Here’s a big one for you today:
First: I’d like to request that the Globe and Mail edits their headlines to be a little closer to reality. How about “Hate Crimes Reporting Up By One-Third“?
Note that this statistic measures reported crimes, not real crimes. We have no indication that the number of hate crimes has actually increased.
I don’t doubt for a minute that the apparent increase in hate crimes reporting is due in part to the Human Rights Commission’s stumping for complaints. The promotion of their “services” encourages people to become oversensitive victims with a chip on their shoulder. In addition, the Commissions have been twisting the ear of the police forces for some time, which must have an effect on how they approach the reporting of hate crimes.
Second: Remember the Tribunal decision against the Downtown Vancouver Business Development Association that was reversed in a real court? The Tribunal had slapped Director Charles Gauthier with a $2000 fine for daring to give an interview to the media, and the BC Supreme Court had reversed the ruling and awarded costs to Gauthier.
Third: Clearing up some of the confusion on the subject of absolute privilege, it’s something that appears to cut both ways at the Tribunal. Normally, absolute privilege protects a person making a legal submission from civil action (defamation) on anything stated therein.
The Tribunal has declared that submissions to it by applicants and respondents are subject to absolute privilege, i.e. either party can slag the other with malicious and untruthful statements during the proceedings of a complaint, and not be afraid of a defamation suit. So it does appear that a respondent has absolutely no recourse to frivolous and malicious complaints against him/her, especially considering that the Tribunal will not award costs. This is a free license for libel.
At the same time, various other documents, such as eviction notices, are also subject to absolute privilege against defamation. Since the Tribunal honors absolute privilege in its proceedings, it cannot accept these documents as evidence for any breach of the Code. So if you are going to slag someone on prohibited grounds, do it in the context of a legal document and you can’t be held liable.
Fourth: A joint letter from various First Nations groups (and KAIROS, but I digress) asserts that Canadians don’t have a right to govern themselves. International law takes precedence over silly concepts like “freedom” and “democracy”.
Fifth: Walker Morrow continues his ascending writing career at Enter Stage Right: “Speaking of Freedom“