Coleman has some explaining to do

The Telegram
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Our next premier, Frank Coleman, may be well known to the power, moneyed elite of the province, but to the ordinary citizen he is pretty much an unknown. He is a powerful man; after all, not one cabinet minister would dare challenge him for the party leadership.

There should be a very real concern with Mr. Coleman and his staunch, public support of the Catholic religion. How far will he push his religious ideas?

He has already shown how he feels about abortion by taking part in numerous public demonstrations against it. His willingness to take away a woman’s right to choose is a serious matter.

The province’s school system is nondenominational. Children can no longer be indoctrinated into a particular faith, including the Catholic faith. Since Mr. Coleman was an original founder and past chair of the private Catholic, Immaculate Heart of Mary School, in Corner Brook, would he return the province to denominational education? When asked this question recently, Mr. Coleman said he would need to look into it more. That’s not a very reassuring answer.

The Catholic Church is against artificial birth control. We need to know if Mr. Coleman supports this view. Would he take action as premier, resulting in making it difficult for women to obtain artificial birth control?

The Catholic Church discriminates against homosexuals and is against gay marriage. Does Mr. Coleman agree with the church? What actions would he take as premier in support of the church’s position?

Finally, the Catholic religion discriminates and gives women a second-class status and has made many rulings that attack women’s equality and freedom (after two centuries, not one female pope, bishop or priest). Wouldn’t it be a good idea to find out where Mr. Coleman stands on this matter?

If, like his church, he believes women are second-class, we need to know this.

Doug Smith

Grand Falls-Windsor

Organizations: Catholic Church, Mary School

Geographic location: Corner Brook

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Recent comments

  • Joseph McGrath
    May 15, 2014 - 15:49

    What religion are you Mr.Smith?????????? Maybe some shrewd person such as a lawyer and a court judge may soon find out???? Here"Hoping!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Doug Smith
    May 14, 2014 - 12:50

    Alex, Jay, Keith and Harvey. Alex, calm down, I wasn’t attacking anyone’s religion only telling the way it is. If you don’t like the way your religion is being portrayed maybe you should switch religions or better yet, have none at all. Jay, how is my letter one of religious bigotry? Those “worst examples” of wrong doing by the Catholic church are the bedrock of the church not some frivolous aspect of the faith. Do you know whether Frank Coleman would support the religious issues you are so upset about? I don’t know and you don’t know. No one knows except Frank Coleman. That’s the point of my letter, we the voters need to know. Remember, Frank Coleman, wasn’t shy about parading his religious views before in a very public way. Finally, Jay, the Catholic church has in the past and is now making fundamental assaults on the equality of all human beings. Keith Kent, you have it all wrong. The Catholic church has not changed its ways or principles since the inquisition. Currently, the church just doesn’t have the power to enforce its views like in the bad old days. Harvey, what in particular is, “utter nonsense” about my letter? The Catholic church is continuing to practice discrimination and misogyny today just like when Rip Van winkle went to sleep. Doug Smith, Grand Falls-Windsor

    • Jay
      May 14, 2014 - 14:52

      Doug, Maybe you should calm down. You're the one who's upset about all the wrong doings of the Catholic church, not me. You're the one using your bigotry to turn religion into a political issue. Read your own hysterical rants if you want to see someone obsessed with religion. Frankly, I don't care what religion Coleman or Ball follow. Those are personal decisionsfor each of them. Though it is interesting that a well known Liberal apologist (you) is only asking about one religion. There are 48 members in in the House of Assembly, who will have ample opportunity to complain if Coleman ever mixes religion with politics. But the bitter haters like you will still concentrate on fear mongering by trying to make religion a political issue if it suits your purposes. Were you so upset with Brian Tobin because he's a Catholic, or can only Liberals be Catholic. Your posts are a disgusting throwback to the "good old days" where people of different religions were taught to hate each other. All of the organized religions have issues which they should be ashamed of, and you should be ashamed of yourself for your focus on one religion which you obviously hate.

  • HydroWorship
    May 13, 2014 - 22:32

    Anyone can be outspoken, few have the facility of critical introspection. I wish it was the case that there was no letter to the editor comment referencing Micheal Jackson and Frank Coleman this week and there was no other letters to chose but an altruistic signifying piece of chafe from the perennial issue pile. Well, look on the bright side, it did make us laugh. Man in Emera indeed! I am certain there were more pressing letters than a reminder that Coleman is part of a strange religion that may be patriarchal, sexually repressed, with a history of educational brilliance in the Jesuits, and depravity in the Christian Brothers. There is nothing wrong with The Trinity - Sun, Wave and Wind - why not worship them? I'm more worried about us being baptized in the Churchill again, than the women in my life being suppressed by Coleman! Asphalt and concrete are Frank's Red Hot issues, not uteruses and scribblers and suffrage!!

