Science fiction and philosophy
All we need now is philosophy fiction and science - or is that, like, the 11th season of Good Morning, Hell already?
This blog provides stories that Denyse O'Leary, a Toronto-based journalist, has found to be of interest, as she covers the growing intelligent design controversy. It supports her book By Design or by Chance? (Augsburg 2004). Does the universe - and do life forms - show evidence of intelligent design? If so, Carl Sagan was wrong and so is Richard Dawkins. Now what?
The Canadian blogosphere is alive with this story, so I will only post a few items:
The investigative power over hate speech was first created more than 30 years ago to apply to telephone communications but the law was expanded in 2001 to include the Internet.Here's a summary of prof Moon's report: It will be tabled in Parliament mid 2009.
Critics contend that the human rights power, which was intended to shut down egregious dissemination of hate propaganda, is being abused with nuisance complaints that would not survive a court challenge.
Liberal MP Keith Martin has introduced a private members' motion to eliminate the commission's investigative power to police the Internet and he says he will lobby the all-party Commons justice committee to hold public hearings and submit a report that he hopes will become the basis for government legislation.
Critics, including Martin, also contend there are hate-crime laws in the Criminal Code to punish true offenders, rather than those who have merely offended rather than promoted hate.
"We have a right to be protected from hate speech but we do not have a right not to be offended," he said.
The first recommendation is that section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act (CHRA) be repealed so that the CHRC and the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT) would no longer deal with hate speech, in particular hate speech on the Internet.One big question, of course, is this - given that hate speech IS a crime in our Criminal Code, why was this "human rights" Gestapo permitted to grow up in the first place? We would need to keep a very close eye on the "Hate Crime Teams" proposed. Will the current unaccountable nabobs turn up again on the Hate Crime Teams?
Hate speech should continue to be prohibited under the Criminal Code but confined to expression that advocates, justifies or threatens violence. In the fight against hate on the Internet, police and prosecutors should make greater use of section 320.1 of the Criminal Code, which gives a judge power to order an Internet service provider (ISP) to remove "hate propaganda" from its system.
Each province should establish a provincial "Hate Crime Team," composed of both police and Crown law officers with experience in the area to deal with the investigation and prosecution of hate crimes including hate speech under the Criminal Code.
In Vancouver, two MPs want to stop U.S. fundamentalist minister Fred Phelps and his supporters from entering Canada. Phelps wants to protest the staging of The Laramie Project -- a play with a gay theme -- later this month. Both the B.C. Civil Liberties Association and Little Sister's Book and Art Emporium say Phelps should be allowed to enter the country and speak his mind.Phelps is a genuine bigot, not the straw doll so often stuffed up here to advance various causes, interests, and incomes.
Jeremy Hainsworth of Xtra reports.
Fred Phelps has already caused untold suffering and pain to the families of dead American soldiers by protesting their funerals with signs proclaiming that “God Hates America” because “Gad Hates Fags” and America tolerates them. He even proclaims on his website that Americans should celebrate Improvised Explosive Devices as a gift from a God who is punishing the soldiers by blowing them up – again, for America’s crime of tolerating homosexuality.So, good for the BC gay rights groups who say, let him come and speak his mind!
Extraterrestrial life: Here's a story you could only read in New Scientist ...