Violence vs. Free Speech

JimCorrigan

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In your examples of rapists vs. killers, the nuance matters when it comes to punishment. One can apply similar logic as to how one deals with antifa vs. the alt-right, they're both bad sure but they deserve different responses.
Nuance only matters if the crimes meriting punishment are different. The intent behind similar crimes is irrelevant.

And for people who stubbornly refuse to call antifa out for what they are, this bud's for you.

National Post said:
'Antifa' are despicable fascists ? call them that, openly, now

Just because a group chooses to call itself anti-fascist, and say it?s against hate, there is no obligation on the press to accept the self-promotion of a violent masked mob

Rex Murphy

September 1, 2017
12:55 PM EDT

We are fortunate to live in an age where the fight against neo-Nazis and white supremacy is taken so seriously. Only last week, reading the editorial and news reports from down south it was evident, especially after Charlottesville, that the days of the American Republic were numbered. A breathless media warned it was Germany in the early 1930s all over again. Fortunately the Republic has survived.

Who saved us all from a toothbrush mustache future? Why, the black-masked ?antifa? militia and their Black Bloc twin, naturally.

Ready as always, clad in black from head to stormtrooper toe, with their full arsenal of smoke bombs, brass knuckles, pipes, sticks and baseball bats, pepper spray and even shields (to pummel, not protect) proved more than capable of putting emergent neo-Nazis under the knout, both in Berkeley and even up here at McGill.

How did they do it?

With mayhem and mobs, of course. They smashed cameras and sometimes the faces of reporters, chased down old people, executed beat downs on isolated protestors, mauled passersby, in one case threatened a man in a wheelchair, and in general stormed the streets like a wolf pack after a long hunger and a really bad hair day. Anti-fascism is hard thuggish work.

Dropping the irony, that was the ludicrous overview being tentatively offered and implicitly supported by many who really should have known much better. A neo-Nazi and/or white supremacist threat to American democracy exists only in the heads of those who read Marvel Comics for news and think Twitter is a medium for sentient beings.

The real question about the antifa nihilist deadheads is how long so many are going to (a) avoid making judgements on them and (b) put up with their blatant violence and duplicity. In a multitude of press reports after Charlottesville they enjoyed a real pass. The most witless or insolent of reporters/commentators likened them (Lord, spare us) to the Allied soldiers landing on the Normandy beaches, a classic example of the excusatory overtime put in to ?justify? a set of thugs who enact the defining brutalities of fascism while calling themselves anti-fascist. What we have seen from antifa and Black Bloc is Mussolini in the bud.

Lorrie Goldstein of the Toronto Sun was outstandingly on the mark from the beginning, seeing them for what they were. Most reporters HuffPuffed their disdain for the troglodytes of the right, but held mum or waxed pious on the antifa mobs. Following an attack on a reporter at the Berkeley melee, Goldstein offered this gem of rebuke: ?Hey, look, Mainstream Media! Your pets are off the leash.?

Bloomberg Media woke up a week late with ?Antifa has more in common with the Nazis than with American ideals.? No less than Nancy Pelosi, after Berkeley, found it expedient to declare ?The violent actions of people calling themselves antifa in Berkeley this weekend deserve unequivocal condemnation, and the perpetrators should be arrested and prosecuted.?

Would we could have heard some of the same here in Canada after the Montreal melee. The Toronto Star, in a backflip that left spider monkeys agape in awe of its agility, declared in a headline: ?Violence at Right Wing Protest.? Their overworked public editor should do a column: ?Fake News and Atkinson Principles, How Easily they Blend.? All the violence at that right-wing protest was antifa, Black Bloc and left wing.

Antifa and Black Bloc, in one or other of their various incarnations, have been around for two decades, and provided they were in sync with any ?progressive? agenda item, earned a media pass. They sprinkled every violent protest with the apologetic cant of ?but the majority of the protestors were peaceful.?

And for all the talk of ?right-wing violence? now, and of ?white supremacists? (they are a scorned and miserable sub-sub-minority of malcontents), actual violence by the black-clad mobs ? as long as it is simply called anti-fascist ? gets a free halo. It earns either no mention, no condemnation if mentioned, or if condemned done in a plaintive whisper of sadness and rue that antifa violence might give ammunition to the dread ?right wing.? The kind of reporting that gives sophism a bad name.

