Golly, you just know so much about America.<quoted text>
I saw them in Edmonton - and was star struck in the front row! A moving experience - they sing and play with such conviction. As for comments about people wishing htey would just "shut up and sing" and stay out of politics - singers have always played a part in voicing politics - ever listen to anything from the 60s - Dylan, anyone? You start to question whether citizens are becomming numb socially, what about forcing change as citizens and not accepting what your gov't does when you dissagree. It seems as though you can keep the majority of citizens happy as long as the next episode of American Idol is on or you throw a "God Bless America" in there somewhere. AS for our Prime Minister, I also wish he'd get his head out of Bush's ass and realize that free trade is not absolute and we need to take some presedence for environmental protection. As for the Chicks - keep on rockin' the free world - it's nice to know that someones willing to put their reputation out for what they believe in.
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#23 Nov 12, 2006
#24 Nov 12, 2006
It doesn't matter how much we know about america... we know the reaction they are giving. If anyone I knew ever reacted that way to someone stating an opinion... I don't know what I'd do, actually. Depends who it is. No matter who it was, though, it would definitely make my opinion of them spin.
This is just like a stupid playground fight. I always speak my mind, never let someone punching me stop me from that (which is probably how I got in the habit of punching stupid people, actually...). I remember being a kid and telling a kid two grades ahead of me that he had no clue what he was talking about. I got a black eye and a rather nasty bruise under my ribs because I told a grade six kid that grade four kids were alowed on the slide, too. Went to the office (because the teacher made me...) and went back to the slide the next day.
Difference is, that kid got bored after about a week and backed down. You'd think a man in charge of running a country would be able to handle the situation better than that kid did.
And before someone says that it's the people, not the President, who are keeping it going... If people really are so loyal to him, and if he was actually able to give a decent speach once in a while, he'd be able to come out making it look like he was being the bigger, better person and get everyone off the Chicks' backs.
#25 Nov 12, 2006
<If anyone I knew ever reacted that way to someone stating an opinion... I don't know what I'd do, actually. Depends who it is. No matter who it was, though, it would definitely make my opinion of them spin.>
Maybe, you need to look at your government's use of censorship.
#26 Nov 12, 2006
yeah, canada needs to increase their censorship up to the level of usa! right stacey?
#27 Nov 12, 2006
There are now 4 categories for which books are prevented entry to Canada, and can be detained for indefinite periods of time at the border. When customs officials on duty at the border, or working with the Canadian government mail company, perceive that a book, magazine, or film, coming through the border could possibly be defined under one of the following four categories, the material is sent by a chain of command to the federal capital in Ottawa, where one individual has the final decision as to whether the book, magazine, or video in question will be allowed through the border.
The 4 categories are:
HATE LITERATURE: Any book that names a specific group as being responsible for something in history or in society that will promote animosity among other people towards that group. For example he said revisionists and neo-nazis say the Jews are responsible for promoting the Holocaust stories to obtain sympathy and money; this is therefore classified as Hate Literature.
OBSENITY: This is subject to arbitrary decisions by government officials. Most types of pornography from simple exposure of genitalia to violent and degrading sexual acts are seized at the border, and some are returned and some are not after decision are made by the one person in Ottawa.
SEDITION: If the material encourages people to break any criminal law, or human rights code of ethics, of Canada
TREASON: When material promotes the overthrow of the leaders of Canada. This is an outdated law as many people today publicly promote the overthrow of the government to their friends and co-workers.
When deciding whether a book would be included in one of the above 4 categories, the Customs officers have to consider such things as artistic merit and educational value.
A current list of confiscated books and an official definition of the above mentioned criteria is being prepared and distributed by the Canadian Department of Prohibited and Controlled Goods
#28 Nov 12, 2006
I've had the good fortune of spending this past month on the road promoting my new book about how anti-discrimination laws are eroding civil liberties. At the end of a recent talk about the book, an audience member asked whether I believe that freedom of expression is really at risk in the United States from laws meant to aid women and minorities. The heart of my response is, "Look at what's happening in Canada. If we don't watch out, we're next."
The decline of freedom of expression in Canada began with seemingly minor and understandable speech restrictions. In 1990, the Canadian supreme court upheld the conviction of James Keegstra, a public-high-school teacher, for propagating Holocaust denial and anti-Semitic views to his public high-school students, despite repeated warnings from his superiors to stop. Keegstra was convicted of the crime of "willfully promoting hatred against an identifiable group," which carries a penalty of up to two years in jail. Criminalizing hate speech, the court stated, was a "reasonable" restriction on expression, and it therefore passed constitutional muster.
