Some of the great-thinking freedom people are starting to look at the arrest of Antonio Padula [see here] as a chink in the armour of free speech in Canada. The Charter guarantees its free-speech provisions in the so-called ‘Fundamental Freedoms‘ part in s.2(b):
Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms; …freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication; [CCRF]¹
So, as Motion M-103 winds its way through the legislature, freedom people from around Canada and around the world are watching closely. The totalitarian-sounding aspects of the Private Members’ Motion include:
[T]he government should…recognize the need to quell the increasing public climate of hate and fear; …condemn Islamophobia; undertake a study on how the government could … develop a whole-of-government approach to reducing or eliminating … Islamophobia; …collect data to contextualize hate crime reports; …make recommendations that the government may use to better reflect the enshrined rights … [in] the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. [Iqra Khalid – Private Members’ Motions]²
Is there an increasing public climate of hate and fear? Hate and fear of what and whom? Is this something the federal government should be considering? Why isolate the word ‘Islamophobia‘ when this word has no legal definition and subjective connotations? Develop a “whole-of-government” approach to reducing or eliminating Islamophobia? So this includes the Department of Environment & Climate Change and the Department of Fisheries & Oceans?
And “contextualizing hate crime reports” – does this mean that all so-called hate-crime reports must be backed up by what the legal profession often calls ‘evidence’? Or does it mean what we think it means – if I say a group of thugs pulled my hijab, and I say they were all ‘white’ (whatever that means), and I say that were wearing ‘I Hate Muslims’ t-shirts, and I say they were all wearing red MAGA hats – then the whole of Canadian society is guilty of being Islamophobic until they can prove themselves innocent? Is that what that means?
And what’s this with the Charter? A, a-hem, ‘re-interpretation’ of s.2(b), perhaps? Freedom of opinion, but only the ‘correct’ opinion, perhaps? Freedom to communicate, but only with the ‘correct’ comments, perhaps? Here’s Jamie Glazov with his take.