Just because a group chooses to call itself anti-fascist, and chooses to say it?s against hate, there is no obligation on the press to accept the self-promotion of a violent masked mob. A lazy and timid press, however, does just that.

There is a kernel of real fascism and real hate in North America. And it is the antifa movement, and its organizers, who are that kernel. They deserve no respect, and less tolerance. And trying to make them heroes of a non-existent, fatuous Resistance to a democratic vote only encourages street-violence that may grow to riot and mayhem, and ultimately stimulate the very breakdown of democratic order and respect for it the mob lying professes to be defending.

Antifa is not a friend of democracy. It despises democracy, and equally despises those who believe in democracy. There?s not a spit of difference between them and the neo-Nazis ? except, and it?s a big except ? they have supporters outside the coven.
http://nationalpost.com/opinion/rex-murphy-antifa-are-despicable-fascists-call-them-that-openly-now

And for the nutty professor:

Washington Post said:
Yes, antifa is the moral equivalent of neo-Nazis


Marc Thiessen
August 30

Last weekend in Berkeley, Calif., a group of neo-communist antifa ? ?anti-fascist? ? thugs attacked peaceful protesters at a ?No to Marxism in America? rally, wielding sticks and pepper spray, and beating people with homemade shields that read (I kid you not) ?No Hate.? The Post reports how one peaceful protester ?was attacked by five black-clad antifa members, each windmilling kicks and punches into a man desperately trying to protect himself.? Members of the Berkeley College Republicans were then stalked by antifa goons who followed them to a gas station and demanded they ?get the [expletive] out? of their car, warning, ?We are real hungry for supremacists and there is more of us.?

The organizer of the anti-Marxism protest is not a white supremacist. Amber Cummings is a self-described ?transsexual female who embraces diversity? and had announced on Facebook that ?any racist groups like the KKK [and] Neo Nazis .?.?. are not welcome.? The protest was needed, Cummings said, because ?Berkeley is a ground zero for the Marxist Movement.?

As if to prove Cummings?s point, the antifa movement responded with jackboots and clubs ? because their definition of ?fascist? includes not just neo-Nazis but also anyone who opposes their totalitarian worldview.

And let?s be clear: Totalitarian is precisely what they are. Mark Bray, a Dartmouth lecturer who has defended antifa?s violent tactics, recently explained in The Post, ?Its adherents are predominantly communists, socialists and anarchists? who believe that physical violence ?is both ethically justifiable and strategically effective.? In other words, they are no different from neo-Nazis. Neo-Nazis are the violent advocates of a murderous ideology that killed 25 million people last century. Antifa members are the violent advocates of a murderous ideology that, according to ?The Black Book of Communism,? killed between 85 million and 100 million people last century. Both practice violence and preach hate. They are morally indistinguishable. There is no difference between those who beat innocent people in the name of the ideology that gave us Hitler and Himmler and those who beat innocent people in the name of the ideology that gave us Stalin and Dzerzhinsky.

The United States defeated two murderous ideologies in the 20th century. So we should all be repulsed by the sight of our fellow Americans carrying the banners of either movement, whether they are waving the red flags of communism or black flags of Nazism. Yet we are not. Communism is not viewed as an evil comparable to Nazism today. As Alex Griswold recently pointed out, the New York Times has published no fewer than six opinion pieces this year defending communism, including essays praising Lenin as a conservationist, explaining why Stalinism inspired Americans, and arguing that the Bolsheviks were romantics at heart and that women had better sex under communism. Can one imagine the Times running similar pieces about the Nazis?

My mother and grandfather fought the Nazis in Poland during World War II, and her family then endured the Stalinist terror that followed, when Nazi occupation was replaced by Soviet domination. So forgive me if I see little moral distinction between the swastika and the hammer and sickle. Both are evil, and their modern adherents need to be condemned ? especially when they dare to commit acts of violence in our midst to advance their hateful visions.

Both the left and the right have a responsibility to police their own movements. In the 1960s, William F. Buckley excommunicated the John Birch Society, widely believed then to be anti-Semitic and a proponent of nutty conspiracy theories, from the respectable right, and today, conservatives have a responsibility to do the same with the white nationalists of the alt-right.

