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The Canadian Evangelical Left has blocked former President George W. Bush from speaking at evangelical Tyndale University in Toronto, deriding him as a virtual war criminal.
An online petition by faculty and students, fueled by reporting by the Toronto Star, evidently ensured the event’s cancellation last month. One Tyndale professor, in his own anti-Bush op-ed, implicitly accused the former president of “blasphemy” and “heresy’ for daring to have employed scriptural language in citations of dreaded American exceptionalism during his administration.
“As no one has been convicted, I do not label anyone a war criminal,” disingenuously wrote Professor Arthur Paul Boers through clenched teeth. “Yet George W. Bush ought to be investigated and held to account for: wrongful abduction and imprisonment without trial; employment of torture; tens of thousands of civilian casualties in Iraq (conservative estimates total 100,000); other civilian deaths in Afghanistan and Pakistan; invading Iraq on mistaken if not fraudulently deceptive grounds; gross human rights abuses at Abu Ghraib and elsewhere; and greater instability around the globe.”
Having himself lived in the U.S. shortly after 9-11, Professor Boers experienced first –hand America’s “fear and hatred” that was “couched in Christian terms” under Bush. The poor professor even toned down his Canadian accent, apparently lest all the American hate turn against him. It’s likelier that nobody minded his accent but quite a few Americans were offended by his snotty tone towards their country, if his op-ed is any example.
“I saw during the Bush years in the U.S. that most Christians chose to remain silent in the face of pretty serious abuses of power and distortions of faith,” Boers afterwards told The Huffington Post. “For me silence is not an option.”
But Boers’ snottiness evidently is not isolated at Tyndale. A petition demanded a “full apology” from the university’s president, who admitted Bush is a “lightning rod figure,” for the effrontery in having invited Bush. The petitioners intemperately indignantly explained: “We believe that no amount of new money can justify profiting from a former figurehead whose policies led to the murder of thousands of innocent civilians while invoking the name of Jesus.”
The Bush event was not even to have been on campus but at the Toronto Hilton and sponsored by a billionaire patron of the school. Apparently Bush went ahead and spoke at another event, at the same hotel, sponsored by the same billionaire, and attended by some school employees. But Tyndale University College and Seminary itself seemingly was preserved from direct tarnish by the angel of death from America.
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