So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter (2 Thess. 2:15). Guard what has been entrusted to you. Avoid the godless chatter and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge, for by professing it some have missed the mark as regards faith (1 Tim. 6:21-22).

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Barbara Kay on "useful idiots".

Barbara Kay raises an interesting point at her National Post site regarding speech-restrictive actions in Canada. Policies which, intended or not, will, if enacted, certainly affect journalists' and others' ability to exercise their inalienable right to freedom of expression.

Fair and responsible commentary is a hallmark of our democracy, and when people attempt to restrict such commentary in order to avoid criticism of their own or others' highly questionable behaviour, people of goodwill who value inalienable rights and the rule of law should make known their objections and call for the rejection of any actions which impinge upon our inalienable rights that form the heart of our democracy.

Kay's essay begins:
Islamism proved a growing threat to Western nations in 2015. But while massacres rivet our attention, they constitute only the most flamboyant tactics in the jihadists’ triumphalist program, which calls for the infiltration of our institutions and the eventual domination of our culture.
That can’t happen so long as we exercise our freedom of speech to denounce Islamism and shame those who support it. Which is why Islamists invented the myth of Islamophobia in Western countries to justify their call for a tightening of the noose on this precious freedom. They certainly can’t do it alone, but they have “useful idiots,” as Vladimir Lenin used to call Western supporters of communism, to help them by furthering the absurd notion that criticism of Islam — a belief system like any other — is a form of defamation, which in our jurisprudence is speech that can only harm an individual.
One of these useful idiots, Jacques Frémont, president of the Quebec Human Rights Commission (QHRC) and president-elect of the University of Ottawa, is the father of Quebec’s Bill 59, which will give offended individuals the power to have writers they perceive to have criticized Islam censored and punished by onerous fines. This dreadful initiative marks a Canadian watershed in Islamist appeasement, but attention paid to it in English Canada has been shamefully sparse. (A dreaded HRC being used as a cane to strike at critics and deter them from exercising a Charter right? Say it isn't so!)
Read the rest at the National Post:
Barbara Kay taught English Literature and Composition for many years both at Concordia University and in the Quebec CEGEP system. She is a Woodrow Wilson fellow. In the late 1990s and early 2000s, Barbara was a board member of the magazine Cité libre and a frequent contributor to its pages. Barbara has been a National Post columnist since 2003. Barbara is the co-author of Unworthy Creature: A Punjabi Daughter's Memoir of Honour, Shame and Love, published May 2011. Barbara's latest book, ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS, A cultural memoir and other essays, was published in 2013 by Freedom Press Canada.
Why should Canadians surrender a legitimate tolerance for authentic diversity to those who, using tolerance as a whip, are attempting to bully people of goodwill into silence in an attempt to squelch criticism of behaviour or ideologies that, to many concerned citizens, represent grave threats to our inalienable rights?

Surely, in a free nation, citizens should have the right to speak their minds, to raise their voices in protest against dangerous ideologies which threaten peace-loving people of goodwill? If people are concerned about islamophobia, homophobia or whateveraphobia, surely the best way to counter certain ideas is not to limit free speech but to counter bad ideas with better ideas, i.e., more free speech not less, is it not? Are those attempting to limit free speech concerned that your average Canadian is not capable of thinking for himself or herself?

Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms
Catholic Civil Rights League
Canadian Charter of Rights & Freedoms

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"A multitude of wise men is the salvation of the world(.)—Wisdom 6:24. Readers are welcome to make rational and responsible comments. Any comment that 1) offends human dignity and/or 2) which constitutes an irrational attack on the Catholic Faith will not go unchallenged. If deemed completely stupid, such a comment will most assuredly not see the light of day. Them's the rules. Don't like 'em? Move on.

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