Feb. 11, 2006: A file photo of Michel Brunelle holding a sign saying 'Freedom of the press is sacred', argues with a Muslim man who called him a racist during a demonstration by local Muslims [in Canada] protesting the recent publishing of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad in a Danish newspaper.
Photo Credit: John Mahoney/Montreal Gazette
Photo Credit: John Mahoney/Montreal Gazette
The voice of Muslim "community" is reaching fever-pitch. Ezra Levant, a Canadian publisher, was forced to defend himself and his publication against complaints filed with the Alberta Human Rights Commission by the Edmonton Council of Muslim Communities.
The "voice" is singular - the Muslim "community" throughout the world is the single voice of Islam.
Levant had the strength and constitution to fight back and 900 days later the AHRC dismissed the Islamic complaint against him. If you are not familiar with his story, his opening statement as the Alberta Human Rights Commission began its interrogation of him is a good place to start. Read his statement or watch the video here.
The Muslim community was offended that Levant dared republish the "Danish cartoons" of Muhammed. They took their complaint not to court but to a Human Rights Commission. Here's a portion of Levant's response in defense of own human rights:
I am here at this government interrogation under protest. It is my position that the government has no legal or moral authority to interrogate me or anyone else for publishing these words and pictures. That is a violation of my ancient and inalienable freedoms: freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and in this case, religious freedom and the separation of mosque and state.Levant was lambasted by Leftist columnists when the dismissal was announced. Naomi Lakritz ("Jewish" according to Levant), writing for the Calgary Herald, lamented the lengthy process within the HRC and didn't hesitate to blame Levant for failing to take advantage of "conciliation."
The commission was meant to deal with deeds, not words or ideas. Now the commission, which is funded by a secular government, from the pockets of taxpayers of all backgrounds, is taking it upon itself to be an enforcer of the views of radical Islam.
So much for the separation of mosque and state.
[Levant] Yes, I was offered conciliation. The offer sounded like this: "pay cash to the radical Muslims, and give them a page in your magazine, unedited. Then we'll let you go." Most people take it -- they don't have the time or money to fight these bastards for 900 days.By accepting and acting upon the Edmonton Muslim Community complaint, the Commission violated Levant's right to free speech. That's the issue: freedom of speech violated in the name and defense of Islam.
Is the dismissal a victory for Levant?
I suppose, in a narrow technical sense, it is. I’m off the hook now for both of the HRC complaints. That’s two legal battles done – though I’m still up to my eyeballs fighting defamation suits and other legal actions that the human rights industry piled on top of these complaints.Here's Levant on another violation of free speech by the AHRC:
But I’ve read the dismissal letter three times now, and each time it makes me more angry. Because I haven’t been given my freedom of the press. I’ve simply had the government censor approve what I said. That’s a completely different thing.
Pardeep Gundara – a second-rate bureaucrat, a nobody – had to give me his approval for me to be allowed to go back to my business. For 900 days I was in the dock, waiting for this literary giant to pronounce his judgment on me. And I found favour in his eyes – but barely.
Two months ago, Rev. Stephen Boissoin was given an outrageous sentence by the Alberta HRC for doing the same thing I did. Rev. Boissoin even met Gundara’s goofy tests. Why was I acquitted and Rev. Boissoin convicted, sentenced and humiliated? Because I’m a pain in the neck to the HRCs, and I have been embarrassing them ever since I YouTubed their interrogation of me. They wanted to avoid the PR disaster of a trial. Rev. Boissoin is more their style: a quiet man they can beat up with impunity.Boissoin has been forbidden, for life, to speak of, refer to or quote any biblical passage on homosexuality.
Read more about Boissoin in Jeremy Maddock's Soft Facism: The Persecution of Reverend Stephen Boisson.
Read about the Kafkaewque Show Trial of Mark Steyn
Read about the Council on American-Islamic Relation's (CAIR) defamation suit against Anti-CAIR's Andrew Whitehead
Read more on a first Islamic complaint, now withdrawn, against Levant.