Monday, May 30, 2011

[VIDEO] Levant & Shaidle on Section 13's Demise (+ the real origins of Section 13)

Great discussion with Kathy Shaidle on Ezra Levant's "The Source" on SunTV.

There seems to be a bit of confusion over how Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act came about.  In her interview with Ezra Levant, Kathy Shaidle says that Section 13 came about due to the "old political correctness".

Unfortunately, the truth is far from being so nice and bubbly.  It is a clear fact that Section 13 was added into the Canadian Human Rights Act specifically to silence and shut up a man named John Ross Taylor.  It was nothing about political correctness, but rather Section 13 is a straight up HIT-law, used to silence, punish and bankrupt those that dare to speak out.

Here are the actual documents which prove my point.  [The following text is an article I wrote on the origins of Section 13 entitled "Genesis of Section 13 - From Taylor to 'Terrorism'" available at]

In November of 1975, Ontario’s Deputy Attorney General, F.W. Callaghan, lobbied the Federal Department of Justice demanding the inclusion of speech-restricting legislation that removed the need for “willfulness” or fair comment based on public interest.  
In a letter dated November 13, 1975, F.W. Callaghan outlined some of the problems they faced when trying to “get” a man named John Ross Taylor, who was recording messages on his telephone answering machine that members of the public could dial up and listen to. In reference to his taped telephone answering machine, Callaghan stated:

“The messages usually are topical and political and focus on a wide variety of subjects.  However, the emphasis always is racial and federal immigration policies frequently are criticized.”
 Callaghan continued in his letter: “The messages discuss such matters as immigration, integration and urban crime, all of which clearly are matters of public interest.”
Here are actual documents:

The real intent of Section 13 was to silence legitimate non-violent criticism of immigration, crime, multiculturalism and integration.  Ontario’s Deputy AG Callaghan summed up the true motivation behind silencing Taylor using the Human Rights Act:

“The simple forced deletion of the message which I have proposed could have a major advantage over a criminal prosecution in that, presumably, it would not be attended by great publicity whereas a criminal prosecution, through publicity and polarization, might promote the mischief which it sought to suppress.”[1]

In 1976, the Federal Government was looking at a larger Act for employment issues and the provision of federally regulated services.  This Act eventually would end up with the innocuous sounding name: the Canadian Human Rights Act. Although no other section of the Human Rights Act covered speech, it was not a problem for the Federal government to capitulate and slip in an extra section to satisfy Ontario’s Attorney General’s lust to silence John Ross Taylor and his home-based answering machine.

During the initial discussions on Section 13, it became clear that there was much discussion about adding intent, truthfulness, artistic expression and other defenses to the act. But as the law wound it way through the legislative review process and at the behest of special interest groups, all defenses were removed.  After all, a good gag law can’t have any pesky defenses that the poor defendants could use to prove their innocence.  And in the case of John Ross Taylor, even Ontario’s AG conceded that what Taylor was doing on his answering machine was “topical and political and focus on a wide variety of subjects.”  Thus a defense of fair comment and political commentary in the public interest would clearly have applied to Mr. Taylor.

In a memorandum to cabinet presented by the then Liberal Justice Minister Ron Basford, described Section 13 as clearly remedial in nature.  “However, this amendment would not expose anyone to prosecution, would not involve penalties, and no coercive action would be taken unless the ‘good offices’ of the Commission failed to dissuade the person responsible”.[2]

Actual Documents:

On July 14, 1977, Bill C-25 “Canadian Human Rights Act,” was passed by the House of Commons and went on to receive Royal Assent.[3] Only a few years after the law was enacted, Mr. Callaghan finally got his wish and John Ross Taylor became its first victim, with the Canadian Human Rights Commission itself and several professional Jewish groups[4] as the complainants. [The law was not used again for close to 10 years after Taylor's case]

Since the law was first enacted, two major changes were made to Section 13.  These changes fundamentally shifted the original intent of the legislation, and turned Section 13 into an instrument to financially and morally punish those with politically incorrect views.

The first change to the legislation occurred on May 15, 1998, when Royal Accent was given to Bill S-5 (1998), which added a new penalty provision to the Canadian Human Rights Act. Bill S-5 added Section 54 to the Canadian Human Rights Act, and allows the Human Rights Tribunal to impose a financial penalty of up to $10,000.  On top of the fines, Section 54 also gave the fanatical Tribunal the ability to impose penalties of up to $20,000 as so-called “special compensation.”  

 The second change occurred in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks of September 11th 2001.  Sadly, this legislation equated non-violent politically incorrect words – which are covered by Section 13 – with terrorism and concerns of national security.  Under the guise of Bill C-36 - Canada’s Anti-Terrorism Act,[6] Section 13 was expanded to cover “a group of interconnected or related computers, including the Internet.” This change, gave the power to Canadian Human Rights Commission to censor the internet and harass Canadians with views that the Rights Fanatics disagree with.

 This change was made according to Preamble of Bill C-36 to allegedly “combat terrorism.”[7] 
 The Preamble of C-36 states:

“WHEREAS acts of terrorism constitute a substantial threat to both domestic and international peace and security;
 WHEREAS acts of terrorism threaten Canada’s political institutions, the stability of the economy and the general welfare of the nation
 WHEREAS the challenge of eradicating terrorism, with its sophisticated and trans-border nature, requires enhanced international cooperation and a strengthening of Canada’s capacity to suppress, investigate and incapacitate terrorist activity;
AND WHEREAS these comprehensive measures must include legislation to prevent and suppress the financing, preparation, and commission of acts of terrorism, as well as to protect the political, social and economic security of Canada and Canada’s relations with its allies;” [8]

 With these changes, fanatical tribunal members now have the ability to both assess hefty fines and a “Cease and Desist” order.  These orders include a permanent lifetime speech ban, which were designed to permanently gag a victim for his entire life.  The “Cease and Desist” orders are registered with the Federal Court of Canada and become an enforceable order of the Court.   If the victim still doesn’t shut up, he could face up to 5 years in jail for contempt of court.[9]  Several victims of Section 13 have been jailed for violating the highly vague and subjective “Cease and Desist” orders.  These include John Ross Taylor,[10] Wolfgang Droege, Kenneth Barker, Gary Schipper and Tomasz Winnicki.[11] 

[Read the rest of the History of 13 at]

[1] Letter from F.W. Callaghan, Ontario Deputy Attorney General to D.H. Christie, Assistant Deputy Attorney General, Federal Department of Justice. November 13, 1975.
[2] Confidential Memorandum to Cabinet.  Cabinet Document 156/76.  March 12, 1976 on Bill C-72 “Canadian Human Rights Act”
[3] Canadian Human Rights Commission publication. “Hate messages and Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act - Legal Milestones”
[4] Canadian Holocaust Remembrance Association and the Toronto Zionist Council were listed complainants.  CHRC v Taylor, Canadian Human Rights Tribunal.  T.D. 1/79. 

[5] Bill S-5: An Act to amend the Canada Evidence Act, the Criminal Code, and the Canadian Human Rights Act. (1998)  Section: Background.
[6] Bill C-36. Anti-terrorism Act.  Subsection 88.
[7] Bill C-36. Anti-terrorism Act.  Summary – Part 5.
[8] Bill C-36. Anti-terrorism Act.  Preamble.
[9] Federal Court of Canada – Sections 466 and 467.  [See Winnicki Contempt case,  2006 FC 873 , Para 9]
[10] Canadian Human Rights Commission publication. “Hate messages and Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act - Legal Milestones” Under Section: “Case Law”