“I Believe in Freedom of Speech, Sometimes…”

There is probably only one thing that I and Paul Groarke, a former adjudicator in the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal, agree on. Resolved Human Rights cases, whether mediated or adjudicated, must be made public. Only, we have completely different reasons for doing so.

Groarke is exactly what you would expect from a cheerleader of the Human Rights apparatchiks. He believes that discrimination is a rampant and endemic plague that is about to destroy our society (convenient, ’cause such a perception gives him a job). He believes that it is the state’s role to force people to “recognize the fundamental equality of everyone in society”. He also believes that the state, in the form of the tribunal, “should play an important role in determining what can and can’t be published.” Then comes the usual Jenny-like contradiction:

Groarke said that while free speech is important, there must be regulations to keep discrimination under control.

Hah. “While I like the color black, I hate anything that isn’t white.” You can extend that line of reasoning to co-opt any of our fundamental rights. Anyone can play this game:

“While Freedom of Religion is important, there must be regulations to keep peoples’ thoughts under control.”

“While Freedom of Association is important, there must be regulations to keep the serfs in line.”

Groarke then joins in with his buddies Haroon Siddiqi and Max Yelden in demanding that the media do the bidding of the Human Rights gurus. Unspoken is the presumed follow-up, “or else…”. What does that sound like?

“While Freedom of the Press is important, there must be regulations to keep the media under control.”

But let’s talk about what we do agree on: that Tribunal decisions and mediated settlements should be made public. Groarke’s argument is that they serve as a better deterrent for other such thought-crimes. But the rest of us have been calling for transparency so that the public can finally see how these Commissions and Tribunals are trampling on our fundamental human rights.

Transparency? Bring it on.

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