Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Canadian liberty

Some of us remain under the false impression that Canada is a free country. Free speech, however, is not apparently not a Canadian value. The Alberta Human Rights and Citizen Commission recently ordered that a preacher "shall cease publishing in newspapers, by email, on the radio, in public speeches, or on the internet, in future, disparaging remarks about gays and homosexuals ...." The minister had published a letter in the Red Deer Advocate that harshly criticized what it called the "militant homosexual agenda" which he regards as "evil" and "wicked." Harsh and provocative stuff but clearly protected speech in the US.

Last week, a complaint against Mark Steyn was considered by the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal. Steyn has written a book suggesting that demographic changes in Europe dramatically increasing the proportion of the population that is Muslim will dramatically change the nature of those societies. This is, of course, almost certainly true. (It is already happening in the UK and the Netherlands.)

But it's unlawful in Canada to say so.

Eugene Volokh points out that the Canadian Supreme Court originally upheld the Canadian "hate speech" ban because it thought that it would be limited to extremely offensive statements. That was incredibly naive. The purpose of hate speech laws is to remake society. It is, quite literally, to abolish heresy and that can't be done by abolishing only the most vulgar and inflammatory statements.

20 comments:

illusory tenant said...

But it's unlawful in Canada to say so.

You sure about that?

For one thing, the MacLean's hearing is based on the B.C. Human Rights Code. For another, nobody's decided yet (apart from the no doubt overwhelming majority of Canadians who find this entire escapade unspeakably silly).

For your edification and amusement:

Liveblogging the Tribunal.

9:56 AM
Oh God: they’re talking about [what witnesses] they’ll be calling on Friday. Five days in a windowless room. If that’s not a human rights violation ...

Anonymous said...

Didn't the State Bar just try to do something like this in the Gableman-Butler election?

illusory tenant said...

The foregoing would immediately appear a bizarre tangent but on closer inspection reveals that some restrictions on speech are constitutionally acceptable in this country as well.

Anonymous said...

It does not surprise me that there is no outrage by "it" who seems to think that the only speech that should be allowed is atheist controlled speech. Is it a matter of fact that also, there is no outrage by “it” because he is Canadian and would like to bring these preposterous ideas to this country?

Oh, I perceive that he would simply love to see religion, particularly Christianity be controlled in every aspect of its beliefs by the State. Of course, he cannot defend his atheist beliefs as being superior to those of Christianity in any historical context, but goes on deceiving people every day that he is an authority regarding this.

Atheism is full of dead bodies and crushed dreams by anyone that has learned anything about Communism and Nazism and many of the other ism’s that have appeared. Free speech and religion are always the first to go when these atheist ideals start to rise.

illusory tenant said...

Sacre bleu! Foiled again.

Anonymous said...

displaying a noose is not protected speech in this country....there are and should be restrictions on hate speak

Terrence Berres said...

Anonymous 9:46 AM asked "Didn't the State Bar just try to do something like this in the Gableman-Butler election?"

In a March 26, 2008 press release http://www.wifaircourts.com/03262008WJCIC-WMC2PR.pdf our State Bar's Wisconsin Judicial Campaign Watch Committee said,
"Finally, we find the [WMC television] ad’s use of the epithet 'Loophole Louie – a nickname given to Justice Butler when he was practicing law -- demeaning to the entire Wisconsin Supreme Court and our judicial system. Under the Wisconsin Rules of Professional Conduct and the Attorney’s Oath, any attorney associated with or approving such an epithet directed at a sitting Supreme Court Justice could be subject to discipline. SCR 20.8.4"

Super Id said...

anon 1:33.

Actually displaying a noose in this country is protected speech. See St. Paul v. R.A.V, which held that burning a cross was protected under the first amendment. Majority opinion by Scalia.

Super Id said...

SCR 20:8.4 prohibits lawyer misconduct. Presumably the Judicial Campaign committee is references subsection c, which prohibits a lawyer from

"engag[ing] in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation"

It's a giant stretch to claim that a lawyer's use of the phrase "Loophole Louie" would be a violation. However, Gableman's own dishonest campaign ads could be considered a violation of that rule.

Cheers

Anonymous said...

t. berres -

What if Loophole Louie didn't mind?

"demeaning to the entire Wisconsin Supreme Court and our judicial system"

Apparantly they do not think what judges do have this effect.

It's amazing to me that you have to give up rights to get a license.

Anonymous said...

"The purpose of hate speech laws is to remake society."

It appears that if you speak out about children in public schools being taught homosexual behavior, that you could be penalized for hate speech.

Therefore, anything that government wants to do must go unopposed. Isn’t this legislating tyranny?

joe stalin said...

In the world of Illusory Tenant it isn't okay to give your opinion about homosexuals, but it is okie dokie to call Jessica McBride a cun+.
Talk about your sanctimonious hypocrites.

James said...

The freightening things it that these "hate speech" laws are and will be selectively enforced. Enforcement becomes based on one persons or groups definition of what is hate. For example, they could say a skinhead rally is hate speech, but Reverend Wright's similar inflammatory speech isn't.

If you're truly honest, when you boil it all down, it becomes about control. Controlling what people can say and dropping the governmental punitive hammer when it so suits those in charge.

As offense as both types of speech above are, I'll defend their right to say it, even though I disagree.

Anonymous said...

Rick,were you just as supportive
of the free speech rights of the
UW instructor, who believed that
Bush and Cheney had something to
do with 9-11, as you are of this
Canadian minister?

AnotherTosaVoter said...

Anon 1:33 said,

"there are and should be restrictions on hate speak"

And let me guess...people like you should get to determine those restrictions and when they should be enforced.

~sas~ said...

My soon-to-be father-in-law just turned me on to this blog, knowing of my Alberta prairie roots. I left Canada's lame-ass half-baked liberalism behind many years ago and have no regrets. I love that there are still people like yourself observing the absurdity of the insanity. I plan to visit often to partake of the ironic laughter your blogging is sure to provoke. :)

Rick Esenberg said...

Rick,were you just as supportive
of the free speech rights of the
UW instructor, who believed that
Bush and Cheney had something to
do with 9-11, as you are of this
Canadian minister?


Yes.

Dad29 said...

"Finally, we find the [WMC television] ad’s use of the epithet 'Loophole Louie – a nickname given to Justice Butler when he was practicing law -- demeaning to the entire Wisconsin Supreme Court and our judicial system

More 'demeaning' than some of their rulings?

I doubt it.

Anonymous said...

One man’s hate speech is another’s call for righteousness.

Careful how you label things.

~sas~ said...

"One man’s hate speech is another’s call for righteousness.

Careful how you label things."


Well yes, but if you hate righteousness then you hate speech calling for it and so then you have "hate speech" and there you go...