Ezra Levant -- who in the past week has become a living folk hero in North America for his video taped confrontation with an Alberta Human Rights Commission bureaucrat who is investigating his publication of the Danish Mohammed cartoons -- lays out a plan for action in another well-written post on his blog.
Included in his action plan is an effort to get Canadian legislators at the federal and provincial levels to shut down the human rights commissions. He lists the provincial governments in British Columbia and Saskatchewan and the Conservative federal government as the three most likely to comply.
These commissions aren't normal. It's not normal to haul publishers before the government to ask them about their political thoughts. It's not normal for a secular state to enforce a radical Muslim fatwa against cartoons. These human rights commissions are counterfeits; they improperly benefit from the reputation of real courts, but they also destroy respect for the whole legal system -- that's just what counterfeit currency does amidst real currency.
Finally, the federal Conservatives despise the commissions -- Stephen Harper himself called them totalitarian, before he was Prime Minister -- and they might be open to whatever changes are possible, given their minority government. (Here's a good barometer of the cabinet's feelings on the commissions' recent adventures in
While I'm supportive of Levant's efforts and one member of Harper's cabinet has spoken out against the Canadian Islamic Congress' human rights complaint against Mark Steyn and Maclean's magazine, I think Ezra is being a bit dishonest with himself if he expects Harper and the Tories to do anything on this.
First off, when Harper made those comments, it was most likely back in his days as president of the pro-liberty National Citizens Coalition, not when he was a professional politician. Harper said lots of things in those days, including advocating privatizing the CBC. Well, the Conservatives have been in power for two years and I'm still getting Little Mosque on the Prairie pumped into my house at taxpayer expense.
Secondly, there's no way Levant has forgotten about what one of Harper's first acts was shortly after being elected in the winter of 2006.
I'll refresh his memory. This is the third statement Harper issued from his office after his election.
“Free speech is a right that all Canadians enjoy; Canadians also have the right to voice their opinion on the free speech of others. I regret the publication of this material in several media outlets. While we understand this issue is divisive, our government wishes that people be respectful of the beliefs of others. I commend the Canadian Muslim community for voicing its opinion peacefully, respectfully and democratically.”
Ezra knows well that this press release was issued shortly after his Western Standard published the Mohammed cartoons. Levant, a former top aide in the Conservative Party's predecessor the Canadian Alliance, was not the man we saw in the videos after this happened and held back any criticism of Harper on the day he made the announcement. Here's his blog post from that day.
Being a Canadian and having seen Ezra on the political scene for the past seven years, I have to say I am a bit of fan and I'm happy that he is receiving all this international attention. But I wish he would take off his blinders regarding how pro-liberty this Conservative government is under Harper.