Somebody Shoot Sheila, Please?

Yes, folks, guess who’s in the line of fire once again:

The Canadian Heritage Ministry

Sheila “Notice Me” Copps and her troops are doing such a wonderful job.

When you think of Canada, what do you think of? Most people will probably come up with maple syrup, hockey, beavers, Mounties; the usual stuff. Well, here’s something else to add to the list: blonde jokes.

Heritage Canada gave a $98,000 grant to a Montr&ecute;al publishing firm, Edimag Inc., and they turned out “Les 500 Meilleurs Gags Sur Les Blondes” (“The 500 Best Blonde Gags”).

Now, before anyone goes off the deep end on me, I’ll tell you that blonde jokes don’t bother me. I am blond. The problem is: is this Canadian culture? Is this something the government should be financing, when legitimate charity organizations are scrabbling for a few thousand dollars wherever they can get it? I don’t think so.

Addendum: [20 January 1999] There’s something seriously wrong the Book Publishing Industry Development program, which issues these grants. Jacques Parizeau’s 1997 book “Pour un Québec Souverain” (“For a Sovereign Québec”) acknowledges financial assistance from Heritage Canada.

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