LEMIRE HEARING Day 3:
AG admits Government Aim is Thought Control, and gives Hadjis a way out of ruling on case. B’nai Brith: Those who live in glass houses should not throw rocks
"I'm Having to Defend the Telling of Jokes," Miss Kulaszka Explained
OAKVILLE. September 17, 2008. Barbara Kulaszka victim Marc Lemire's lawyer was up at the podium again today. She started off defending "jokes and trivia." The law shouldn't concern itself with 'trivia. This law has gone mad.
"Making motions to this Tribunal is like going to a feminist convention and recommending that women stay home and home school and cook meals for their children. I wouldn't want to go back to an era where I couldn't be a lawyer and, yet, women going to work has meant children raised on junk food and a growing problem of obesity."
Tribunal Member Hadjis argued that persistent off colour jokes in the workplace can be considered harassment. "But this isn't the workplace," Miss Kulaszka countered, "where you might have to put up with harassment day after day. Surfing the Internet and accessing a website where these jokes occur is voluntary."
The application of this law is "totally political," she charged. Harvey Goldberg, the head of the CHRC hate committee, "went to the Moslem community and urged them to lay complaints under Sec. 13. They said that the CHRC wouldn't accept complaints from them. Well, in the Maclean's case the CHRC didn't accept the Moslems case. They were right."
"There was no attempt to balance free speech with the application of this law," Miss Kulaszka stated.
Mr. Hadjis interrupted her to argue that Parliament had passed such laws to protect certain minorities.
"This is a political persecution," Miss Kulaszka charged.
"As to Mr. Warman's credibility, Mr. Warman denied posting his complaints on a website called Recommnet. Dean Steacy said in investigating a complaint against that website Mr. Warman admitted he had posted that material" Miss Kulaszka explained.
Fothergill Says Thought
Control is the Gov't's Aim
"Hate has not changed with the new technology of the Internet. Events in Rwanda and Darfur have only reinforced the scourge of hate speech." Kurz argued that:.
"1. Hate speech remains harmful.
2. Canadian society must continue to strive to eliminate hate speech."
"Hate speech strikes at the very core of a person's identity and the trauma can last a lifetime," he stated referencing Dr. Karen Mock's report, but Mr. Hadjis corrected him saying that her report dealt mostly with assaults, not with postings on message boards.
"None of the shameful episodes in Canadian history, – the refusal to admit Jewish refugees, the internment of the Japanese – were not caused by censorship but by vilification," Kurz insisted.
Mr. Kurz then turned to the hateful passages from B'nai Brith's own website. Mr. Hadjis pointed out that intent didn't matter.
One of the postings on the B’nai Brith “cooperative affiliation” sponsored, Nizkor Website read in part:
Fuck em. What have they done for the preservation and advancement
of the White race? They let the Jews crap all over our planet. They let
our schools be mongrelized with Niggers.
What have they passed on to us? Niggers dancing around on MTV with half
naked White women. A $5 trillion dollar debt. Public education is a joke.
A population that is over 30% non-White. Faggots infect our streets.
However, Mr. Kurz argued that the "effect" of the passage was all that mattered.
way to deal with hate speech is before it becomes a cancer, using civil
remedies like. Sec. 13 rather than the heavy hand of the Criminal Code,"
Kurz stated, not reminding Mr. Hadjis that the fines and gag orders of Sec. 13
require a far lower level of proof than the Criminal Code.
After lunch, Barbara Kulaszka presented her rebuttal. She criticized B'nai Brith and Commission witness Karen Mock for their efforts to shut down debate. "She said she won't debate 'holocaust deniers or haters I urge you to look at the press editorials. The media is outraged by these attacks on freedom of speech."
During his rebuttal, Simon Fothergill, arguing for the constitutionality of the Internet censorship law, seemed to retract his earlier charge against the defence that it was abusing the process by trying to revisit previous legal decisions: "Of course, things have changed because of the Internet."
"Both Mr. Christie and Mr. Fromm took great exception to my comment about the Internet being used to organize and reinforce like minded opinions. We are concerned about permitting certain prejudicial attitudes to develop unchecked. That part of the conclusion is not determined by the Internet and should be treated as settled," he argued.
"In terms of remedy, you are certainly entitled to consider the remedial nature and it would be a legal error to impose a penalty for a punitive purpose," Mr. Fothergill added.
Citing press briefing papers when penalties were added to the Act in 1998, Mr. Fothergill spoke of the fines as "deterrents" to people using telephone answering machines and the Internet to expose privileged groups to "hatred" or "contempt."
Mr. Fothergill urged the Tribunal not to consider media commentaries as uninformed and reflecting a bias, rather than, "as Miss Kulaszka said, the opinions of Canadians.' I urge you to ignore the media commentaries that are filed as they are inherently unreliable."
"The Commission plays a major role in filtering out complaints and seeing that an inadvertent slip on a message board, if measures are taken, may not lead to a Tribunal," Mr. Fothergill said by way of reassurance.
Even Tribunal decisions may contain hateful statements, Mr. Fothergill admitted, but "context is everything." Thus, presumably if B'nai Brith or the government posts hateful comments it's alright; if a website with the wrong ideology says the same things, it's off to Tribunals, gag orders, fines and maybe even prison for them.
Mr. Fothergill, recounting the numerous Commission abuses of Mr. Lemire's rights, including the non attendance of Mr. Warman even for the final submissions, said Mr. Lemire should have sought judicial review, but, he added, "that if you feel the administration of justice would be brought into disrepute by these acts, you can dismiss the complaint, as Mr. Fromm, advocated, on those grounds."
"If you consider these abuses that Mr. Lemire complains of – and I take no position on them – they are administrative and you can dismiss the complaint or stay the proceedings, rather than invalidate the legislation and the will of Parliament."
Margot Blight then took over on behalf of the Commission. "It is submitted that the Commission uses common sense and the history of Sec. 13 referrals confirms that. If there is no need for a remedy, there is no need for the Tribunal to refer a case. It makes no sense to think the Commission would refer to a Tribunal a website that was being run properly."
"When the Commission discovered very late in the day that the message board had been taken down in the Ouwendyk complaint, the Commission, withdrew its participation. It is the position that this law captures only the most extreme forms of speech.
Barbara Kulaszka offered a brief rebuttal to Ms Blight's hour long response. She said when she sought a settlement, Mr. Warman summarily turned Mr. Lemire down stating that he "had dirty hands."
"What a WHOIS search means we explained through our expert Mr. Klatt. The Commission called no rebuttal evidence," she stated.
"I was astounded to hear Mr. Fothergill give you a way out, if you find this an abuse of protest, to dismiss this complaint without striking down the legislation," she added.
"Our charts demonstrate that this Section is not being used in a remedial fashion. We rely on Tremaine and Lampman where letters of apology don't work. Mr. Warman even posted Miss Lampman's letter on one of those websites he calls 'neo-Nazi.' With respect to Mr. Vigna, I stand by my submissions. Mr. Steacy made it very clear Mr. Warman and Mr. Vigna knew who Jadewarr was," she recalled."The Commission's 'gatekeeper' function is only to stop complaints against their friends, stakeholders or powerful people like Maclean's," she stated in her quiet forceful way.
"Thank you all, it's been a long ride. I'm very overloaded. So, don't expect anything soon," Member Hadjis said in adjourning the hearing.
We desperately need your support to cover the legal bills and costs associated with this challenge of Internet Censorship