27 December 2008

The Loss of Freedom

George Jonas has written a piece on the fate of freedom in the West as we transit from a Classic Liberal to a Modern Liberal society. His post is pretty rambling but his warning is clear - we need to protect basic freedoms and beware of the incursion of false "human rights" that are really individual sensibilities that are rammed down the throats of others.
George has managed to escape from two frightful events in his lifetime - the occupation of Hungary by the Soviet Union and marriage to Barbara Amiel. In the first he became painfully aware of the dangers of the unquestionable sensibilities of the moral elite overriding the rights of anyone to question or debate popular myths and what "everyone knows". We are in serious danger of tredding that path with Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act. The "right" to not be offended masked as being targeted with "Hate Speech" represents a slippery slope to true authoritarian oppression.
I wrote earlier about the Canadian Human Rights Commission inconsistency in a ruling in Montreal recently compared to the gag order issued to Reverend Stephen Boissoin in Alberta. Social misfires, such as statements that offend others, need to be dealt with socially - if someone offends you shun them. But for the State to issue a gag order on otherwise free speech is an abomination in a "free" country. It is only a short step to including criticism of the government as offensive (or "hate") speech. I believe that the argument that homosexuality (or other things) is blasphemous is wrong. I, however, will defend with my life the right of wrong people to say that it is. They may even be right; I only believe that I argue from God's side of this argument.
Just to be clear, the CHRC finding that the writings of imam Abou Hammaad Sulaiman Dameus Al-Hayiti do not represent hate speech against identifiable groups is dead wrong. The ruling gagging Reverend Boissoin is also dead wrong. The difference is that imam Al-Hayiti must have the right to argue his hate and that must be vociferously refuted in the same that the view of Reverend Boissoin must be refuted, not gagged.