Parliament needs a police force too

If the complaints are kept secret, any investigation or consequences kept out of the public eye, all deterrence is lost.

B Far from more answers, experience leaves me asking more questions. For instance, how is it no police force is authorized to investigate wrongdoing on Parliament Hill?

As I understand it, if a murder were to occur in Chambers, let’s say a question period got out of hand and tempers flared beyond the norm, sleuthing would fall to the speaker of the house and the board of internal economy, a hush-hush behind-closed-doors committee made up of nine persons from all parties (except the Green) plus the speaker.

How qualified are MPs to be Sherlock Holmes? And since when is it advisable culprits investigate themselves? Though the CBC appears to be doing that over the Ghomeshi affair, self-investigation is not acceptable nor an effective means of getting to the bottom of any wrongdoing.

If police are barred from the Hill, what have the MPs been doing for years arguing to the rafters in question period while never getting down to brass tacks and putting in place a proper procedure for dealing with such complaints as sexual harassment between MPs or between MPs and young interns or journalists?

And why are cocktail parties and other alcoholic drinking happening in Parliament at all? At any hour? We elect MPs to Ottawa to steer the business of Canada, not to fraternize with members of the opposite sex (or in this day and age, perhaps members of the same sex) and paw younger staff or journalists whose careers can be stymied by rebuffing unwelcome attention.

Excuses for drinking include MPs are far from home and family, life can be lonely, their work days are long, and alcohol is an accepted accompaniment to late night meetings. MPs expect voters to buy that?

When the day’s work is done, go home. Sixty years ago MPs went to Ottawa for months at a time. That is no longer the case. Today they commute back and forth by plane with regularity.

A related topic prompting questions is the suspension of two Liberal MPs from their caucus following complaints by two female NDP MPs a year after the alleged unacceptable behaviour. Mulcair fumed the two women had wanted their complaints to be kept secret. Why?

One of the main purposes of court sentences is to deter others from contemplating a similar crime. If the complaints are kept secret, any investigation or consequences kept out of the public eye, all deterrence is lost.

I can appreciate the women would prefer their experiences remain out of newscasts. But if they were old enough to run for election they had to know once they sought remedy by reporting their experiences to NDP Party Whip Turmel or Liberal leader Trudeau, secrecy would end.

Back home, what are the families of the two Liberal MPs making of their caucus suspension? How jovial is life at the kitchen table since Trudeau summarily kicked them out without even identifying what crime they allegedly committed? Once doubt creeps into a marriage, restoring trust can be difficult, if not impossible. You don’t need Dr. Phil’s word for that.

Leading on from those topics, where is Jian Ghomeshi hiding? Two weeks since CBC fired him and no one knows where he is or what he’s up to.

For a man who sought the limelight non-stop, remaining incommunicado must be unsettling for him. How is he managing to stay underground? His face is more widely distributed than Rob Ford’s at the height of his crack cocaine capers. He has not been a guest on any talk show.

Is he hunkered in Mom’s home recuperating from plastic surgery? How is Mom coping with her son’s adverse publicity? Is Big Ears Teddy facing the wall in shame?

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

City of Terrace Mayor Carol Leclerc, left, received the plaque from Terrace Community Foundation Chair, Norm Parry at George Little Park. (Binny Paul/Terrace Standard)
VIDEO: Terrace Community Foundation marks 10 years as a philanthropic organization in the city

The plaque presented by the Foundation will be permanently displayed at City Hall

Terrace Search and Rescue vice president Dave Jephson during longline training exercises in 2018. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Terrace Search and Rescue Operations spike in 2020

Last year was the busiest ever for Search and Rescue groups in B.C.

Terrace city staff are in the process of reaching out to local and Indigenous governments in the northwest to form a lobby group to pressure the provincial government to fix the city’s growing social issues crisis. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Province urged to fix Terrace social services ‘crisis’

City wants to form regional lobby group

The report prepared by Independent Investigations Office of BC said that no offence was committed by the police officer from Lisims/ Nass Valley RCMP detachment while responding to a stabbing incident that led to an in-custody death. (Black Press file photo)
Nass Valley RCMP officer cleared in October 2020 police-involved death

Independent Investigations Office of B.C. concludes no offence committed by police officer

Photo collage of loved ones lost to substance use and overdose. (Photo courtesy Moms Stop The Harm)
B.C. overdose deaths still rising 5 years after public health emergency declared

Moms Stop the Harm calls on B.C. to provide safe supply in response to deadly illicit drug use

Demonstrators at the legislature on April 14 called on the province to decriminalize drug possession and provide widespread access to regulated safe supply across B.C. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)
Rally calls for decriminalization, safe supply on 5th anniversary of overdose emergency declaration

From 2016 to the end of February, 7,072 British Columbians died due to overdose

(Government of Canada)
Liberal MP caught stark naked during House of Commons video conference

William Amos, in Quebec, appeared on the screens of his fellow members of Parliament completely naked

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Feb. 1, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps to 1,168 Wednesday, nearly 400 in hospital

Now 120 coronavirus patients in intensive care, six more deaths

Moss covered branches are seen in the Avatar Old Growth Forest near Port Renfrew on Vancouver Island, B.C. Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. blockades aimed at protecting old-growth forests reveal First Nation split

Two Pacheedaht chiefs say they’re ‘concerned about the increasing polarization over forestry activities’ in the territory

Richmond RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng said, in March, the force received a stand-out number of seven reports of incidents that appeared to have “racial undertones.” (Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
‘Racially motivated’ incidents on the rise in B.C’s 4th largest city: police

Three incidents in Richmond are currently being invested as hate crimes, says RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng

Commercial trucks head south towards the Pacific Highway border crossing Wednesday (April 14, 2021). The union representing Canadian border officers wants its members to be included on the frontline priority list for the COVID-19 vaccine. (Aaron Hinks photo)
CBSA officers’ union calls for vaccine priority in B.C.

Border officers at ports including, YVR and land crossings should ‘not be left behind’

A still from the video taken of a violent arrest on May 30, 2020 in downtown Kelowna. (File)
Kelowna Mountie charged with assault for caught-on-camera violent arrest

Const. Siggy Pietrzak was filmed punching a suspected impaired driver at least 10 times during an arrest

A screenshot from a Nuu-chah-nulth healing song and performance created in collaboration between Hjalmer Wenstob and Timmy Masso. (Screenshot from YouTube)
VIDEO: Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation brothers produce COVID-19 healing song

Hjalmer Wenstob and Timmy Masso share dance and inspiration.

Most Read