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WATCH: A Tearful Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Apologizes to Canadian LGBT People

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“We betrayed you. And we are so sorry.”

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stood in the House of Commons Tuesday afternoon and apologized to countless LGBTQ2 people “branded criminals by the government.”

“Today, we finally talk about Canada’s role in the systemic oppression, criminalization, and violence against the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and two-spirit communities,” the Canadian Prime Minister told lawmakers in an internationally broadcast address. CTV and The National Post have the prime minister’s full remarks.

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“Our laws made private and consensual sex between same-sex partners a criminal offense, leading to the unjust arrest, conviction, and imprisonment of Canadians. This criminalization would have lasting impacts for things like employment, volunteering, and travel,” said an at times visibly tearful Trudeau. 

“Those arrested and charged were purposefully and vindictively shamed. Their names appeared in newspapers in order to humiliate them, and their families,” he continued. “Lives were destroyed. And tragically, lives were lost.”

Trudeau called it “a purge that lasted decades,” which “will forever remain a tragic act of discrimination suffered by Canadian citizens at the hands of their own government.”

From the 1950s to the early 1990s, the government of Canada exercised its authority in a cruel and unjust manner, undertaking a campaign of oppression against members, and suspected members, of the LGBTQ2 communities.

The goal was to identify these workers throughout the public service, including the foreign service, the military, and the RCMP, and persecute them.

Trudeau noted that “what resulted was nothing short of a witch-hunt.”

The public service, the military, and the RCMP spied on their own people, inside and outside of the workplaces. Canadians were monitored for anything that could be construed as homosexual behaviour, with community groups, bars, parks, and even people’s homes constantly under watch.

During this time, the federal government even dedicated funding to an absurd device known as the Fruit Machine — a failed technology that was supposed to measure homosexual attraction.

When the government felt that enough evidence had accumulated, some suspects were taken to secret locations in the dark of night to be interrogated.

They were asked invasive questions about their relationships and sexual preferences. Hooked up to polygraph machines, these law-abiding public servants had the most intimate details of their lives cut open.

And in a stunning moment, Trudeau said:

It is with shame and sorrow and deep regret for the things we have done that I stand here today and say: We were wrong. We apologize. I am sorry. We are sorry.

For state-sponsored, systemic oppression and rejection, we are sorry.

For suppressing two-spirit Indigenous values and beliefs, we are sorry.

For abusing the power of the law, and making criminals of citizens, we are sorry. …

To all the LGBTQ2 people across this country who we have harmed in countless ways, we are sorry.

To those who were left broken by a prejudiced system;

And to those who took their own lives — we failed you.

For stripping you of your dignity;

For robbing you of your potential;

For treating you like you were dangerous, indecent, and flawed;

We are sorry.

To the victims of the purge, who were surveilled, interrogated, and abused;

Who were forced to turn on their friends and colleagues;

Who lost wages, lost health, and lost loved ones;

We betrayed you. And we are so sorry.

To those who were fired, to those who resigned, and to those who stayed at a great personal and professional cost;

To those who wanted to serve, but never got the chance to because of who you are — you should have been permitted to serve your country, and you were stripped of that option.

We are sorry. We were wrong.

Indeed, all Canadians missed out on the important contributions you could have made to our society.

You were not bad soldiers, sailors, airmen and women. You were not predators. And you were not criminals.

You served your country with integrity, and veterans you are.

You are professionals. You are patriots. And above all, you are innocent. And for all your suffering, you deserve justice, and you deserve peace.

It is our collective shame that you were so mistreated. And it is our collective shame that this apology took so long — many who suffered are no longer alive to hear these words. And for that, we are truly sorry.

To the loved ones of those who suffered;

To the partners, families, and friends of the people we harmed;

For upending your lives, and for causing you such irreparable pain and grief — we are sorry.

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MERRY CHRISTMAS - EXCEPT FOR THE GAYS?

Watch: Ben Shapiro Demands LGBTQ People Leave Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and His ‘Fragile Flying Back’ Alone

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Right wing extremist Ben Shapiro is demanding LGBTQ people leave Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer alone. Shapiro, who runs the far right website The Daily Wire, says the popular children’s Christmas character has enough problems and doesn’t need any more.

“Can’t you just leave Rudolph alone?” Shapiro asked on his radio show. “Like, he’s got enough problems without you putting your own issues with sexual orientation on his fragile flying back.”

Shapiro, who is virulently anti-LGBTQ, was reading from Wednesday’s New York Times opinion piece, “‘Rudolph,’ the Queerest Holiday Special.”

“As for ‘Rudolph,’ the whole movie feels as L.G.B.T.Q. friendly to me as any episode of ‘Queer Eye’ or ‘Steven Universe’ or ‘The L Word.'”

“Except for the fact that,” Shapiro notes, “You know, Rudolph doesn’t have sex with any of the other male reindeer.”

