A NDP MP says Conservative MP Wai Young’s comments likening the Stephen Harper government’s pushing through of antiterrorism bill C-51 to the work of Jesus Christ ranged from “the profoundly stupid to the incredibly ignorant”.
“I don’t know how this woman is still a candidate for the Conservatives,” Nathan Cullen, the MP for Skeena-Bulkley Valley, said in an interview at the Georgia Straight office. “The level of ignorance and misinformation coming out of one speech is profound. And yet I think this is what the Conservatives think they were doing with [Bill] C-51. They are attempting to shred the Charter of Rights and Freedoms with no benefit to security. And now they’re out trying to scare people and just saying we could have stopped something as tragic as Air India. I find it offensive. I can’t imagine what the families of those victims are thinking, when their tragedy is being hauled out to justify such awful legislation.”
Young, the MP for Vancouver South, made her comments during a speech to the congregation at Harvest City Church.
“Jesus served, he saved, but he acted, as well,” Young said last month.
Young went on to say: “I want to share with you what I think our government is doing in the same vein—Jesus served and acted to always do the right thing, not the most popular thing.”
Referring to the 1985 bombing, the Conservative MP also made the bizarre claim that “if Bill C-51 had been in place 30 years ago, Air India would never have happened”.
On Twitter, Young’s words inspired a flood of satirical tweets using the hashtag #CPCJesus.
In a statement, Young claimed she “misspoke with regards to the investigation of the Air India bombing”.
“I regret this error,” Young stated.
Cullen predicted Young will be unavailable for interviews from now until the federal election this fall.
“I don’t think you’re going to gain any access, because there’s somebody in Harper’s shop right now, saying, ‘How do you quiet this person down?’” Cullen said. “You can understand why Harper muzzles so many of his own MPs though.”
The NDP MP went on to raise the spectre of Young potentially becoming a cabinet minister in the future.
“How much bench strength has this government lost, in terms of their ministers and such?” Cullen asked. “She would be a candidate for cabinet. You laugh, but I’m not kidding. Who else they got? She would absolutely be a candidate for cabinet. This is how low the standard has gotten for Harper.”