Canada secures conviction under hate speech law

Reader Patrick called my attention to two articles in the Globe and Mail and VICE, reporting that Canada’s infrequently-used “hate speech” laws have not only been used to charge two people, but to convict them. Click on the screenshots below:

Globe and Mail:

VICE:

The two men convicted, James Sears and LeRoy St. Germaine, were respectively the editor and publisher of Your Ward News, a vile Toronto-area newspaper that reached 300,000 people (probably not via subscription). The conviction was for promoting hatred against women and Jews. The content that led to their conviction is described by VICE (Richard Blouin is the judge who rejected the defendants’ claim that their paper was satirical, and his full decision is here):

Blouin goes on to list several examples of this occurring such as when after the Toronto van attack Sears told his readers to shut down women talking down to men with “extreme prejudice,” or how he commanded his readers to use jury trials to nullify statutory rape and domestic assault charges.

The decision says that Your Ward News contains “undeniable glorification of Adolf Hitler” and that Jews were portrayed as having Satanic horns, drinking the blood of children, blamed for atrocities, and celebrates past persecution of the religious group. The decision strongly goes after the duo for their views on women, with Blouin writing “any position communicated that essentially denies that an entire half of the world’s population are human beings is so outrageously reprehensible that the word “hate” is starkly inadequate. You can read the full decision below.

Your Ward News is a small publication—having around 20 pages per issue—and was put out in the Toronto area. Inside its fold, you would be able to find rape advocacy, Holocaust denial, all forms of anti-Semitism and racism, conspiracy theories, and all sorts of vileness.

One rather notorious passage which preaches against the statutory rape law, reads “age of consent should be the age at which a woman can safely have sex, and not a random number chosen by our ZioMarxist oppressors.”

From the Globe and Mail:

Prosecutor Robin Flumerfelt told the trial the publication – 22 issues from the start of 2015 to the summer of 2018 were scrutinized – demonized feminists as “dangerous people” and called women “tri-orficed chattels.” The paper branded most feminists as “satanists exhilarated by abortion,” claimed women are inferior, and that feminism encourages rape.

The paper also repeatedly claimed the existence of a worldwide, blood-thirsty Jewish conspiracy. The imagery depicted Jews as devils with serpent tongues and reptilian hands, argued Jews were behind the 9/11 terrorist attacks and that the Holocaust was a Jewish myth to strengthen their control of the world.

Here are more examples of the paper’s hate taken from the judge’s decision:

 

This is Canada, not the U.S., so while the statements made by the two men would have been legal in the U.S., they are crimes under section 319(1-2) of the Canadian Criminal Code:
Section 319 also specifies that there are defenses against violations of these sections, but they were not found applicable in this case:
 
Make no mistake about it: these are hateful, odious, antisemitic, and misogynistic men. Sears used to be a doctor but had his medical license revoked in 1992 for sexual misconduct with three women, and also has two convictions for sexual assault.

If ever there was a case to test the First Amendment in America, this would be it. And yet, despite the hatred they spewed and the vileness of their views, I still defend their right to say what they want. In other words, I don’t think Canada’s law is justified.

That’s because, as the American founders and the courts recognized, there’s a slippery slope between this kind of stuff and other views that might be discussed, and who is to say what’s acceptable speech and what is hateful. Yes, it’s hateful to demonize the Jews, but what about criticizing Judaism? Child rape is odious, but is it not debatable what the age of consent might be? (No, I am not encouraging child rape here, or saying that the views of these two guys are worthy of respect, just that they don’t deserve to be censored or tried.)

In other words, what is hate speech to some people is speech for others that is worthy of discussion—even if the only value is to sharpen your own opposition to repugnant views and hone your ideas against the best case for the other side. In general, I agree with the U.S. courts that speech should be deemed illegal only if it incites immediate violence, or if it’s libelous, contains threats, incites harassment against another individual, promotes child pornography, makes false and harmful statements about products like drugs, and so on. Hatred of groups does not fall within that ambit, nor should it. In view of the fact that what constitutes “hate” is so subjective, especially these days, I’d prefer to put that one to the side when advocating government censorship.

I realize that jailing these men (and they face a maximum of six months in the pokey and a $5,000 fine) may serve as a deterrent to others to from publishing similar views. But will it end the hatred? No, I think—it will just drive it underground, and make martyrs of these men. Why not air these views and allow them to face the opposition they deserve? The way to eliminate hatred is to bring it into the open, not repress its expression.

Finally, reader Patrick asked me this question:

I am curious if you have any thoughts on this case, and if you have any thoughts on the “defences” list for Canada’s hate speech law. More specifically, I wonder whether a free speech almost-absolutist can support a public postal service (such as Canada Post) refusing to distribute a hateful publication such as YWN. I am unsure about this (leaning towards no, since it is a government institution) but in actuality I am very happy they aren’t distributing it any longer.

I’ve answered the first bit, and as for the postal system, since it’s an arm of the government, in the U.S. it would be illegal, I think, to prevent publications that don’t violate the First Amendment from being distributed. After all, that would be government censorship of speech, as the postal system is an arm of the government. This censorship is legal in Canada, but I disagree with it.

A photo (and caption) from the Globe and Mail:

James Sears, right, editor in chief of Your Ward News, and publisher LeRoy St. Germaine, are seen outside Ontario court in Toronto on Nov. 28, 2018. COLIN N. PERKEL/THE CANADIAN PRESS

136 Comments

  1. Diana MacPherson
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    I think we are so close to another L’école Polytechnique incident or the running down of mainly women in Toronto by an incel, that I’m okay with silencing this rhetoric.

    • mikeyc
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 10:52 am | Permalink

      That’s terrifying and shocking to me, as Canada always seems so sane. But do you think silencing this rhetoric will prevent it?

