David Suzuki has raised eyebrows, we’re told, by deploying a colourful analogy in the course of a discussion about greenhouse gas emissions. As Maclean’s reports, Suzuki doesn’t have much time for Brad Wall’s view that economic factors such as potential job losses need to be considered when formulating policy in this area:
Suzuki dismissed Wall’s comments as the same arguments used by those who benefited from owning slaves. “It sounds very much to me like southern states argued in the 19th century, that to eliminate slavery would destroy their economy,” Suzuki said in an interview Monday on SiriusXM’s Everything is Political with Evan Solomon.
Suzuki says 19th-century slave owners prioritized the economy over the goal of ending slavery like Wall is putting the economy and jobs ahead of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. “Who would say today that the economy should have come before slavery?” Suzuki said.
Apparently Suzuki, in his sanctimonious way, said something about both climate change and slavery being “moral” issues as opposed to “economic” ones. I’d view them both as issues that have coexisting moral and economic dimensions, neither of which can be reasonably ignored. I doubt any government ever abolished slavery without thinking hard about the economic consequences, unless slavery was a marginal institution in the country in question to begin with.
Be that as it may, Suzuki was also full of praise for another prominent climate change activist:
“I’m with the Pope, and as you know, I’m an atheist, but I’m willing to kiss the Pope on his feet, on his hands or anywhere else he wants me to kiss him,” Suzuki told Solomon about the Pope’s position on climate change.
I wasn’t previously aware, in fact, that David Suzuki was an atheist. Good on him, of course, and it also occurs to me that he may have performed a considerable service to Canada by making those comments. If the Vatican becomes aware of his offer of anatomically unrestricted oral affection, Pope Francis may just be sufficiently alarmed to avoid setting foot in our free and glorious land until St. David the Green is safely enclosed in its soil.