MARK STEYN April 23, 2008 Maclean's
This is a "must read" it is excellently written. Just going to quote a couple of paragraphs I thought exceptional:
Hmm. "History has shown us that hateful words sometimes lead to hurtful actions that undermine freedom and have led to unspeakable crimes." Commissar Lynch provides, as she would say, "no substantiation for these claims." But then she's a "hate speech" prosecutor and, as we know, Canada's "human rights" procedures aren't subject to tiresome requirements like evidence. So she's made an argument from authority: the great Queen's Counsel has risen from her throne in the Star Chamber and pronounced, and let that suffice. Those of us who occupy less exalted positions in the realm might wish to ponder the evidence for her assertions.
"Remarkably, pre-Hitler Germany had laws very much like the Canadian anti-hate law. Moreover, those laws were enforced with some vigour. During the 15 years before Hitler came to power, there were more than 200 prosecutions based on anti-Semitic speech. And, in the opinion of the leading Jewish organization of that era, no more than 10 per cent of the cases were mishandled by the authorities. As subsequent history so painfully testifies, this type of legislation proved ineffectual on the one occasion when there was a real argument for it."
Oh, and by the way, almost all those powers the Nazis "seized" the morning after the Reichstag fire, the "human rights" commissions already have. In the name of cracking down on "hate," Canada's "human rights" apparatchiks can enter your premises without a warrant and remove any relevant "document or thing" (as the relevant Ontario legislation puts it) for as long as they want it. And without anybody burning the House of Commons or even the Senate.
Happily, beginning on July 1, under Ontario's "human rights" reforms, Commissar Hall will have far greater powers to initiate prosecutions against all and sundry. Under the new proposals, " 'hate incident' means any act or omission, whether criminal or not, that expresses bias, prejudice, bigotry or contempt toward a vulnerable or disadvantaged community or its members." "Act or omission"? Of course. The act of not acting in an insufficiently non-hateful way can itself be hateful. Whether or not the incident is a non-incident is incidental. I quote from "Concepts Of Race And Racism And Implications For OHRC Policy" as published on the OHRC website:"The denial of racism used by so many whites in positions of authority ranging from the supervisor in a work place to the chief of Police and ministers of government must be understood for what it is: an example of White hegemonic power over those considered 'other.' "
Got that? Your denial of racism merely confirms your racism — because simply by being a "White hegemon" (like Barbara Hall or Jennifer Lynch) you wield racist power. The author, Frances Henry, cites the thinking of "modern neo-Marxist theorists" as if these are serious views that persons of influence in Canada's "human rights" establishment ought to be taking into account, rather than just the latest variant of an ideology that's led to the deaths of millions in Russia, China and everywhere else it's been put into practice. Yet, underneath the blather about "omissions" and "denial" of racism is the bleak acknowledgement that, alas, Canadians just aren't hateful enough to justify the cozy sinecure of taxpayer-funded hate police. "I would say that for a province as large and as diverse as Ontario, to have 2,500 formal complaints a year, that that's a very low level," Commissar Hall said. C'mon, you Ontario deadbeats, can't you hate a little more?Or complain a little more? To modify Brecht, we need to elect a new people, if only to file more "human rights" complaints.
Oh, and again, isn't that kind of a Nazi thing to do? Exaggerate the threat in order to justify government powers to deal with it?
I don't have as low an opinion of Canadians as Barbara Hall and Jennifer Lynch do. I don't believe your liberty is the conditional discretionary gift of hack bureaucrats advised by Marxist theorists. You defeat bad ideas — whether Nazism, Marxism, jihadism, Steynism or Trudeaupian pseudo-"human rights" mumbo-jumbo — in the bracing air and light of day, in vigorous open debate, not in the fetid corridors of power policed by ahistorical nitwits. It's not a left/right thing. It's not a gay/straight thing. It's not a Jew/Muslim thing. It's not a hateful Steyn/nice fluffy caring compassionate Canadian thing. It's a free/unfree thing. And the commissars are on the wrong side.
"So she's made an argument from authority: the great Queen's Counsel has risen from her throne in the Star Chamber and pronounced, and let that suffice. Those of us who occupy less exalted positions in the realm might wish to ponder the evidence for her assertions." I loved this. I laughed out loud. Great writing. Good point. Love the metaphor. We're living in a fantasy world now. Listen to the White Witch, the Queen of Winter speak...