Commission Issues Statement on Decision in Maclean’s Case

TORONTO, April 9 /CNW/ – The Ontario Human Rights Commission has decided not to proceed with complaints filed against Maclean’s magazine related to its publication of an article “The future belongs to Islam.” The complainants alleged that the content of the article and Maclean’s refusal to provide space for a rebuttal violated their human rights. The decision means that the complaints will not be referred to a hearing before the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario. Denying a service because of race or creed can form the basis for a human
rights complaint. However, the Ontario Human Rights Code does not give the Commission the jurisdiction to deal with the content of magazine articles through its complaint process. Even though the Commission is not proceeding with these complaints, it still has a broader role in addressing the tension and conflict that such writings cause in the community and the impact that they have on the groups
that are being singled out. While freedom of expression must be recognized as a cornerstone of a functioning democracy, the Commission strongly condemns the Islamophobic portrayal of Muslims, Arabs, South Asians and indeed any racialized community in the media, such as the Maclean’s articleand others like them, as being inconsistent with the values enshrined in our human rights codes. Media has a responsibility to engage in fair and unbiased journalism. “Clearly more debate on this issue is required in Canada,” commented Chief Commissioner Barbara Hall. “That’s why we issued a statement today.” To read the full statement, please visit our website: www.ohrc.on.ca.  Aussi disponible en françaisFor further information: Jeff Poirier, Manager, Communications Policy &
Education Branch, (416) 314-4539(Source)

Translation:  If we went ahead, it would remove the victimhood status of the perpetually aggrieved constituency and place it on Conservatives.  That might mean losing our phony baloney Star Chamber jobs and we could not continue our stellar work any longer. We simply could not take that risk.

What a lame excuse:   “Ontario Human Rights Code does not give the Commission the jurisdiction to deal with the content of magazine articles through its complaint process”.  So let me get this straight, as long as I post something in a “magazine” and not on a blog or discussion board, you can’t touch me?

What a load of bullkaka.

10 thoughts on “Commission Issues Statement on Decision in Maclean’s Case

  1. Gee, they know “Islamophobia”, “racialization” and irresponsible media when they see it. No need for long and costly hearings; respondents take note.

    Good on you OHRC – that’s why we love you, you never disappoint.

  2. No, I don’t believe he’s off the hook. Three commissions were complained to — Ontario, Canada, and BC. This simply removes Ontario from the mix. I had thought that one of the other two had already rejected the case, but even if that’s so, it still leaves an active case at one.

    Mind you the commissioners aren’t stupid. They see which way the wind is blowing, and they know that Mark Steyn and Macleans magazine have much deeper pockets and a much bigger megaphone than, say, Ezra Levant. And while running into Ezra’s buzz-saw like intellect (I mean that as a compliment) may not be pleasant for a foe, Steyn’s similarly intelligent and possessed of a rather devastating wit.

    Like Marvell, I find it utterly mind-boggling that Barbara Hall would refer to Steyn’s article as Islamophobic. Surely that is not only speech actionable under section 13, but also hateful speech very likely to expose Steyn to mortal threat from terrorists?

    To then tar him (with a nod and a wink) as guilty of a hateful portrayal of a “racialized community” just gilds the lily.

    I jest of course. Crown immunity and all that (or whatever it’s called).

    But there you have it. Governmental officials can make hateful and, I believe, unfounded statements about private citizens, and there appears to be no direct recourse.

    Nice. Freedom for her, not so much for thee or me.

    That said, perhaps people should write to whoever Ms. Hall’s boss is.

    -Holmwood

  3. I thought the part was funny where they said they were concerned about the rise of Islamophobia since the Sept 2001 attacks. But apparently no one is concerned that in Sept 2001, in the name of Islam, the terrorists deprived thousands of people not only of their ‘human rights,’ but of their very lives. Which I would think is the most serious possible violation of human rights.

  4. “……the Commission strongly condemns the Islamophobic portrayal of Muslims, Arabs, South Asians and indeed any racialized community in the media, such as the Maclean’s articleand others like them, as being inconsistent with the values enshrined in our human rights codes.”

    A truly mischievous client might pursue slander charges for that last statement.

    “Media has a responsibility to engage in fair and unbiased journalism.”

    So the OHRC thinks that FOX is the right model? ROFLMAO!

  5. “the Commission strongly condemns the Islamophobic portrayal of Muslims … and indeed any racialized community”

    Are these guys really so *dense* that they think Islam is a race? What else do they imagine is a race? Communism? IFAW? The Catholic church?

  6. John-with-a-lower-case-j:

    “A truly mischievous client might pursue slander charges for that last statement.”

    Probably not, in my experience. It’s comment rather than fact, and there is a lot of latitude in the fair-comment defence. As long as you base your opinion on provable facts (which are: Steyn wrote, and Maclean’s published, a book excerpt about Muslims, and the Sock Puppet Three complained — and OHRC can stop there), then your logic need not be good, you just have to get from the facts to your opinions by some road that isn’t blocked by fact. You don’t even, necessarily, have to have considered all the facts.

    Yes, Barbara Hall is a nitwit; but the law does entitle her to her opinion, as stupid and unsupportable as it might be. (One part that really bothers me is OHRC’s implication that the publisher of an opinion piece bears responsibility for other people’s more extreme opinions — read OHRC’s longer statement about wacko blog commenters. Whoa — did I say wacko blog commenters? — not me, b’ye.)

    That a fair-comment defence is even relevant here assumes OHRC has no Crown immunity from suit, but they might have it (I dunno the statute).

    Holmwood is right — the proper recourse is through the political process, not the courts.

  7. There’s an interesting comment which seems to be overlooked in the ruling ”

    “Denying a service because of human rights grounds such as race or creed can form the basis for a human rights complaint. However, the Ontario Human Rights Code (the “Code”) does not give the Commission the jurisdiction to deal with the content of magazine articles through the complaints process.”

    What they are saying is the AGREE that the perperually aggreived crybabies in the Islamic Congress were justified in their complaint BUT unfortunately the law wasn’t encompassing enough to actually prosecute the case. They follow this up with the veiled threat of better things to come with the new improved commission coming soon.

    I think we need to step up the pressure.

    Who is this asshat Barbara Hall anyway ?

  8. Curious word “Islamophobic” which should mean “fear of Islam” not hatred. A phobia is an irrational fear. In light of Islamo-fascist terrorism like 9/11, London, Madrid and Bali to fear Islam is rational.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Solve : *
32 ⁄ 16 =