Two years later, the same court held that obscenity laws are unconstitutional to the extent they criminalize material based on sexual content alone. However, any "degrading or dehumanizing" depiction of sexual activity — including material that the First Amendment would protect in the United States — was deprived of constitutional protection to protect women from discrimination.
Even the most zealous advocates of freedom of expression often feel uncomfortable defending the right to engage in Holocaust denial or to propagate degrading pornography. But, not surprisingly, the inevitable result of allowing these initial speech restrictions has been the gradual but significant growth of censorship and suppression of civil liberties across Canada.
In many cases, the speech that is suppressed conflicts with the Canadian government's official multiculturalist agenda, or is otherwise politically incorrect. For example, the Canadian supreme court recently turned down an appeal by a Christian minister convicted of inciting hatred against Muslims. An Ontario appellate court had found that the minister did not intentionally incite hatred, but was properly convicted for being willfully blind to the effects of his actions. This decision led Robert Martin, a professor of constitutional law at the University of Western Ontario, to comment that he increasingly thinks "Canada now is a totalitarian theocracy. I see this as a country ruled today by what I would describe as a secular state religion [of political correctness]. Anything that is regarded as heresy or blasphemy is not tolerated."
Indeed, it has apparently become illegal in Canada to advocate traditional
#29 Nov 12, 2006
Status of free speech in Canada:
In the U.S., a person cannot legally yell "fire" in a crowded movie theatre. But they are free to say just about anything else without danger of criminal prosecution. For example, a conservative Christian teleminister in the early 1990s advocated the execution of all Wiccans in the U.S. More recently, a Baptist pastor from Texas advocated that the U.S. army round up Wiccans and burn them alive with napalm. Both clergy were immune from prosecution due to the U.S. Constitution's First Amendment which guarantees almost complete freedom of speech in the country.(We do not wish to overemphasize genocidal advocacy of Wiccans by conservative Christians. However, we are unaware of any other instances in North America where genocide has been actively advocated in recent years.)
Canadians do not have this degree of freedom of speech. Legislation in Canada follows the British tradition, as do laws in Australia and New Zealand and some other former colonies. In particular, citizens are not allowed to incite or promote hatred, advocate genocide or actually commit genocide against certain specified groups.
The Criminal Code of Canada: Hate Propaganda:
Before 2004-APR-29, the "Hate Propaganda" section of the Criminal Code of Canada (Section 318 & 319) prohibited the expression of hatred against -- or the advocacy of genocide of -- four "identifiable groups:" people distinguished by their "color, race, religion or ethnic origin." 1 Curiously enough, sex, disability, and other criteria are not included. Apparently one can deliver a speech that "willfully promotes hatred" -- even one which "advocates or promotes genocide" -- against women or the disabled and enjoy immunity of prosecution under the law. Hatred against persons on the basis of their sexual orientation was not protected either. An individual could promote hatred or even advocate genocide against heterosexuals, bisexuals, or homosexuals with impunity, as long as the speech was directed at persons with a specific sexual orientation. Bill C-250 changed this when it was signed into law.
#30 Nov 16, 2006
Stacey... I just kind of skimmed those posts, because I'm really short on time... but those things aren't really taken seriously. I have quite a large collection of hatred books... not because I support them, but because I find them especially interesting. They're not hard to come by - they're just not in the major chains.
And quite honestly... I don't know what degree of free speach we have... but I do know that I can say whatever I want to. What does it matter to me if there's a law stopping me from saying something I don't want to say in the first place? Far as I'm concerned, people should be able to say whatever they want - but with the level of common sense deteriorating it might not be such a good idea anymore. If someone wants to verbally abuse someone, they'll do it - the law doesn't matter much.
I still stick to my point, though - people up here, in general, would never react the way people in the U.S. have. You must know as well as I do that the law wouldn't be able to stop this.
#31 Nov 16, 2006
<Far as I'm concerned, people should be able to say whatever they want - but with the level of common sense deteriorating it might not be such a good idea anymore.>
Who will get to decide? You can't have free speech with restrictions.
#32 Nov 17, 2006
Um... free speach has always had restrictions. Certainly you don't mean to say that the U.S. doesn't have free speach restrictions. Because they definitely do. Ideally, free speach would mean that the Chicks could have said their opinion without most of the problems they've run into - so don't tell me free speach doesn't have restrictions.
For the most part, though, I consider the restrictions to be common sense - the kind of things most people wouldn't say anyways. Still, as I said before - people will say whatever they damn well please, regardless of the law.
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