Alright, here we go.
First off, a bit of a grab-bag. A little more commentary on the Boissoin appeal decision from For Christians & Messianic Jews, while The Daily Cartoonist talks about the no-fly cartoonist’s efforts with the HRCs, and Scaramouche talks a little about Richard Warman’s involvement with the prosecution of neo-Nazi scum Bill White, as does Mark Goldberg at Telecom Trends.
Meanwhile, Ken Dickerson writes Centre for Constitutional Studies: The Boissoin v. Lund Decision: If Alberta’s Hate-Speech Law is Constitutional, What Does It Actually Prohibit? ( also noted by Blazing Cat Fur ); while the Dickson decision for the Boissoin appeal is noted by From The Lighthouse.
United Nations Human Rights Day protest was a very enlightening experience for us. We were successful at the Alberta Human Rights office protesting but not at attempting to file a complaint there.
Peter Samardzija did the honors and he was absolutely livid when he exited the building. I believe the situation was not handled well by the Commission as Peter was not wearing any protest signs nor was he carrying any brochures yet he was refused access to the Human Rights office itself. The letter explaining why they would not accept any complaint from Peter is now ready. Click Here
We did not encounter any problems along Jasper Avenue making our way down to Canada Place but problems occurred quickly after arriving. A coatless woman runs out and gets a brochure from Ralph and darts back into the building. Click Here We did not attempt to enter the building in anyway and suddenly we have 3 Security members taking pictures of us. In response we took pictures of them. Within moments we are being confronted and ordered away from the building even though we felt we were on the sidewalk. Passersby came to assist us and began confronting the Security members yelling this is public property, a federal building. I demanded to know the lawful authority being used to harrass, intimidate and force Canadian citizens away from a Federal building we never even attempted to enter. It was explained that Canada Place is private property thus no protesting and no picture taking by us. 5 minutes later a senior Security official came out to escort us away from the building immediately. I demanded to know if they intended to use force. They kept reiterating we were leaving now and that if we did not leave immediately they would call the Police and have us arresting for tresspassing on private property.
Third, via Today’s Trucking.com: Drug-testing rules for domestic truckers relaxed:
TORONTO — Reefer screening (and no, we don’t mean refrigerated trailers) for domestic truck drivers may be acceptable in some circumstances under human rights rules.The Canadian Human Rights Commission released a revised policy in September on the subject of drug and alcohol testing in the workplace, which apparently makes it easier for Canadian companies to test truck drivers for drugs an alcohol for Canadian operations.
For years, random drug testing violated Canadian human rights legislation.
Read the rest here.
Fourth, via The Montreal Gazette: Woman to file human rights complaint after airport strip search:
By Sarah Anderson
OTTAWA — A Canadian woman who was strip-searched at the Ottawa Airport after returning from her grandmother’s funeral in Jamaica has decided to launch a human rights complaint.
Charmaine Archer, who holds dual citizenship with Jamaica, said she hopes her complaint will result in an investigation to prove that a report that traces of heroin and THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, were found on her toothbrush was fabricated to justify the strip search.
“If you swab everything and look at everything and find no traces of drugs, why do you have to search me?” Archer said.
She said Canadian customs agents told her she was being flagged because she had purchased her ticket to Jamaica at the last minute and had stayed only four days.
Instead, she believes she was flagged because of her race and country of origin.
Fifth, via TheRecord.com: Grand River Transit told to announce bus stops to help the blind:
By Jeff Outhit, Record staff
WATERLOO REGION — For more than two years, Grand River Transit has put off a human rights demand that it assist blind passengers by announcing all bus stops.
Politicians figure they can stall no longer, after three other transit services were hauled before a human rights tribunal for not acting fast enough.
Regional council is now considering hiking taxes $200,000 in 2010, to launch the technology to automatically announce all stops. The proposed tax increase would build to $900,000 a year by 2013.
“We don’t have any choice,” Regional Chair Ken Seiling said. All passengers will benefit, he said, and transit is already moving toward the upgrade.
Read the rest here.
