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Trudeau’s ‘online harms’ legislation includes life imprisonment for ‘hate speech’

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Justice Minister Arif Virani

From LifeSiteNews

By Anthony Murdoch

While the government claims the bill is intended to protect kids, Conservative Party of Canada leader Pierre Poilievre said Liberals are looking for clever ways to enact internet censorship laws.

Details of new “online harms” legislation to regulate the internet have emerged, revealing that the bill could lead to more people jailed for life or fined $20,000 for posts that the government defines as “hate speech” based on gender, race, or other categories.

Bill C-63 is titled “An Act to enact the Online Harms Act, to amend the Criminal Code, the Canadian Human Rights Act and An Act respecting the mandatory reporting of Internet child pornography by persons who provide an Internet service and to make consequential and related amendments to other Acts.”

It was introduced by Justice Minister Arif Virani in the House of Commons today and passed its first reading in the afternoon.

The new bill will create the Online Harms Act and modify existing laws, amending the Criminal Code as well as the Canadian Human Rights Act, in what the Liberals under Prime Minister Justin Trudeau claim will target certain cases of internet content removal, notably those involving child sexual abuse and pornography.

According to the Trudeau government, Bill C-63 aims to protect kids from online harms and crack down on non-consensual deep-fake pornography involving children and will target seven types of online harms, such as hate speech, terrorist content, incitement to violence, the sharing of non-consensual intimate images, child exploitation, cyberbullying and inciting self-harm.

Virani had many times last year hinted a new Online Harms Act bill would be forthcoming.

While the Trudeau government claims the bill is being created to protect kids, Conservative Party of Canada (CPC) leader Pierre Poilievre said the federal government is looking for clever ways to enact internet censorship laws.

During a February 21, press conference, Poilievre said that Trudeau is looking to in effect criminalize speech with he does not like.

“What does Justin Trudeau mean when he says the word ‘hate speech?’ He means speech he hates,” Poilievre said.

As part of the new bill, the Trudeau Liberals are looking to increase punishments for existing hate propaganda offenses in a substantial manner.

The Online Harms Act will also amend Canada’s Human Rights Act to put back in place a hate speech provision, specifically Section 13 of the Act, that the previous Conservative government under Stephen Harper had repealed in 2013 after it was found to have violated one’s freedom of expression.

The text of the bill, released Monday afternoon, reads that the Canadian Human Rights Act will be amended to add a section “13” to it.

This section reads, “It is a discriminatory practice to communicate or cause to be communicated hate speech by means of the Internet or any other means of telecommunication in a context in which the hate speech is likely to foment detestation or vilification of an individual or group of individuals on the basis of a prohibited ground of discrimination.”

“In this section, hate speech means the content of a communication that expresses detestation or vilification of an individual or group of individuals on the basis of a prohibited ground of discrimination,” the bill reads.

A “Clarification – hate speech” in the bill reads, “For greater certainty, the content of a communication does not express detestation or vilification, for the purposes of subsection (8), solely because it expresses disdain or dislike or it discredits, humiliates, hurts or offends.”

Earlier Monday, details of the bill were released to the media in a technical briefing.

“New standalone hate crime offence that would apply to every offence in the Criminal Code and in any other Act of Parliament, allowing penalties up to life imprisonment to denounce and deter this hateful conduct as a crime in itself,” the technical briefing reads.

“The maximum punishments for the four hate propaganda offences from 5 years to life imprisonment for advocating genocide and from 2 years to 5 years for the others when persecuted by way of indictment.”

For now, the law will affect all social media platforms as well as live-streamed video services, notably Meta and Google (YouTube).

Bill creates three ‘Digital Safety’ positions to enforce rules and let anyone file ‘complaints’

Bill C-63 mandates the creation of the Digital Safety Commission, a digital safety ombudsperson, and the Digital Safety Office.

The ombudsperson along with the other offices will be charged with dealing with public complaints regarding online content as well as put forth a regulatory function in a five-person panel “appointed by the government.” This panel will be charged with monitoring internet platform behaviors to hold people “accountable.”

Bill C-63 also includes text to amend Canada’s Criminal Code and Human Rights Act to define “hatred” as “Content that expresses detestation or vilification of an individual or group of individuals on the basis of a prohibited ground of discrimination, within the meaning of the Canadian Human Rights Act, and that, given the context in which it is communicated, is likely to foment detestation or vilification of an individual or group of individuals on the basis of such a prohibited ground.‍ (contenu fomentant la haine).”

Most worryingly, the new bill will allow it so that anyone can file a complaint against another person with the Canadian Human Rights Commission for “posting hate speech online” that is deemed “discriminatory” against a wide range of so-called protected categories, notably gender, race, those, or other areas.