      • Michael Fisher
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 11:42 am | Permalink

        It might stop a small proportion of misfits connecting with other misfits.

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

          That’s about the slipperiest slope in the whole damn mountain range.

          There’re plenty of weirdos out there who’d probably be better off not reading de Sade’s libertine novels — or Popular Mechanics, for that matter. 🙂

          • Michael Fisher
            Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

            This is true, but I was moved to write that by this bit in the OP:
            Judges decision [14] where Mr. Sears [Dimitri the Lover] writes that Men should not face criminal charges for “raping a woman who cockteased” nor for “ravaging one’s own chattel [wife]”

            For me this is over the line.

          • revelator60
            Posted January 25, 2019 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

            Luckily de Sade’s novels are so boring that most weirdos wouldn’t find them worth the effort. I read through all 1,205 pages of “Juliette” and can report that the sex isn’t sexy and the violence is horrifying but sandwiched between long deserts of “philosophy.”

            • Ken Kukec
              Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:14 pm | Permalink

              Years ago I read Justine — which is mercifully shorter (barely a novella, really) and thus lacking in such longueurs — though I must concede that nothing about it left me longing to dive into Juliette. 🙂

        • gravelinspector-Aidan
          Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

          I don’t think it would even do that. I mean, part of the point of Facebook and the like is to allow like-minded people to find each other and communicate. If you stop them talking on dead trees, or Facebook, or WattsApp, or FlavourDuJour, then they will move on to somewhere else.

          • infiniteimprobabilit
            Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

            I disagree. The ‘they’ll only do it some other way’ argument can be used to inhibit taking any action that isn’t guaranteed 100% effective.

            Whereas even 10% effective is surely an improvement.

            Overton window and all that.

            cr

            • gravelinspector-Aidan
              Posted January 26, 2019 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

              Expending large effort and resources to negligible effect remains a WOMBAT. Find a better solution – such as holding people publicly accountable for their statements and jailing a few on a regular basis. You could say, “Byng“-ing them an encouragement.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 11:56 am | Permalink

      Is there any evidentiary basis or historical precedent for believing that silencing them would be effective in forestalling such an incident?

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

        The hate laws in Canada are built around calling for the harm of a group. I think it has been shown, historically, that rallying groups of people to attack another group, never ends well. This is why there are formal ways of evaluating whether someone should be stopped. The courts decided this is one of them.

    • Blue
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

      I am, Ms MacPherson, so, so saddened to hear this news.

      Blue

    • Mark Sturtevant
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

      I can certainly understand that opinion. On a related note, I have been puzzled by the extension of free speech to allow extreme use of hate speech against specific individuals online and on their phone. You know the kind, as they involve extreme insulting and demeaning harrasement, referrals to rape, ‘i know where you live’, that sort of thing.
      Have long wondered why that is even allowed and is not illegal as it is clear that any recipient cannot process the difference between that sort of harrasement and intimidation versus actual direct threats. Inside, it feels the same and seems just as awfull.

      • Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

        Threats of violence are illegal; I guess it depends on how explicit they are. If hate calls are repeated and harassing, regardless of whether they threaten violence, the FBI can be involved in the US.

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

        I think if someone felt it was a threat they could prosecute people who did that but if it’s not threatening and it’s someone mouthing off and the person doesn’t take it as a threat, then it’s not considered prosecution worthy.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

        In the US, it is a federal crime to make obscene or harassing telephone calls, even in the absence of any explicit threats of violence. See 47 USC section 223(a).

    • gravelinspector-Aidan
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

      When (note : not “if”) there is another successful attack and it becomes clear that your strategy has failed, you’ll drop the ineffective tactic of silencing?

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

        I don’t call for constant silencing and I don’t think this is an example of that. The hate laws, as Jerry posted, are rarely used. When they are used, there is careful deliberation so to suggest that this is some sort of terrible Canadian censorship is just false. Instead, this is stopping riling up people against groups. I can get behind that. I don’t know if it is going to stop all of it but if it makes a difference, great.

        • infiniteimprobabilit
          Posted January 25, 2019 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

          I’m with you on this one, Diana.

          IMO ‘free speech’ is not an absolute right and nor is anything else. Not even in US of A. It’s impossible in any society to have an absolute right that doesn’t potentially infringe on someone else’s rights or wellbeing. And it’s unrealistic to pretend there can be.

          cr

    • Curtis
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

      The problem comes when someone you disagree with gets to define hate speech. For example, in half the states, promoting abortion might be considered hate speech against unborn babies. Or perhaps Trump could define hate speech by executive order.

      Restricting your enemy’s rights seems great. But once you allow it, sooner or later, your friends will lose their rights as well.

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 9:02 pm | Permalink

        So how did you feel about communism being illegal in the US?

        How do you feel about other restrictions on rights? Like freedom of religion?

    • chrism
      Posted January 26, 2019 at 6:30 am | Permalink

      My first reaction on reading the over-the-top examples quoted from the paper was that it must be satire – surely no one could be dumb enough to believe that and yet have the brains to print a paper? After all, it reads like those regrettable ‘newspapers’ that little boys used to write and draw by hand for the entertainment of their peers before the internet took over. All scatology, all the time.
      I’m with James Stuart Mill when it comes to free speech, so I believe our hate speech laws will be counterproductive. Nonetheless, if they actually believe their words, they deserve all the scorn and shame we can pour on them.

