Lemire Appeal Update
The notorious Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act has finally come under review by a federal court with the authority to strike it down. Mr. Justice Richard Mosley heard the arguments of the Canadian Human Rights Commission and its sycophants and the arguments by Marc Lemire and other supporters of freedom last Wednesday. No decision has been passed as of yet but we have reason to be hopeful that one way or the other – either through judicial review or through the passing of Bill C-304 introduced by Brian Storseth – the tyrannical dragon which is Section 13, will finally be slain.
Connie Fournier on The Arena
Connie Fournier, who with her husband Mark co-founded the conservative internet message board Free Dominion, appeared on Michael Coren’s show “The Arena” last week to talk about the way Free Dominion was harassed by the CHRC and continues to be harassed by SLAPP suits. Blazing Cat Fur has put the video of the interview up on Youtube where it can be viewed here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uufPRTHtPKE
Moral Clarity and Free/Hate Speech
Section 13, and similar laws at the provincial level and in other countries, do not prohibit behaviour which is inherently harmful to others, like shooting them with a gun, stabbing them with a knife, or stealing their possessions. These laws prohibit words. Advocates of such laws argue that words can lead to actual violence. This is true but it is not an adequate justification for laws like Section 13. The words prohibited by such laws are not words inciting others to violence against a particular person or group of persons. Laws against incitement existed long before someone thought up the idea of “hate speech” laws. The kind of speech prohibited by Section 13 takes the form of “Members of X group are Y”. X stands for any group protected against discrimination by the Canadian Human Rights Act. Y stands for a predicate which casts group X in a negative light. Words of this kind, supporters of Section 13 believe, deserve fines in the tens of thousands, life-time gag orders.
The laws are not consistently applied. The Canadian Human Rights Act lists “race” as one of the prohibited grounds of discrimination. The way it is worded would suggest that members of any particular race are prohibited from discriminating against all other races. In practice, however, laws against discrimination are treated as a one way street. White people are prohibited from discriminating against members of other races, but members of other races are free to discriminate against white people. This is especially true when it comes to “hate speech”. From certain ethnic groups, one frequently hears language about white people that is extremely derogatory and which blames all evils suffered by the group on white people, similar to the way in which Hitler blamed all of Germany’s woes on the Jews. This, however, is not regarded by the Canadian Human Rights Commission as “hate speech”, even though it is more hateful, more extreme, and more likely to result in violence than the kind of language that is considered “hate speech” by the CHRC.
The justification given for all of this is that it is needed to combat the ever present danger of a widespread neo-Nazi movement arising in Canada to threaten the rights, liberties, lives, and security of ethnic minorities and other groups protected by the CHRA. That threat is laughable, however, and this response to it is like going after a mosquito with a tank.
Supporters of Section 13 try to muddy the waters by pointing to how unacceptable the views of the people who have been charged under Section 13 are to the majority of Canadians. They use the tactic of guilt-by-association to smear those who have opposed this persecution. Progressives would find it completely unacceptable if we were to start passing the guilt of murder, rape, or robbery onto lawyers who defend people accused of these crimes. They would see this as a tactic to scare lawyers away from defending people accused of murder, rape, or robbery, leaving people accused of those crimes without the legal right of defense, and would be morally outraged. This, however, is exactly what they themselves have done in the case of lawyers like Doug Christie and Barbara Kulaszka who have fought for the defence in “hate speech” cases. The views of their clients are attributed to them and they are themselves demonized by progressive journalists and bloggers.
“Hate speech laws” are about inflicting heavy penalties on people for nothing more than words. They, like the SLAPP lawsuits which Section 13 supporters like to make against its critics, are nothing more than a form of bullying.
This will be my last post to Throne, Altar, Liberty before Christmas. My next post will be either at the very end of the year or in the first few days of the New Year. I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
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