Those on the left have responsibilities as well ? responsibilities few are meeting. On Monday I asked the office of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) for her statement of condemnation. To her credit, Pelosi issued a strong statement Tuesday, declaring, ?The violent actions of people calling themselves antifa in Berkeley this weekend deserve unequivocal condemnation, and the perpetrators should be arrested and prosecuted. In California, as across all of our great nation, we have deep reverence for the Constitutional right to peaceful dissent and free speech. Non-violence is fundamental to that right.?

Good for her. So why haven?t more leading Democrats done the same? After Charlottesville, the media rightly demanded that President Trump and all Republicans condemn the neo-Nazis and the KKK. So where are the calls for Democrats to condemn antifa ? and the brutal public condemnation for those who fail to do so? If black-clad neo-Nazis had attacked peaceful protesters at a ?No to Racism in America? march in Berkeley, politicians in Washington would be falling over themselves to express their disgust ? and any who failed to do so would be vilified. But when neo-communists commit this kind of violence, they get a pass from the left.

That cannot be allowed to stand.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/yes-antifa-is-the-moral-equivalent-of-neo-nazis/2017/08/30/9a13b2f6-8d00-11e7-91d5-ab4e4bb76a3a_story.html?utm_term=.eac9b85f6421
 
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kunedog

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"It's OK when we do it." - every violent fascist mob ever.

As for the onlooking enablers who refuse to unreservedly condemn them, one of the (many) problems with SJWs and the regressive left is, succinctly stated:

So long as something is in their ideological favor, they value it.
 

JimCorrigan

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Quoting this because everyone here who attempts to dismiss, or worse defend (looking at you, professor) this vile group needs to see this. I came here to post it myself. This video helps to showcase two important developments:

1) antifa's actually a domestic terror organization
2) the media is in on it.

The proof is in the eating of the pudding, and we now sit at the table. If you aren't familiar with Steven Crowder or Ben Shapiro, I suggest watching their stuff... mostly the latter, so you can see how the left wing protests, and media's descriptions, of him are misguided at best ("controversial" conservative speaker) and a complete lie at worst (white supremacist). Also review old media clips and newspaper articles, as it is all faithfully portrayed in the video above. This is not conspiracy nonsense, it is real, and it is frightening. There is no justification for the defence of this fascist, violent terror group.
 
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SirEdward

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There are several groups of people who disconnect from reality and indulge in their own mental onanism; the more they do this, the more they disconnect, the more they will come up with insanities of all sort. This is the core mechanism. The triggering (no pun intended) factor may vary, but the results are similar, sometimes equal. It's all a matter of time and skills. This is why it's not the idea that matters, but the behaviour, the abandonment of logical thinking and empathy, the hook on the ideology drug.

Antifa, in the version depicted here, surely is one of those groups.
 

mpicco

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I am no Crowder fan but he has a point. This is no longer the actions of just a few people who watched too many movies and believe themselves to be Batman, taking down the new Nazis, it's an organized terrorist group who's MO includes stabbing people at the very least, and the media are ignoring them because it's "inconvenient" for their narratives.

Protests and free speech are allowed from either side, but vigilante mobs deciding on which things can or cannot be said, which people can speak in universities, etc, is just going too far. The police needs to crack down on these people hard.
 
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JimCorrigan

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This doesn't fit under "violence" but this is most certainly a frightening development in the erosion of freedom of speech.

http://nationalpost.com/opinion/bruce-pardy-law-societys-new-policy-compels-speech-crossing-line-that-must-not-be-crossed

National Post said:
Bruce Pardy: Law society's new policy compels speech, crossing line that must not be crossed

At the core of free speech is the liberty to criticize the content of the law. For no one is this more important than lawyer


National Post, October 3, 2017
10:09 AM EDT

Every lawyer gets emails from the Law Society: reminders to file reports, pay fees, or use assistance programs to cut back on the booze. But a recent message almost made me choke on my sandwich. ?New obligations for 2017? was its subject line, ?Actions you need to take.? All lawyers, it said, must prepare and submit a personal ?Statement of Principles? attesting that we value and promote equality, diversity and inclusion. According to the advisory, ?The intention of the statement of principles is to demonstrate a personal valuing of equality, diversity, and inclusion with respect to the employment of others, or in professional dealings with other licensees or any other person.?