  2. Jon Gallant
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    Beside the major concern of the paper’s misogyny, I was struck by two other things.
    First this: “The paper also repeatedly claimed the existence of a worldwide, blood-thirsty Jewish conspiracy. The imagery depicted Jews as devils with serpent tongues and reptilian hands, argued Jews were behind the 9/11 terrorist attacks and that the Holocaust was a Jewish myth to strengthen their control of the world.” This may be cause for indictment in Canada, but here it would be endorsed by such noted progressive authors as Alice Walker, and by scholars at “Gender Studies” departments at places like Rutgers. The second striking feature is that Mr. St. Germaine looks uncannily like the little ghoul in Charles Addams cartoons.

    • gravelinspector-Aidan
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

      All of the stories these two idiots were promoting are very old shit – well on the way to coprolites – and no doubt are well promoted by other bunches of idiots.

      Mr. St. Germaine looks uncannily like the little ghoul in Charles Addams cartoons.

      Ummm, Uncle Fester? (Only going from the B/W TV series, the cartoons are rare sheep on this side of the pond.)

  3. Posted January 25, 2019 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    It should be legal to advocate for a change in a law — the age of consent, for example. It is illegal to advocate breaking the existing law.

    • Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:56 pm | Permalink

      Is it really illegal to advocate breaking a law? Isn’t that how the US got started? I would have thought that arguing, for example, for civil disobedience would not be illegal. I’m thinking of my own statements long ago encouraging and helping to organize trespassing to make sit-ins in front of tractors that were about to destroy endangered bird habitat.

      I note that the statements in the paper under discussion do more than this, as they advocate actual violence against women. But I wonder about the less extreme cases, such as the one I just mentioned.

      • Posted January 25, 2019 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

        All rebellions are illegal until they succeed. Word to the wise: don’t fail.

        Protests like the one you organized are illegal. That’s why folks get arrested for them. It’s a conscious decision to commit a crime (a misdemeanor in your case) to make a public statement.

        In the US, the benchmark for what constitutes actionable advocacy to commit a crime is Brandenburg v. Ohio.

        In Canada, it’s apparently hurting someone’s feelings.

        • gravelinspector-Aidan
          Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

          All rebellions are illegal until they succeed.

          I remember seeing “Dubya” doing a “confused owl” blink on being challenged with the statement that “one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter” – he showed his mettle (compared to the present incumbent) by not walking into the proffered man-trap by saying that he’d target freedom fighters too.

          Word to the wise: don’t fail.

          “History is written by the victors” – which probably goes back to Ashurbanipal the Great and his people-peelers. In writing.

      • Posted January 25, 2019 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

        Did your campaign succeed?

        • Posted January 25, 2019 at 6:34 pm | Permalink

          We had many campaigns, and yes, they often succeeded, at least temporarily. Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge, near Austin (my city in the 80s and 90s), was created to protect the species we fought for, and this only happened because of grassroots environmental activism.

          Of course those of us who trespassed got arrested, and we expected this. But no one ever got into trouble just for advocating occupation of the threatened habitats. So I think advocating a non-violent crime is not itself a crime. We made very powerful people very angry (especially H Ross Perot, real estate developer and failed presidential candidate, and George Bush, then governor and strong advocate for property rights), so I think that if our advocacy had been a crime, they would have put us in jail for it.

        • Posted January 25, 2019 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

          I just checked the numbers for one of the species of greatest concern and and most arrests, the Black-capped Vireo. When we were working on this, the world population was down to 350 birds and falling. The latest tally is >5000 birds. So yes, success, at least for that species, though the other focal species, the Golden-cheeked Warbler, is still declining.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 7:08 pm | Permalink

        It is legal to advocate breaking the law in the US so long as such advocacy is unlikely to result in imminent law-breaking.

        It is unlawful to aid or abet, or to conspire with another to commit, a specific crime.

        For example, it is lawful to advocate that people smoke pot even in states where it remains illegal, but it would be unlawful to conspire with someone to smuggle marijuana into such a state.

    • DrBrydon
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

      I think that would fall under 3c of the exceptions.

    • Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

      I don’t think it’s illegal to advocate breaking the existing law unless you’re urging people to do it on the spot and it leads to violence or disruption. For example, I can say that I urge people not to pay their income taxes, and that is not illegal. Where do you get this idea about the illegality of breaking existing law?

      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

        a. Obviously breaking existing laws is illegal.

        b. Encouraging or advocating it risks a ‘conspiracy’ or ‘accessory’ charge. (Note: I disagree with such charges, particularly when the penalty for conspiracy is vastly more serious than the penalties for the relevant law-breaking, but they have been used, even in the USA. Chicago Seven for instance).

        cr

      • Posted January 25, 2019 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

        Yes, Jerry, I think that is correct. I think you have to advocate violence to get into trouble.

        • Posted January 26, 2019 at 11:03 am | Permalink

          I think you have to advocate violence to get into trouble.

          Then shoplifting is cool.

      • steve oberski
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

        “An individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for the law”

        ― Martin Luther King Jr.

      • Posted January 26, 2019 at 10:28 am | Permalink

        For example, I can say that I urge people not to pay their income taxes, and that is not illegal.

        Incitement is illegal if the advocated criminal act is imminent. If you announce: ‘were everyone to stop paying their taxes, the government would have to start listening to the people!’ you’re good to go. If you’re urging folks to not pay their taxes on April 15, 2019, you’re committing a crime. (Though it’s highly unlikely you’d be prosecuted for it.) If you give them tips on how to do it, or evade punishment (things these two lovely gentlemen did), that’s aiding & abetting, also a crime.

    • Posted January 25, 2019 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

      I believe it is entirely legal, and in some cases proper, to advocate breaking a law. That is what civil disobedience advocates from Thoreau and the civil rights advocates have done. If people do break laws they believe are unjust, they have to be prepared to take the consequences.

      • Posted January 25, 2019 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

        Yep.

      • Posted January 26, 2019 at 10:46 am | Permalink

        Saying it’s legal to break a law is an oxymoron.