If a person is found guilty of violating the Human Rights Act by going against what the government deems to be hate speech, they face fines of $20,000 along with being mandated to take down any postings online, notably on social media.

Many aspects of Bill C-63 come from a lapsed bill from 2021.

In June 2021, then-Justice Minister David Lametti introduced Bill 36, “An Act to amend the Criminal Code and the Canadian Human Rights Act and to make related amendments to another Act (hate propaganda, hate crimes and hate speech).”

It was blasted as a controversial “hate speech” law that would give police the power to “do something” about online “hate.”

It was feared that it would target bloggers and social media users for speaking their minds.

Bill C-36 included text to amend Canada’s Criminal Code and Human Rights Act to define “hatred” as “the emotion that involves detestation or vilification and that is stronger than dislike or disdain (haine).”

If passed, the bill would theoretically allow a tribunal to judge anyone who has a complaint of online “hate” leveled against them, even if he has not committed a crime. If found guilty, the person would be in violation of the new law and could face fines of $70,000 as well as house arrest.

Two other Trudeau bills dealing with freedom as it relates to the internet have become law, the first being Bill C-11, or the Online Streaming Act, that mandates Canada’s broadcast regulator, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), oversee regulating online content on platforms such as YouTube and Netflix to ensure that such platforms are promoting content in accordance with a variety of its guidelines.

Trudeau’s other internet censorship law, the Online News Act, was passed by the Senate in June 2023.

The law mandates that Big Tech companies pay to publish Canadian content on their platforms. As a result, Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, blocked all access to news content in Canada. Google has promised to do the same rather than pay the fees laid out in the new legislation.

Critics of recent laws such as tech mogul Elon Musk have said it shows “Trudeau is trying to crush free speech in Canada.”

Censorship Industrial Complex

Scotland’s crazy anti-hate law may be sign of things to come here

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From the Frontier Centre for Public Policy

By Brian Giesbrecht

Scotland had 8,000 complaints in the first week. Is it likely that a similar avalanche of claims will result in Canada if C-63 becomes law?

Actually, there will probably be a lot more here.

For one thing, our population is many times the size of Scotland’s.

Some argue that Scotland’s new hate speech law is more draconian than Canada’s yet-to-be-enacted equivalent, Bill C-63. Others say this is not so — that portions of ’63’ are even greater threats to free speech than Scotland’s extreme new law.

Regardless of who wins in this radical experiment in mass censorship, one thing we can predict with certainty: Both laws will be a goldmine for the legal profession and a nightmare for anyone who has ever dared to write, say or broadcast anything controversial.

How? Well, in the first week that Scotland’s new hate legislation has been in force there has been an avalanche of new claims launched — 8,000, and counting. Every one of those claims will have to be defended by a person who believed that they were exercising their right of free speech.

Now, 8,000 of those people will be caught up in expensive, time consuming, and emotionally draining litigation. Their cases will mostly be heard by officials and judges who were appointed specifically because they shared the same views as the government that appointed them — the same government that felt the need to prosecute these 8,000 people.

That 8,000 surpassed the total number of hate crime allegations in Scotland for all of 2023. A projection is that there will be an estimated 416,000 cases for 2024 if this rate keeps up. The complaints have completely overwhelmed Scotland’s police.

The Scottish Police Federation’s David Threadgold said this about how the new law was being used by angry citizens with an axe to grind: “…the law was being “weaponised” by the public in order to settle personal grudges against fellow citizens or to wage political feuds, while suggesting that the government encouraging the public to report instances of ‘hate’ has clearly blown up in their face.”

We have already seen this Scottish law in action when J.K. Rowling, who is famous not only for her wonderful Harry Potter books, but more recently for stating what we knew as fact for the first few hundred thousand years or so of human history — namely that men are men, and women are women — famously reposted that claim and dared the Scottish police to charge her.

The police announced that she wouldn’t be charged — at least that particular police officer wouldn’t charge her at this particular time.

The other person who has been the subject of many of those 8,000 complaints is First Minister Humza Yousaf — the very man responsible for this monstrosity of a law. Yousaf is himself quite famous for complaining that Scotland has too many white people. Who knew?

That odd observation resulted in a world famous spat with none other than Elon Musk. The online slugfest basically took the form of each man accusing the other of being a racist. At times it looked more like a schoolyard fight.

That a national leader seriously feels that the sledgehammer of the criminal law must be used to sort out such cat fights between citizens is rather alarming.

But, in this regard, Yousaf and Trudeau are birds of a feather. Both are convinced that only “acceptable views” — namely the views they agree with — will be allowed, while “unacceptable views,” namely, those they don’t like, must be disappeared by the machinery of the state.

