CBC: Want to protect freedom of expression? Strengthen hate speech laws

You might want to think twice before swearing that “you’ll defend to the death” a person’s right to say something you disagree with. That saying, a popular rallying cry in defence of freedom of expression, is misguided at best and sets expression, regardless of its content, on a pedestal which it may not deserve.

Words are powerful. Anyone who has been the target of racism, homophobia, misogyny or other bigotry will tell you that the old adage “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me” is far from accurate.

This debate misses the point…

Canada’s hate speech laws?

…And in one of the most egregious examples of society not self-regulating, in late 2012, Sun News host Ezra Levant went on air with a tirade targeting Canada’s Roma community (he referred to them as ‘Gypsies’, a pejorative term), which made use of language reminiscent of the propaganda used by the Nazis before the Holocaust.

Although Levant “apologized” nearly half a year later, the damage was done…

…In the aftermath of the attack, one French Member of the European Parliament, Aymeric Chauprade, published a video which claimed that “the roots of violence and totalitarianism are in Islam, even in its sacred texts.”

If you want to have a respectful debate about important political issues, Canadians should be able to expect that such a discussion will be had respectfully and in a way which promotes, rather than stifles, debate.

The abuse of free speech to demean and strip minority groups of their basic human dignity has no place in a truly democratic society.

  • Censored_often

    The CBC is weighing in with its characteristic leftist-socialist-statist views on the free speech debate. *sigh*

    Will Sun News be shut down? Political and cultural blogs? When will it ever end? Will the imams set government policy?

    Totalitarianism must be averted! Wake up, Canadians.

  • Man_with_Hat

    Every single comment blasted the CBC. 🙂 If this was a private company the author would be fired. Time to privatize the CBC.

  • Those who, in the name of democracy, say that speech should be less than free – they are claiming more power for themselves than for others. They are claiming the power to dis-empower others. They are claiming the right to diminish the rights of others.

  • Exile1981

    “If you want to have a respectful debate about important political
    issues, Canadians should be able to expect that such a discussion will
    be had respectfully and in a way which promotes, rather than stifles,

    I agree with this sentiment, the problem is that this is not what they are proposing. The CBC wants to censure free speech through hate laws. Hate laws are the biggest obstacle to a free and open society. The moment they are enacted someone will invariably decide that a select group needs to be protected and then the laws will be enforced selectively which of course was the whole reason the left pushed for hate laws to begin with.

    If anti-hate speech laws were honestly and equally enforced then there would be no copies of the koran in Canada as every copy would be destroyed for the hate speech it contains.

  • pdxnag

    Exempting Muslims for their adherence to the inherently violent Koran because they do not yet have superior numbers would be like exempting white racists in South Africa because they did not have superior numbers. This is not to say that whites were or are anywhere near as violent and genocidal as pious sharia-adherent Muslims.

  • Martin B

    “…the roots of violence and terrorism are in Islam, even in its sacred texts”

    Truer words have never been seen on the CBC website. So naturally the CBC wants to lock up anyone who says them.

  • Morticiaa

    Gypsy nigger Indian fuck cunt creepy Muslims sharia Mohamed pig
    Sorry to hear we can’t use these terms in relation to people
    Golly the times are a changing
    Ezra and sun at least try to have critical input
    Listening to or watching CBC news etc is like
    Swallowing dog dung
    Real news must be gathered from too many
    Sources and takes too much time
    Thank you to news bloggers
    Who are the real reporters of news

    • DD_Austin

      You can’t use those terms because they all also mean “asshole”
      unless your yourself are a minority and an asshole, when go right ahead.
      Double standards are for assholes after all.

      Of course the fact that the majority of the said minority are in fact assholes,
      has in fact made the term mean asshole, and the minority of the minority
      who are in fact not assholes, do in fact use those terms to describe the
      assholes who are making them look bad.