Shapiro, like many other conservatives, boils being gay down to having sex.

“I’m particularly tired of the hijacking of children’s literature and children’s specials to promote political viewpoints on sexual matters,” Shapiro, who apparently is unfamiliar with LGBTQ people and culture, says. “Like, it’s a piece of children’s literature, cut it out.”

Related: Ben Shapiro Slammed as ‘Very Outspoken Bigot’ for Calling World Cup Champ Megan Rapinoe an ‘Outspoken Lesbian’

“The left likes to play this game a lot when it comes to TV,” Shapiro says, wrongly, accusing some LGBTQ people of “hijacking” SpongeBob SquarePants.

(It’s important to note that Shapiro is having this conversation with himself on his radio show while the U.S. House of Representatives is engaged in a debate over impeaching the President.)

He then went on to accuse “some members of ther LGBT community” in the early ’90s of “sugggesting that some of the Teletubbies were gay.”

“Jerry Falwell made a comment about, ‘Well, the Teletubbies aren’t gay,'” Shapiro insisted, falsely. “It’s silly to try and hijack children’s characters and the left was like, ‘A ha, trolled you, trolled you,” Shapiro said.

Except that’s not what happened, not at all.

Jerry Falwell is the far right religious extremist who is best remembered for these comments about the 9/11 terror attacks:

“I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way, all of them who have tried to secularize America. I point the finger in their face and say ‘you helped this happen.'”

And it was Jerry Falwell, not LGBTQ people, who said one of the Teletubbies was gay.

“Tinky Winky, one of four characters on the children’s TV show ‘Teletubbies,’ is gay and therefore a moral menace to American youth, the former Moral Majority leader Jerry Falwell warns,” The New York Times reported in May of 1999. “Mr. Falwell said the creators of the program intended for Tinky Winky to be a gay role model.”

”He is purple — the gay-pride color; and his antenna is shaped like a triangle — the gay-pride symbol,” he wrote. He also noted that Tinky Winky carries a purse-like bag.

Seems Shapiro just can’t seem to get anything straight.

And as for “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer,” yes, that New York Times opinion piece is correct.

Watch:

 

Image via Wikipedia

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COMMENTARY

Trump White House Already Scripting How Impeachment Trial Will Play Out? WH Counsel Just Walked Into McConnell’s Office

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Just how much control will the Trump White House have over the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump?

Consider this.

The White House Counsel, Pat Cipollone, just walked into Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s office. Chances are good it wasn’t for a friendly game of checkers.

And Cipollone was accompanied by Eric Ueland, a former member of the Trump transition team who Trump tried to hand a top State Dept. job to but was forced to pull his nomination. A recent promotion has elevated him to now serving as the White House Director of Legislative Affairs, after spending years working for then-Senator Jeff Sessions.

One thing is clear: the Senate should not be working with the White House to pre-determine how the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump will be conducted or will play out.

Remember, it was just six says ago that Cipollone sent this angry letter to Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler, effectively saying Trump and the White House would not participate in the House’s impeachment hearings.

Cipollone called the impeachment inquiry “baseless.” He insisted it was both a waste of time and should be done “fast” so Trump could win in the Senate.

Experts say Cipollone’s December 6 letter in conjunction with his repeated refusal to hand over any documents or comply with congressional subpoenas may have forced the House to add the obstruction charge to the Articles of Impeachment.

Which apparently is where we are today.

 

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DUDE

Matt Gaetz Probably Isn’t the Best to Go After Someone’s Drug Use: Internet Cautions Republican Congressman

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Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) probably isn’t the best person to make an argument against driving under the influence given his own arrests. Even Rep Hank Johnson (D-GA) cautioned against “the pot calling the kettle black,” during the Thursday House Judiciary Committee hearing.

Gaetz was arrested for a DUI in 2008 on suspicion of a DUI after he refused a field sobriety test and a breathalyzer test. Just two years later he was elected to the Florida state legislature and by 2016 he was in Congress.

According to the arrest report, Gaetz was driving home from a nightclub when he was pulled over for driving 48 in a 35 mile-per-hour zone, the Tampa Bay Times reported. He was driving a BMW that belonged to his father, state Sen. Don Gaetz. The case was subsequently dropped.

“I’m of the view that that is part of who I am,” said the Fort Walton Beach Republican, who in 2016 will seek the seat now held by his father, Senate President Don Gaetz. “I made bad decisions that resulted in an arrest, and that is sort of something that we all live with.”

Related: Top MAGA Congressman Mocked for ‘Threatening to Retroactively Impeach Obama’

It was something the internet cautioned should probably be addressed by anyone other than Gaetz if they’re going to somehow go after the former vice president’s son for drug use.

You can see Rep. Johnsons’ comments here.

You can read the tweets below:

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