After several years of harassment from leftist activists and politically motivated bureaucrats, Peterson is once again being threatened. This time, with the loss of his license to practice psychology unless he submits to a series of ‘re-education’ programs mandated by the College of Pyschologists of Ontario.
The CPO is a quasi-governmental body (a mostly unaccountable bureaucracy) acting in accordance with the Psychology Act, 1991 the Health Professions Procedural Code, the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991 and the regulations and by-laws of the college. The CPO’s sudden aggressive effort to silence Jordan Peterson appears to have been triggered by his reinstatement on Twitter in November.
He was originally banned from the site for referring to actress Elliot Page by her original name (Ellen Page) and using the word “her” as a descriptive, which is a scientific fact, but also a violation of the leftist site’s TOS before Elon Musk’s takeover.
The psychologist is also known for his criticisms of Canada’s draconian covid lockdowns and mandates.
With Peterson once again having access to a wider audience on social media, the CPO has ordered him to complete a mandatory “Specified Continuing Education or Remedial Program” to “review, reflect on and ameliorate [his] professionalism in public statements,” according to a lengthy list of requirements from the college that Peterson shared on Twitter. He must meet with a psychologist for coaching classes, which he must pay for, until a final report is issued by the coach that shows their concerns have been “properly ameliorated.”
The CPO argues that Peterson’s social media interactions constitute a violation of the organization’s standards for professional interactions with the public. In other words, the CPO essentially believes it has the right to control the speech of member psychologists and force them to adhere to a predetermined narrative they find acceptable when engaging with the public.
It should be noted that there are no publicized instances of psychologists being threatened with a loss of their license for espousing leftist viewpoints on social media. The measures appear to be strictly designed to punish more conservative leaning professionals.
Peterson says he will not comply with the CPO programs because his comments have nothing to do with his role as a psychologist. “Every single accusation is not only independent of my clinical practice, but explicitly political — and not only that: unidirectionally explicitly political,” Peterson writes.
Canada’s spiral into authoritarianism is widely publicized and the nation’s waning respect for free speech accelerated during the pandemic lockdowns. While the US is not far behind, Americans at least have free speech rights codified in a constitution that is designed to regulate what the government can and cannot do. In Canada, such a thing does not exist. Canadian rights are treated more like privileges that the government is allowed to legally erase at a moment’s notice.
CPO actions not only indicate hostility towards free speech, but also hint at an underlying fear – Members of the professional class are often the most indoctrinated of all people, and for one of them to break from the paradigm and speak against the establishment is considered the utmost betrayal.
Peterson is being targeted with a special brand of bureaucratic attention because the establishment uses the professional class to convince and control the general public. The claim that the “experts have spoken” is the ultimate tool for manipulating a majority of the population, and when some of those experts contradict the narrative, the powers-that-be take particular notice.