        You may well believe it’s morally ‘proper’ to break or ignore a particular law you disagree with. But so do abortion clinic bombers.

        • Posted January 26, 2019 at 11:11 am | Permalink

          I said it is legal to *advocate* breaking a law. Obviously, breaking a law is illegal by definition.

          • Posted January 26, 2019 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

            It is not legal to advocate breaking a law. I don’t know where you folks got this idea, but run it by your local police station if you don’t believe me.

  4. DW
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 10:58 am | Permalink

    Wait, can we pause a moment on “former doctor and pick up artist”. When did “pick up artist” become something you put on your CV?

    • Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

      I believe Dr. Richard Carrier, PhD, started the fad.

    • gravelinspector-Aidan
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

      Someone got arrested (or detained – I’m not sure) in Glasgae recently for trying to film some for-youTube guff about chat-up lines or being a “pick up artist”.
      It is quite possible that he was detained for his own safety as the Saturday Night crowd of Sauchihall ladies started sharpening their shivs for the party. I’m not normally one for blood sports, but I’d watch that on YouTube.

  5. Posted January 25, 2019 at 10:59 am | Permalink

    These two foul men have been convicted for saying exactly what many imams preach with impunity.

    • mikeyc
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 11:01 am | Permalink

      Indeed.

    • davelenny
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

      Quite so. Next time, the two men need to start a religion first with rape as a sacrament and anti-semitism as a doctrinal requirement; then defence 3b will be available to them.

      • gravelinspector-Aidan
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

        LRon missed several tricks, didn’t he?

  6. Marina
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 11:01 am | Permalink

    Now, free speech is wonderful, but if you allow someone to teach the earth is flat you create damage for anybody listening to it.
    Saying that “most women are irrational, short-sighted, passive-aggressive traitors” is like saying the earth is flat. Untrue and damaging, not a simple opinion.

    • mikeyc
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 11:02 am | Permalink

      Wait. What? How in the world does saying “the earth is flat” harm anyone?

      • NormG
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 11:58 am | Permalink

        I suppose that, other than producing people who believe gravity is not real, we’ve never been to the moon, we’ve never been to space for that matter, all scientists and NASA are in cahoots hiding this flat pizza we are living on, all space images are cgi, the fundamental forces of nature are an opinion, we can never go to Antarctica, the sun and moon are local (no more than 30k in the sky) Evolution and climate change are lies from the same secret organisation that hides the flat earth from us, nothing.

        • mikeyc
          Posted January 25, 2019 at 11:59 am | Permalink

          Again, where’s the harm?

          • NormG
            Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

            Science illiteracy is a threat to your nation.“The consequence of that is that you breed a generation of people who do not know what science is nor how and why it works,” he said. “You have mortgaged the future financial security of your nation. Innovations in science and technology are the (basis) of tomorrow’s economy.” Neil DeGrasse Tyson

            • mikeyc
              Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:53 pm | Permalink

              That’s a reason to educate people, not silence them.

              • NormG
                Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

                You asked where the harm was.

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

          What’s this about Antarctica?

          I’m familiar with the debunking of the others, but never heard the Antarctica thing bunked in the first place.

          • Michael Fisher
            Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

            A faction of the anti-spherists hold with this Flat Earth map:

            In which Antarctica is an 150′ tall ice wall that forms a tall rim at the edge of the Flat Earth disk. Supposedly NASA [or NATO or black helicopters] guard the wall to keep people from climbing it and falling off the edge…

            • gravelinspector-Aidan
              Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

              In which Antarctica is an 150′ tall ice wall that

              Have they been smoking Game of Throwns, instead of reading it?

            • phoffman56
              Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

              That ‘world map’, with us all being surrounded by the Antarctic ice wall, was very amusing. I hadn’t seen it before.

              Now, just in case I’m taken seriously, a pathetic attempt at humour:

              So presumably ‘militant’ south-centric Australians with similar delusions would have us all surrounded instead by (much more pathetic) arctic ice, living in a disk with Antarctica more-or-less at its centre. But (unfortunately for us with less delusions) climate change will likely completely melt all that delusional boundary away much too soon. How then will these south-phylic deluded explain world geography?

              Actually all the ice everywhere might go in some (few?) centuries, the last being the Antarctic of course. But with 10s (100s?) of metres of rising sea, humanity will be preoccupied (to say the least) with simply survival as a species, too much to celebrate the melting away of this flat-earther delusion.

              • Michael Fisher
                Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

                There are other disk maps – all of them stolen [repurposed] legit map projections. I’ve never seen an original creation from the Flat-Earthers, who are all ‘challenged’ when it comes to geometry, Newton etc.

                Flat-Earthers are probably already on the decline as YouTube is working on mechanisms to demote fringe conspiracy shit in the rankings & cut off the monetization. The people who pay for ads are complaining when their products/services get associated with the Flatties, anti-vaxxers, racists etc.

            • phoffman56
              Posted January 25, 2019 at 6:29 pm | Permalink

              Now that I think of it, these flat-earthers would be correct after removal of just one point from the earth, namely the south pole itself.

              To explain, of course I may seem to be taking the earth to be an exact sphere, which it is not. But the main point is that these flat-earthers would be mathematical topologists, but oblivious to geometry in its more complicated senses. Remove a point from the surface of a sphere and you are left with a disc, topologically. These goofy folks are then better described as disc-earthers. They are not really flat-earthers, because flatness has nothing to do with topology, only the more complicated differential geometry.

    • DrBrydon
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

      I think you need to explain how this creates “damage.” Even if it does in some way, you have to weigh that damage against the damage caused by a remedy which allows censorship.

    • Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

      Sorry, but while a college or state can forbid the teaching of creationism in a public school, it is not illegal to stand on a soapbox and proclaim it, or to proclaim a flat earth. Nor should it be! How else would we know the evidence for why the Earth was round?

      I suppose you’d ban Holocaust Denialism, too, since it’s untrue and “damaging”. But without it how would we know what the evidence for the Holocaust is–something that each generation needs to relearn?

      Sorry, but I disagree strongly with your view that “untrue and damaging” speech should be banned.

    • Posted January 25, 2019 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

      I find it untenable to ban speech according to the criterion that you consider it harmful.

  7. nwalsh
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 11:15 am | Permalink

    I’m with Diana on this. No problem here.

  8. Posted January 25, 2019 at 11:27 am | Permalink

    Notice that this guy might have been ok if he’d demonstrated a religious connection. I regard this as one of the more odious aspects of the hate speech laws.

  9. barube
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    Thanks for blogging about this. My views align with yours. As a Canadian I can say that I lament our hate speech laws. They will and have morphed. Not good, especially that our current leader is a sjw-gender obsessed leftist.

  10. steve oberski
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    Sears told his readers to shut down women talking down to men with “extreme prejudice,”

    This seems to be a clear incitment to violence against an identifiable group of people, there is already legistlation in place for this sort of criminal behaviour.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

      A Canadian statute?

      No US statute would pass First Amendment muster unless the statements in question were likely to incite imminent lawless action.

  11. Glenda Palmer
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 11:51 am | Permalink

    Sub

  12. Liz
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

    This is a difficult topic for me and I admire the courage involved in tackling this issue. Every time I read about this on here I am undecided until I sense a danger in prohibiting any speech for fear of getting the type of “wrong” speech wrong. I usually think about religion and how grateful I am that there are no blasphemy laws in the United States. I didn’t even really know there were any until more recently in my life. However, this is where I stand on this particular comment:

    “…that speech should be deemed illegal only if it incites immediate violence…”

    “’In a non-feminized country, no man would ever face criminal charges merely for…raping a woman who cockteased him incessantly.’”
    I have no power when being raped unless I have a knife or pepper spray. That is not okay to say in front of me.

    • Posted January 25, 2019 at 8:54 pm | Permalink

      +1

      It is easy to be in favor of free speech when that speech that does not disgust us. It is for the disgusting speech that it is difficult to defend the right. But not so long ago speaking out in favor of gay sex and marriage rights was disgusting to many. And for some, it still is.

  13. Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    It is unfortunate what they have said, but making laws that restrict free speech will have the unintended effect of pushing people like Sears underground and more likely to produce another L’école Polytechnique.

    When people can act on their hostility through speech that can have a psychological mitigating effect of taking the edge off of real actions.

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

      Ah. “These men can be assisted to avoid inevitable violence by … providing a safe space where they can vent their frustrations before resorting to violence.”

      Statement by Sears, paraphrased by the judge.

      That point is not automatically wrong, but as against that, encouraging such rhetoric can also reinforce their mindset. It can go either way.

      cr

  14. Ken Kukec
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

    Are we sure these guys aren’t some elaborate Poes? Their fish-wrap seems way too over-the-top for its contents to constitute anyone’s sincerely held beliefs.

    But then, the world never ceases to be a source of wonderment when it comes to the crap some people will buy into.

    • darrelle
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

      More or less my thoughts as well.

      Can’t imagine a pick-up artist having much success with those lines.

  15. Ken Pidcock
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    I’m conflicted here. I understand the importance of defending freedom of speech, but the Canadian statute seems defensible. We’re social animals who can be manipulated, and I worry that expansive free speech can as easily be used to promote authoritarianism as defend against it. Then I think that’s just cowardly.

  16. sang1ee
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    I’ve had this paper delivered to me during the past few years and sometimes written “LOL” across the front page and mailed the entire thing back to them a couple of times.

    What’s funny is that one of these guys has some kind of Native ancestry and the publication had a kind of indigenous flavor sprinkled in with the antisemitism and misogyny. Real bizarre stuff. I think they should be allowed to air their views and publish but not if they are inciting harassment or violence, which I don’t believe was the case. However, I haven’t read all of their stuff so I’ll reserve judgement.

    • Posted January 25, 2019 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

      They should defend themselves by saying they hate only white women, not all women.

  17. Ullrich Fischer
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, this publication seems pretty clearly to be exhorting people to violence, so should be shut down not necessarily on the hate speech law, which I agree is dangerous and subject to abuse by Islamists and other professional offense takers, but on laws against conspiracies to commit hate crimes.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:36 pm | Permalink

      Canada’s hate speech laws explicitly allow for the criticism or discussion of religion. So, you can’t be dragged to court for criticizing Islam.

      • steve oberski
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

        Especially since we (very recently) got rid of our blashpemy law.

      • Nicolaas Stempels
        Posted January 26, 2019 at 11:53 pm | Permalink

        Yes, whether you approve of this law or not, they should throw (3)(b) out. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander, or is it? 😁

  18. Mark Sturtevant
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

    I would reluctantly extend protections of free speech to almost every one of their spewings, but isn’t it a bona-fide crime to push for readers to nullify juries involved in rape and assault? I would be surprised if that wasn’t a crime.

    • gravelinspector-Aidan
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

      but isn’t it a bona-fide crime to push for readers to nullify juries involved in rape and assault?

      I couldn’t work out what they were meaning, and just shrugged it as implying some weirdness of the Canadian legal system that I didn’t know about. Do you have any idea about what they could actually mean?

      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 3:44 pm | Permalink

        From the court’s judgement (the PCC linked to in the post):
        ‘Dimitri the Lover [Sears] also advocates jury nullification by men becoming “lone wolf gender warriors” to allow other men to be acquitted on sexual assault trials’.

