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Not good enough to line my green bin!

Every now and again, I am reminded why, a couple of years back, I cancelled my subscription to the Ottawa Citizen.

At the time, I was angry at and tired of the editorial board’s über-Christian, David Warren and his constant rantings about his born-again-ness and how Christians were fighting along the side of Dubya for morality, the free market and the American way… all being interchangeable in the mind of “Father” Warren.

It’s not that I mind a good theological debate. My views on the subject are pretty well-defined and have been honed over the years. I grew up in a decidedly non-Christian household that to a large degree shaped how I think today. Later in my teens, I performed a thorough and critical examination of the world’s major religions to see if I had missed something and that perhaps I could find a path that would enhance my life experience.

Nope – what I found was a good basis upon which to launch many arguments counter to religiosity and for secularism. And I remain of the same mind to this day.

It’s also not that I think that having a system of religious beliefs is a bad thing at all. Indeed, if it gets you though life and its many pitfalls, by all means – believe!

I am reminded of my favourite episode of the West Wing where President Bartlett, after his lifelong assistant and confidante is killed in a car accident, stands in a church wailing in Latin against the absurdity of the death and how a righteous and kind god could ever allow such a tragedy. In the end, though, he finds strength in his beliefs and this helps him through the loss.

However, I digress.

For the past couple of days, including today, the Ottawa Fish Wrapper has been running a series of major pieces on how Christianity is running rampant in the developed and the developing world. It is, according to our very own version of Pravda, responsible for the democratisation of China and that secularists (comme moi) are scrambling lest the god crew sends us back to the Middle Ages.

Speaking only for myself, I have yet to scramble in the face of this onslaught and I yet to hear tell of said scrambling anywhere.

My point is this: The Ottawa Typo-Master is a private enterprise that is free to write as they wish within certain parameters of decency and acceptable behaviour. But they go overboard when openly and unabashedly advancing their extreme evangelical Christian beliefs in the guise of “reporting”. Their flagrant support for the Conservative Reform party is one issue – after all, they are not the only rag to do this – but issues of spirituality and the advancement of one spiritual weltanschunng over another is completely out of order in our diverse, and yes, highly secular country. The other side of an issue as integral to our national fabric should be addressed by a major Canadian newspaper through balanced reporting and addressed not just as an afterthought but in a thorough and fair manner.

So Trashy, you ask, how do you know this if you yourself are not a “faithful” reader of said rag as evidenced by your detailed description of all of this?

Well, truth be told, I buy the Saturday paper for the New York Times crossword – cheaper than buying the New York Times.

But I think I will make the investment.


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