Alright, here we go.
First off, Mark Steyn appeared on ABC Radio National’s Counterpoint ( click on ‘show transcript ) a little while ago, and during the course of conversation, naturally, the issue of Canada’s HRCs came up:
Michael Duffy: Mark, I understand you’ve had some problems of your own in the last year or two, in fact you’ve written a book about them called Lights Out, to do with free speech issues in Canada. Can you tell us briefly what happened there?
Mark Steyn: Yes, I found that an excerpt from my previous book America Alone was published in Maclean’s which is Canada’s biggest selling news magazine. It’s a very mainstream magazine, it’s not extreme or right-wing or anything else in any way at all, and it became the subject of three complaints from the Canadian Islamic Congress. Essentially I was subjected to triple jeopardy because they filed complaints with the British Columbia Human Rights Commission, the Ontario Human Rights Commission and the Canadian Human Rights Commission.
And those words, by the way, ‘human rights commission’, are quite relevant to Australians because there’s been a lot of talk in your country recently about having a Canadian style system of human rights commissions. I regard them as an abomination. All the key protections of common law, the presumption of innocence, truth as a defence, the right to due process, the right to confront your accuser in open court, all these things go by the board under a human rights commission system, which is essentially a hierarchy of fashionable victim groups.
So, for example, if a gay group sues Christians, gays trump Christians in the victim group hierarchy. If a Jew sues an anti-Semite, Jews trump anti-Semitism in the victim hierarchy. It gets a bit more complicated if, for example, it was a Muslim suing a gay, then the hierarchy of fashionable victim’s rights gets more complicated.
Second, a bit of a grab-bag, as Rootleweb notes the Boissoin appeal decision, while Gabriel Cayer makes note of Ezra Levant and Mark Steyn’s run-in with Canada’s HRC authorities – albeit in rather more of a positive light than, say, I would. Meanwhile, Blazing Cat Fur provides the odds ‘n’ ends.
Third, from Scaramouche: =Look Who’s a Vice Chair of the Ontario ‘Roos:
One Faisal Bhabha, that’s who. The OHRT site mentions that
As a law student, Faisal worked for human rights organizations in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories. He also researched comparative discrimination law in South Africa. Faisal was called to the Ontario Bar in 2003.
As a lawyer, Faisal focused on human rights and constitutional law, representing clients in issues related to employment, education, public safety and health. He appeared before a variety of administrative boards and agencies and at all levels of court, including the Supreme Court of Canada. Faisal also advised or represented numerous public interest organizations and NGOs in matters related to constitutional law and human rights.
But that doesn’t nearly do his C.V.–you should pardon the expression–“justice.” Mr. B., a founder of the Arab Canadian Lawyers Association, once described odious Holocaust denier/anti-Zionist Norman Finkelstein as “an intellectual with moral courage.” He also appears to have little problem with creeping sharia (read about it here, here and here) and has a decidedly anti-Harper, anti-Israel slant on things.
Fourth, the expenses scandal continues – check out this post on the Mob for all the details, and all the updates.
Fifth, from Allan’s Perspective: Disabled!
Here in Canada the Human Rights Commission has made a lot of rulings in the last while that seems questionable at best and idiotic at worst.
A lot of this has to do with an attitude of political correctness and even more from the attitude and beliefs of some of the people running things.
Now it seems that the Ontario Human Rights Commission is getting into the act as well with decisions that make you sit up and scratch your head in wonder!
Following yesterday’s release of the tribunal’s decision, DiSalvo said he believes the case sets an important precedent for people with disabilities who live in condos.
The Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario has ruled in favour of a disabled condo owner who argued that the complex should bear the cost of a wheelchair ramp to the front door of his unit.
The tribunal has ordered a 24-townhouse Burlington condo corporation to pay for the purchase, installation and maintenance of a ramp for Paul DiSalvo, who has degenerative multiple sclerosis.
The condo corporation must also pay DiSalvo $12,000 in general damages for infringement of his rights, including “injury to dignity, feelings and self-respect,” and retain a consultant to develop human rights policy and a complaint mechanism.
(By ANTONELLA ARTUSO.)
Read the rest here.