Canadian law professors warn against criminalizing online glorification of terrorism

If someone posts a statement online that “all real Muslims should engage in military jihad,” should that be enough for police to come knocking?

In a newly published paper, two Canadian law professors are cautioning the government against rushing to criminalize the glorification of terrorism — or “radicalized boasting” — on the Internet, saying it could undermine freedom of expression and put the country on “extremely uncertain constitutional terrain.”

Craig Forcese of the University of Ottawa and Kent Roach of the University of Toronto write that the causal link between radicalized speech on the Internet and violence is still very tenuous. Government officials are better off using existing laws to target the most dangerous Internet materials — those that have clearly crossed a criminal line and are designed to further the aims of terrorist groups, whether it be recruiting or inciting, they said.

  • Jay Currie

    Erring on the side of free speech may be annoying but it is the right thing to do. At some point I might want to write that people who support terror should be interned/shot/deported. As a policy prescription this should not be illegal.

    People advocating terrorist solutions get on the security services lists; until they move to action or direct incitement that’s where they should stay.

    Otherwise, when I applaud the Israelis’ clever helio attack on the Hezbolhah fanatics, for some people I would be advocating terror and subject to criminal charges. I don’t think so.

  • Mickey Oberman

    Look at all the EU countries that had and still have the same attitude as our revered professors.
    They are all on the verge of becoming part of the Islamic Ummah.
    Sometimes rules must change or be eliminated to preserve what is valuable but endangered by those who would destroy us.

  • Martin Luffa

    I say all the time that all real Muslims are Mohammad copycats, essentially

  • Shebel

    What is a Kouchi ?
    That asshole in the pic is apparently quite proud to be one.

    • David Murrell

      Googled the word:

      and I still do not have a clue, after reading the above link. Whatever it is, one mus have a sub-80 IQ to become one.

    • Exile1981

      The Kouchi brothers were the ones who killed the Charlie staff and several police officers in Paris. He’s saying that he is a radicalized killer with ties to Islam.

    • Minicapt
  • Mark DeFord Eletion

    “If someone posts a statement online that “all real Muslims should engage in military jihad,” should that be enough for police to come knocking?”

    Er … Yeah, if they are advocating armed overthrow of a democratic western government for the purpose of installing a non-democratic form of government. Legal justification for police action needs to exist first, of course.

    When governmental authorities are unable or unwilling to protect the people’s preferred way of life, then there is no one left to protect it but the citizens themselves. The principle applies equally to majority and minority groups. Minority groups in the west (muslim, etc.) seem to be more active in this way. Majority groups have so long been indoctrinated into helping the poor downtrodden minorities, that they seem unable to defend themselves.

  • Exile1981

    While I agree that there will always be a small segment who spout off on line; I do believe that the vast majority of those we are calling for the death of non-believers are likely already radicalized and those comments should be taken at face value and should cause the police to investigate the persons plans.