My first instinct was to check my passport. Was I still in Canada, or had someone whisked me away to North Korea, where people must say what officials want to hear? Forced speech is the most egregious violation of freedom of expression, protected by section 2(b) of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. In free countries, law governs actions rather than expressions of beliefs. People can be required to obey the speed limit and pay taxes, but they may not be compelled to declare that the speed limits are properly set or that taxes are a good thing. The Supreme Court of Canada has said that forcing someone to express opinions that they do not have ?is totalitarian and as such alien to the tradition of free nations like Canada, even for the repression of the most serious crimes.?

The email might as well have announced that the thought police had taken over the Law Society of Upper Canada (soon to drop its historical moniker and become known, probably, as the Law Society of Ontario). In 2012 it created a working group to investigate systemic racism in the legal profession. In 2016 the working group reported, wait for it, that there is systemic racism in the legal profession. (It is doubtful whether the data upon which the report relied actually supports this conclusion, but that is not the point of this column.) The Law Society accepted its recommendations for action, three of which are being implemented this year. One of those is the requirement for personal Statements of Principles, which require not just compliance with the law but concurrence.

At the core of free speech is the liberty to criticize the content of the law. ?However admirable the objectives and provisions (of the law) may be,? the Supreme Court said, ?no one is obliged to approve of them: anyone may criticize them? and seek to have them amended or repealed, though complying with them so long as they are in effect.?

For no one is this more important than lawyers, who are the last line of defence against authoritarian orthodoxy. Had this requirement been imposed upon another of the governed professions, nurses say, or engineers, they would hire a lawyer to protect their right to think and speak for themselves. This time, it is the lawyers themselves whose ability to argue about the law?s propriety is threatened.

The contours of anti-discrimination laws have long been the subject of debate within legal circles. For example, Richard Epstein, a prominent American legal scholar, in his 1992 book Forbidden Grounds: The Case Against Employment Discrimination Laws, argued for the repeal of such laws on the grounds that they ?set one group against another, impose limits on freedom of choice, unleash bureaucratic excesses, mandate inefficient employment practices, and cause far more invidious discrimination than they prevent.? Whether Epstein is right or wrong is part of the debate. The Law Society?s new requirement effectively prohibits Ontario lawyers from engaging in that debate. Instead, they must betray their integrity and submit a Statement of Principles that professes values that they may not hold.

This policy crosses a line that should not be crossed. It is not enough that we obey. Now we must also agree and actively promote. The late Alan Borovoy, former general counsel of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, said that the greatest threat to liberty is not from without but from within. ?The source of the most insidious peril,? he said a decade ago in a speech at Queen?s University, ?is not evil wrongdoers seeking to do harm, but parochial bureaucrats seeking to do good.? I suspect Borovoy would be shocked that his warning would apply so acutely to the governing body of the legal profession.

The Law Society does not say how it will punish lawyers who do not comply. It states only, and ominously, that they ?will be advised of their obligations in writing.? Perhaps compelling speech upon penalty of actual sanctions would be unconstitutional. How should lawyers respond? They have a number of choices. They could conform. That might suggest that lawyers are unable or unwilling to defend themselves. They could decline. That might determine whether elected ?Benchers? actually represent them. Or they could just submit a copy of this column.
Stop the world, I need to get off.
 

JimCorrigan

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If you haven't watched the Crowder/Antifa video posted above by Level, watch it now.

Then, watch this.


Incredible.
 

mpicco

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Antifa are just a bunch of college kids thinking they're revolutionaries when they haven't had a single original thought in their lifetimes. They need to be dealt with like any other criminal band, arming themselves to hurt people who say things which hurt their (incredibly fragile) sensitivities.
 

Interrobang

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I am anti fascist - with all my heart. But I also consider most People who identify themselves to be Antifa - as fascists. These people betray the ideals of people actually doing something about fascism in the world and I have little else but disgust for them.

