Monthly Archives: February 2009

The unpredictability of hate laws

It is bizarre and confusing that David Ahenakew was just quietly found not guilty of hate speech. If his venomous ravings weren’t hate speech, what is? And how is anyone meant to understand our laws or court system now?

In case you missed it, a provincial court just let him off, following a 2005 conviction and successful appeal, because his, although his statements “about Jewish people were revolting, disgusting and untrue,” he lacked the intent to spread hate — and you need to have intent for the remarks to be criminal. Now this is foolishness because, as Lorne Gunter wrote in the National Post, Ahenakew repeatedly spewed filth in public settings, even after a theatrical apology, including during his first trial.

I trust you remember the gist of his original 2002 outburst. For one hesitates to repeat his various revolting statements, even when they are well known and even though there now seems to be no legal jeopardy in making them enthusiastically, let alone quoting them critically. Continue reading

More leeches!

Remember the jokes about medicine in the bad old days where they’d bleed the patient and he’d get weaker so they’d bleed him some more until, for instance, George Washington lay dead? Well, today’s news from the New York Times is that the financial firms and car companies that have slurped tens of billions of dollars out of the healthy economy now desperately need to slurp down tens of billions more or the economy will get sicker.