I won't bother to give examples of the poor writing, given that there isn't a paragraph of the piece that doesn't require rereading at least once. Just read it and you'll see what I mean.
The thing that I find most troubling about this grossly incompetent scrawl--and I'm not being glib here: it troubles me to the lengths of considerable distraction and a very real despair--is the baselessness of almost every assertion of fact that Ms. Copps makes. Behold the true substance of her "passionate voice for a progressive Canada since 1984": pure, pig-shit ignorance! It would be to strain credulity to put it in any milder terms. Her passionate voice is the inarticulate gurgle of someone who has been too long in solitary confinement; her only progress (over the last 22 years apparently) has been to devise ever more resourceful ways to stay the accumulated weight of reality that should, long ago, have toppled the doors of her lightless little cell.
- Ms. Copps claims that the "climax" of Lent is a "religious [really?! -ed.] family-centred feast."
- She claims that "the very notion of Christianity is tied to the belief that we are our brother's (and sister's) keeper."
- She claims that "religious values are intended to promote social support and communal betterment" and that "communal support is also a core value of Judaism, Sikhism and Hinduism."
... I could go on and on with these--the above covering only four of the first six sentences, and there's much else here that's far riper--but you get the idea.
The problem, I guess, is a fairly simple one. The sort of person best qualified to speak knowledgeably to the finer points of Roman Catholicism, needs be a Roman Catholic. Likewise: the sort of person best qualified to speak knowledgeably to the finer points of the obligations of Canadian citizens, needs be someone with a fairly comprehensive working knowledge of the mechanisms of the Canadian state.
... That Sheila Copps is a Catholic and a former Deputy Prime Minister is, well, an imponderable ...
Honestly. What can you say? Other, that is, than: shoot me now! Please! Yes, with that gun! NOW!
One soon learns of the reputations made in this country--and the kind of weight they carry above and beyond the parametres of their making--that these people cannot be taken with mere grains of salt. You need the strong, ungainly, road-variety version of the stuff. And you need it in spades.
* I am, of course, exaggerating. Given, that is, that F's are pretty much forbidden in today's public schools.