Alberta UCP's John Carpay Compares Rainbow Flag to Nazi Swastikia and Communist Hammer and Sickle

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Alberta UCP's John Carpay Compares Rainbow Flag to Nazi Swastikia and Communist Hammer and Sickle

John Carpay, the United Conservative Party(UCP)) of Alberta member who is the lawyer challenging the NDP government's Bill 24 that would protect LGBTQ students from being outed to their parents by their schools, compared the Rainbow Flag to the Nazi Swastika and Communist Hammer and Sickle on the weekend. UCP leader Jason Kenney has compared Carpay to civil rights activist Rosa Parks, who successfully sparked the 381 day Montgomery Alabama bus boycott by refusing to relinquish her seat on a segregated bus. Last month, Kenney was forced to disavow a UCP campaign worker with white supremacy and anti-semitic posts on social media. Previous to that a couple of UCP candidates posed for pictures with the hate group Soldiers of Odin. 

On Saturday, Calgary lawyer John Carpay, with the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, spoke at a conference organized by Rebel Media, a far-right media organization that has been criticized for sympathetic coverage of white supremacy. "How do we defeat today's totalitarianism? You've got to think about the common characteristics. It doesn't matter whether it's a hammer and sickle for communism, or whether it's the swastika for Nazi Germany or whether it's a rainbow flag, the underlying thing is a hostility to individual freedoms," Carpay said.  ...

Other speakers at the event included Conservative Saskatoon MP Brad Trost and People's Party of Canada leader Maxime Bernier.

Carpay is the lawyer behind a lawsuit challenging Alberta's Bill 24. In arguments before the court, he alleged that gay-straight alliances — peer-support groups that are meant to tackle bullying and provide supportive environments for LGBTQ students — are "ideological sexual clubs." ...

Carpay is a UCP member who spoke to resolutions at the party's policy convention this spring. In 2017, Kenney spoke at a Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms event, comparing Carpay's work to that of civil-rights activist Rosa Parks and asking people to donate to Carpay's organization.

Last month, Kenney disavowed a former campaign worker with ties to white supremacy and cancelled his UCP membership. ...

"To equate the Nazis with the movement for equality for LGBTQ people is abhorrent," said Duncan Kinney, the executive director of left-leaning advocacy group Progress Alberta. "Jason Kenney was just in the media last week talking about how he's going to create a database to keep extremists out of the UCP. This is an extremist in his ranks … Kenney has spoken warmly about the human rights work Carpay has done."


And Kenney seems to be fine with it.

Cons are slime


gadar wrote:

And Kenney seems to be fine with it.

Cons are slime

A feature, not a bug.


More on John Carpay and is links to Kenney

Carpay was a principal player in the unsuccessful effort last spring by the so-called Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms to get a court injunction to halt enforcement of the Alberta law preventing schools from informing parents when students join gay-straight alliances.

He is president and founder of the JCCF, the self-described "voice for freedom in Canada's courtrooms." The group's legal work on behalf of various social conservative causes has earned the endorsement of Rebel Media and donations from various right-wing slush funds like the Aurea Foundation, which also bankrolls the Munk Debate. In court filings in its battle with Alberta Education Minister David Eggen in June, the JCCF sparked outrage by calling GSAs "ideological sexual clubs."

Madam Justice Johnna C. Kubik of the Alberta Court of Queens Bench made short work of the group's legal effort, but Carpay, also a former Reform Party and Wildrose Party candidate as well as a former Alberta director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, is no quitter.

On November 10, he was speaking to a Rebel Media conference in Calgary when he compared the rainbow pride flags that symbolize the rights of LGBTQ people to the swastika flag of Nazi Germany and the hammer and sickle of communism. ...

Well, as they say, you just can't make this stuff up. And in Alberta, you almost never have to.

Pretty soon there was a video clip of Carpay injudiciously flapping his gums circulating on social media. In it, he could be heard asking, "How do we defeat today's totalitarianism? You've got to think about the common characteristics," he went on in an explaining tone of voice. "It doesn't matter whether it's a hammer and sickle for communism, or whether it's the swastika for Nazi Germany, or whether it's a rainbow flag, the underlying thing is a hostility to individual freedoms." (Emphasis added.)

The "individual freedom" people who fly the rainbow flag are hostile to, by the way, is the "freedom" to persecute other people for things they can't change, like their sexuality. ...

Commentators were quick to point out the mutual admiration Carpay and Kenney share for one another. A recording of Kenney touting for the JCCF soon surfaced. ...

As my colleague Joshua Bergman wrote in a strong social media commentary on Mr. Carpay's comment: "This comparison is particularly offensive and hurtful considering thousands of LGBTQ people were arrested, sent to concentration camps, tortured, and killed under Nazi rule."

Obviously worried about the impact of his blunder, Carpay issued a carefully worded apology on the JCCF's website late yesterday. "I unintentionally drew a broad comparison between the rainbow flag and the flags which bear the symbols of Communism and Nazism," he said in part. (Emphasis added.)

