Canadian Human Rights Commission 344 Slater Street, 8th Floor Ottawa, Ontario K1A 1E1 Canada
To Whom It May Concern:
I am an American blogger who takes great issue with your organization and the way you run roughshod over freedom of speech – and I’m not alone, on both sides of the border. (Believe me.)
I’m actually sorry you dismissed the Maclean’s/Mark Steyn case, as it most assuredly would have gone to a REAL court had they been “convicted” in your kangaroo court, where laws of evidence don’t exist; and, not only would the case have been shot down in flames, your organization would be even further in the crosshairs than you are now. I notice you haven’t posted anything about the case on your news page, hoping, no doubt, the fuss will die down quickly. Well, it won’t. In fact, it’s only going to get worse.
The way you’ve treated Maclean’s, Ezra Levant, the Rev. Stephen Boissoin, Catholic Insight Magazine and Marc Lemire, among many others, is downright Stalinist. In Lemire’s case, you’ve even stooped to online subterfuge. No wonder there’s a groundswell building against you. You brought it on yourselves. I only wish Maclean’s could have been one of the earliest cases, so a lot of innocent ordinary people wouldn’t have had to suffer so much at your hands.
You have no right to dictate to anyone what to say or not to say, unless you can prove (with REAL evidence) someone is directly inciting hatred – i.e., calling for people to go out and cause actual harm. And that is something a court of law should decide. In fact, you have no right to exist at all.
Bloggers are NOT going to let this issue fade away. We are, perhaps, the single most influential voice in the public arena today. Sooner or later, mainstream media publishes what we’re talking about. Indeed, it relies on us nowadays for its talking points. And this one is huge, trust me.
Your own Dean Stacey thinks freedom of speech is “an American concept?” Guess what. It’s in your own Canadian Charter.
I don’t expect to see the day you’re disbanded (though you should be), but I, and MANY others, do look for, and work toward, the day you’re out of the “hate speech” business.
P.S. My mom is from Nova Scotia, and she’s sickened by what’s happened to her country at the hands of nanny-staters like you. Gather up what’s left of your shreds of dignity and go away.
Trust me, the first draft wasn't NEAR this "nice" to these clowns.
Next up -- letters to MPs throughout Canada. I'll be nicer to them (less aggressive), but I'll still make the point.
I like to share these from time to time, as I feel they deserve as much readership as possible. Recent ones include Blazing Cat Fur and Covenant Zone (their links are on my "very cool sites" to the right).
This time, it's Deborah Gyapong. She's a stellar Canadian journalist who writes and blogs from a religious perspective. Lest anyone forget, the Rev. Stephen Boissoin is fighting his own "human rights" battle, as is Catholic Insight Magazine, for having the audacity to believe homosexuality is wrong. Deborah is doing a terrific job keeping these issues top-of-mind.
Check her out!
(Caveat: For the record, I don't agree with many of the stands taken by these victims of nanny-statism. I don't condemn homosexuality, for example. However, I do believe religions should be free from attack for their beliefs. And, yes, that includes Muslims.)
Okay. I've already written the British Columbia human rights idiots before on Maclean's/Mark Steyn. I just might do it again. First, however, I'm going to write to the national outfit about how they weaseled out of taking a stand so they could cover their precious @**es. They may think the heat is off, but they've got another think coming.
"Did this come from media pressure around the world? After all, the BC hullabaloo must have been pretty embarrassing for Canada. Now doubt this pressure had something to do with the feds backing off. I hope so. With any luck, all these baby steps will get us to our destination - to abolish the thought crimes provision entirely."
"The only question remaining is whether Heather MacNaughton, chief kangaroo of the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal, will convict Maclean's. The "jurisprudence" is there; Maclean's surely is "guilty" of "likely" "exposing" someone to "hatred or contempt". Everyone's guilty of that; so the only question is who gets charged.
"Will MacNaughton save her skin -- and preserve her tax-funded sinecure, like the CHRC is trying to do? Or will she continue her Stalinist approach to speech? Tough call; her decision in the comedy case shows she's as nutty as a Snickers Bar. But I'm still betting she'll acquit Maclean's. She'll throw that big fish back into the sea, so she can continue to haul in lots of smaller ones with political impunity."
"You may talk o' gin and beer When you're quartered safe out 'ere, An' you're sent to penny-fights an' Aldershot it; But when it comes to slaughter You will do your work on water, An' you'll lick the bloomin' boots of 'im that's got it."
(If you're not familiar with orgonite, check Karmasurfer's archives, or start here.)
He made these HHGs (holy hand grenades) with a nice, dense mixture of metal particulates, large and small. Plenty of quartz crystals, too, but with the addition of lapis lazuli crystals as well. He has knowledge of how lapis can affect sleep and dreams, so he was curious to see what might transpire if he put them in orgonite.
He put one in the bedroom, and we slept like the dead for three nights. No dreams, or very few.
The strange thing was, however, we both noticed that during the day, we were gradually losing more and more energy. By the third day, we were really drained. So, he moved the HHG, and voila, normalcy returned.
This is a very, VERY powerful device. K thinks it's excellent for people troubled by insomnia, or for those who need deep sleep when sick, etc., and I agree.
In the spirit of understanding, I've made it a point to educate myself on anything Muslim, lately. Bill the Bard extolled us to "know thy enemy." I prefer that my enemy be my friend.
And so, I've trawled around. I happened on a very good Muslim site, that does NOT advocate "jihad against the infidel" and all that stuff, but which seriously debates conflicts between traditional Muslim beliefs and Western practice. Go there.
You know ... Muslims are not the "enemy." They're simply misguided, many (perhaps most) of them. We ARE undergoing a "clash of civilizations" -- but, after all, we're all humans, and must know one another.
"My response, in short, Dear Ms. Eliadis, is that we are not a narrow band of intolerant bigots. That's just your wishful projection, the primitive figuration of a victim/scapegoat that is one of the oldest religious tricks in the book (and if there is anything we need protection from, it is this, this death cult that is the postmodern "human rights" world view)."
Andrew Bolt notes that, among many other of Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's weaknesses, is a tendency to not really know what he's doing in the first place.
Andrew quotes The Australian writer John Lyons: "Insiders say that barely a day seems to go by when the Prime Minister's office is not derailed by an ultra-sensitive leader who abandons his program at a whim."
