’d like to see more of it. Justin Trudeau will be the first sitting Prime Minister to take part in the Toronto Pride Parade. I cannot wait for that. I might actually wade into the massive crowd and watch the parade instead of hanging out at Treehouse (best outdoor Pride party). I just hope it’s actually hot and doesn’t piss rain like last year. It was not just rainy, but chilly and windy. It was, hopefully, an anomaly.

    Anyway, this is all very nice for Degas Sikorski. Hopefully the niceness of this card can surmount the awfulness of the other one.

  5. says

    Once again, yay Edmonton. We’re also home to one of the most obnoxious “men’s rights” organizations in the country.

    I will give some credit to whoever wrote that initial “Valentine” – at least they were thoughtful enough to put their hatefulness in writing. It makes the human rights complaint that much easier to file and it gives corporate headquarters none of the usual corporate wiggle room their PR departments try to find when these things happen.

  6. wzrd1 says

    @8: Those boardrooms try to find any and all wiggle room for a reason, rights litigation gets obscenely expensive. That’s in PR and in payments in the end.
    One single employee can cost a corporation billions, even when the employee’s actions are against corporate policy. The slightest error in dissemination, distribution or training gets insanely expensive and it should be so.
    For then, corporations will make it clear, in no uncertain terms, violate the law and company policy, the offending employee will create a hypersonic sonic boom out the door. My company made that painfully clear in our HR provided mandatory briefings, where we signed documentation that we’d abide by both the law and corporate policy, any violation would result in termination of employment.
    The only time the word faggot should be used is in reference to its original definition, a bundle of sticks.

  7. davidnangle says

    “Liberal kindness is the real meanness! And good conservative meanness helps our victims be better prepared for life!”

  8. carlie says

    And then my heart grew two sizes that day, and I died of cardiomegaly and acute pericarditis.

    Which you wouldn’t in Canada, because they have healthcare.

  9. Sastra says

    I do kinda wish Mr. Sikorski was a bit more cynical.

    He said he’s dropped his plan of pursuing a police investigation, not wishing the person who defaced his Valentine to suffer a criminal record.

    “Whoever did it knows it was wrong,” Sikorski said.

    Uh huh. I’m sure. And Sikorski quit the job, too.

    He is, however, “still pursuing a human rights investigation against his former employer.” So let’s hope his employer is a bit less optimistic over how sorry the perpetrator is and thinks it matters who did it.

  10. quotetheunquote says

    I think the PM and his cabinet desevre much credit for this action.

    FECK, I hate bullies.

    Tabby Lavalamp #8: Just looking at the link, I am not clear that anyone at his (former) place of employment is working terribly hard at tracking down the perpetrator. Of course, there could be a lot more going on that I/we are not aware of, but I tend to be a bit cynical about this sort of thing…

  11. numerobis says

    In Canada we don’t get anywhere near as excited about putting people in jail as you do South of the border. We prefer to use milder methods.

  12. treefrogdundee says

    Its always nice when those moments that make you despair for the human race are immediately followed by moments that rekindle your faith. We could use more of those on our side of the border.

  13. taraskan says

    @16 Ouch, gotta cringe at the word faith here. This is a myth. When have we ever been given any indication people have natures that align by default with or against the particular brand of morality society’s currently practising? Don’t dare to believe in people. Bad behaviors need to be corrected, tirelessly, and it’s fine to praise good behavior, but I wouldn’t count on it to just re-assert itself like this because it isn’t the case that people are one way or another. That is Chamberlainism. The Trudeau response was needed to reinforce modern morality precisely because it isn’t an innate thing. From reading the parliament members’ notes in that card it sounds like they know exactly what happens when bullying goes unanswered.

    Leave it to an atheist community to resurrect the faith v. acts debate.

  14. iankoro says


    To be fair, it looks like someone may have added the bigotry on to the first valentine. The name “Degas” and the vile message are written in different handwriting, and with a different instrument.

    If I had to guess, all the staff got similar valentines with candy in them from their boss, and then some shitstain went and added his bigotry onto the one intended for Degas.