"'The slogans of 'diversity,' 'equity,' 'tolerance' and 'inclusion' have been abused in ways that undermine our free society, and the fundamental freedoms of speech, conscience, religion, association and peaceful assembly," he argued, not very persuasively. "Taken in context, I hope it can be seen that it was not my intent to broadly equate the rainbow flag with the evils of Communism and Nazism, and I again offer my apology to anyone who may have interpreted my remarks in such fashion." (Emphasis added, again.) ,,,

I'm not so sure that Kenney cares. He and his supporters are so persuaded they will win the next Alberta election no matter what, they may have concluded they can say what they like and get away with it.



Carpay and Kenney have come under a barrage of criticism for comparing the rainbow flag to the swastika and hammer and sickle. 

There's been no shortage of Albertans demanding that Kenney, leader of the Conservative opposition in the legislature, revoke Carpay's membership in the United Conservative Party for his odious comparison of the rainbow pride flag to the banners of Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union.

Kenney's even had a Postmedia political columnist -- a breed not usually associated with criticism of the UCP -- gently suggest that now might be an excellent time to advise Carpay his assistance is no longer required. Columnist Don Braid called Carpay's comment "a dark, ugly slur," and reminded readers that "the jackboot march to real totalitarianism always starts by demonizing minorities."

Carpay's inadvisable commentary also reminded folks of the kind of things Kenney says when he's among friends, like that time last year when he compared Carpay to Rosa Parks, the civil rights activist best known for her role in the 1955 Montgomery, Alabama, bus boycott. That was said at a fundraiser for Carpay's so-called Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, which earlier this year tried to get a court injunction to halt enforcement of the Alberta law preventing schools from informing parents when students join gay-straight alliances.

At that point, Premier Rachel Notley entered the fray, tweeting that "John Carpay is no Rosa Parks" and telling Kenney "that is the second most offensive comparison I've heard this weekend. If you want to distance yourself from Mr. Carpay's hateful views, you need to condemn -- in a clear, unequivocal way -- all of them." (Emphasis added, of course, since there are no italics on Twitter.)

Kenney had published a tweet Monday morning calling Carpay's opinion "vile" -- without actually mentioning Carpay -- and another one a minute later reminding everyone that Carpay had apologized, never mind that it was a political non-apology apology. Kenney's second tweet went on to try to divert the conversation by saying "this tendency to trivialize the unique meaning of Nazi and Soviet terror must stop." That got even more people yelling at him.

Even Kenney's sock-puppet accounts seemed strangely subdued, complaining plaintively that Kenney was being damned for something he said a long time ago. No sooner had they trotted out that excuse than another old recording of Kenney surfaced. In this one he was smugly praising former Canadian Alliance leader Stockwell Day for fighting to end "taxpayer-funded abortions in Alberta," ban adoptions by gay couples, and use the Notwithstanding Clause to overturn "the outrageous Vriend decision in the Supreme Court of Canada," which proclaimed that same-sex couples were entitled to equal protection under the law.

One just has a feeling there's plenty more where that one came from. So, Monday was not a good day for Jason Kenney and John Carpay. Yesterday wasn't either. 

A couple of things about Cardus that readers should know

You may have heard the reports that a think-tank has issued a report concluding it would be a good thing if Alberta doubled or tripled the number of students enrolled in private schools. This would "foster innovation and reduce the 'monopoly' of teachers' associations," was the way the Edmonton Journalsummed up the conclusions of the report, called "Better is Possible," by the Cardus Institute, which describes itself as "a non-partisan, faith-based think-tank."

Well, OK. Cardus doesn't openly support a given political party. But there are some things readers should know about Cardus just the same that are likely relevant to its position in this debate. First, Cardus got its start with money from the Donner Canadian Foundation, a vast fund for financing right-wing opinion and argument, to conduct research to undermine unions. This may explain the report's characterization of teachers' unions like the Alberta Teachers Association as a "monopoly," and its assumption that weakening them would be a good thing.

Cardus President Michael Van Pelt -- presumably no relation to the girl who keeps snatching Charlie Brown's football away -- was hired away from the Sarnia Chamber of Commerce, which is likely not a hotbed of pro-union sympathies. Other Cardus reports have attacked rules in other provinces restricting bids on some public contracts to unionized contractors and favouring the approach to labour relations advocated by the Christian Labour Association of Canada, or CLAC, as it is better known. Cardus also has a connection to the better-known but similar Fraser Institute in Deani Van Pelt, a "senior fellow" with both organizations. There may be a more formal relationship -- although it would take some digging to prise out the details -- between CLAC, whose no-strike approach is extremely controversial in the Canadian labour movement, and Cardus, both of which have their roots in the Christian Reformed Church. 

The CRC is a Protestant denomination dominated by people who are certainly conservative in the theological sense, and often in a political sense too. Regardless, the CRC operates private Christian schools in Alberta.

Now, I have not yet had the opportunity to read the Cardus report. So I will leave formal analysis of its findings to others for now. But the relationships noted above, while not enough to discredit the Cardus conclusions automatically, should lend a healthy sense of skepticism to anything presented by the group as conclusive.