But I do get the impression that all this talk about Antifa by the Us Government and their Media is more of a diversion, a smokescreen if you wish to draw focus away from the problems this administration has. Antifa is a problem, make no mistake - but I don't think the level of coverage they are currently getting is justified.
 

kunedog

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But I do get the impression that all this talk about Antifa by the Us Government and their Media is more of a diversion, a smokescreen if you wish to draw focus away from the problems this administration has. Antifa is a problem, make no mistake - but I don't think the level of coverage they are currently getting is justified.
Huh?

Until very recently, what talk of Antifa in the media couldn't be traced almost directly to video evidence of pre-emptive violence committed by Antifa (usually allowed by police)? For a year the mainstream media has been desperate to not talk about it, when they weren't running sympathetic stories or interviews with apologists. You just watched Nightline and an affiliate of Fox (I bet you'd call them USG's media, right?) turn down a gift-wrapped story about Antifa caught planning an attack, and the university spokesman caught lying that there was no credible threat.

In fact, it's eye-opening to compare the coverage of this clear, proven planned attack to what happened back when Anita Sarkeesian was scheduled to speak at Utah State. A public threat (not secret plan) was emailed to the university.

https://www.usu.edu/today/index.cfm?id=54178

Despite the fact that in this case police (working with the FBI) did determine the threat was non-credible (it seriously reads like women's studies fan fiction), this single email resulted in national coverage in multiple outlets including CNN, WaPo, Guardian, Forbes, LA Times, you name it.

That's what it looks like when there's a concerted effort to blow something out of proportion to distract the public (i.e. from the Gamergate scandal) and further an agenda.
 

JimCorrigan

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I am anti fascist - with all my heart. But I also consider most People who identify themselves to be Antifa - as fascists. These people betray the ideals of people actually doing something about fascism in the world and I have little else but disgust for them.
With all due respect, but unless you've had a change of heart on freedom of speech (your comments from post 81 in this thread)
...
Ones freedom of speech ends where someone elses right of not being insulted begins.
... then whether intentionally or not, you are contributing to the growing problem of fascism. Subjective suppression of freedom of speech is incompatible with actual anti-fascist belief.

But I do get the impression that all this talk about Antifa by the Us Government and their Media is more of a diversion, a smokescreen if you wish to draw focus away from the problems this administration has. Antifa is a problem, make no mistake - but I don't think the level of coverage they are currently getting is justified.
This is proof you know not of what you speak. NO ONE in the US Government is speaking about Antifa, except to justify it as being "anti-racist", with the possible exception of one speech by Donald Trump (post-Charlottesville) in which he castigated Antifa as "far left" (maybe it was "alt left", I forget the exact wording), and a brief denouncement of Antifa by Nancy Pelosi leading up to the latest Berkeley episode.

And it is not "their" media. If you've paid any attention at all, mainstream media have been working hard 24/7 to attack anything and all Donald Trump says or does, whether it's merited or isn't. The US media is not in the pocket of the government. Far from it. Aside from the articles I posted up last month from a few sites, there remains a disturbing paucity of coverage of a homegrown terrorist network.

Go to Youtube, search for "antifa" and then tell me it's all overblown.
 
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Cellos88GT

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Antifa are just a bunch of college kids thinking they're revolutionaries when they haven't had a single original thought in their lifetimes. They need to be dealt with like any other criminal band, arming themselves to hurt people who say things which hurt their (incredibly fragile) sensitivities.
Yes and no. Antifa is primarily led by local radicals from Oakland and Berkeley that seek to recruit college kids. They're dumb and won't amount to anything much like the organizations that came before them: OWS, black bloc, weather underground, etc.

They only have as much power as people are willing to give them.
 

JimCorrigan

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They only have as much power as people are willing to give them.
Right now the people give them a lot of power.

You have people who still (wrongly) believe they are actual anti-racists standing up for the oppressed. You have media which turns its backs to organized, planned violence (see above). You have anyone that has conservative (not extremist) values being labelled "racist", or "white supremacist", or "homophobe/transphobe" by these thugs in order to generate sympathy for their violent actions against anyone who disagrees with them.

And anyone who seeks to oppose/expose these scum must remain peaceful and not resort to violence, otherwise this will turn into redshirts vs brownshirts circa 1933.

