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Save Free Speech Now!

NO LAUGHS PLEASE. THIS IS VANCOUVER

Doug Collins

Feb. 19, 2001

The word is that Vancouver has become Dullsville. No better, perhaps, than Freezing Prairie, Sask. We are no longer going to public parties, getting boozed up at English Bay, or ogling the girls on Granville Street.

These laments — in other terms — have reached officialdom. “We’ve got to come together as a community. We can’t allow ourselves to slip into a backwater,” says the head of the Vancouver Board of Trade in commenting on the city’s waning spirit.

What set off this Jeremiad was the prospect of the Grizzlies NBA team moving down to more salubrious climes in the U.S. Tears had also been shed about Benson & Hedges no longer putting on their Symphony of Fire on the waterfront. Several other major events are likely to slide into extinction, including the Indy car race.

While the rest of the world from London to Sydney put on magnificent Millennium shows at New Year, Vancouverites stayed home, oohing and aahing over foreign wonders and sipping a guilty beer or two while watching TV. If they hadn’t already gone to bed, that is.

Ever obedient in the mass, they paid attention to a police warning that they should stay home and be good. Which they did.

“Don’t think you’re going to come downtown and party on the street,” announced Constable Anne Drennan on TV, the PR girl for the cops. “If people come downtown on New Year’s Eve, they better have some place to go.”

So why have we become a flock of sheep? An “expert on popular culture” at Simon Fraser University says we are now suburbanites who like to stay at home watching the box rather than going out.

I have news for him. It ain’t that. It’s the pall of political correctness, aided in no small part by sociologists, the media and other do-gooders.

We have become a fun-hating bunch of New Puritans who are afraid to say boo to the politically correct goose; citizens of Wimpland who collapse at the thought of being called “racist” and other bad names.

An early example was the fuss in 1972 over a huge and famous picture in the lobby of the Hotel Vancouver that showed the Indians greeting Capt. Vancouver on his arrival here, one or two of whom were kneeling.

The hotel was being renovated and the picture was to be donated to the University of British Columbia. Hoots and howls of rage. It was an insult to our native brothers, etc. So the pic ended up in some basement on the Atlantic coast. By now, it’s probably been given to the inhabitants of Tierra del Fuego. Or burnt.

About 20 years ago, the last fun-filled Lady Godiva ride took place at UBC. Lesbians and other rad-fem freaks deplored this awful affront to women.

Goodbye, Lady Godiva.

Rugby teams have been hauled over the coals for using “racist language” in their dressing rooms. Humorless human rights maniacs lurk in wait for the wrong words. Obey, obey obey! Be pure. Think no bad thoughts. As was recently claimed, B.C. leads in keeping the multitudes on the straight and narrow. God bless the NDP.

Goodbye to Capt. Vancouver, too, and not only in pictures. On the 200th. anniversary of his getting here there was no celebration because the mayor of the city that bears his name thought the Indians wouldn’t like it. It’s a wonder we haven’t changed our name. Writers in The Vancouver Sun have even suggested that the name of the province be changed. “British” Columbia is bad for you.

In this new Vancouver, circuses are not welcome on account of how they’re not good for the animals. Or so it is claimed. Which reminds me that when bear-baiting was outlawed in England, it was said it was done not for the pain it gave to the bears, but for the pleasure it gave to the audience.

Our last killer whale in the Vancouver Aquarium is to be sent away to San Diego. It too gave too much pleasure to the audience, including the kids who would scream with delight when it and its mates jumped around and splashed them.

Smoking is pleasure for some, which is why, really, no other place in Canada has adopted anti-smoking regulations in the restaurants quite as enthusiastically as we have. The weed-lovers never bothered me, a non-smoker. But they bother the politicians, who are bothered by the pure, and sheep run where barking dogs tell them to run.

So who can blame Benson & Hedges for nixing their Symphony of Fire? Why should they spend millions amusing Vancouverites when Vancouver kicks them in the ass?

The Vancouver Sun has just come out with a rah-rah editorial headed

“Let’s chase off the blues and have a ball.” Sure. As long as it’s politically correct, which that brave rag is in spades.

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