        (My opinion: That attitude is extremely dangerous to the jury system, exactly as dangerous as a femin**i who believes on principle that any man accused of a sexual offence must automatically be guilty.)

        cr

        • Posted January 25, 2019 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

          In thinking further, I have come around to understanding that this could be legal in the U.S (!) If there was an actual instance of a follower getting on a rape/assault jury, and that person then tries to nullify a guilty verdict, then that could well be viewed as a crime. But just advocating for a hypothetical person to commit a crime is different from directing a specific person already on a jury to do so.

        • gravelinspector-Aidan
          Posted January 26, 2019 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

          I still don’t understand what “jury nullification” is. If jurors die (or withdraw for other reasons, “medical” being the only one I’ve heard of sticking), the trial continues until … I think 9 jurors has been done in Englans, and as low as 111 in Scotland (starting at 15). For long, complex cases, the judge may empower a larger than normal panel (up to 15 in England/ Wales, I think up to 18 in Scotland) expecting some drop-outs. But that’s not “nullification”. In the event of major juror intimidation, a trial may be re-started under higher security, but again, not “nullification”. It sounds like he’s talking about a legal concept that just does not exist on this side of the pond.

          Or, he’s spouting insane drivel, probably aiming for a “not guilty by insanity” appeal.

      • Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

        I was thinking that that particular part was related to obstruction of justice and jury tampering. I beleive the latter is a crime in the U.S. (at least!)

  19. Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

    “Richard Blouin is the judge who rejected the defendants’ claim that their paper was satirical”

    A clear case of missing frogs and lizards. Adding a lizard or amphibian into the “satire” is known to instantly defuse any hint of racism, new world order, and antisemitism. Maybe next time.

    Always remember, if it features such an animal, it cannot be anything sinister and is just good fun.

    • Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

      On a more serious note, I don‘t think the “slippery slope” concern can withstand scrutiny. There are already various laws that restrict freedom of speech in about any Western country, including the USA.

      These restraints also sit in fuzzy categories, and do not break down to simple, hard and fast rules. In each of such cases, judges have to careful look at the evidence and make assessments of whether the criteria for category membership hold, or not, does defamation, libel etcetera apply, for instance.

      For such reasons, I don’t believe that hate speech laws are different in kind. They are just one item more on the list of things restrictions.

      In this comment I am not concerned with the potential abuse of such laws, whether it would be acceptable. I only want to addreas the “slippery slope” (or “who gets to decide”) argument, which is faulty. Criteria can be set up, and carefully used by judges to decide, for instance.

      • infiniteimprobabilit
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

        Absolutely agree with you there Aneris.

        And I disagree with almost all ‘slippery slope’ arguments (such as Jerry’s). They are usually fallacious and misleading, and of course, like guns, they can fire in either direction.

        There is no action in society which cannot become oppressive or toxic, taken to extremes, and it is erroneous to say that we have to tolerate the extremes for the sake of the moderate.

        Am I allowed to stand in front of my neighbour’s house 12 hours a day shouting abuse at him? Why not, I’m in a public place. I’m entitled to my free speech.

        Everything in life involves value judgements and drawing lines. It is fallacious to suggest that ‘free speech’ is an exception to this.

        cr

        • mikeyc
          Posted January 25, 2019 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

          Do you think that if I published a critique of Donald Trump where I said he was “repulsive pedant, a gross hypocrite and an unprincipled oppressor”, I should be prosecuted, fined and jailed?

          What about if I said his administration was characterized by “ridiculous pomp, foolish adulation, and selfish avarice.” What then? Should I be put on trial, sentenced to prison and fined?

          Because that’s exactly what happened here in the US. Those quotes were what got two men (of many) convicted under the Alien and Sedition Acts.

          The problem with slippery slopes is that you don’t know how slippery they are until you’re on them. Best to avoid them as much as possible.

          • Diana MacPherson
            Posted January 25, 2019 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

            You could say all those things and not be charged under any crime in Canada.

            • mikeyc
              Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

              Undoubtedly true today. What about tomorrow?

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted January 25, 2019 at 8:59 pm | Permalink

                It is why we have a democracy and an independent judiciary. In the US communism wasn’t allowed. I don’t know if it is. Ow or not but that was a huge limitation on freedom. In Canada we still have communist candidates here and there. Neither country has collapsed by their separate approaches and Canada could easily have pointed out that the US was less free in its limitation of the right of freedom of expression, freedom of conscience or freedom of association.

          • Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

            The key properties of a “slippery slope” is that it’s slippery and sloped. It’s written such that nobody knows how far treating is safe, and it gives the authority too much power for abuse: it can ignore speech of one side, but prosecute political opponents.

            But are hate speech laws inherently that way? I don’t think that has been demonstrated.

            It is rather the fear that the “woke” ideology, hypocrticial, one-sided, cruel and abusive as it is, might guide authorities and judges in a similar way as it erratically directs hate mobs onto another blood track. It is the fear that such laws are pretense to regulate and control the wild frontiers of the internet far more broadly than the letter of the law originally intended. It is the American libertarian streak that simply dislikes any additional paragraphs in the books.

            Libertarianism is one of the most ridiculous ideologies out there: paranoid about governments but cool with total surveillance by private entities. Angst-ridden about any law, but unconcerned about intrusive ten extra pages in the terms of service coming up every other week. Extremely vigilant about the 1st Amendment, but deeply relaxed about censorship, gatekeeping and information filtering by silicon valley, that happens literally every time you use the internet. When it hits others, exhuding a laissez-faire attitude — their business, their rules. When it hits the own tribe, or people they like — yelling at clouds (though quickly going back to “free speech”).