- - - Updated - - -

More examples of special treatment, and bully tactics by Justin Trudeau's supposedly "Liberal" (re: fascist) party.

National Post said:
Barbara Kay: Liberals left reeling by clear, rational criticisms of M-103

Far from the slam-dunk feel-goody gesture it was meant to be, M-103 is looking more and more like a pivotal political and cultural moment in Canadian history


With Parliament?s passage in late March of Motion 103, which condemned ?Islamophobia and all forms of systemic racism and religious discrimination,? the Canadian Heritage Committee was tasked with a study to determine ?what Canadians have to say? on the motion. Now underway, formal hearings are revealing what polls have already made clear: many Canadians find M-103 disturbing.

They dislike it because it singles out one religion for special consideration and because they don?t believe Canada is a systemically hateful nation. But they particularly fear its implications, as the principals behind M-103 ? proposer MP Iqra Khalid, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Heritage Minister Melanie Joly, and Muslim community spokespeople ? keep balking when called on to define ?Islamophobia.?

(Feeding that fear: until B?nai Brith expressed public concern Monday, the newly-released Toronto District School Board?s Islamic Heritage Month Guidebook ? citing input from some of the same actors engaged in promoting M-103 ? defined Islamophobia as ?fear, prejudice, hatred or dislike directed against Islam or Muslims, or towards Islamic politics or culture.? ?Islam?? ?Islamic politics or culture?? According to a TDSB representative, this ghastly mile-wide definition was chosen ?in error.? Please, TDSB, a little respect for Canadians? intelligence.)

Hearings began in June. Anti-M-103 activists, noting that the Liberals were allowed to call 36 witnesses, the NDP 12 and the Conservative Party 24, wondered if the fix was in for M-103 opposers.

They were not heartened by Heritage Committee chairperson Hedy Fry?s on-record comment: ?There is no guarantee that radical voices won?t speak at M-103 hearings.? So far, pro-M-103 voices predictably toe the Liberal party line that racism and Islamophobia are serious problems in Canada. What Fry might call ?radical voices? have raised sensible, compelling challenges to this assumption, and have expressed concerns this kind of motion could eventually lead to politicians creating laws that further limit free speech.

On Sept 20, Toronto Sun columnist Tarek Fatah (himself a victim of oppressive speech codes in his native Pakistan) testified that discouraging or limiting criticism of Islam would, in effect, most harm those secular or free-thinking Muslims who came to Canada precisely for the freedom to speak their mind to Islamic authority figures as they could not do in their countries of origin. In any case, ?You cannot define (Islamophobia),? he charged, ?because the word is a fraud.? According to Fatah, these bold challenges earned him such frosty treatment from ?the phalanx of Liberal MPs? and ?haranguing? from Fry that one MP contacted him later to apologize for the ?intimidation and bullying? he had experienced.

On Sept. 27, all four individuals who testified opposed M-103.

Father Raymond J. de Souza (speaking for himself, not the Catholic Church) said it was unwise to single out any one religion, and that government should encourage theological exchange rather than impede it.

Peter Bhatti, Chair of International Christian Voice, noted that his brother was murdered in Pakistan for daring to protect Christian lives from that country?s suffocating blasphemy laws. Bhatti said anxiety over the vagueness of the term ?Islamophobia? was creating distress amongst Canada?s Pakistani Christians, who see M-103 as being tantamount to a repressive blasphemy law.

Jay Cameron, a lawyer with the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, denounced M-103?s linkage of the word ?quell? to ?climate of hate and fear,? as ?quell? is a word normally reserved for policing riots, not words (excellent point). ?Racism is something you can?t legislate against, per se, because it begins in the mind,? he pointed out.

Raheel Raza, president of the reform-oriented Council for Muslims Facing Tomorrow, asked, ?Why are only Muslims mentioned by name?? and, ?It?s not the government?s responsibility to babysit just one community.? She suggested that instead of the government deflecting attention from retrograde Islamic behaviours like honour killings and polygamy, Canada should take a leadership role in encouraging a return to a ?free thinking? model of Islam, once a widespread norm.