    • Terry M Loder
      May 14, 2014 - 06:29

      Your comment is just brilliant! Every now and then I come across the justification I often require to stay with the Telegram! Thank you!

  • Alex
    May 13, 2014 - 20:39

    I cant believe that the editors at the telegram would stoop so low as to print rubbish. Whats next telegram? There is only one thing worse than attacking a mans religion and that is attacking the color of his skin. I guess we know who the telegam will be supporting in the next election....

  • Doug Smith
    May 13, 2014 - 19:40

    Mr. Wilson, Mr. C O’Brien, and Joey’s Boy; please point out one example of religious discrimination by me in my letter! Each statement I made about the Catholic religion is a fact not an opinion. I also challenge any one of you three to point out any comment of mine about the Catholic religion that is in error. I only deal in reality, you three seem not to be able to handle the truth, a failing not uncommon to religious types. Doug Smith, Grand Falls-Windsor

    • Jay
      May 14, 2014 - 08:41

      Mr. Smith, Your whole letter is one of religious bigotry. You dredge up the worst examples of wrong doing by the Catholic church, and then, in a feeble attempt at fear mongering, you imply that Frank Coleman, as a Catholic, would support them at a political level. You conveniently forget to acknowledge that abortion is a federal, not a provincial, issue. You also neglect to mention that the denomiational school system ended during the reign of a Catholic premier. But don't let facts stand in your way when you want to bash a Tory, especially when you can use petty bigotry. By the way, I'm not a religious type, nor will I vote Tory in the next election, but I won't be petty enough to use religion as a justification for my political stance.

  • keith kent
    May 13, 2014 - 19:15

    Difficult to believe that even after so many years of tolerance and respect among different Religions, there are still dinosaurs around like Doug. He deserves our pity and prayers.

  • Harvey
    May 13, 2014 - 15:55

    To publish this garbage gives a new low to journalism. What utter nonsense. The write must have gone asleep with rip van Winkle and is now only waking up.

  • The Man in Emera
    May 13, 2014 - 14:28

    So there only reason this guy is our premier is because he knows Williams? What have we fallen for? I wonder what his election tune would of been? The Highway man? The wizard of Oz? Takin care of business? I'd say it was a take off of a Michael Jackson tune.

  • George Wilson
    May 13, 2014 - 14:02

    I cant believe the Telegram would actually publish this letter so rife with religious discrimination. I didn't realize this type of prejudice still existed in today's society. Reminds one of the days when Catholics had to hold religious services in the woods to avoid persecution. Shameful

    • Morris
      May 14, 2014 - 06:19

      George, the Telegram did not publish anything discriminatory! Criticism of any religion or faith is not discrimination, nor is criticism of a political party a form of discrimination! There is no prejudice evident in this commentary, only generally accepted facts ! Your feelings may be hurt and you may even be offended, however that does not mean the opinion expressed is a violation of your statutory human right! Too many people now believe they have a RIGHT NOT TO BE OFFENDED , well you Don't!

  • Joey's Boy
    May 13, 2014 - 07:35

    Way to go Doug, stir up that old catholic vs protestant hatred. You're a man long past your time.

  • C O'Brien
    May 13, 2014 - 07:34

    Sad to see that religious bigotry and ignorance are still alive in this province. Mr. Coleman's religion has nothing to do with politics. Just as no one questioned Balls, Williams, Grimes, Tobin , Well,. et al.

  • carogers
    May 13, 2014 - 07:06

    I know nothing about Mr. Coleman. The reason is entirely his own choosing. He has not mad any effort to openly address the public. He seems to be hiding away. I certainty do not want anyone representing my province who can't even address his own people. If the media had not come out with his religious beliefs. I would not know anything at all about this man. His lack of communication with the public has already made my mind up. Not voting for him or his party. Who ever is advising him needs to do a better job.

  • Morris
    May 13, 2014 - 06:22

    Well said Mr. Smith! Has anyone ever questioned Ms. Lorraine Michaels re her position on abortion. Why has she been silent re Coleman's position on this and other matters including women's issues?

    • Eileen
      May 13, 2014 - 11:46

      Morris: If you think that Lorraine Michaels has been silent on women's issues, then perhaps you should check out the past 30-40 years of her activism on women's issues. There are few, if any women in the province who have been more outspoken on these issues.