            • Liz
              Posted January 25, 2019 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

              y = (wintry)(m)x + b

              Very much appreciate your comments.

            • Diana MacPherson
              Posted January 25, 2019 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

              Agreed esp with the part about people who hate government control but are ok with private companies knowing all about them. I used to work in government supporting the health department. I used to say that people were paranoid about the government having their information, which was protected by a ton of legislation and used only for one consented to purpose as per legislation, than the pizza delivery guy knowing all about them. It’s a clumsy analogy but I think accurate in essence.

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted January 25, 2019 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

          The First Amendment permits reasonable “time, place, and manner” restrictions to be placed on speech (which is why you wouldn’t be permitted to stand in front of your neighbor’s house shouting abuse for 12 hours). But the absolutely crucial key is that such restrictions must be content (and, even more crucially, viewpoint neutral). The law could not, for example, allow you to shout Republican, but not Democratic, slogans in front of your neighbor’s house. It’s laws that restrict the content of speech that create slippery legal slopes.

          Libel laws, of course, concern the content of speech, which is why we have no criminal libel laws in the US. And even in the civil context, the US Supreme Court has created sturdy toeholds along the slope. A civil lawsuit for libel can be maintained by a public figure, for example, only if the alleged libelous statements are false and were made with knowledge of their falsity or with reckless disregard for their truth.

          If someone can suggest a similarly secure toehold regarding “hate speech” — one that supplies a readily applicable bright-line for distinguishing what it is and what it isn’t — I’m sure the US courts would be willing to consider it in the context of the our First Amendment. I, for one, have yet to hear such a standard proposed.

  20. Curtis
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

    For all those who think hate speech laws are a good idea, remember that someone you don’t like may get to define hate speech.

    In half the states, promoting abortion could be considered hate speech against unborn babies.

    You need to think really hard before advocating limits to freedom of speech. It is ONLY for speech that people hate not for nice pleasant conversations.

  21. Ken Kukec
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

    I dig that crazy pic of Sears and St. Germaine — looks like Lawrence Tierney as “Joe Cabot” from Reservoir Dogs (if he’d been shrunk down to the size of Danny DeVito) standing next to James Franco from The Disaster Artist. 🙂

    https://www.sbs.com.au/movies/sites/sbs.com.au.film/files/styles/full/public/disaster.jpg?itok=JmeKH__W

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

      Sorry, didn’t been to embed Joe Cabot.

    • mikeyc
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

      Or Lenny Mclean as Barry the Baptist in Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels;

      https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTlCXJ70byreKxXLlNdToWIP9iH0_z3N8uAulDzVIupVK5txcXTZQ

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

        Good call, Mikey. (And great movie, too.)

        • steve oberski
          Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

          It was good but I had to turn the sub-titles on to understand a lot of the dialog.

          • Ken Kukec
            Posted January 25, 2019 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

            Could be worse: try figuring out what Brad Pitt or any of the other “Irish Travellers” are saying in Snatch. 🙂

  22. DrBrydon
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

    (3)(c) if the statements were relevant to any subject of public interest. . . .

    The trouble with these sorts of statutes is that they call for what must ultimately be a subjective evaluation of what is “relevant” and of “public interest.” Although swimming in the deep, stagnant end of the pool, arguably this publication was engaged in a political debate. Someone could have easily said that this publication was laughable, and left it at that. Someone didn’t like it, though, and used the courts to shut them up. I am sure that dictatorships have a very narrow view of what would be acceptable, and could use a statute like this to limit speech extremely. Note also that (3)(b) would excuse similar speech if couched in religion terms. I still call it censorship with no limit except the opinion of the judges.

  23. organism
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 1:58 pm | Permalink

    I live in the ward where Your Ward News was distributed.

    When this paper first arrived on my doorstep, I might’ve thought it was satire, except for the fact that James Sears is infamous in my neighbourhood, having run for office at a couple of different government levels repeatedly.

    The caricatures of Jewish people were particularly stupid, to the point where I couldn’t take it seriously. The things written in Your Ward News were beyond asinine, and anyone with half a brain could figure that out right away.

    Should they have been charged under hate speech laws?

    I certainly don’t mind seeing these two individuals go to jail. But I wish they could be charged with something other than “hate speech”.

    Everyone I know in my neighbourhood despises James Sears, and I don’t think he has much influence at all. I think 62 people voted for him in the last election. That’s very few people in a large ward in Canada’s biggest city.

  24. Douglas Thompson
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

    Canadians have always accepted greater ‘intrusion’ to their individual rights by the Responsible State than their Southern co-existors (neighbour implies affection). As an empiricist, I ask which country presently is producing morally defensible public dialogue at the present time?

    Did not Jesus have an axiom about critical hypocrisy? Matthew 7:3-5. Perhaps Jerry should consider and redirect his energy to his American issues. Jerry stand shoulder to shoulder with Alex Jones. Ye shall be judged by your company.

    • DrBrydon
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

      I don’t think this is about “morally defensible speech,” whatever that is. It’s about whether it is appropriate to censor speech in a democracy.

    • mikeyc
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

      What the smeg is “morally defensible speech”? I’m sure you are certain you know what it is, so please define it for us.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

        Yeah, that “morally defensible speech” one’s a stumper. I hear Canada’s got more bear shit, too, though I don’t know if there’s an “axiom about critical hypocrisy” that accounts for it.

  25. eric
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

    I wonder whether a free speech almost-absolutist can support a public postal service (such as Canada Post) refusing to distribute a hateful publication such as YWN.

    I can support it. The reason is pretty obvious too, I don’t know why liberals keep forgetting it: because the next person in charge of the postal service might decide that your liberal paper is a hateful publication.

