Letters to the editor – Re: Sculpting tourism to accommodate Pride community

Re: Sculpting tourism to accommodate Pride community – April 5, 2018

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I read the above article with interest and felt that I should respond to some of the assertions made and presumptions voiced. If for no other reason than oftentimes silence can be construed as consent or a lack of challenge as agreement.

The assertion is made that ‘embracing diversity and inclusion benefits everyone’. This is not so obviously true as the writer would seem to believe. It is necessary in any civil society to exercise discretion, use critical thinking as well as common sense. We use these faculties to make value judgements that help our society to work.

I would suggest that there necessarily limits on all of us as human beings in terms of behaviour. I would further suggest we all exclude and include in every part of our lives everyday. Who our friends are, who our partner is, who we like and don’t like.

As an aside I would say naming a group Fernie Pride is in and of itself a grossly exclusive name (if I follow the accepted ideology). With regard to pronouns ‘and the correct use of them’ I would say that in spite of the passing of Bill C16 which seeks to impose compelled speech, there are many many people who do not believe this to be a legitimate use of language but rather the wholesale hijacking of the English language to normalize a well-documented psychiatric disorder.

As for diversity and inclusion training, this is unscientific ideological propaganda and should be rejected for the nonsense it is. There are two biological sexes. Period. This is not a matter open to serious debate. I would advise extreme caution against going down this ideological rabbit hole as the ideology of the left leads to logical absurdity.

Sincerely,

Karl K. Leathley, Fernie

Re: Karl Leathley – April 12, 2018

I offer this letter of explanation to the writer last week who shared concerns about Fernie Pride. FYI, I am not associated with the Fernie Pride Society.

Gay pride began decades ago to promote a positive stance towards gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people as a response to discrimination and violence. I work in population health and I can attest to the damage that systematic societal oppression does to LGBTQ individuals (and others), and I work to promote healthy communities that include folks of many gender identities, sexual orientations, skin colours, abilities, ages, religions, languages spoken, and more. I want to live in a world where everyone matters and can belong. It is vital that all my brothers and sisters on this planet feel safe.

I find that embracing inclusion and diversity benefits me greatly. That doesn’t mean I’m not discerning about who I get close to; it just means human rights apply to every person and nobody has it all figured out. There is much I have learned and continue to learn from folks who are different than I am, and I welcome a broader perspective. For example, the term ‘U.S. exceptionalism’ has been used to bring attention to the idea that the United States of America is superior to other nations. This idea is no more fact-based and no less harmful than racism, sexism, and other forms of bigotry (see the new book Curing Exceptionalism by David Swanson). I don’t want to live in a community that defends any sort of exceptionalism.

Lastly, there is ample evidence in multiple species, including homosapiens, of biological sex existing on a spectrum. Most people can look at their sexual organs and place themselves on either the male end of the spectrum or the female end, but this is not true for everyone. The term for those who do not fit within the typical definitions of a male or female body is intersex. Unfortunately, many of us haven’t learned anything about intersex people because of fear, shame and prejudice. Modern science undeniably demonstrates that there are more than two sexes, in addition to an endless amount of ways a person may choose to express their own sexuality and gender.

In peace,

Kerri Wall, Fernie

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