Jack Uppal is a member of Canada’s Liberal party and a candidate for the provincial riding of Nepean-Carleton. He became the candidate after jumping in as a last-minute substitution. Uppal is in the news for this post on Facebook:
The title of the post is Human Brain Analysis — Man vs. Woman. In a nutshell, the post argues that women are better at multi-tasking and learning languages, while men are better analytical thinkers. Apparently the vetting processed missed something, because this is not the kind of post any candidate for office should make. The post is doubly embarrassing because Ontario’s premier, Kathleen Wynne, is also a member of the Liberal party.
In a statement, Laurie Scott, candidate for the Progressive Party, blasted Uppal’s remarks:
“I’m proud to be a woman in politics, and proud of all the women standing as candidates in this election. Mr. Uppal’s statements have no place in Nepean-Carleton, in politics, or in our society. He seeks to diminish the contributions women have made in communities across our province.”
Uppal issued a statement apologizing for the remarks:
I received and re-shared a Facebook posting that, if taken literally, is without question offensive to both women and men. It was certainly not my intent that the post be taken literally or to offend anyone. I apologize unreservedly.
I’d actually call this a pretty good, brief apology. Uppal explains (while not making excuses) and issues a broad and unequivocal apology. Of course, the apology doesn’t excuse the fact that sharing such a post was a terrible idea and severely calling into question Uppal’s judgement. Let’s assume, for the sake of argument, that what Uppal said in his statement is true, and that he really didn’t mean to make a post like this. If that’s really the case, then this is a great example of a candidate not realizing a basic social media truth: you are what you share or like. When you share content on your Facebook profile, unless you state otherwise, the statement will be viewed as an explicit endorsement of the content. As such, be careful with what you share, and make sure that you never post anything that could call your judgement into question.