    You limit the ability of government to censor ‘dangerous’ ideas because what the government considers ‘dangerous’ will not always align with what you consider dangerous. In fact there are many many cases of government considering ‘dangerous’ speech that we would consider vital for any meaningful freedom.

    • Diana MacPherson
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

      Isn’t that why you don’t allow government to decide on these cases but instead of separate and independent judiciary? Most democracies have limitations on rights.

      • mikeyc
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

        They do and that’s what this dispute here at WEIT is all about (or aboot, as the case may be); how far do we go in limiting speech rights?

        • phoffman56
          Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

          Actually it’s “aboot” versus “abaat”, isn’t it? Or “abaote”.

          • Ken Kukec
            Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

            Eh?

            • nwalsh
              Posted January 25, 2019 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

              I would have thought Americans would have outgrown this pronunciation criticism nonsense (aboot & eh etc)Canadians are awash
              in the entertainment industry down there and I defy you to pick them out. HUH?

              • nwalsh
                Posted January 25, 2019 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

                I should have placed a little smiley after my remarks 🙂

              • Diana MacPherson
                Posted January 25, 2019 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

                Shhhhh! You’re outing our operatives!

      • eric
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

        There are many feminists in jail in Saudi Arabia awaiting trial for blasphemy. They’ll get their chance to have their dangerous speech protected by the judiciary. I doubt the outcome will be just.

        …A judicial system helps, but I think strong constitutional speech protections provide an extra layer. No system can guarantee justice, of course, but a clear written protection on top of a fair trial system at least makes manipulation and doublespeak by political and judicial leaders more obvious and more politically costly.

  26. phoffman56
    Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

    I’m a Canadian, but do not feel defensive at all about this imperfection in Canadian law, related to freedom of speech, which I generally support very strongly.

    But it is not that clear that USian law is in this respect all that perfect either, though maybe others know enough more about it to convince me against what I write below:

    Apparently one is in US behaving criminally if one encourages direct and immediate physical harm to be done to a specific person. What if it is harm to 2 specific persons? Surely again criminal. But to 17 specific persons for example? Also surely criminal.

    But what if it is a very large set of people, actually of women, and the physical harm is rape? If that also criminal in US, as it should be in my opinion, then it really appears to me that those two assholes just down the road in Toronto would be convicted of a crime in the U.S. as well, because of what they have been publishing.

    Now an objection may be to do with my above word “specific”. (Surely not “immediate”.) It seems to me however the set of women whose harm is advocated here is quite specific.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

      “… though maybe others know enough more about it to convince me against what I write below …”

      Just like a Canadian to be polite when we’re trying to have an argument here. 🙂

      • Diana MacPherson
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 9:04 pm | Permalink

        Well “sorry” wasn’t said yet so….

        A student and i almost collided on campus and we both said “sorry” at the same time. I thought “wow, that was really Canadian”.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 25, 2019 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

      To give you the serious answer your inquiry merits: the issue under USian law isn’t the number of people being put in danger; it’s whether the danger is imminentviz., whether the harm is likely to occur before good speech can counteract bad to prevent it.

      The foundation of the US system is that good speech can out-compete bad in the marketplace of ideas. The only time speech can be prohibited is where that marketplace is constrained from operating freely.

      • phoffman56
        Posted January 25, 2019 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

        Thanks for that good answer, which I had not particularly considered.

        It does bring up a question of the number and type of people to whom it is advocated they do that violence (as opposed to the number to whom the violence is to be done). It is pretty clear here that the potential violators would include some very badly misled and perverted minds, in particular those for whom no amount of counter-speech would have any real effect. If so, hopefully US law takes that into account.

        In any case, it is the vagueness and malleability of “hate speech” which is a major problem for any law like Canada’s, as Jerry has said.

    • Nicolaas Stempels
      Posted January 27, 2019 at 12:13 am | Permalink

      I think the violence threatened is not ‘imminent enough to make it illegal.
      Note, as remarked earlier, the dehumanizing, reducing to ‘vermin-status’* of specific ethnic groups or social classes has shown to often result/be complicit in genocide.

      * the equating of people with vermin is particularly ‘toxic’: our aggression against vermin is basically uninhibited.

  27. Torbjörn Larsson
    Posted January 27, 2019 at 4:11 am | Permalink

    I don’t think Canada’s law is justified.

    That’s because, as the American founders and the courts recognized, there’s a slippery slope between this kind of stuff and other views that might be discussed, and who is to say what’s acceptable speech and what is hateful. … Why not air these views and allow them to face the opposition they deserve? The way to eliminate hatred is to bring it into the open, not repress its expression.

    The courts is to say, which is also why there is no slippery slope and how we can make them face the opposition they deserve.

    Thank you, I have heard these philosophic, and apparently empty, claims before. I am still waiting for research that can tell us if these laws, or their absence, are useful.

    • Torbjörn Larsson
      Posted January 27, 2019 at 4:18 am | Permalink

      Meanwhile, diversity is good, I suppose.

      I don’t begrudge US their absence of hate speech laws. But I am not sure about opinionate on other nation’s laws without having access to facts on their effects.

    • Posted January 27, 2019 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

      “In May 2017 the Swedish Institute, government agency that maintains the Sweden’s official Twitter account blacklisted some 14,000 Twitter users allegedly involved in “threats against migrants, women and LGBTQ people” or suspected of right-wing extremism. The list that was leaked online included Swedish parliamentarians, media correspondents and the Israeli ambassador to Sweden. After the public outcry that followed the ban for the blacklisted users was lifted… In 2017 a 70-year-old woman was prosecuted for expressing a ‘disparaging view of refugees’ on Facebook where she commented public order disturbances allegedly committed by the migrants.”

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship_in_Sweden


%d bloggers like this: