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PO Box 92545
BC Civil Liberties Association files at the Federal
Court of Canada to oppose
Internet censorship from the misnamed Canadian "Human Rights" Commission
Intervene in the Marc Lemire Free Speech case
On February 25, 2010,
Canada's largest Civil Liberties
Association has filed at the Federal Court of Canada to intervene in
Marc Lemire Constitutional Challenge to the internet censorship of
the Canadian "Human Rights" Commission and
Section 13 of the "Human
The British Columbia Civil Liberties
Association have made some very good submissions to the Federal Court of
Canada on why the power to censor the internet should - and MUST
- be removed from the ambit of the fanatical Canadian "Human Rights"
The BCCLA submits that:
- Freedom of expression is a fundamental democratic
right. The BCCLA's mandate is to preserve, defend, maintain and
extend civil liberties and human rights across Canada
- Section 13 and 54 of the Canadian Human Rights
Act infringe s. 2(b) of the Charter of Rights And Freedoms
and that the infringements cannot be justified under s. 1 of the
- The context has changed since the Taylor
decision in 1990 (which found s. 13 constitutional). The main change
is the law is now punitive and penal in nature. And that sec. 13 has
been expended to the Internet
- The digital era changes everything, and sec. 13
should not restrict expression on the internet.
- The Internet is par excellence a
democratic "marketplace of ideas", which provides its own
self-corrective solution to problems of inaccurate, offensive and
- The potential for "psychological injury" to
members of society (which formed the basis for the Taylor
decision) is lessened by user control over content, and provides
individuals with a high degree of control over viewing of
- Severing S. 54 (fines) from the Human Rights
Act, does not make s. 13 constitutional. (As the
CHRC claims). It does
not address 1) strict liability and the absence of defences. 2) the
extension of the hate speech provision to the internet.
Background to Lemire case:
In 2003, serial plaintiff
Richard Warman filed a Section 13 complaint against Marc Lemire for
postings on the Freedomsite message board. None of the posting
complained about were written or approved by Marc Lemire, but
because he was the webmaster of the message board, the CHRC is trying to
hold him liable.
In 2005, Lemire challenged
constitutionality of Section 13 and 54 of the Canadian Human Rights Act
as an egregious censorship provision severely limiting freedom of speech
and thought. Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act is Canada's
shameful internet censorship provision.
Section 13 makes it an
offence to "likely" "expose" privileged groups to "hatred and/or
contempt." There are NO defences under Section 13! Even truth and
intent are considered irrelevant to a finding of discrimination.
The law was enacted in 1977
in order to
silence a man named John Ross Taylor for messages he recorded
onto his telephone answering machine. In the intervening 32 years, not
a single person who has been hauled up on Section 13 charges has ever
been acquitted - a 100% conviction rate.
media outlets, from Victoria to Halifax, have demanded a repeal of
Section 13 and denounced the human rights industry. Editorials commonly
refer to the Tribunal as a "kangaroo
court," and highlight how 'human rights' commissions "threaten
case against Lemire
dragged on for 5 years before the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal, and
before the Federal Court of Canada, where the CHRC was forced to admit
spy on Canadian and American websites.
Since Marc Lemire and his
courageous lawyer Barbara Kulaszka went to work, the entire landscape of
Section 13 censorship has changed.
On Sept 2, 2009, the Human
Rights Tribunal fully acquitted Marc Lemire, and refused to apply
Section 13 due to its unconstitutional provisions. The case has been
appealed by the CHRC human rights fanatics.
Messages posted on the Freedomsite message board by Craig
Messages posted on the Freedomsite message board by persons
other than Mr. Lemire or
Messages posted on the Freedomsite message board by Mr.
The “Controversial Columnists” section of the Freedomsite website
The Doug Collins Column
“Ottawa is Dangerous” Article
The Lemire Tribunal ruled that:
following the reasoning of Justice Dickson, at 933,one can
no longer say that the absence of intent in s. 13(1)
“raises no problem of minimal impairment” and “does not
impinge so deleteriously upon the s. 2(b) freedom of
expression so as to make intolerable” the provision’s
existence in a free and democratic society. On this basis,
I find that the
impairment test has not been satisfied, and that s. 13(1)
goes beyond what can be defended as a reasonable limit on
free expression under s. 1 of the Charter.
c) Conclusions with respect to
the claim of infringement on the freedom of expression
 For all the above reasons,
I find that s. 13(1) infringes on Mr. Lemire’s freedom of
expression guaranteed under s. 2(b) of the Charter,
and that this infringement is not demonstrably justified
under s. 1 of the Charter.
 This question, however, is not what is
relevant to the present discussion. The point is that, when
assessed against the characteristics of the penalty
provisions enumerated in these decisions, it is evident that
s. 13(1) has become more penal in nature (irrespective of
whether s. 11 Charter rights are necessarily
triggered). The provision can
no longer be considered exclusively
remedial, preventative and conciliatory in nature,
which was at the core of the Court’s finding in
Taylor that s.
13(1)’s limitation of freedom of expression is demonstrably
justifiable in a free and democratic society,
and thereby “saved” under s. 1 of the Charter.
I have determined that Mr. Lemire
contravened s. 13 of the Act in only one of the
instances alleged by Mr. Warman, namely the AIDS Secrets
article. However, I have also concluded that s. 13(1)
in conjunction with ss. 54(1) and (1.1) are inconsistent
with s. 2(b) of the Charter, which guarantees
the freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression. The
restriction imposed by these provisions is not a reasonable
limit within the meaning of s. 1 of the Charter.
Since a formal declaration of invalidity is not a remedy
available to the Tribunal (see Cuddy Chicks Ltd. V.
Ontario (Labour Relations Board),  2 S.C.R. 5),
I will simply refuse to apply these provisions for the
purposes of the complaint against Mr. Lemire and I will not
issue any remedial order against him (see Nova Scotia
(Workers’ Compensation Board) v. Martin, 2003 SCC 54 at
On January 25, 2010, using
tax-payers money, the Canadian Human Rights Commission challenged the
Lemire decision, which found that the thought control
legislation of the
Canadian Human Rights Act was unconstitutional and a violation of
the Charter guaranteed rights to freedom of speech and thought.
Canadian "Human Rights" Censors file at the Federal Court of Canada
to keep their precious censorship franchise]
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In Defence of Freedom
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Books won't stay banned.
They won't burn. Ideas won't go to jail. In the long run of
history, the censor and the inquisitor have always lost. The
only sure weapon against bad ideas is better ideas.
Censorship reflects a society's lack of confidence in itself.