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Nathan Cherry at Engage Family Minute: The Alliance Defending Freedom records a small victory for free speech in light of this case as it appears at least one statute was struck down in Canada’s Human Rights Code. But it is indeed a small victory as the overall tenor of this case is foreboding at best. The takeaway from this is that events like this are happening right now in America. There is a concerted effort to not just limit free speech and religious freedoms, but to elevate the “rights” of minority groups like homosexuals and transgender people above all others. This is the ultimate end of “anti-bullying” laws that equate changeable aspects of a person, such as sexual orientation, with permanent aspects such as race or nationality.
Canadian Constitution Foundation: Last week, in an unanimous decision in the case of Saskatchewan (Human Rights Commission) v. Whatcott, the Supreme Court of Canada struck a blow against freedom of speech.
Charles C.W. Cooke at National Review: If the Canadian Supreme Court is happy to indulge the prosecution of those whose speech apparently “opposes the targeted group’s ability to find self-fulfillment,” then I wonder if it wouldn’t also be happy to bring back Spectral Evidence, which William Stoughton allowed into his courtroom with such famous success at the Salem Witch Trials.
Religion Clause Blog: In Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission v. Whatcott, (Sup. Ct. Canada, Feb. 27, 2013), the Supreme Court of Canada, in a 116-page opinion, upheld the constitutionality of a key provision in theSaskatchewan Human Rights Code, Sec. 14.
LifeSiteNews: Canada’s top court has released an unanimous decision today that critics say has struck a monumental blow against freedom of speech, opinion, and religion across the country.
John Carpay writes at the Canadian Constitution Foundation: “At the University of Calgary, setting up a pro-life display on campus can end your academic career. Last week, vice-provost Meghan Houghton found eight students guilty of a ‘major violation’ of rules governing ‘non-academic misconduct’ — a category that also includes theft, vandalism, arson, violence and sexual assault. Of course, the U of C is being careful about how it is framing its case, using the canard of campus security as a pretext for censorship . . . ”
CBC: “Eight University of Calgary students engaged in non-academic misconduct when they refused to turn their graphic anti-abortion signs away from passersby on campus, the school’s vice-provost has ruled. The students, who are members of the Campus Pro-Life Club, were accused of failing to comply with campus security procedures in connection with a display they put up in April depicting aborted fetuses. The penalty is a formal, written warning.” | Related: University of Calgary may expel pro-life advocates
Canadian Constitutional Foundation: “If ever Canada’s Senate needed an opportunity to demonstrate its value by imparting ‘sober second thought’ to the legislative process, that moment arrived on April 13, 2010, when Bill C-232 landed on Senators’ desks. A private member’s bill promulgated in the House of Commons by New Brunswick NDP member Yvon Godin, C-232 would require that all future judges appointed to the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) be able to understand both French and English ‘without the assistance of an interpreter.’”
CBC News: “The University of Calgary is threatening to expel a group of students who refused to move a graphic anti-abortion display on campus. The eight students, who took part in a Campus Pro-Life display, received letters from the school earlier this month advising that they had violated the non-academic misconduct policy.” | For more information see this ADF Alliance Alert compound tag: http://www.alliancealert.org/tag/country-canada+global-sanctity-of-life+topic-education/
National Post: “‘Bans on hate speech in human rights law are often justified in part because they can be overturned by fully fledged courts of law, where the rules are more strict. But that oversight is becoming problematic as judges grapple with Canada’s legal test for hatred, famously defined by the Supreme Court as “unusually strong and deep-felt emotions of detestation, calumny and vilification.”You can sooner grasp steam in your hands, or nail Jello to a wall, than know with certainty what this bar for hatred is,’ said John Carpay of the Canadian Constitution Foundation, who argued as an intervenor in two recent hate speech cases. ‘Our argument is that provinces do not have the right, the constitutional authority, to restrict speech,’ he said.”
In a decision released February 25, the 3-member court ruled that William Whatcott did not violate section 14(1)(b) of the Saskatchewan Human Rights Code by distributing flyers to oppose the teaching of homosexuality in Saskatoon’s public schools.