Yep, it’s that time again.
Second, is that Ezra Levant I see there? From the Earth Times:
NASHVILLE, Tenn., Sept. 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Betsy McCaughey, Rep. Tom Price, M.D., and Ezra Levant are some of the featured speakers at the 66th annual meeting of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) to be held in Nashville, TN from Sept 30 through Oct. 3, 2009.
Read the rest here. Geez, that guy is everywhere.
Third, happy international free press day! Mark Steyn’s all over it on the fourth anniversary of the Danish cartoons, dredging up some relevant articles from the past: Stout-Hearted Men? and Unfit to Print.
Fourth, Glen Kauth writes for the Law Times: Signs of trouble in the human rights system:
Henry Freitag knows his issues well. Having fought the Town of Penetanguishene a decade ago in his battle to get his municipal council to stop reciting the Lord’s Prayer, he’s in a good position to lead his current bid to get politicians there to abolish such religious observances altogether.
So, in launching his case to rid of all prayers, including the non-denominational one the town council has observed since his victory at the Ontario Court of Appeal in 1999, Freitag is so far representing himself at the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario.
The Penetanguishene senior may succeed, but it’s clear that many other people alleging discrimination before the tribunal would struggle to make their case without a lawyer.
It’s worrisome, then, that roughly 70 per cent of the people making complaints to the tribunal since last year’s overhaul of the province’s human rights system don’t have counsel.
The high number is somewhat logical given that many cases are still at early stages and given that the changes aimed in part at allowing people direct access to the tribunal without first applying to have the Ontario Human Rights Commission investigate their case and provide legal representation.
But while the old system came under heavy criticism for long delays, human rights advocates were deeply concerned the revamped one would leave complainants, many of whom are vulnerable, without the ability to make their cases.
In efforts to allay those concerns, the province promised the new Human Rights Legal Support Centre would fill the gap by providing lawyers to take up people’s causes.
That would still leave complainants without a body like the commission to investigate their files but at least held some prospect of speeding up the system while ensuring access to justice.
Fifth, a development in the CHRC’s investigation into Arthur Topham of The Radical Press, and in the not-dead-yet case of Warman v. Lemire. From Connie Fournier at Free Dominion:
The CHRC has indicted that they will be telling Arthur Topham “their position” in regard to the Lemire decision today.
Considering that the government has only two days left to file an appeal of the Lemire decision, we will likely know today if you are going to appeal it or not.
Marc Lemire has been dragged through this process for six years. After all that time, and all that investigation, they weren’t able to find ONE THING that was written by Lemire himself that violated Section 13.1 of the Canadian Human Rights Act.
This process has cost Marc Lemire thousands and thousands of dollars, and there is no way for him to recoup any of his costs.
If your government decides to appeal this decision, Marc will be forced to start throwing money at this thing all over again.
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!!
If Rob Nicholson, the man who stood up at the last CPC Convention and voted to abolish Section 13.1 of the Canadian Human Rights Act, now uses his authority to challenge the ruling that has rendered it unconstitutional, he WILL pay a political price.
If the CHRC appeals it, we will know that it is with the support of Rob Nicholson and the Harper government because the CHRC is reportable to the Rob Nicholson.
I, for one, will not sit quietly and watch the government use our tax dollars to continue this persecution of Marc Lemire, and this campaign of censorship and intimidation against the Canadian people. If they do this, I will work actively and tirelessly AGAINST the Conservative Party during the next election.
I await your decision with interest.
Read it here.
Fifth, more on illiberalism in Manitoba. From the Winnipeg Sun:
By Paul Turenne, SUN MEDIA
NDP leadership candidate Steve Ashton wants to introduce a law that would make racist or other derogatory comments or behaviour an offence.
Ashton said “one of his first acts” if elected leader, and thus premier, would be to introduce what he calls the Dignity Act.
“I want to see Manitoba become a model for human rights,” Ashton said. “We want a zero tolerance approach to racism and other forms of discrimination.”
Ashton said the bill would be based on the British Race Relations Act, which has been law in the United Kingdom in one form or another since 1965.
Ashton said he is still working on the details of the law, but stated in a release that it would “make employers, governments, unions, organizations and individuals in positions of authority responsible for promoting equality and improving race relations by eliminating unlawful discrimination, promoting equality of opportunity and promoting positive relations between people of different racial groups. The bill will also ensure similar provisions for gender and sexual orientation.”
Ashton said the law would go “one step further” than existing laws like the Manitoba Human Rights Code and the hate crime provisions of the Criminal Code.
“It’s common sense. It’s when you’re inciting racial hatred, that will be the legal test,” Ashton said. “The key to the future is getting along, working together, and putting aside some of the things we’ve seen in the past.”