It should be explained at this point that Scotland’s new law, unlike our C-63, requires police to determine whether or not the person under complaint has “stirred up hatred.”

Bill C-63 has those “hate” complaints heard by the Human Rights Tribunal.

In both cases however, one person’s opinion will judge another person’s opinion. However, one person will be paid to perform this function, while the other person might become a criminal if their opinion fails a completely subjective test.

Scotland had 8,000 complaints in the first week. Is it likely that a similar avalanche of claims will result in Canada if C-63 becomes law?

Actually, there will probably be a lot more here.

For one thing, our population is many times the size of Scotland’s.

For another, C-63 allows people to make complaints anonymously if the tribunal says so. It also promises up to $50,000 per complaint. That’s a powerful motivator. That $50,000 doesn’t come from some magic bank, by the way. If you are the person complained about, it comes from you. And you might be required to fork over an additional $20,000 to the tribunal for their troubles.

I’m not sure if they will expect a tip.. 

Much has been written about C-63. Many knowledgeable Canadians have discussed in detail the hundreds of objections they can see with this Bill. Senior Canadian voices, such former Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin, and world famous author Margaret Atwood, have warned Canadians about this seriously flawed legislation.

But what no one has done — except for Trudeau apparatchiks — is to give any good reasons why Canada needs this legislation.

If Scotland’s projected number of complaints for 2024 is 416,000 and they have a population of less than six million, the projection for Canada would be into the millions of complaints. Even setting aside the obvious impossibility of paying for thousands of new tribunal adjudicators, staff, and the thousands of new lawyers required to help the million-plus people who are thrust into this hate complaint boondoggle, why would any serious government even wish such a thing on their citizens?

Do we not have a rather large bag of serious problems we must contend with?

We have a generation of young people, for example, who might never in their lives be able to afford a home of their own. How do we expect these young people to raise a future generation of Canadians without a home in which to raise them? Isn’t that a bigger problem than someone’s hurt feelings?

Another example… Trudeau has just noticed that we don’t seem to have an army anymore. Isn’t that a bigger problem than whether or not someone feels that they have been misgendered, or called nasty names?

There is a list, as long as the longest arm, of very real problems that need urgent attention. Why are we wasting time and money on the brainchild (yes, I use that term loosely) of a desperate prime minister and his few remaining fellow ideologues?

This legislation is totally unnecessary, and an appallingly disrespectful way to treat Canadians. We already have hate laws. We already have laws to protect children. C-63 is as useless as the tired apparatchiks pushing it.

We should definitely pay attention to what is happening in Scotland. It will be our fate if this perfectly awful Bill C-63 is not defeated.

Brian Giesbrecht, retired judge, is a Senior Fellow at the Frontier Centre for Public Policy

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Trudeau gov’t pledges $42 million to the CBC to promote ‘independent journalism’

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From LifeSiteNews

By Clare Marie Merkowsky

The budget did not explain how the CBC could provide “independent journalism” if the Trudeau government is paying its bills.   

Canadian taxpayers will pay $42 million in additional funding for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) under the Trudeau government’s newly proposed budget.  

According to the Liberal’s 2024 budget, published April 16, the CBC is set to receive $42 million in increased funding for 2024-25, as the outlet continues to lose credibility with Canadians.  

The increased subsides aim to ensure “Canadians across the country, including rural, remote, Indigenous, and minority language communities, have access to high-quality, independent journalism and entertainment.” 

The budget did not explain how the CBC could provide “independent journalism” if the Trudeau government is paying its bills.   

The $42 million to the CBC is in addition to massive media payouts which already make up roughly 70 percent of its operating budget, and total more than $1 billion annually.  

The payout is also in addition to another Trudeau government announcement that saw legacy media subsidies continue for the next five years to the tune of $129 million .  

That subsidies are the CBC’s largest single source of income has become a point of contention among taxpayers who see the propping up of the outlet as unnecessary.   

In addition to the increased payouts for the CBC, the budget promised $58.8 million to the Department of Canadian Heritage for the Local Journalism Initiative over three years beginning in 2024-25. 

Indeed, recently stories published by the CBC seems to reveal the corporation’s bias to the Trudeau government and its agenda.  

While the CBC claimed “Canadian doctors who spoke to CBC disagree” with the report, Peterson accused the CBC of purposefully only speaking to doctors who opposed the research.   

Similarly, in January, the CBC produced a video seemingly justifying the intentional burning of numerous churches across Canada.    

While taxpayer funding of legacy media continues to increase, credibility seems to be on the decline. According to a study by Canada’s Public Health Agency, less than a third of Canadians displayed “high trust” in the federal government, with “large media organizations” as well as celebrities getting even lower scores.   

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