The Liberals were back-footed by these forcefully argued dissents. Various Liberal MPs tried to ?explain? the motion, muddying the ?Islamophobia? waters further and monopolizing so much time that Conservative MP David Anderson accused them of ?filibustering their time.?

One witness who earned the right to testify was shunted to ?standby? status as a replacement in the unlikely event of a dropout. Major (Ret?d) Russ Cooper is a highly decorated combat veteran of the first Gulf War, recognized by the Air Force for courage and leadership in his role. The M-103 pushback campaign was kicked off by Cooper?s national anti-M-103 petition drive, which garnered 27,000 signatures and was then leveraged by other outlets to gain 200,000 signatures. Cooper?s prepared testimony to the hearings, which may never be heard formally, is a model of reason, clarity and high intelligence. You can read it in an online Canadian Heritage Committee briefing note. And the pith of his argument can be viewed on this concise YouTube video.

Stay tuned. Far from the slam-dunk feel-goody gesture it was meant to be, M-103 is looking more and more like a pivotal political and cultural moment in Canadian history.
National Post said:
After nixing Rachael Harder nomination, Liberals force unwilling Conservative to take committee chair

It is not normal practice for a government to pick who gets positions reserved for the opposition and Conservatives say the move is a sign of Liberal 'intolerance'

by Marie-Danielle Smith, October 3, 2017

OTTAWA ? Liberals, with the support of a New Democrat, strong-armed an unwilling Conservative into chairing the House status of women committee Tuesday after they shot down the Tories? first pick.

It is not the normal practice for a majority government to pick who gets positions reserved for the official opposition. Conservatives say the move is a sign of Liberal ?intolerance.?

The status of women committee chair is always a member of the official opposition, according to House standing orders. But last week, Liberal MPs walked out of a committee meeting to protest the nomination of Conservative MP Rachael Harder, who is also the party?s status of women critic.

The dramatic move came after New Democrat critic Sheila Malcolmson raised concerns about Harder?s pro-life stance, and how that could affect her steering of a committee tasked with studying women?s issues, including reproductive rights. Women?s rights groups such as the Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada backed Malcolmson and applauded Liberals for following suit.

Meanwhile, Conservatives rallied around Harder, saying her personal views wouldn?t preclude her from being able to do the job. So did pro-life groups, who argued many women in Canada disagree with abortion and having pro-choice views shouldn?t be a requirement for a parliamentary role.

So when the gavel came down Tuesday, Conservative MP Karen Vecchio nominated Harder again. Liberals asked for a vote, and, with Malcolmson?s support, knocked down the nomination. Instead, Liberal vice-chair Pam Damoff moved Vecchio should be the chair.

?Although I appreciate the nomination, I would like to back down from that nomination, if possible,? Vecchio said. Procedurally, this would require the consent of the committee and she didn?t get it. Liberals and NDP voted together to make her the chair despite her own objections, and Vecchio quickly adjourned the meeting.

?For Justin Trudeau to say a Member of Parliament is unfit to hold a procedural position because she doesn?t agree with his personal position is ridiculous,? reads a joint statement released by Vecchio and Harder following the committee meeting.

?It?s disappointing that Justin Trudeau would act this way and his actions demonstrate the intolerance of the Liberal Party of Canada, which claims to value diversity.?

Still, the statement continues, ?Conservatives accept the democratic will of the committee.?

The Liberals waited a week so Conservative leader Andrew Scheer could ?rethink his choice,? Damoff said after the committee meeting. Liberals require their MPs to take pro-choice stances in votes, while Conservatives allow their MPs to vote however they want on conscience issues.

Scheer had offered no indication last week he would back down. He told a CTV morning show on Friday he wasn?t sure why Harder?s nomination had become so controversial, and Liberals were being divisive. ?Our party is very clear. Our caucus is very clear. We?re not going to open up these kinds of debates, and Rachael Harder agrees with that,? he said. ?This is a procedural position for the committee and the Liberals are trying to politicize this.?

Damoff admitted Liberals hadn?t asked Harder if she would feel comfortable representing the committee on, for example, transgender issues. But she explained why Liberals see Vecchio as a better option. Vecchio had previously stated in committee that she is pro-choice, Damoff said, and had not been endorsed in the federal election by the Campaign Life Coalition, which vets candidates based on their social conservative stances.

