Governments Must Reform Human Rights Commissions, Says Canadian Magazine Editor
EDITORIAL By Fr. Alphonse de Valk, editor, Catholic Insight Magazine
(Originally published in February 2008 issue of Catholic Insight)
TORONTO, February 13, 2008 (catholicinsight.com) - Over the last two months some media have exposed the nefarious role of Human Rights Commissions (HRC’s) in suppressing freedom of speech in Canada and threatening freedom of religion. Originally established to sort out practical problems of racial or gender discrimination in daily labour conflicts, they have now grown into Canada’s new thought police, all too willing to step in where angels fear to tread. For a quick overview, see the article “Catholic Insight in the News” (http://catholicinsight.com/online/features/article_779.shtml). It covers the complaints against Catholic Insight, Maclean’s and publisher Ezra Levant in Calgary.
If readers have not seen anything in the news about this issue, perhaps they should change national newspapers. While there has not been a peep about this in the Globe & Mail, the National Post and the Ottawa Citizen have not shied away from the topic, helped by writers who are deeply concerned about the role of HRC’s and its impact. So are some columnists of the Sun newspapers. Western Standard’s last edition (Sept 16) exposed the HRC’s while the quarterly magazine Reality published by REAL Women has opposed them for years, as C.I. has done. See, for example, our 16-page historical chart of the interplay between HRC’s, the courts, and legislative activity during the years 1965-2005 in undermining traditional law and order (http://catholicinsight.com/artman/uploads/homosexualitytimeline.pdf).
What Canadians need now are citizens who will demand from our governments – provincial and national – that HRC’s, as presently constituted, be reformed. They must stop their role as censors of what may or may not be printed or said in Canada, as they are doing today without regard to the normal role of the press in society, or to the rights to freedom of speech and religion, and without the legal safeguards of the courts. HRC’s are extra-judiciary instruments whose officials rule and levy fines on the skimpiest of evidence, or sometimes in its complete absence, as in the recent case of Baptist Pastor Stephen Boissoin in Calgary.
Their personnel seem driven by an agnostic mentality opposed to traditional standards of behaviour. One example is the badgering and bullying of at least a dozen mayors of Canadian cities over the last 15 years or so, to allow Gay Pride days. They fined those who refused, until they complied.
Toronto’s Gay Pride displays vulgarity and public nudity. The mayor gives his blessing, the police look the other way or actively take part, and the newspapers treat it as a great cultural event which brings in “tourists” and supposedly millions of dollars, while taxpayers must subsidize the lewd carnival to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars via a city which is deeply in debt.
Alas, many Canadians, including Catholics, have been indifferent to the progress of the “gay” agenda. They use standard replies: “You don’t have to attend Gay Pride days if you don’t want to.”“Their agenda does not concern us.”“Legalizing same-sex ‘marriage’ does not affect me.”“You’ll get used to it.” These, and other expressions like it, are based on the false notion that agnostic secularism is neutral. Well, it is not.
Today its adherents demand that all school children must be taught the equality of same-sex "marriage" to marriage between a man and a woman; that all public opposition must stop and be designated as “hatred” and prosecuted under the “Hate Crimes” section of the Criminal Code; that all adverse comments about the homosexual lifestyle and its social, family and medical consequences be stricken off the record and publicly denied as untrue.
Quite a few individuals, including us, will not do this. So we must face the HRC’s.
“It is right for us to give glory in every way to Jesus Christ,” wrote St. Ignatius of Antioch, bishop and martyr (died AD 107). “Since love will not allow me to be silent about you, I am taking the opportunity to be united in conformity with the mind of God. For Jesus Christ, our life, without whom we cannot live, is the mind of the Father, just as the bishops appointed over the whole earth, are in conformity with the mind of Jesus Christ.”
The Catholic Church, for one, cannot and will not change her teaching, not even in the face of false legislation in Canada, or Holland, or Spain, or anywhere else. We suggest we all do the same.
Please write your MP’s, MPPs or MLA’s demanding reform of the HRC’s.
See related LifeSiteNews.com stories:
Liberal MP Launches Motion to Stop Human Rights Commission Squelching of Free Speech
Internal Memo Tells Canada’s Conservative MPs to be Noncommittal on Human Rights Commissions
Toronto Catholic Magazine Faced with Human Rights Complaint by Homosexual
Catholic Insight Responds to Human Rights Complaint by Homosexual Activist
Mark Steyn Case Wakes Up Canadian Press to Human Rights Tribunals’ Threat to Free Speech
Canada Catholic League Calls for Halt to Use of Human Rights’ Commissions in Free Speech Cases
Christian Political Party Before Human Rights Commission for Speaking Against Homosexuality
Prominent Canadian Publisher Denounces Human Rights Commissions at HRC Hearing
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