I watched the film Polytechnique as part of a local event reminding us of the Montreal Massacre of 30years ago. The film is a powerful re-enactment of the horrific event at the Université de Montréal’s École Polytechnique on December 6, 1989.
There was an interesting disjunction that evening. Our Member of Parliament, Ted Falk, failed to attend, but did send a written, well written in fact, comment. But in it he referred to the killer, who killed himself when he was done, as a “madman.” During the film the killer called himself “a rational person.” This may surprise, but I think the killer was right. Our MP was wrong. He was not a madman. And that is the real chilling aspect of this case. He was not mad. He was not errant. He was the natural product of more than a century of male dominance. He was the logical conclusion of that dominance.
People who have power rarely give it up gently. In fact, people who have power see any opposition to that power as deeply irrational. It does not make sense, because their power makes perfect sense. They deserve the power. So invariably they believe. That is true of tyrants and it is equally true of ordinary male supremacists. They can’t even see the incongruity. White male power is natural. Many even claim it is endorsed by God. Just goes to show you how irrational men can be.
All too often men who see their power slipping away react badly. Sometimes, as in the case of Marc Lepine, the Montreal mass killer, their resentment explodes into irrational rage. No I don’t think Lepine was a madman. I wish he was. It would be easier to deal with than the truth.