Beware of censorship
By RORY LEISH
While the Canadian Human Rights Commission has bowed to widespread public opposition to proceeding with a complaint against
Elmasry has a low tolerance for criticism. In a newsletter published by the Canadian Islamic Congress, he has charged me and three others with bearing primary responsibility for "today's wave of anti-Islam vitriol" in
Ironically, it is not I,
Of course, more than a few non-
An array of intellectuals denounced that statement as ignorant, malicious and ill-informed. But for all their bluster, not one could cite a single study to refute the experience of centuries which indicates that with rare exceptions, children thrive best under the care and guidance of their natural parents who are united in the traditional bonds of marriage between husband and wife.
However, truth is of no account in the censorship proceedings of a human rights tribunal. Typically, Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act prohibits the publication of even true statements that are likely to expose a protected person to hatred or contempt.
In general, the rules of evidence protecting the innocent in a court of law do not apply in a human rights tribunal. Furthermore, while human rights commissions pick up legal costs of complainants like Elmasry, the accused can easily accumulate more than $100,000 in legal bills.
Regardless, the prospects for mounting a successful defence in a human rights tribunal are remote. The Canadian Human Rights Commission has never lost a case under Section 13.
In the end, the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal, like its federal counterpart, will probably not dare to censure a powerful publication like
Not likely. And neither would any other self-respecting journalist obey such an oppressive edict. They would all prefer to languish in jail as a prisoner of conscience rather than obey a court order requiring them to apologize for upholding the truth as they are given to see the truth.
There is only one sure way of preventing such a travesty of justice in
Stop Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act