Watching this, it wasn’t much of a debate. It was two against one (three against one if you count the moderator). Dr. Peterson’s main argument is that it is never good to give the government the authority to punish people for not saying things a certain way. This is not so much an issue of what you can’t say; it’s an issue of what you must say, and Peterson rightly points out how dangerous that is for a free society.
Peterson’s opponents, Brenda Cossman and Mary Bryson, appeal mainly to kindness and an unquestioning obedience to the law. I’m quite sure that if this had been a debate about abortion, Brenda Cossman’s only argument would have been: “Abortion is legal. What’s the point in debating it?” She criticized Peterson for not knowing the law well enough. Well, you don’t have to be a lawyer to recognize bad law, and Peterson, who has studied totalitarian societies for years, does know how bad laws corrupt free society.
Hopefully Dr. Peterson doesn’t lose his job or his license to practice psychiatric care in the future. But if he does, will Canada still continue down this current path? Or, will someone throw a Trump brand monkey wrench into Canada’s PC machine?
Further reading on the debate:
If gender identity debate at U of T was about free speech, then the battle is truly lost
by Christie Blatchford
Intolerance Strangles Diversity
by Louis Kakoutis