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OTTAWA, Dec 14 ( – Canada’s new Supreme Court justice, Louise Arbour, former head of the United Nations World Court in the Hague, along with two of her colleagues, ruled yesterday that sexual touching (lap dancing) in strip bars is legal. The court threw out charges of indecency leveled against a strip club owner in Quebec. Arbour, speaking on behalf of the 3-2 majority, said the sexual touching did not violate the community “standard of tolerance” that would make the bar illegally indecent under the Criminal Code. 

Gwen Landolt, a lawyer and vice-president of REAL Women Canada condemned the appeal to “community standards”, telling LifeSite that the justices decide what community standards are without polling communities for their opinions. She added, however, that in this case the justices did not deem a law against sexual touching unconstitutional, so the Quebec legislature has the option of amending the law to ban the so—called entertainment. 

The case is another example of the ongoing assault from the Supreme Court on Canadian morality. It is also the first confirmation, since Arbour’s recent appointment to the court,  of warnings about Arbour’s very social liberal, and interventionist approach to law. The unaccountable, unelected courts have ushered in immorality the likes of which could never sustain public scrutiny. Court watchers fear that given the Supreme Court’s track record, the case against child pornography to be heard early next year may prove disastrous. 

The explanatory write-up on the decision expected in the next few months will have to demonstrate why the court reversed its previous ruling against lap dancing in 1997. The National Post noted that the justices took less than two hours to decide on the case. 

Justices Frank Iacobucci and Michel Bastarache were the dissenting justices: “We find the behaviour indecent … due to the sexual touching between the dancer and her client and the fact that the acts weren’t private in nature,” they stated.