Furthermore: "A senior Labor figure who has until now been a strong Rudd supporter predicted the public service would begin leaking against Rudd because of his treatment of them. One senior public servant reflected the anger when he spoke about ... two officials being kept waiting. "They were just cooling their heels in the corridor,' the public servant said. 'You know, this is not the only time this has happened.'
"No one from the Prime Minister's office thought to tell the two they could return to their offices and be called when needed.
"As a result, [Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs Michael] L'Estrange missed the farewell lunch he was meant to be hosting for the departing French ambassador, Francois Descoueyte. His non-appearance was noted by French officials, although they later said they understood it was not his fault."
A Pajamas Media blogger puts the whole AP fooferaw into perspective:
"(T)he smartest thing the Associated Press can do right now is to pull a Facebook (remember Beacon?) and back away from everything it has just done, apologizing as it goes.
"But even on the slim chance of that happening, I for one will always think twice about linking to an AP story. And I’m sure I’m not alone.
"In trying to make a quick buck, AP likely just closed the door on the metamorphosis to the Web that would have made it billions – and perhaps kept it alive for another 162 years. Instead, this is the last time that grandpa gets trusted with a knife to carve the turkey."
"(T)he issue here is bit clouded. Bill C-10 is not actually censorsing filmakers or other artists. It does provide the government funding agencies with the ability to deny monies to productions whose content is found objectionable. Denying them money is not the same as saying you can't make the film, it just says go ahead and make the film just not on our nickel."
Nope, true. Filmmakers are free to find other sources of funding. It appears there is a loophole.
But my question is: WHY should creative thinkers HAVE to look for "creative loopholes?"
People, this is getting serious. Time to roll up your sleeves and start bombarding your lawmakers with your objections. I know, it's time-consuming. But -- and not to sound too apocalyptic -- civilization depends on it.
Blogger Diogenes Borealis notes a steep decline in women who wear pantyhose anymore, citing Michelle Obama as giving the celebrity death knell to the traditional legwear.
He asked his women friends to weigh in on whst they think about it. I posted that even as a kid, I hated wearing dresses, Scout-Finch-like, though I wasn't a tomboy. Even in my 20's (40's now), I hated them, but went along because they were the "professional" thing to wear.
Now in the new millennium, the trend is moving away from dresses, skirts and pantyhose -- and am I thrilled! As I said to DB, some of my men friends have lamented the decline in dress-wearing, and so, occasionally, I'll don one for their sakes. But it's excruciating torment.
I should examine just WHY this is so, but for the life of me, I can't. Describing pantyhose is easy enough -- they're just darn uncomfortable. As I told DB, it's like either wearing blood-pressure cuffs, if they're "support" hose, or meshy onion bags, if they're the regular kind.
But dresses? I dunno. I like the feeling of my legs protected, but not encased. Dresses and skirts are just too ... open.
The Canadian Broadcasting Corp. (CBC) online site posted an op-ed piece by Neil McDonald titled "Free speech, eh? Why is Canada prosecuting Mark Steyn?" on Friday. Here it is Wednesday, and the comments are still going strong. You don't see that every day!
"From Dante's Inferno to the Danish cartoons, there have always been people who demean Islam. Does this harm the faith? No."
He goes on to say:
"But will Canadian Muslims thrive while trying to choke anyone who says boo? If an illegal immigrant is deported, is it Islamophobia? If people are picked up, suspected of plotting to behead our prime minister, is that Islamophobia?
"Only in the minds of those Muslims who want to give the impression that they are victims.
"I would like to ask what these Muslims were thinking when they came to Canada. Did they imagine they were coming to a sacred land where everything would be halal and holy? Also, were they forced to come here? Most of us came here for personal freedoms. Canada is a country where freedom of expression is a cherished value. This includes the freedom to criticize the followers of a faith if they're indulging in stupidities."
Now, THIS is the kind of stuff we need to read more of. But, *sigh* ... I hope Mr. Raza doesn't get death threats, as so many moderate Muslims have.
I have looooooong experience with the (Dis)Associated Press. As a former copy editor, it was my job to choose which AP feeds we'd use on a daily basis. I got sicker and sicker as time went on, with the "choices" I had. It got so bad that nearly every story AP produced, from politics to purse-snatchings, had a BDS spin on it (Bush Derangement Syndrome). But they were the only game in town, so I just had to live with it.
AP made a big, BEEEG mistake going after bloggers over use of content. Now, more and more bloggers are banning AP stories from their sites.
Take that, you bloated, overpriced, arrogant bunch of twerps. Oh, and FYI -- I'm banning you too.
"Newsflash for Bernie Farber - I don't give a damn if you are Jewish, Muslim or a Frick'n Wiccan or whether you are Tamil, Tabogoan or a Tamale, Free Speech is absolute, it is not your privilege to deny anyone that freedom and I will fight you or anyone else who attempts to trample a right that has been paid for in blood."
Wonderful, excellent prose from blazing cat fur. If you haven't checked out his/her blog, by all means, do. Especially if you want info on the Maclean's/Mark Steyn/Ezra Levant etc. assaults on free speech. BCF is a gold mine of information.
They're arguing that a small percentage of users eats up the lion's share of bandwidth. Bollocks. It doesn't cost any more electricity or other resources to provide bandwidth. They're simply trying to cash in.
Please -- make your voice heard. Write to the CEOs of Time Warner Cable and AT&T as soon as you can. This is just one more step toward regulating the Internet. And that must not happen. At all. In any form.
I can't say I'm surprised, but it's still sad and alarming -- Britons are leaving their native land in droves.
I lived there from 1989 to 1991, and life was good. The downward slide has been terrible to watch.
But I'll always have good memories. The photo is of the Queen's Head Pub in Chesham, Bucks, right across the street from my house. Indeed, that's the edge of my house on the left. Beautiful house, beautiful town.
Okay, full disclosure. I'm a closet tree-hugger. I've been for not polluting the Earth all my life. But that's where today's greenies and I part company.
(I, for one, am nauseated at the idea that developing countries can't use the energy they're sitting on to develop, but are told they A) can't use oil, and B) can't use genetically engineered seed. The alternative? Starve. Oh, well, say greenies. We need a lot less people on the planet anyway.)
Along comes a new technology with which I am extremely familiar -- converting waste coal into clean fuel. I briefly worked with these guys at a local newspaper at which I was an assistant editor, trying to get the word out.
