Posts Tagged ‘Order of Canada’


September 16, 2011

The panel that decides who receives an Order of Canada is considering stripping Conrad black of the honour.   The rules provide the award can be revoked if a person is convicted of a crime. 

Black went back to prison last week to serve out his term of 13 months.

Only four people have ever been stripped of the Order of Canada.

My wife thinks it’s silly to deprive Black of this honour which he justly earnt.  She argues that he has already sufferred enough and this is kicking a man when he is down.

Should Black lose his Order of Canada?

what do you think?


July 9, 2008

The fallout from Dr. Henry Morgentaler being awarded the Order of Canada is still with us.  A Catholic priest in B.C. has returned his Order,  a Catholic organization in Ontario has returned theirs, and a Catholic nun is mulling whether to give back hers.

Which brings us to the case of Dr. Margaret Somerville,  the distinguished ethicist at McGill University.  Let me deal with any bias straightaway.  I have known Dr. Somerville for a number of yea  rs, I like her and I respect her opinions (although I do not necessarily agree with all of them).

Whatever one thinks of her views, there is little argument about whether she has strong Order-worthy credentials.  Somerville breaks out of the ivory tower at every opportunity to contribute to legal and ethical debates over such issues as stem-cell research, euthanasia, biotechnology. animal-research, nuclear waste-management and so on.  She has written several powerful books including The Ethical Canary which I highly recommend.

One would think her an ideal candidate for the Order.  And indeed she was nominated two years ago by a faculty member of the Toronto School of Theology (U. of T.) named Carol Finlay.  Finlay says the Order told he it had turned Somerville down because she is too “controversial.”

Isn’t that a laugher?  Especially in the light of the Morgentaler award.  It’s true that Somerville has been critical of abortion and gay marriage.  And it’s true that the Order has already been awarded to the Rev. Brent Hawkes, a Toronto cleric who  performed Canada’s first same=sex marriage.   And now it’s been awarded to Morgentaler, the most controversial candidate in the Order’s history, who championed abortion.

Surely Somerville’s exclusion is political correctness run wild.  As she said herself in a speech in Vancouver last month:  “Political correctness operates by shutting down non-politically correct people’s freedom of speech.  Anyone who challenges the politically correct stance is automatically labelled as intolerant,  a bigot or a hatemonger.”  And turned down for the Order to boot.  A fact that says a lot more about the Order’s agenda (pro abortion?) than it does about  Somerville.

Do you agree it’s hight time Margaret Somerville was awarded the Order of Canada?

And if not, why not?


July 6, 2008

Even before the dust has settled on Dr. Morgentaler’s controversial nomination to the Order of Canada, the drums have started to beat for another divisive public figure. I speak of Don Cherry who is lauded for the Order by Rex Murphy in today’s Globe and Mail.

Murphy doesn’t mince words. He says Cherry is the most glaring omission on the long list of those who have so far been culled from the Order of Canada.

Murphy goes on “….it is a strange Canada that, year after year, lets this living emblem of our emblematic game wander into the twilight of his life without an official wave toward the consequences, toward his (largely unheralded) manifold charities, his truly first-class support of our military during a time of war, and toward the real affection that millions of Canadians hold for him…. He has brought more smiles to young faces than the invention of ice cream and bubble gum combined.”

Murphy concludes with a strong petition: “…. how can the Governor-General and those who advise her hold from his eloquent neck an honour that he has long since earned tenfold over and then some. Please, do the right thing. Soon.”

Well, folks, count me out. I belong to that large group of Canadians who consider Cherry an ignorant narcissistic boor. We remember how Cherry dubs those players who wear helmets, cowards. How he smears European players. And how he insults French-Canadians. (In that last regard, he reminds me of Conn Smythe.)

Do we really want colour-coated, high-collared buffoon in the Order of Canada?

I say No.

What do you say?