WARNING: This article may incur a fine in Canada. So read and share at your own risk, eh?
Canada's ruling Liberal government announced a bill last week that would fine people $20,000 for "online hate speech." (And that's just for the first offense. It's $50,000 for the second offense!)
Now, you might be thinking... "Wait a second! Outlawing "online hate speech" violates freedom of expression." And you'd be right.
However, if you're willing to use the Orwellian logic of the Canadian government, then, apparently, you're able to say the exact opposite.
"Hate speech directly contradicts the values underlying freedom of expression and our Charter of Rights," Attorney General David Lametti said.
"It threatens the safety and well-being of its targets. It silences and intimidates, especially when the target is a vulnerable person or community. When hate speech spreads, its victims lose their freedom to participate in civil society online."
Lametti has it reversed. The tyrants in the Canadian government violate people's freedom of expression, not the people online! The direct contradiction to "freedom of expression" comes from this bill, not "online hate speech."
Who defines what counts as "hate speech," anyway?
You'll get different answers depending on who you ask. For example, do Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's MULTIPLE "Blackface" incidents count as "hatred"?
Also, how on earth did they come up with the number $20,000 for saying something mean online?!?
And to whom is the fine being paid? The government? According to liberal (un)logic, someone "harmed" by "online hate speech" is a victim. So if that person is the victim of a "hate crime," why is the government being paid for damages?
Trudeau also released a statement on Wednesday with the proposed legislation (i.e., Bill C-36). So here he is on his soapbox.
"Online hate can turn into offline hate with devastating impacts on communities and families," Trudeau said. "We have a responsibility to victims to take action to combat hate online and continue to build a more inclusive Canada."
The wording is sneaky because it sounds like Trudeau is ONLY trying to stop people from doing physically violent things to other people. The word "can" in the phrase "can turn into offline hate" is the Trojan Horse of this legislation.
All the Canadian government needs is the possibility that someone saying mean stuff online could perhaps result in something violent in real life. That is all they need to say the bill is designed to do good in protecting people from harm in real life. As C.S. Lewis once said, "a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive."
The scariest part of the bill is the ambiguity of phrases that will carry immense weight in court.
"The bill aims to:
- amend the Canadian Human Rights Act to define a new discriminatory practice of communicating hate speech online, and to provide individuals with additional remedies to address hate speech;
- add a definition of 'hatred' to section 319 of the Criminal Code based on Supreme Court of Canada decisions; and
- create a new peace bond in the Criminal Code designed to prevent hate propaganda offences and hate crimes from being committed, and make related amendments to the Youth Criminal Justice Act," Trudeau said.
Ultimately, the Canadian government has positioned itself to define sin (i.e., "hatred") and provide salvation (i.e., "remedies"). Boy, that sure does sound like a theocracy, except the god of this government is the government itself.