Here's the deal.
Fuel distributor John W. Rich develops machinery that takes the HUGE, ugly, moonscape mountains of waste coal blotting our Pennsylvania landscape (and polluting pretty much all waterways with acid mine drainage) and turns them into clean fuel.
And when I say mountains, I mean it. They're huge.
So, no-brainer, right? Wrong. Guess where Jack told me the buck has stopped? Dick Cheney's desk.
Now, I'm no liberal, or "progressive," or whatever the totalitarians are calling themselves nowadays. Conservative I am, and always will be. But ... this is disturbing.
And I'm sure Jack himself is no "progressive." He's a businessman. We had a conversation about this, and the summation was, basically, "WTF?!" Jack's savvy enough to know if there's some lobby that has Cheney's ear better than his own. So it just doesn't make sense.
I'm thinking push is coming to shove, fuel-wise. If enough noise is made demanding that Jack's technology be put online, it will be. Pretty soon, the camps of "no drilling into reserves" and "no alternative energy except what we approve of" are going to have their backs to the wall.
My beloved stepmom is a native of Nova Scotia. She grew up on a farm. Her father married her mother (a descendant of Commodore Perry) when he was 19, and she 35. For love, believe it or not.
Times weren't easy. It was the Depression, after all. But her parents made ends meet. Dad shot squirrels and groundhogs, and Mother made them palatable. Dad tended the orchard, and Mother earned cash by teaching piano lessons. (She was a graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music.) My grandmother never turned a Depression tramp away, according to my stepmom. Despite having to do things like save, iron and re-use gift wrap, there was always something to give to someone down on their luck.
My stepmom earned her degree at Acadia University by waitressing at a resort in Maine. She owned exactly three dresses, three changes of underwear and one pair of shoes. (She washed her day's clothes every night in the sink in the dormitory where she and other wait staff lived.) Her first teaching job was also in Maine, in a one-room schoolhouse.
My stepmom took the painful step of getting a divorce from her first husband. Thereafter, she decided that what she and her two children needed was exposure to the wider world. And so she took a job teaching American children in schools in the Panama Canal Zone. (Which is where she met my Dad.)
Dad had to seriously court her. Not no way, not no how, would she EVER sleep with a man before marriage. And Dad never even hinted that she should. He loved her as much for that as for anything else. And he wooed her.
It can't have been easy. My Dad's wife left him with four kids to handle. (I was 3 years old.) My stepmom knew what that portended, and she was right. The older three were teenagers, resentful of her, willing to undermine her and hurt her. And they did. (And I was just as bad -- at 3, I was scared of her. She's assertive, and has a temper. I hid from her.) Still, she persevered. She loved my Dad. She loved us, in spite of ourselves.
She bit the bullet, and married my Dad. A month later, he was shipped off to Vietnam, for an entire year.
During this time, she had to undergo emergency surgery for female plumbing problems. Who helped her? Not us kids. My oldest brother actually pulled a gun on her, in his adolescent anger. Not her family, far away in Nova Scotia, and not able to afford a visit. No one helped her.
But she didn't cave. Nor whine, nor complain.
In subsequent years, she taught school, alongside my Dad and his career, to make sure the blended six of us had what we needed. She wore herself out. Today, she suffers from a lot of health problems, and no day goes by I don't worry about her.
I have been a Canada-phile for a long time, because of my stepmom. Is my stepmom a typical Nova Scotian? A typical Canadian?
If so, it needs to be bottled up and sold.
I made many visits to Nova Scotia as a child. Her uncle had a farm, where he raised dairy cows -- and had a 9-hole golf course as pretty as anyone could wish. I have so many memories of how unique and lovely Nova Scotia is.
And I love you, my beautiful stepmom, more than words can say.
The great folks over at Covenant Zone are putting words into action on the recent assaults on free speech Canada has undergone. They're talking civil disobedience, and I support them all the way.
One case that has flown under the radar during the high-profile Maclean's case is an earlier one involving the Rev. Stephen Boissoin, who is passionately opposed to homosexuality on religious grounds. He wrote a letter to the Red Deer Advocate stating why homosexuality is wrong and what can be done to eradicate it. (text of letter here -- via Covenant Zone).
Well, here's what the Alberta Human Rights Tribunal slapped on him. (thanks again to Covenant Zone for link)
I especially love point 7 -- They're basically saying,our intent is not to punish, but to ameliorate the effects of discrimination. Socking Rev. Boissoin with more than $12,000 in fines -- forcing him to wear a scarlet letter, i.e. publish a repudiation of his letter -- and forcing him to go against his own core beliefs isn't punishment?!
I've already written a nastygram to the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal. It's Alberta's turn, next. I might be an American, but I stand united with anyone victimized by this stuff, anywhere.
I'm discovering, to my great pleasure, that not ALL major Canadian media toe the multi-culti, nanny-state, victimology line.
Just listen to this, from the National Post's Colby Cosh:
"Khurrum Awan believes Muslims are positively entitled to a 'voice' — a voice printed with somebody else's ink on somebody else's paper, delivered to homes by means of somebody else's employees and somebody else's internet infrastructure."
Just wow. Nail on head, in just a few succinct words.
(via Kathy Shaidle. By the way, she's under the gun from these anti-free speech maniacs, too. Please consider hitting her tipjar after visiting a really great blog.)
Professor Anne Barbeau Gardiner is astonished by Gaia prophet James Lovelock’s new book, The Revenge of Gaia:
Lovelock assures us that he does not agree with the “totalitarian greens, sometimes called ecofascists,” who want to see most of the human race “eliminated” by genocide so as to leave a “perfect Earth for them alone.” That’s a relief. But wait—he then tells us that if we survive the current crisis, our next goal must be to forcibly reduce our numbers: “If we are to continue as a civilization that successfully avoids natural catastrophes, we have to make our own constraints on growth and make them strong and make them now.” As it is, we are unintentionally at war with Gaia and must agree to “wartime” rationing and temporary “loss of freedom.” Strong constraints? Loss of freedom? What's the difference between this and ecofascism? And how far down will our population have to plummet to satisfy Gaia? Actually, Lovelock states that something like nine-tenths of our population must vanish...
Lovelock’s bottom line:
Our “primary obligation is to the living Earth. Humankind comes second.”