?I?m glad that Karen Vecchio has taken the chair,? Malcolmson said in the hallway outside the meeting room. ?I feel more comfortable with her being the committee?s spokesperson and the arbiter of the committee?s business given that she doesn?t have as outrageous a position on reproductive rights and abortion access as Rachael Harder did.?

Although she supported Vecchio taking the position, Malcolmson admitted ?it?s not good? that Liberals would end up dictating the choice. ?It?s too bad that Vecchio had to be forced by the Liberals to take the seat. It would?ve been much better if the Conservatives had proposed a reasonable candidate themselves,? she said. ?This is not a good situation for anybody.?
 
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JimCorrigan

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Following up on the National Post article re: Liberal party discrimination, even the usually left Globe and Mail has weighed in against the Grits, with their official editorial no less.

https://beta.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/editorials/globe-editorial-is-it-now-okay-to-discrimate-against-people-who-oppose-abortion/article36493276/
Globe and Mail said:
Globe editorial: Is it now okay to discriminate against people who oppose abortion?

The Liberal government of Justin Trudeau has sent a terrible message by blocking the election of a Conservative MP to the position of chair of the House of Commons committee on the status of women solely because of her opposition to abortion.

Think of it this way: Were Rachael Harder, the Alberta MP in question, fired from a job in a private company, or from the public service, for the same reason, she would be the victim of a violation of her Charter rights.

And yet in a committee vote on Tuesday, the Liberals denied Ms. Harder a position she is fully qualified to hold simply because she refuses to conform to their view of the world.

Is this something the same Liberals would tolerate outside the confines of Parliament? Are they telling Canadian women who don't believe in abortion that their opinion can be used against them by the government?

The only way the Liberals' ouster of Ms. Harder would be justified would be if there were a clear requirement, either legal or practical, that the committee chair overtly favour the status quo when it comes to abortion in Canada. But there is no such requirement.

The job of the chair is to run the committee's meetings, and the job of the committee is to examine legislation and issues relating to equality of the sexes and violence against women and girls.

There is not, as Mr. Trudeau has wrongly contended, a requirement that the chair be "able to stand up and unequivocally defend women's rights" as they are defined by him and his party.

The committee is there to hear the views of all Canadians, on all issues, regardless of whether or not their positions align with those of the Prime Minister or make some people uncomfortable.

One can now only imagine the rude welcome this stacked committee will give to any witness who dares express a view that is not in line with the government's. Why would such a person even bother testifying to the committee? (Maybe that's the point.)

The right to abortion is one we support, but there is a higher principle at play here ? the right to hold beliefs, and to act on them legally, without interference from the government, and without being discriminated against by society.

The Liberal government's shameful actions this week send a contrary message ? that it is perfectly acceptable in Canada to discriminate against people who oppose abortion.
 

SirEdward

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Tolerance is a choice; we choose to open up our minds and societies to others. It is an internal process requiring calmness, thought, acceptance. If it becomes compulsory, it becomes a rule, so we have to follow it regardless of what we think; following a rule is an external process, we can force ourselves ot do it even if we hate it, if we refuse it and despise it in our minds.

If tolerance becomes compulsory, it isn't tolerance anymore.
 

argatoga

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You don't have to open up your mind to be tolerant. It's accepting people saying and doing things you don't like.

To give you an idea, my grandmother was Greek, so I am by no means a fan of the genocide denier and self proclaimed "Young Turk" Cenk Uygur. Yet I would be against any call to silence him. I tolerate his racist views because speech must be absolutely free for liberalism to function.
 

LeVeL

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You don't have to open up your mind to be tolerant. It's accepting people saying and doing things you don't like.

To give you an idea, my grandmother was Greek, so I am by no means a fan of the genocide denier and self proclaimed "Young Turk" Cenk Uygur. Yet I would be against any call to silence him. I tolerate his racist views because speech must be absolutely free for liberalism to function.
I agree. Unfortunately, many on the far left, as well as several of our European members, have expressed a willingness to suppress certain types of speech, such as "hate speech", or the KKK, or even someone like Milo. We've had heated arguments about this before.
 
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