“It sounds like a good Idea, don’t you think?”
Charles McVety, a close ally and key endorser of Doug Ford’s campaign for the PC leadership, thinks Ontario’s schools should teach creationism.
Addressing the audience during a conference this week, the hardline social conservative and Canada Christian College president questioned whether the Earth is more than 6,000 years old and spoke in favour of creationist philosophy in the province’s schools.
In one video posted on the Canada Christian College Facebook page, McVety tells the gathering:
“People talk about the world being billions and billions of years old, but I’ve never seen anything more than 6,000 years old. You have a perfect historical record for about 6,000 years and then…stopped…This nonsense that this world has been like this for billions of years is really troublesome to me in my mind because it makes no sense at all, but how many know that the devil makes no sense?.”
At 1:28:30 of another video from the same conference, McVety can be seen saying:
“I just want people to know, that this man takes a stand, and you know that the devil doesn’t like it. In fact, last week the Toronto Star wrote an article and they ridiculed us for having Ken Ham here to come to speak on Genesis and they said that they’re worried that McVety’s relationship with Doug Ford means that creation is now going to be taught in all the schools in Ontario. I, of course, said there’s no move in that direction but it sounds like a good idea, don’t you think?”
Ham is founder of the “Creation Museum” in Kentucky, which promotes pseudoscientific philosophy about the Earth’s age and origins based on a literalist interpretation of the Book of Genesis.
McVety is a former televangelist who was deemed too extreme for the Christian TV station CTS. In 2010, management yanked him off the air following complaints that he was broadcasting “discriminatory comments.”
According to a ruling from the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council, McVety violated broadcasting codes by presenting “distorted facts” and “abusive comments about homosexuals,” specifically comments that “suggested that homosexuals prey on children.”
McVety’s Institute for Canadian Values is a social conservative think tank that targets the LGBTQ community and regularly spreads disinformation on legislation relating to issues of sexuality, including Ontario’s sexual education curriculum or falsely claiming Canada is making it “legal for adult men to engage in anal sex with children.”
McVety’s college has also hosted a number of controversial events, including a 2011 speech by Dutch far-right leader Geert Wilders and a 2017 rally organized by Rebel Media protesting a motion condemning racism and Islamophobia following a white nationalist’s horrific terror attack on a Québec City mosque.
In February, Ford joined McVety on a whirlwind tour of several Toronto churches where the pastor told congregants Ford would back their agenda.
“I can guarantee you we will make sure the church has a voice all the time,” Ford then told congregants. “All the time.”
Ford subsequently promised to “repeal” sex-ed.
More recently, McVety scored front-row seats for City TV’s May 7th provincial leadership, on Ford’s own invitation as a VIP guest.
— PressProgress (@pressprogress) May 7, 2018
Ford’s embrace of hardline social conservatives, while perhaps more explicit, isn’t new to the PC party.
In 2016, PC MPP Rick Nicholls was forced to retract comments made to a group of Christian supporters about how the party could never win government on the force of social issues alone.
“Social issues are very, very important,” Nicholls had said, before adding:
“We need to form government, then watch us go…watch us go.”