  15. wzrd1 says

    @18: I have faith in people to eventually do the right thing. That doesn’t mean that I believe for a moment that they’ll do so of their own volition without guidance.
    Faith isn’t only a matter of religious belief, but a belief in the better side of people once their error is shown to them to finally show their better selves.
    We don’t all confirm the experimentation and measurements of others, we have faith in peer review and the replication of the work by others. We have faith in the natural laws that we’ve not personally measured and I’m certain beyond all measure that the laws of nature won’t suddenly go on holiday at some random point in time.
    I have to take it on faith the observations and measurements of E=MC^2 (slap the Lorentz factor in for relativistic velocities), as I lack the instrumentation to measure such things, but the experiments have been repeated many times, peer review has been positive, so I take that mass of disparate groups word on the matter.
    The faith used here is a faith tempered by reason and trust in the processes that guide science, verify good science and reveal pseudoscience and scientific errors.
    In short, rational faith, based upon the use of reason and the verifiability of scientific results, with the bonus of the rejection of unscientific results.
    This, rather than unreasoning faith, with no evidence, no supporting and verifiable measurements or experimentation.

  16. wzrd1 says

    @19: That “shitstain”‘s next job should be sewage treatment plant taste tester, as a career move.
    That bullshit has no place in any workplace.

  17. Saganite, a haunter of demons says

    Aw, that is very touching and also a great message to send to any remaining haters within Canada. I like this Trudeau guy: Working to create a diverse cabinet, standing up for minority rights… you might just have found a decent politician, Canada. Keep a careful watch on him, though, he’s still a politician, after all…

  18. dick says

    Young Justin is gaining my esteem.

    But I’d like to know which MPs didn’t sign the card, & why.

  19. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    translation please:
    What is the ramification of not getting shifts?

    all I can think of is (being directed at a sales clerk): not getting sales | for a reason [cuz u r a fag]

    I agree it is a disgusting card and worse as a “valentine” parody.
    Just puzzled by the semantics.

  20. Yellow Thursday says

    @25 slithey tove

    Not getting shifts means that Degas wasn’t getting scheduled for as many hours as his coworkers. The person who gave/defaced the valentine is attributing that to their (or the scheduler’s) bigotry against Degas’ sexual orientation. That seems like a huge clue to who defaced the valentine.

  21. voyager says

    We have a long way to go to make up for the Harper years, but Justin Trudeau seems to be steering the boat in the right direction. His father was a class act and it seems that Young Justin might just be too. He is also quite open about mental health issues and he has given interviews discussing his own struggles with his mother’s bipolar disorder.

  22. says

    It is a really nice gesture, but such a shame that it was needed. I have to wonder how often things like this happen but never become public knowledge. But I am glad Trudeau has been so wiling to be vocal about these issues. In February, Trudeau’s office released a press released stating that he “intends to recommend that a pardon under the authority of the Royal Prerogative of Mercy be granted posthumously” to Everett George Klippert, who was declared a dangerous sexual offender, subject to indefinite imprisonment, as a Crown-appointed psychiatrist concluded his homosexuality was incurable and he would likely seek to have sex with men again if released. In addition, they are planning to review cases of those convicted of similar charges to see if they warrant pardons as well.

  23. says

    numerobis (#3) –

    The National Post paints Trudeau in a positive light? Hell has frozen over!

    Forget the National Compost, the surprise is that Alberta accepts the card, vis-a-vis the “Trudeau salute” and “let the eastern bastards freeze in the dark.”

    chris61 (#5) –

    In this regard at least, Justin is obviously his father’s son.

    They are alike in more ways than one. Signing the law against BDS protests is as repugnant as his father using the War Measures Act. Both were excessive overreactions to a situation that won’t solve the problem while stomping on rights and free speech.

  24. chigau (違う) says

    I was a young person in Southern Alberta when Pierre invoked the War Measures Act.
    We were all expecting to be rounded-up for having long hair or staying out past cerfew or being commies or publicly protesting the invocation of the War Measures Act or something…

  25. hiddenheart says

    Even if it were pure pandering, I’d applaud a situation in which a calculating politician finds it worthwhile to pander in our direction. :)

  26. numerobis says

    left0ver1under@29: I was in kindergarten when Pierre Trudeau resigned, and I’m approaching middle-aged (yikes!)

    I’m sure a generation of Albertans will remember the early Justin Trudeau years as being economically disastrous because he caused the oil price to tank. But in Edmonton proper — isn’t that the Austin of Alberta?

  27. wzrd1 says

    Well, if we want to compare early memories, I was being potty trained, mom was taking the curtains down for cleaning and she sat me in front of the television saying, “Here, watch the President, he’s important”.
    Shortly after, “Mommy, the President was shot. In the head!”. JFK in Dallas.
    I recall mom being distracted and distraught, going to the toilet and clogging the toilet with excess toilet paper. No memories beyond that.

    As for waste, I started my military career under Reagan, in tactical nuclear missiles. Watching money get wasted on vaporware of SDI and nuclear alerts – far too many nuclear alerts. The man was a menace!