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July 21, 2006

And on it goes...

What the hell have Lebanese-Canadians ever done to deserve the scorn that's being heaped upon them? Peter Worthington, who has a habit of soiling himself in situations like these, has charged to the front of the pack:

Frankly, any dual-citizenship Canadian who chooses to live in one of the danger areas of the world should not expect Canada to rush to his aid and rescue him and relatives when danger threatens.

Why should the government be responsible for naturalized citizens who return to live in a dangerous country in which they are also citizens?

Again, until last week, Lebanon outside the south was not "one of the danger areas of the world". (What is this terminology anyway? Is it from GI Joe?) Beirut was once again a safe, cosmopolitan metropolis — "Paris of the Middle East" was never supposed to be an ironic nickname, just for the record. The naturalized Canadians who were back in Lebanon to live or to visit were there precisely because it wasn't dangerous anymore.

But it gets worse — much worse — for Worthington:

Although Lebanese have settled in Canada for well over a century and are productive citizens, Canada's current policies risk clogging the country with people who shouldn't be here and whom we don't want.

Already, we won't deport terrorist suspects or criminals if there's fear they may be executed or tortured in their birth country. This means virtually no bad guy can be deported to the Middle East.

Canadians of Syrian or Iranian descent should avoid visiting Damascus or Tehran where they're in danger of being grabbed on phony charges -- which in no way is to suggest that the Lebanese Canadians being evacuated have done anything illegal.

Oh no, certainly not! He's just riffin', people. Like if I were to write a piece about the Jewish Diaspora in Canada and segue into a discussion of a cabal of evil, all-powerful bankers. It's just the way one's thoughts go, right? Any discussion of Lebanese immigrants, the majority of whom until recently were Christian, will naturally bring you to the Khadrs:

We already have a self-described al-Qaida family in Canada, with one member charged with murdering an American soldier in Afghanistan. Many feel this family doesn't deserve to be Canadian, since their allegiance is to an enemy of Canada.

The Toronto Sun should be ashamed of itself for printing this bigoted dreck. What he implies about Lebanese people is bad enough. But he can't even cobble together some semi-coherent thoughts about dual citizenship:

Canada accepts that dual citizens have special rights. But the policy needs fine-tuning. It can be argued -- as some countries do -- that allegiance should be to one country, not two or three.

Sure it can. I'll note here, however, that every single western nation I'm aware of opted to help evacuate its citizens from Lebanon. Moving on:

If someone wants to be a Canadian, that person should give up citizenship in his birth country.

An exception should be made with the U.S. on grounds that we are geographically, traditionally and culturally close.

In other words, I should give up my UK passport, even while the Queen reigns over me through her Canadian representative, because Canada isn't geographically nearby the British Isles. Australians, Irish, Estonians — don't even bother. We have nothing in common. We're going to become the only western country outside Scandinavia with a "one passport" policy, and the fact that we're doing it on the occasion of having to spend a lot of money evacuating some olive-skinned types many of us casually and groundlessly associate with Islamic terrorists… well, that's just a coincidence.

Posted by Chris Selley at July 21, 2006 07:34 PM

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Excellent post.

Posted by: KevinG at July 21, 2006 11:09 PM

"Only western country..." Well, it seems that Germany has a similar policy, at least as applied to adults (age 23 and up). Other countries mentioned in the article as prohibiting dual-citizenship include Japan and India, as well as noting that the US actively discourages the practice. I see nothing shameful in being grouped with such countries.

It's is a nice sound-bite Chris - but doesn't really mean much. That is, even to the extent that determining Canadian policy by counting worldwide noses means anything, anyway.

I agree that Worthington's view of a 'specal exemption' for US dual-nationals is off-the-wall. I consider the source, and disregard it, other than as a source of amusement.

Posted by: dcardno at July 22, 2006 01:56 PM

Staggering. I love the "well, except the United States" bit. As if 'retrograde' and 'xenophobic' weren't enough to cover off in one column, he needs to stir in 'inconsistent' just to round the whole thing off.

Posted by: optimus at July 22, 2006 06:28 PM

Mr. Worthington needs a slap with a kipper.

John A. Macdonald said - "As for myself, my course is clear. A British subject I was born - a British subject I will die." - in his last electoral address, Ottawa, February 7, 1891

Mr Worthington wishes a special dispensation for citizens of The USA, which until Pearl Harbour was practicing war games which imagined the conquest of the Dominian of Canada.

Mr Worthingtonis a bag of wind, a poltroon.

PS I am a dual citizen of The Dominan of Canada and The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. As are many millions of Canadians.

Posted by: Colin at July 22, 2006 11:52 PM

Add self-serving: his step-daughter is Danielle Crittenden, and her husband the notorious David Frum. Both are born Canadian; both migrated to the United States, and for social and economic reasons, in spite of ample opportunities in Canada to the point of fairly considerable chattering-class fame.

Both took American citizenship.

Peter Worthington: F****** up a hundred thousand family reunions, but don't you imagine f****** up his. His family reunions are "culturally close." Right.

Posted by: Corey at July 23, 2006 11:00 PM

Right on, Chris! I too have blogged about the unfortunate tendency of some commentators to think of non natural-born Canadian citizens of being not true Canadians.

Posted by: James Bow at July 24, 2006 08:31 AM

Lemme join the chorus. Chris, not a wasted word--fine article.

You know what I can't figure out, you being so damned humane and all? Why you keep posting at the Western Standard. Oh well, you're being roasted over there as I speak. That'll larn ya. :)

Posted by: Dr.Dawg [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 25, 2006 08:39 AM

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