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Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Intellectual freedom in Canada: Deborah Gyapong on the effects of last night's Canadian election

At least it won't get worse, Gyapong, of the Parliamentary Press Gallery, says:

So Stephen Harper returns with a strengthened minority government. Is that
a good thing or a bad thing? From the freedom of speech point of view, Mark
Steyn has this to say:

Mr Harper's failure to sweep the land probably means that this inherently cautious politician will be unlikely to champion any serious reform of the country's ghastly "human rights" commissions that consumed so much of my time and money this last year. He was awfully non-commital when I spoke to him about it back in the summer, and I'd imagine he'll be even more so now.

I agree with Mark on this. We cannot expect any changes, at least
on the surface. Whatever changes, if any, will be so subtle and so incremental
that they will escape detection by any but the most diligent observers.

For example,
The big difference we are likely to see is what we've already been seeing: an attempt to define the hallmarks of hatred according to the Supreme Court's Taylor decision, signally a move away from the vagueness of the "likely to expose" thought- crimes provision in the Canadian Human Rights Act, section 13(1) that is so dangerously open to interpretation, and so free of any recourse to truth as a defense.

No, it is not good enough. It is also a great disappointment that the Justice Minister (who got relected) continues to have his department intervene on behalf of that horrible subsection. But believe me, having this Tory minority government is far better than having a bunch of ideologues with the ability to define hatred any way they choose, and targeting Christians and conservative dissent with impunity.
Read the rest here.

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