Canada’s Parliament Debates the Use of the Word Fart
The United States may be experiencing some turmoil over its recent presidential election, but in Canada, political discussions of a different source are happening in the halls of government. Namely, is Parliament too dignified for the word fart? On November 15, members of Canada’s Parliament began debating whether or not its members should reference flatulence on the floor, as Mashable dutifully reports.
During a discussion of carbon taxes, Conservative MP Michelle Rempel got colorful, asking, “Why does the government treat Alberta like a fart in the room that nobody wants to talk about or acknowledge?”
In response, Green Party MP Elizabeth May of British Columbia decided to spell out just how offensive her word choice was. “I hate to interrupt my friend in her speech, but I heard her say a word that I know is distinctly unparliamentary, and I think she may want to withdraw it,” she declared. “The word was f-a-r-t.” Later, she explained that “the reason I feel it is important to make something of the member's choice of words is that she then accused people opposite her for reacting. In that context, decorum and respect are important in this place.”
Another Conservative MP from Alberta told her to sit down, and eventually someone broke out the rule book on Parliamentary language. The discussion later moved on to more serious matters, leaving the issue of the f-word unresolved. How will we ever know how to refer to flatulence in the halls of government now?
Because Canada is a beautiful place, the entire discussion has been transcribed by the independent, volunteer-run openparliament.ca, and can be viewed in its entirety here.