I’m the ‘stupid person’

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Written by Submitted

There were two Conservative politicians remembered in the April 6 edition of the Edmonton Journal on the occasion of their respective deaths. One was a front page story by Darcy Henton and James Wood.  One was written by Gordon Kent and was on page E7.
Both individuals held right-wing political viewpoints.  One was a geologist and entrepreneur, the other a TV weather personality.  Both were large city municipal politicians, one a mayor and the other a councillor. Both ran for the provincial Conservative Party.  One was elected and later became Premier, the other was defeated, but continued to work for the Conservative Party.
Both had publically called those holding a different political view “left-wing colleagues”, or “left wing nuts”.
Yet one publically admitted that he had become totally intolerant of any opinion that was different from his own. “I’ve been attacking (other counselors) as stupid when I’m the stupid person.”
The other never apologized but remained “true to himself”.
The gentleman who admitted wrong was Paul Norris, a two-term Edmonton Alderman in the 1980’s.  The other, of course, was Ralph Klein.
Name calling has become a common behaviour amongst politicians. But I would argue that trash talking someone’s person or reputation because you don’t agree with them is bullying.
And if we hold “bully” politicians up as heroes, then we should not be surprised when bullying becomes a problem in our schools or on the internet.
It would be pleasantly refreshing if character-bashing politicians started to take Mr. Norris’ message to heart.
“I’m the stupid person”.

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