Last night I went out to help support a fellow blogger. Blazing Cat Fur is in the process of fighting a lawsuit from a former employee of the Canadian Human Rights Commission. BCF's crime? Linking to another website that sad bad things about the man. I showed up early and met saw a few other bloggers from the city. Scaramouche, Lumpy Grumpy and Frumpy, Kathy Shaidle of Five Feet of Fury fame, and a few others. The number of local bloggers that showed up was rather impressive. There were a few others that I met over the night, I am sorry if I can't remember all their names and blogs, I am sure though that some of them will remind me when they see me next.
So after we filed into the hall, grabbed our jelly filled, sugar coated donuts, latkes, and drinks, Meir Weinstein of the Jewish Defense League led the crowd in the lighting of the first Chanukkah candle and told us the story of the miracle.
After the lighting Mr. Weinstein said a few words about the fight that Blazing Cat Fur is going through. He talked about how people are starting to infringe on our rights in freedoms here in Canada by trying to stifle free speech. He then turned the floor over to a speaker that came all the way from Ottawa, Joseph Ben-Ami who works at the Canadian Centre for Policy Studies.
Mr. Ben-Ami talked about the CHRC's and it's history. He also apologized for his community for the whole mess. Believe it or not Section 13 of the Canadian Charter of Rights was instituted to protect Jewish people from hate speech. Now we see the CHRC's been used to "fight" all sorts of hate speech. I wish I had taken proper notes, but at least Blazing Cat Fur has promised videos of the speeches so check his site out later on today.
After Joseph Ben-Ami, Meir Weinstein introduced Kathy Shaidle who is also embroiled in a lawsuit as well.
She discussed how she's been fighting the same battles, how we need to support people like herself and BCF against the charges that are being made against them. She is a very good speaker and if you are in the area and have the chance to hear her I urge you to go.
Finally after all the big wigs spoke, BCF was dragged up to the stage to say a few words as well. He was a little overwhelmed by the turnout and show of support for him. He talked about what is going on, Lawfare and SLAPP suits.
There was a question and answer period after everyone was finished talking. One fact that was brought up was about the take over in Germany in 1933 by the National Socialist party. All the laws that they used to stifle speech and restrict freedoms of the people weren't laws that they had created. ALL the laws they used were already on the books. Something similar to what's going on here as well.
Two other pieces of information about the CHRC "official" policies were brought up as well. A well known iman in Montreal, the name escapes me at the moment, was accused of hate speech under Section 13.1 of by a private citizen. Everything was documented on paper, video, and audio tape. The CHRC refused to prosecute him. Another time a group of union members were getting upset about the level of anti-semitism that was being vocalized at union meetings and protests. They approached the CHRC to make a complaint and were told since they weren't members of the target group they couldn't make a complaint. There's a lot more stories like that out there about this travesty of justice.
I urge you to go to Blazing Cat Fur's site and make a donation to his legal fund. He needs all the help, support, and prayers. He's in for a tough fight and a long one. So please keep him close to mind. He's not just fighting for himself, he's fighting for the rights of all us Canadians. Not all front line troops wear armour and are armed with weapons.
Keep up the good work, and fight the good fight Blazing Cat Fur.
Update: Welcome Blazing Cat Fur and Five Feet of Fury readers.