Which is shared by the ABC’s Planet Slayer website, which invites children to calculate how their emissions are killing Gaia, and suggests a solution:
I just dashed off this screed to the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal:
You people are an outrage.
Thank God I can still say that! Because if you Stalinists had your way, I couldn't. I might be American -- where we solve these things in REAL COURTS OF LAW -- but I happen to know the Canadian Charter also protects freedom of expression.
I've been studying Canadian opinion extremely closely over this past week, and I've learned something you may not be comfortable with. Guess what: The tide is turning against you. Canadians are waking up to find they've outgrown nanny, and don't like her. And I say, it's about time. We down here in the States don't much like her, either, and don't want her moving in here.
Whether you dismiss the Maclean's/Steyn case or not, you are seen around the world in a very bad light. I hope you don't dismiss it. Maclean's/Steyn will figuratively slice you to ribbons in a REAL court. And if you do dismiss it, you've left a bad taste in too many mouths that will never go away. (Trust me. You folks are NOT popular.) Rock, meet hard place.
Go munch some grass with the other marsupials and stop trying to put a muzzle on people.
If I'm lucky, maybe they'll send some goons after me.
"(Staff Sgt. Charles) Klein is still haunted by one vivid memory of D-Day: “Down on the beach an LSI, a very large vessel, had grounded. They lowered the ladders. The men were just about to leave, but apparently the ship wasn't quite firm yet, so it took a little bit of time. Before the men started to disembark, a shell hit that ship and I have never seen anything go so quickly. It went up just like a charcoal fire. Poof! It was a mass of flames. We lost 200 men in an instant.'"
Speaking of stellar journalists -- Andrew has been a hero, live-blogging the Human Rights Tribunal idiocy from day one. He's battled claustrophobic conditions, laptop issues and faithfully (and in superb style) chronicled the whole event.
From all of us who are so very grateful, Andrew, cheers!
This excellent journalist is not afraid to stand up to anyone, especially the Human Rights Commission. His overriding motivation is to protect free speech, and he's fighting hard on behalf of all of us.
He has a donation tipjar -- after all, these missions aren't cheap -- so please consider helping the cause.
I enjoyed finding Hillarious comments on a blog in an earlier post, and enjoyed the comments even more on Andrew Coyne's blog during this whole Maclean's/Steyn fiasco even more.
Jay Currie, yet another stellar blogger, has been meta-live-blogging the scene, and doing a bang-up job. (I love the way he writes!) His commenters are equally funny and insightful, but, alas, it would be overwhelming to incude EVERYONE'S, so I'll have to stick with Andrew's.
So without further ado, here are my completely arbitrary selections, in all their unedited glory:
(WARNING: Content-specific. You won't get it unless you first visit steynonline.com, or read this.)
Day 1, Part I: --comment by Tarek Fatah on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 1:43 pm
If this case can be summed up, it would be:
“The Muslim Brotherhood vs. Canada.”
I excitedly waiting for the cross-examination of El-Misery. However, I am willing to compromise if his boy-band is allowed to shoot themselevs in the foot first.
--comment by Jeff on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 2:30 pm
Big thanks to Andrew for live-blogging this and keeping me from accomplishing anything at work today. Thanks!
--comment by Henry V on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 2:31 pm:
“…or, guilty in defense, be thus destroyed?” --comment by rzr on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 2:33 pm:
“hallmarks of hate”
isn’t that a section in the greeting card store? --comment by Louis Nettles on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 3:10 pm:
Alas where’s Rumpole when you need him. The perfect lawyer for hopeless case. --comment by rc on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 3:32 pm:
“to make the point that Steyn’s article encouraged others to view Muslims with hatred.”
This whole proceeding is encouraging me to view the entire Canadian judiciary with hatred. So should the CHRC now sanction itself? --comment by Rich Trzupek on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 3:36 pm:
Might I suggest that our friends to the north add another verse to their national anthem - one that reflects the new reality? How ’bout this:
O H-R-C! They will watch what you say. Don’t piss them off, or they’ll put you away.
In print and air, on web and wall They don’t like it when you’re mean.
We’re little kids And H-R-C wants to keep us clean.
So shut your mouth, and stop being rude. Thanks H-R-C; now Canada is screwed.
Thanks H-R-C; now Canada is screwed. --comment by d. andy jette on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 3:43 pm:
Not to nitpick…but if one more person types “McLeans”…I may file a human rights complaint on behalf of the “Canadian Letter ‘A’ Booster Club.” --comment by Mitchell Young on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 3:45 pm:
How about MacClean’s? --comment by Rich Trzupek on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 3:57 pm:
“Where’s the free speech when it comes to posting comments on this blog?”
This would be Mclean’s blog, so they are exercising THEIR free speech by determining what content THEY approve THEIR blog.
You, on the other hand, get to exercise YOUR free speech and decide what content YOU have on YOUR blog.
(Isn’t that neato-cool the way that works?)
Now then, if big brother comes along and tells me that I can’t insult someone on my blog, that would be denying me this little fundamental right that everyone is excited about.
I am tempted to sign this “Captain Obvious”, but I don’t want the HRC invading Chicago…
--comment by Robert W. on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 4:04 pm:
C’mon Sammi, it the government. They’ve had a loooong morning and need a little nap after din-din. Give ‘em a break!
--comment by Jack on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 4:55 pm:
The Fahion police need to know what Ms. McNaughton is wearing on this auspicious occassion. Submit your report immediately. --comment by Bob Williams on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 5:49 pm:
Where in either of these documents is it stated or implied that anyone has a “right”to live a life free of being offended by what others have to say?
Where in either of these documents is it stated or implied that someone deemed to be “wrong” in a context of “political correctness” does not have every “right”to be “wrong”?
Well, see, the doctrine of multiculturalism emanates some penumbras, one of which empowers the state to make you be “nice,” or else.
--comment by Sheila on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 6:00 pm:
“The common thread: you have to prove guilt based on the facts of the case at hand.”
Facts, truth - oh, oh. Such things aren’t considered a defence by the Captain Kangaroos who preside over these farces.
