I’m not just using this as title because I often find myself at odds with the former Mr. Barbara Amiel, no, today I’m convinced the man is actually one of the stupidest columnists writing in Canada.
Some backstory: Paul Wells was touting his former employer’s new website and, in all fairness to their web design people, it does look better. Nonetheless, this lured me into reading the Opinion section where I stumbled across George Jonas’ theorizing about the RCMP killing of Robert Dziekanski.
According to Jonas, the real way that the state killed Mr. Dziekanski was by forbidding him to smoke in the airport! No really he says:
“Before the armed agents of the state ran wild, though, the unlucky Pole ran a bit wild himself. Why did Mr. Dziekanski start throwing things around at the Vancouver airport, which eventually conjured up the Taser-toting agents of the omnipotent state?
The probable answer is nicotine starvation. Before Big Nanny deprived Mr. Dziekanski of his life, she deprived him of cigarettes. There’s a chance the enthusiastic East European visitor to our shores, gung-ho enough to keep a Canadian flag at home, who talked about looking forward to seeing grizzly bears in British Columbia, ended up dying to smoke. Literally.”
Wow. That’s an excellent use of Eastern European stereotypes. The real killer here is that people can’t smoke wherever they want? Now in fairness, further on in the column, Jonas does concede that the RCMP electrocuting Dziekanski may also have had something to do with his untimely end, and that that too, was unwise. But a nic-fit as a cause of death in this case, I mean come on! Do we even know that Dziekanski was a smoker, and if so, even a heavy one?
Is it okay to stereotype Poles again? George Jonas, you are an idiot at best, a racist demagogue at worst.