Sixth, via Scaramouche: Jennifer’s Travels:
Back in the day–the day when the nascent United Nations was devising its Universal Declaration of Human Rights–the words “human rights” actually meant something. Today, of course, when every tin-pot backwater has its own “human rights” outfit, and some of them are even helping run the UN’s “human rights” racket, and the term “human rights” has become so devalued as to become virtually meaningless. What “human rights” means today is a chance to impose political correctness (in democracies) and pay lip service to “human rights” (in non-democracies). But don’t tell Jennifer Lynch, Canada’s Queen Censor, the jig is up. She’s having far too much fun hobnobbing at shmancy confabs with her “human rights” equivalents from places like Cuba and Saudi Arabia.
Read the rest here.
Seventh, via Our Changing Landscape: Keeping Our Eye on the Ball:
The Human Rights Commissions (I have a special link for all my posts on the HRCs at the right hand column of this blog) are associated with the Canadian Human Rights Act, the Canadian Multiculturalism Act, and the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. They were, as were the other institutions, installed to dampen the effects of diversity and the conflicts that multicultural and diverse communities can incur. They predictably arrived right after the amended immigration policies of 1967, which allowed non-white immigrants to enter into Canada without any restrictions.
Recent high-profile cases have involved pastor Boissoin and his letter to his local Alberta paper on homosexuals, and Marc Lemire who was put before the Commissions for comments on the website that he monitors. But the most vocal and belligerent cases have by far been by Muslim groups trying to silence writers and commentators on Muslim issues and news.
Read the rest here.
Eighth, via Van Maren Traditionalist Views: The Wisdom of Ted Byfield:
Several years ago, I read a book entitled Epistles of an Unrepentant Redneck, by the great Canadian conservative commentator Ted Byfield. The book was amazing—I hadn’t been aware that there were any Canadian conservatives who wrote on almost any social issue with such candor, as most Canadian small-c conservatives focus on specific issues, such as Ezra Levant and the human rights commissions and Mark Steyn concerning the spread of Islam and plunging Western demographics. Ted Byfield views the world through the lenses of the Judeo-Christian tradition, and does so both masterfully and unapologetically.
Ted Byfield on the human rights commissions:
“The activities of the human rights commissions have violated almost all the principles which they claim to be representing. The minute you start to accept evidence without the rules of evidence applying, than you are abrogating a fundamental human right. That’s exactly what they’re doing. If you go back, a lot of instances where liberal governments based themselves on defending human rights, wind up attacking human rights and curtailing them. It’s characteristic, I think, for liberal movements to erode liberal beliefs.”
“Given the mindset of these people in the human rights commissions there is a real danger (against freedom of speech), but I also think they’ve aroused considerable antipathy right across the country, and unless they desist in what they’re doing they will eventually be abolished. I think they’re becoming aware of this and will likely become more cautious, and the government will also become more cautious in whom they put on [“trial”] on these things.”
Read the rest here.
Ninth, via CanadianChristianity.com: Church was balanced in 2009:
By Jim Coggins
BALANCE. It is not a word always associated with the church. But it may apply to the Canadian church in 2009.
In CC.com’s annual analysis of the year’s news, we looked to see what the outstanding trends were — and what stood out was that nothing stood out. The church, in a general sense, showed remarkable balance in 2009.
Five stories dealt with homosexuality (compared to 12 in 2008), but only four were focused on court cases; the other involved open discussions between Christians and the gay community. Seven stories involved human rights tribunals, down somewhat from 2008.
It is indicative of a significant shift that only four concerned homosexuality, and two concerned the issue of whether ‘hate speech’ laws are unduly restricting freedom of speech and freedom of religion.
Read the rest here.
Tenth, Andrew Lawton writes, via Strictly Right: Merry Christmas, Canadian Bloggers have free speech…
Jay Currie reports that the Supreme Court of Canada has issued a decision ruling that journalists in Canada can use “responsible communication” to defend themselves against libel suits. As well, the decision goes so far as to include “non-journalists…with the norms of new communications media” within the same banner.
Now, this is only a bitter-sweet victory as the kangaroo court of Canada (herein after referred to as the Canadian Human Rights Witch-hunt Commission) still can prosecute bloggers under the guise of “reasonable limits” to freedom of speech, but the upside to this decision based on my limited legal knowledge is that now one can appeal a CHRC decision to the Supreme Court and actually have a shot at winning it!
Read it here.