--comment by John W on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 6:42 pm:
Note to Sheila:
Speaking as a boomer generation member in good standing, I have to respectfully correct you. This silly, offensive, and utterly undemocratic tribunal is, indeed, the classic definition of a “kangaroo court”…but it has NO relation or resemblance to the late, great Bob Keeshan, aka. “Captain Kangaroo” who was a beloved children’s TV pioneer and who, along with his dear aides Mr. Greenjeans and Bunnyrabbit, will always be a force for democracy, decency, and for eating your vegetables and drinking your milk. Now its late. And its a school night. Time for bed. (smile) --comment by Rich Trzupek on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 6:07 pm:
Frank Stringer said:
“Piss-Christ so-called artworks and seriously unfunny cartoons which insult Big Mo or whatever are, it seems, not even controversial - fair game, let’s have more of ‘em! I’m sorry, but that’s not only intolerant it’s not the kind of world any right minded person would want to live in.”
So we’re going to regulate both taste and cartoonists, eh? Can we start with Celine Dion and “Cathy”? PLEASE??
--comment by Jeff on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 7:12 pm:
Frank: Every time you post some off-topic nonsense, a Unicorn dies.
--comment by trzupek on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 7:17 pm:
Damn, I’ve been edited! As a Yank, can I get in on this whole HRC thing now? I think I’ve been terribly wronged, in some terrible way. (Plus, I could use some new wheels).
I will confess to be being Polish myself, but my daughter IS 50% Mexican — if that helps…. --comment by Bob Williams on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 7:45 pm:
I am getting the impression that Canada is not REALLY a country. I think it is a great big honking American Univeristy.
em>Ooh! That hurt my feeling, so I’m going to petition the Dean Of Multicultural Programs to have you fined and expelled. --comment by Bob Williams on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 8:32 pm:
I’m starting to worry about Mr. Coyne. I hope he hasn’t been taken into custody and charged with Second Degree Aggravated Sarcasm. --comment by Ed Minchau on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 8:56 pm:
“The moderators would like to keep this discussion more-or-less on topic and will delete comments that aren’t. As an example, we consider the Guantanamo Bay discussion not even remotely on topic.”
I find that offensive; as I am a poor debater, you have injured my delicate sensibilities and exposed me to ridicule and hatred, and I demand that Macleans Online publish my rebuttal, which will consist of the word “Gitmo” 5000 times (because although a reader might not “get it” after the first 4000 times, those last 1000 will surely convince all). Also, I wanna be on the cover of Macleans. And a pony and a plastic rocket.
Actually, the pony isn’t for me, it’s for my friend Frank. It can be the horse he rode in on. --comment by Anna Keppa on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 10:04 pm:
p.s. to Pompous, who said::
“Why should you care? You don’t live here. You live in a country where the Pentagon (and thus the Government) pays generals to propogandize to its own people over the pubic [sic] [sorry, but .... ROFL!!!! -- Eowyn] airwaves.”
Why should you care? You don’t live here.
See how easy it is to play that stupid game?
When you gather together the neurons to actually make an argument, report back to me. --comment by A *Pompous* Canadian on Monday, June 2, 2008 at 10:47 pm:
Somwetimes you can offend groups by saying accurate and truthful things about them. --comment by The Opinionator on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 9:27 am:
You know things are bad when the NYT reporter is stunned.
--comment by cdbmausa on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 11:45 am:
At an HRT in BC Poor Steyn’s in the dock, dear me For writing rude things In a mag called Macleans Oh! Canada - land of the free?
I can’t wait… I’m so excited to see my tax dollars at work.
Anyone know what the carbon output on this money guzzler is? Is it taxed? --comment by TerryG on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 12:44 pm:
So nice of BC to hold Ontario trials.
--comment by WL Mackenzie Redux on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 1:09 pm:
“Now entering three reports on racism and Islamophobia in other countries”
Where is this trial again??…On planet Aibohpomalsi?..oh well that’s ok then.. --comment by Bob Williams on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 1:15 pm:
“Can someone explain to me what the prosecutor(?) needs to prove in order for the panel to find Macleans guilty?”
Given the rules of rules of evidence do far, i imagine they’ll throw Steyn in a pont. If he drowns, he’ll be innocent.
--comment by Sheila on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 1:39 pm:
10:28 AM by Coyne: “We’re breaking for probably half an hour or so while the panel considers the question.”
Translation: Time for the troika to flip another coin. Or maybe it’s rock, paper, scissors - best two out of three.
--comment by MikeH on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 1:56 pm:
Man - where are the Marx Brothers when you need them? - as in “A Night at the Human Rights Commission”.
--comment by Sad2beacanuck on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 2:24 pm:
Yep, bad Mark Steyn, for not liking Little Mosque on the Prairie. “WE RULE, you must like it, and appear in it as an Imam.”
--comment by David on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 3:14 pm:
Pity this hearing is in BC and not Alberta as “Little Kangaroo Court on the Prairie” has a sort of ring to it. :)
--comment by John H on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 3:17 pm:
Ezra had provided the link to Joseph’s employer, the law firm Lerners LLP based in London, ON. Here’s some of the promo from their website:(I’ll * the part that jumped out at me wrt what’s going on here)
The law firm that puts strength on your side
Lerners, one of Ontario’s leading law firms, is dedicated to providing all of our clients—be they individuals, businesses, institutions or corporations—with exceptional legal counsel.
***Precedent setters Our lawyers are renowned for taking on complex class action cases, even to the extent of creating new law where none existed before. Our groundbreaking, high-profile court cases often create a stir in the media and favourable outcomes for our clients. ***
Wow…they must be tireless; they’re chasing an ambulance (full of hurt feelings) right across Canada!
--comment by Krista Janicki on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 4:50 pm:
`No, no!’ said the Queen. `Sentence first–verdict afterwards.’
`Stuff and nonsense!’ said Alice loudly. `The idea of having the sentence first!’
`Hold your tongue!’ said the Queen, turning purple.
`I won’t!’ said Alice.
`Off with her head!’ the Queen shouted at the top of her voice. Nobody moved.
`Who cares for you?’ said Alice, (she had grown to her full size by this time.) `You’re nothing but a pack of cards!’
--comment by Fred on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 5:38 pm:
You be careful now. There are so many kangaroos hoping madly about in that room, someone could get hurt. --comment by Jeff on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 6:51 pm:
Wait…I get it now.
This is the most elaborate hoax in the history of hoaxes. Asthon Kutcher is going to come out and tell MacLean’s they’ve been Punk’d…right?
