Saturday, June 29, 2013

Still Celebrating the End of State Censorship? Anthony Furey Says You Might Want to Tone It Down a Bit

He has a point:
It may just be a case of winning the battle but losing the war. After the usual long slog through the House and the Senate, Bill C-304 has the go ahead, repealing Section 13 from the Canadian Human Rights Act.
Now a nuisance complaint can no longer see someone dragged before a kangaroo court based on Internet “hate speech” — which could be something as simple as typing that you don’t like someone’s religion or making a colourful joke. Now there will be a higher threshold for “hate speech” prosecution. Police and courts will adjudicate, instead of tribunals. In other words, serious cases will still be prosecuted. But this argument is far from over. It may even get worse.
Here’s what Kathleen Mahoney, a University of Calgary law professor, said at a June 25 Senate committee studying the bill: “Human rights legislation puts the onus on individuals to make a claim. In other words, it does not recognize that people are members of groups. When a person is attacked individually, their group is attacked as well. In order to achieve a human rights remedy, every individual must go before a Human Rights Commission and say: This is what happened to me, because I was Jewish, because I was a woman, because I was gay or because I was a fill-in-the-blank. 
“It seems to me it would improve our human rights legislation if the legislation recognized group harms in addition to individual harms.” 
Recognize group harm?! But groups don’t actually exist. And they certainly don’t have rights. And if they did, how could they act en masse? Is there really an official Jew out there who has the right to speak for and file suits on behalf of all Jews? 
This is a troubling statement, particularly as it comes from a legal authority...

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