Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Another MP Supports Repeal of Section 13 of the "Human Rights" Act

Today a junior back bench MP responded to a constituent with this message which would seem to indicate that the whole Conservative Party will be supporting Keith Martin’s Private Members Motion M-446 to remove subsection 13(1) from the Canada Human Rights Act (CHRA):



Thank you for your correspondence of March 13th concerning Keith Martin’s Private Members Motion M-446.  I appreciate that you have taken the time to share your thoughts on this issue with me.


Mr. Martin’s motion has garnered a significant amount of attention recently in the media and within the broader public.  It calls on the federal government to remove subsection 13(1) from the Canada Human Rights Act (CHRA).  So you are aware, subsection 13(1) states:


 It is a discriminatory practice for a person or a group of persons acting in concert to communicate telephonically or to cause to be so communicated, repeatedly, in whole or in part by means of the facilities of a telecommunication undertaking within the legislative authority of Parliament, any matter that is likely to expose a person or persons to hatred or contempt by reason of the fact that that person or those persons are identifiable on the basis of a prohibited ground of discrimination.


As you noted, this section of the CHRA has been used recently by the Canadian Islamic Congress (CIC) to file a complaint against columnist Mark Steyn and Macleans magazine in response to an article Mr. Steyn authored.  It is clear to most that this complaint represents an abuse of the Act, and is amounts to an attempt to censor authors and publications from publishing pieces that are critical of Islam.  This is in complete opposition to the ideals of freedom of thought and expression that form the core of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.  I will therefore be supporting Mr. Martin’s motion when it comes before Parliament.


Again, thank you for taking the time to share your views on this issue with me.  If you have any further questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact me.



[Privacy requested by constituent]


(Conservative Ontario Member of Parliament)





Legislative Repeal of Section 13:




MPs, Newspapers and Organizations that Support a Repeal of Section 13


Liberal MP Keith Martin

Liberal MP Dan McTeague

Ezra Levant

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (Rex Murphy)

Catholic Insight Magazine

Catholic Register

Halifax Chronicle Herald (Paul Schneidereit)

Victoria News

PEN Canada

CDN Association of Journalists

Mary Steyn (Macleans Magazine)

Calgary Herald

Western Standard Magazine

London Free Press

B'nai Brith Jewish Tribune

Sask Leader-Post

Deborah Gyapong

Calgary AM770

Globe and Mail

National Post

David Warren (Ottawa Citizen)

Eye Magazine (Toronto)

Toronto Star

Toronto Sun

Interim Magazine

Sault Ste. Marie – SooToday

Winnipeg Free Press

Oak Bay News