RIGHT? --comment by Fred on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 8:50 pm:
This blog could be the Pilot script for a new CBC sitcom. . . .
“Little Tribunal in the Rain Forest”
--comment by Terry Gain on Tuesday, June 3, 2008 at 10:05 pm:
The CBC would not run it unless it was named “Commenters In Wonderland”.
--comment by Zach on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 6:37 am:
Please be careful with the way you reference witches and the scandalous events in Salem. You are dangerously close to fomenting hatred of witches, which could land you in a tribunal of your own. At least once the BC Human Rights court determines that their jurisdiction expands into the net, and across all other arbitrary barriers, like borders. --comment by richfisher on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 11:54 am:
“Now I really hope these guys win, and maybe you’ll care a little more.”
“She talks very quickly”. This is obviously a stereotype of professors in communications at Carleton School of Journalism who do doctoral work on media “constructions” of religion and nationalism in Bollywood films. --comment by Erik Larsen on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 1:04 pm:
Day Three of “Malice in Wonderland” --comment by TerryG on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 1:09 pm:
What does Bollywood have to do with Muslims in Ontario, who have come to Vancouver, to grieve their case on behalf of the primary complainant who stayed at home in Ontario? Is this a movie? --comment by ebt on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 2:00 pm:
The phrase Steyn used was in fact “wobbling blancmange”. “Fromage” doesn’t wobble. --comment by SK on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 2:02 pm:
EBT: oddly enough, because of that quote, I went and made blancmange today, just to see what it was like. It does wobble! And it’s not too bad. --comment by Bob Williams on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 2:26 pm:
I admit it. I hold an ugly stereotype of a Canadian as an unhappy barber who would much rather be a lumberjack. --comment by Theatreoftheabsurd on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 3:17 pm:
Oh my G_d! You mean Mr. Steyn and Mcleans are just out to make MONEY? GASP! Controversial Opinions presented just to rake in filthy lucre! How dare they! To the (for the present time) metaphorical gallows with them, post haste!…Thermodynamics beckons…
--comment by SK on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 3:51 pm:
Bleh, I’ve just bored myself to tears. I blame Steyn!
--comment by Laura on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 4:53 pm:
This is all Roo Diculous.
--comment by Eric on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 5:30 pm:
Has anyone began planning “Radio Free Canada” yet?
--comment by Muslim Steynfan on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 6:47 pm:
In 1995, we all watched the O.J. Trial. If you told me, that 13 years later, we’d be refreshing a web page to watch up to the minute text updates of a human rights tribunal, I would NEVER have believed you.
--comment by SK on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 6:49 pm:
When I write a musical based on this story, I’ll call it, “The Audacity of the Socks.” Just to be postmodern, I’ll make it a costume drama set in 18th-Century England.
I rather wish Julian Porter had accused Joseph of “chutzpah,” though, rather than audacity. Would have had Steyn fall out of his seat laughing.
--comment by Warren Z on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 6:57 pm:
It’s getting a might meaty.
--comment by Bob Williams on Wednesday, June 4, 2008 at 7:12 pm:
OMG! Somebody called somebody else a “scaredy-pants”! This may end up in further litigation!
--comment by Statweasel on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 12:08 pm:
C’mon Habib - take the stand man. I don’t want to do any actual work today and you’re my diversion of choice. --comment by Eric on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 12:16 pm:
Yes Dawood, I’m an uninformed American, so tell me of the barbarity that existed in Canada prior to 1977.
--comment by MamaFish on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 12:37 pm:
Oh, my mother had a simpler way of putting it: “You have to see the boil to lance it.” God bless her Newfie heart.
--comment by MamaFish on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 1:19 pm:
Newfie mother, actually, though no doubt my many Newfie Aunts (and other relatives) have said much the same. :) --comment by Granton on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 1:21 pm:
Mama Fish, apologies, your mother.
I mean - I was referring to your mother, not your aunt. I wasn’t throwing out “Your Mother!” like “Your Mama wears army boots” or some kind of expletive or with some asperity.
--comment by Theatreoftheabsurd on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 1:09 pm:
Hmmm…Hockey team names…the Provincial Hegemonic Oppressors vs. the Municipal Contemptuous Prevaricators! --comment by Bob Williams on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 1:13 pm:
“We’re back, and the first item for business is Joseph demanding an apology for yesterday’s “scaredy-pants” outburst, which he says is causing his client “stress.””
First, we have to clear up yesterday’s hate crime..
--comment by steve miller on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 1:30 pm:
I love that from the witness: “I read something that troubled me, so I Googled to find more things that would trouble me.”
In my day, we called that begging for a fight. But in Canada, this is called tuning the sensibilities against hate.
Go figger. --comment by steve miller on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 1:34 pm:
“Daddy, that man hurts my feelings. He bad! Go hit him!”
Is that about the summary of the complaint?
--comment by Eric on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 1:35 pm:
I think its more like “Mommy that man hurt me”. This is a nanny state after all and we don’t want to promote patriarchy.
--comment by Theatreoftheabsurd on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 1:46 pm:
He purchased his pants under the belief that they were a courageous and protective defense against the elements. Now it is revealed to him that his pants are somewhat deficient in the “courage” department. One can only imagine his personal sense of humiliation! Surely he deserves to be compensated for his mental and emotional anguish!
--comment by Stephen on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 1:51 pm:
So if I post something like, the sky is blue, and some nut responds in the comments that because the sky is blue all should be eradicated….does that make the The Sky is Blue a hate crime? Or does it ake the comment a hate crime?
Think I will go read Kafka this afternoon.
--comment by Tim on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 1:53 pm:
“Would you prefer that this be an echo chamber, that everyone tow the same line and that “trolls” like me disappear a chance to debate?”
The very fact that you can post such drivel gives lie to your complaint.
Grow up, sir.
--comment by Jeff Patterson on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 2:00 pm:
Why isn’t Google on trial here? Not only did they disseminate Steyn’s hate, but have made all hate available all over the world. --comment by sanwin on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 2:27 pm:
Did you buy all the shares in the ‘Extreme Hyperbole Factory’ ?
--comment by Grulkey on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 2:35 pm:
To our American friends, this is how reporting is done in Canuckland. Get all excited about an issue and then forget to plug in the batteries the night before! Good grief!!
