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RIGHTSLAND, a fairy tale?

Everybody in Rightsland was excited; their new ruler, a Philosopher King, was creating a new constitution. It was to be called "The Charter of Rights and Freedoms," and every person was going to be equal.

A few negative persons said it would not work, that it had been tried before in a place called "Animal Farm." It was pointed out to these persons that "Animal Farm" had only been a story but what Rightsland had planned was going to be for real, and it would be a success!

It was nearly 20 years after Rightsland had adopted its Charter of Rights and Freedoms (which was decided without the people voting on it). Rightsland was now a hive of activity and rights had become an industry. Rightsland even had a motto which said, All wrongs become rights. It's possible: two wrongs do make a right.

Every day new rights were created: pedophiles had rights; perverts had rights; pornographers had rights; alternative lifestyles were a right. Marriage was now being claimed as a right between men and men, or women and women, or any other combination that could be claimed as a right.

The judiciary no longer relied on interpretation of the law, but was now "reading in" rights to the Charter of Rights. This was called imaginative or hallucinatory justice and its possibilities were endless.

The politicians had also given power to political appointees. These were called Human Rights Commissars and their job was to search and find rights wherever they could. They were doing this at a record pace, putting a lie to the statement that government was unproductive. Wrong persons were hauled before these commissars because their views were not right. These people were told they had to be reeducated. Anyone questioning the validity of wrongs that had become rights was accused of hate crimes, being bigoted, extremist, homophobic, anti-choice, mean-spirited, intolerant, or just plain wrong. After all, the new Rightsland was for rights, and questioning rights was a wrong.

The present ruler of Rightsland was a former henchperson of the original Philosopher King. He had assisted in bringing "The Charter of Rights and Freedoms" to Rightsland. Lots of people didn't know what he said but everybody agreed with him. After all, how could he be wrong? This was Rightsland.

At his political party's convention his righteous followers had chanted "four more years," as they wanted his rule to continue. He wanted to show, how right he was by winning three election terms. Some people in Rightsland, however, thought of him as a little dictator.

This Philosopher King Jr. had a way of handling dissenters. He would plunge into a crowd and grab a dissenter by the throat. This chokehold was his way of saying Hello, or Bonjour. He also loved pepper; he liked it on his food and he liked it on protestors who objected to him keeping company with dictators.

He told everyone that the next election would be fought on "values." Some persons hearing this said they didn't think there were any real values left in Rightsland. But these were considered to be negative people.

Rightsland had a unique system of government. It had language police in one part of the country to ensure that only the right language was used. It had human rights police to ensure that all rights were enforced and no wrongs tolerated.

It had wheat board police to ensure that no free enterprise in grain was allowed. In fact, one farmer who had tried to sell his own grain was taken to a Rightsland jail in chains. He had committed a wrong against Rightsland and that went against the grain.

It had Gag laws to prevent anyone seriously challenging the three main political parties during an election. Some people called those three parties "The Three Stooges." Their names were Gliberal, New Deviations, and The Progressive Cons. All three had one thing in common: they all agreed that Rightsland was for Rights and no wrongs should be tolerated.

Rightsland even had files on all its citizenry. The reason given was that these files helped to ensure that everyone was getting their rights. Some wrong people objected to these files and said personal freedom was in danger. They said it smacked of Big Brother and "1984." It was pointed out to them that "1984" had only been a story and that in Rightsland everyone had equal rights.

Rightsland also had a system of boards. There were dairy boards, chicken boards, fish boards, and wheat boards. These were places where bureaucrats plied their trade, counting chickens and sheep and watching the selling of wheat. These were called "Boardoms." They kept a huge political class across the country gainfully employed.

The politicians and police in Rightsland liked to attend and march in parades. One of their favourite parades was called the Pleasant Pride Parade. This was where all the alternative lifestyles took to the streets, dressed up in various costumes. It was hard to tell which gender was which; however, some did display their bodily appendages. And some made lewd gestures. At one time in Rightsland when the country was sane, this behaviour would have been called obscene, an insult to law and order. But this was Rightsland and nothing was wrong anymore. And wasn't that the Police Chief leading the Pleasant Pride Parade? Therefore, nobody had better call this law and disorder.

In Rightsland about 30% of the workers were in workers' collectives or unions. These workers were forced to pay dues in order to work. Each received a card from the union. This was called compulsory democracy. Some people called this creeping communism, but communism was dead. So this statement was wrong. This compulsory dues system worked well because it enabled the union bosses to finance political, social and moral agendas with the millions of dollars they received. Any workers objecting and claiming that their freedom of association under the Charter of Rights was being violated was told this was democracy, Rightsland style.

Some of these union bosses even received "The Order of Rightsland" for services rendered. Making picket signs and threatening blood in the streets was considered a service. The fluent use of obscenities, handing over memberships' funds to the New Deviations Party, and special interest groups were also considered services.

Life in Rightsland was about choice. Before the "Charter of Rights and Freedoms" a pregnant woman was known to be carrying a baby. But the womyn's rights movement had decided this was no longer a life, but a choice. New words were invented to take away the stigma of this killing by choice. Words like "product of conception," "potential life," and "freedom of choice" were used when the baby or "choice" was not wanted. This language was called "choicespeak" and was similar to "Reading in" that the judiciary used. Language could mean anything you wanted it to mean. Rightsland was a Wonderland and Alice was right at home there.

It was also decided that Rightsland had to be made safe. Therefore, all guns had to be registered. This would make it easier to confiscate them. It would also ensure that only criminals would have guns. It was also proposed by a Rightsland politician that the police should be allowed to break the law. Some negative people said that would make the police criminals and thus questioned how it could be lawful.

Rightsland also had a system of giving money to special favoured groups. These were people who wanted more rights, or to create new rights, so they received Rightsland grants. The only criterion for receiving Rightsland grants was that it must be a right, and only wrong people were refused.

Wrong people in Rightsland were known as law-abiding, family-oriented, tax-paying traditionalists. These people had been the backbone of the country before the imposition of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. They did not qualify for Rightsland grants because somebody had to pay the taxes for the grants; this, of course, fell on their shoulders.

But now it appeared that the wrong people were starting to rebel. They complained they had no rights, that they were paying over 50% of their income in taxes, that crime was out of control, that criminals had rights, that their children were being indoctrinated into unsafe lifestyles, and that their freedoms were being taken away.

But Philosopher King Jr. had an answer for all these wrong people: leave the country. Some of them did. Those who stayed believed a new day was coming and hoped that freedom, sanity, and real rights could be restored to Rightsland.

Stephen Gray of Chilliwack, B.C., is President of Save the Union Movement (SUM) and has published a printed bulletin by that name over the last eleven years. He may be reached at 9521 Paula Crescent, Chilliwack, B.C., V2P 6H1 Tel: (604) 792-5267
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Author:Gray, Stephen
Publication:Catholic Insight
Geographic Code:1CANA
Date:Nov 1, 2000
Previous Article:Pierre Elliott Trudeau, RIP.
Next Article:Letters to the Editor.

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