--comment by John H on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 2:47 pm:
and now a musical interlude with AC/BC
--comment by Mick on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 2:55 pm:
What do Women Lib, Minority rights, and other issues come from? Anyone know? Free speech maybe? Do you think these ideas offended people in there day?
--comment by Kathryn on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 3:01 pm:
“Of the original article itself, he said he found the cover shot of women in burkhas “demonizing of Islam,”
If Habib sees a burkha as demonizing, let’s hope he never thinks of Saudi Arabia. I can’t imagine the case of the vapors he’d get. --comment by Bob Williams on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 3:12 pm:
Yesterday, I think the tribunal used their lunch break to watch Dr. Zhivago.
--comment by Chris on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 3:21 pm:
It’s quite a blow. Porter can’t ask Habib about any of Elmasry’s outrageous comments.
Quick, somebody post Elmary’s comments in a Free Republic thread, that should make them allowable.
--comment by Muslim Steynfan on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 3:31 pm:
Can someone please tell me how I can get on the stand and explain that Steyn’s article didn’t expose Muslims to anything but a good read.
--comment by James Goneaux on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 3:33 pm:
“The publisher is responsible for the content of the magazine. I can’t say whether these people are crazy people.”
Well, there goes the Beatles catalog. After all, they are responsible for what Charles Manson did --comment by Stephen on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 3:34 pm:
FJ “that there’s some sort of collective consciousness among Muslims”
So if there is no collective consciousness among Muslims, then I guess they can’t be collectively offended….
--comment by Laura on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 3:56 pm:
Somebody buy Coyne a stiff drink.
--comment by b_C on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 4:24 pm:
Amazing that every time the ‘roos retire en masse to consider an issue, they come back with a boot to the respondant’s ‘nads.
--comment by Meany on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 4:27 pm:
The slippery slope theory is once again proven right.
This is why you don’t have ANY restrictions on free speech, or our rights. When you start making little exceptions here, and there, eventually those exceptions spread, and sooner or later, one of Canada’s most respected magazines isn’t allowed to publish articles on contentious subjects.
These “Human Rights” clowns MUST be stopped.
--comment by Granton on Thursday, June 5, 2008 at 4:35 pm:
Hey Meany… as a clown I am offended by your remark.
--comment by b-C on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 12:44 pm:
Think the roos will ever roo the day they overrooed the roole of law, and trooth as a defence, and only pretended to roominate proodently on the trooly croocial issues of free speech … before delivering a predestined rooling to scroow those unrepentant, unrooly nasties at Maclean’s? --comment by George on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:00 pm:
To all bloggers of similar elk: Pls do a spell check before posting. Failure to do so may damage our crudibility.
--comment by MKN on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:10 pm:
Andrew — “Cover used again: the picture of the little girl, in particular. There’s an obvious contradiction here: Habib said yesterday she looked frightened and vulnerable, playing on stereotypes of women in Muslim life. Joseph says she looks ominous and threatening, like something from “a horror movie.” Well, which is it?” ******* It’s logic, in Kangaroo Kountry.
--comment by Jack M. on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:11 pm:
“Also, he uses sarcasm.” Th’ unkindest cut of all.
--comment by John H on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:11 pm: I’m shocked! shocked to learn that Steyn uses sarcasm in his writings. The cad…
--comment by SK on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:15 pm:
And hearing this (especially that sarcasm bit), the Chief Tribunal rent their garments, threw ashes upon their heads, and cried with a loud voice, “Crucify him! Crucify him!”
--comment by Rich Trzupek on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:21 pm:
To follow down Warren Z’s track, here’s the suggested closing argument for Macleans: “I don’t wanna talk to you no more, you empty headed animal food trough wiper! I fart in your general direction! Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries!” Or would that be too much? --comment by Bill Simpson on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:23 pm:
Sarcasm? Reminds me of this old Monty Python sketch about the Dinsdale criminal gang in london: Vercotti, Doug (takes a drink) “I was terrified of him. Everyone was terrified of Doug. I’ve seen grown men pull their own heads off rather than see Doug. Even Dinsdale was frightened of Doug.” Interviewer: “What did he do?” Vercotti: “He used sarcasm. He knew all the tricks, dramatic irony, metaphor, bathos, puns, parody, litotes and satire.”
--comment by Tarek Fatah on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:29 pm:
Dear ‘Just Living,’ Try living a full and free life instead of hiding behind a cyber-burka(.)
--comment by Sisyphus on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:27 pm:
Well. After perusing all this,I’m puzzled as to who is more worthy of contempt… the silliness of navel-gazing HRCs, poor befuddled paranoid Muslims who take a clown like Steyn seriously, or the Whyte Post/MacLeans bitter boys who love this crap. What to do? What to do? As my Hiberian grandma used to say - “bad ‘cess t’ye”
--comment by Blazingcatfur on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:37 pm:
Time to sharpen those pitchforks and light them torches;)
--comment by Sheila on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:42 pm:
“Wants a judgement ordering Maclean’s to publish a counter-argument to the piece.” Well, if we could all have what we want, I’d be blond with a big bosom.
--comment by Rich Trzupek on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:44 pm:
“Claim that Islam is antiquated.” Worked in that fabulous, rockin’ Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for a while. We would us one line that never got old, each time as we were about to touch down: “Ladies and gentlemen, we are about to land in Jeddah — please set you clocks back 500 years.” Not that there’s anything WRONG with that. --comment by arj on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:47 pm:
I’m reading Faisal’s closing statement and the whole thing is just large wank. In the words of Bugs, “what a maroon”.
--comment by mick in oz on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 1:48 pm:
Daiwoo - oh so it’s a civilisation today! It was a race yesterday.
--comment by Kent Brockman on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 2:02 pm: I’d just like to take this opportunity to say that I for one welcome our new Islamic Overlords.
--comment by Michael Teper on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 2:04 pm:
Hey, Mr. Joseph is being quite modest in his demand for a coerced rebuttal only. Prof. Lund got a coerced apology he didn’t even ask for! Who knows, maybe Maclean’s will be slapped with an order never to publish anything ever again…
--comment by Stephen on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 2:10 pm:
“They need to be controlled or provide balance.” And where does this stop and to whom does it apply? Yes it is simple. Simply frightening. Scratch a theocrat find a fascist.
--comment by Matt Harrington on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 2:10 pm:
As a US citizen, this has proved fascinating reading over the last week. Of course, we have the same kind of thing here–it’s called Academia. “Also, he uses sarcasm!” I remember getting complaints on my teacher evaluations that I used sarcasm in my lectures. Who knows, maybe there’s an anti-sarcasm movement brewing we don’t know about. Soon, there will be legislation, anti-irony lobbyists, trauma support groups, etc.
--comment by Bob Williams on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 2:20 pm:
“Anything you say, or any thing you don’t say but we think you really meant to say, can be used against you in the Star Chamber.”
--comment by Calgary Clippper on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 2:25 pm:
Wow! The respondent’s summation - twenty words or less and then sits down. Fascinating to read the respondent’s approach - thanks for all you have done, Andrew. So…. the ball is in the ‘Roos pouch now and we will have to see in due course what the baby looks like.
--comment by Brock on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 2:25 pm:
That’s great, it starts with a roo court, birds, snakes, a magazine called Macleans, Andrew Coyne is not afraid … It’s the end of the roo as we know it It’s the end of the roo as we know it It’s the end of the roo as we know it and I feel fine
--comment by Fred on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 2:33 pm:
Reading some of the Sock Puppets comments has hurt my feelings and, I believe, left me as Caucasian Canadian, open to ridicule and hate from the CIC. Where do I go to file a Section 13 complaint against them ?
--comment by SK on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 2:45 pm:
I wonder how well the “reasonable person standard” can work here. Isn’t the “reasonable person” in Canada a seething, racist bigot, who requires the Human Rights Commission to restrain him from pogroms and murders and… and dirty looks, and being a meanie… and… um, sarcasm?
--comment by Mick on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 2:57 pm:
Don’t worry its to close to lunch for them to be listening. There is only on thought. I’m hungry and your guilty.
--comment by WhatDoesitMean on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 2:58 pm:
Question. I am very hurt by Al Gore, Greenpeace etc, calling myself and my group Warming Deniers and other worse things Might that be a hate crime in BC?
--comment by SK on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 3:05 pm:
(Big Storm Coming Through Here) Gaia is angry at the Tribunal, and judgment is nigh. Run to the hills. Save yourselves.
--comment by sailorman... on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 3:21 pm:
FIRE! FIRE! FIRE!
--comment by D H Smith on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 4:17 pm:
My God, I was just thinking! When Macleans is convicted, we commentors must be guilty of something, right? “Accessories after the fact” or something!! Before you scoff, remember what we’re dealing with here. Kidding. Sort of.
--comment by Blaise MacLean on Friday, June 6, 2008 at 5:02 pm:
Re: “As I left the courtroom for the lunch break, i was taken aside by a sheepish-looking court official, who said that he’d just learned that I had been “broadcasting” from inside the courtroom.” All I can say is “Baaaaa”
These self-same "human rights tribunals" have, in fact, stolen the very "human rights" from thousands of people they claim to protect. Some examples:
* A bus company, trying to cut down on excessive absenteeism (one driver missed as many as 200 sick days in one year), enacted a policy whereby "Employees identified may be monitored, asked to provide a medical assessment or in the most serious of cases, told to meet an attendance target. Failing to meet that target could result in being fired.
"As a result of the ruling, the company has been ordered to pay six employees damages between $5,000 to $6,000."
* A woman who worked for McDonald's developed a skin condition, allegedly from working 23 years at McDonald's, and found she couldn't comply with the company's once-an-hour hand-washing policy. Allegedly, she sought to work with the restaurant to find a job that didn't require hourly hand-washing, and the company was unhelpful. She was awarded a total of $75,000.
(She couldn't, er, find another job? There ARE no jobs at McDonald's restaurants that DON'T require hand-washing. Does anyone think their patrons are going to put up with someone handling their food or work spaces with unclean hands?)
These are but two of the more well-known cases. There are hundreds of cases of "little people" getting fined, like landlords who try and evict unclean, obnoxious tenants who, by accident of birth, belong to a "victimized minority," so claim "human rights abuses." Many of these people lose their savings, assets and any chance of a happy life -- at least for a long, long time.
At issue, here, are some very fundamental rights. Freedom of speech, anyone? The right to face your accuser in a court of LAW, anyone?
Since when did any "human right" involve discrimination? "Discrimination" is a civil matter at best, and common court at that. Judge Judy stuff. If it's alleged to be institutionalized, then take it up in state or provincial, or federal, civil court.
Human rights are, by their nature, FUNDAMENTAL. The rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The basics. Parsing, hair-splitting and other forms of redressing wrongs are for the COURTS. By setting up some kind of "tribunal," with no accountability to law, but which carries sanctions that INFRINGE on people's ability to pursue life, etc., you are spitting in the face of everything thinkers have been trying to accomplish for Western civilization since the Magna Charta.
Think about it. Please.
We here in the U.S. have been increasingly dismayed to see the lengths to which our brother democracies (Canada) and mother ones (Britain, France) have caved in the face of threats by a culture so diametrically opposed to it in terms of REAL rights.
Actually, we see similar stuff going on here, on a smaller scale (for now). Muslims are using bully tactics like Canada's "human rights tribunals" (which ought not even to exist) to force Western people to put up with erosion after erosion of some of their most cherished beliefs -- equality of women, accommodating religious habits at taxpayers' expense (women-only swim time at public pools, etc.) and accommodation of so-called "sharia law," which "requires severe punishments. These include pre-marital sexual intercourse, sex by divorced persons, post-marital sex, adultery, false accusation of unlawful intercourse, drinking alcohol, theft, and highway robbery. Haram sexual offenses can carry a sentence of stoning to death or severe flogging. An eyewitness account of Soraya M, a woman executed by stoning, can be read on an anti-Iranian web site."
So -- rather than debate these things in their proper forums -- the editorial sections of newspapers, talk shows on TV and radio, etc. -- Muslims in Canada have chosen the sneaky, bully-boy (and largely unaccountable) "human rights tribunal" route.
Me, I've met -- and read the opinions of -- a LOT of Muslims who see things in exactly the right light. In short, to use a tired cliche, "they" are "just like us." But they are way too few, and way too far between.
If you're Canadian, I urge you to contact your legislators via letter or e-mail and protest not only the treatment of Maclean's and Mark Steyn and the assault on free speech, but the very existence of those kangaroo courts they call "human rights tribunals."