Ezra Levant's book, SHAKEDOWN,hits bookstores this week.
It includes an introduction by yours truly, Mark Steyn, and I'm honored Ezra asked me to contribute.
The book is a blistering analysis of the damage done to real human rights by Canada's pseudo-"human rights" regime, not to mention the ruined lives left in its wake.
Aside from Ezra's insight into the Danish cartoons case and the Mohamed Elmasry/Steyn/Maclean's case, it's a wake-up call to a Canadian citizenry still largely unaware of the damage done to its legal inheritance by Trudeaupian totalitarianism, and also a handy primer for Americans, Britons, Australians, Europeans and others on how to avoid empowering moralist commissars with all but unlimited powers.
If you get the chance to catch Ezra on his coast-to-coast publicity tour, don't miss him - and I gather there's the possibility of an event or two south of the border as well.
In the last year and a half, I couldn't have asked for a doughtier comrade in my battles with Canada's disgusting "human rights" commissions. As I like to say, Ezra reminds me of one of those shower dials where the merest twitchette sends the water straight to scalding. At the beginning of my own troubles, a lot of fellows told me: Stand well back from all this; play it cool; let the legal process work itself out... If Maclean's and I had done that, we'd have been thrice convicted by now. It was only because Ezra chose to go Magna Carta on the HRC's totalitarian ass, and I decided to follow, that the thought police decided that, for the moment, discretion is the better part of valor. If Commissar Lynch and Commissar MacNaughton and the rest think that all they have to do is lie low for a few months, this book is a timely reminder that Ezra and I are in this till we win.
So here's what Paul Schneidereit has to say in The Chronicle Herald:
“The high-profile examples of Levant and Steyn, however, have drawn attention to the ugly attempts at censorship going on under the "human rights" banner in this country.
How ugly? Let me put in a plug for Levant’s new book, Shakedown, which lays out, in example after example, how government-appointed human rights bodies warped the noble mission for which they were created. Inspired by the government-backed attack on his basic rights, Ezra dug into the work files of human rights commissions across the country. What he found should disturb every Canadian. In case after case, many of which go beyond attacks on free speech, Ezra shows how human rights bodies have put purported grievances of single individuals ahead of the facts, the public interest and even common sense...”
Let’s be clear. Section 13 and its provincial counterparts are an abomination. They avoid the rigorous tests found under Criminal Code restrictions on hate speech and libel and give government-backed thought police shocking powers to tell us what we can and can’t say.
Human rights commissions may have been "denormalized," to use Ezra’s term, but still not one Canadian government has acted to cut out the cancerous threat to free speech found in the legislation of too many human rights bodies across this country.
Here's Kathy Shaidle's review at Pajamas, plus another from Wendy Sullivan (who also offers an interesting glimpse of life on the Toronto subway). I believe The National Post is carrying a couple of excerpts from the book next week, and Ezra's own site is the best place to check in for updates on his TV and radio interviews. I liked this observation:
“Right around the time of my interrogation by the HRC, I spoke with Mark Steyn and we talked about how the chief weapon used by HRCs is psychological. Usually, their formal punishments aren't enormous -- typically in the tens of thousands of dollars (though they are occasionally more extreme, including lifetime bans on publicly or privately saying certain words, and even orders to people to publicly issue false apologies: see the Lund v. Boissoin case).
The real punishment is the process -- biased, slow, uncertain, capricious, lawless, costly, unfair. The process is designed to so demoralize political dissidents as to make them abandon hope, leave the jurisdiction, or spiral down in a rage. Many people who are caught in HRCs actually become, over time, the caricature that they are accused of being -- they're turned into obsessive cranks, which is a wholly predictable outcome when a Canadian expecting Canadian justice is subjected to Soviet-style 'justice.'
So I simply decided I wasn't going to become like that. If I were to 'obsess' over the unfair charges against me, it would take the form of a relentless campaign for reform, using my time and whatever talents I have to spread the word about the corruption and abuse of the system. I knew I was luckier than pretty much any other HRC target in the past: I had friends in politics and journalism, and it would be pretty tough to tag me, a Zionist Jew who had actually started a multi-racial club in law school called Minorities Against Discrimination, as a 'neo-Nazi' or 'white supremacist.' So, unlike the HRCs' previous targets, I would actually have a chance to be heard when I pointed out the rot in the system.
I decided I would try to live up to the title of Mark Steyn's column in the National Review: the 'happy warrior', and to use mockery and ridicule where appropriate.”
Ezra makes a good point. If you were casting the ideal victim of these "human rights" enforcers, it would probably be David Suzuki or Margaret Atwood or some other beloved CanCon icon. Ezra and I are never going to be that cuddly, but we enjoyed a higher profile than most HRC targets and we made the most of it. What was done to Stephen Boissoin was outrageous, but he wasn't somebody the media were sufficiently interested in to take notice of the injustice. Likewise, Marc Lemire and his bulldog lawyers did sterling work researching the federal "human rights" commission's abuses of process, including the fact that current and former HRC employees pass their days posting hate messages on neo-Nazi websites. Yet Mr Lemire was never in a position to bring the Warman shenanigans to a mass audience. Ezra and I were: we were the link between the Lemire evidence and the general public. But, as Ezra says, the tone is important. What you're trying to get across is that Richard Warman and Barbara Hall and the rest of the gang are way weirder and far more menacing to the Queen's peace than any of the losers and misfits that get caught in their net.
Meanwhile, the idiot decisions go on: This latest Ontario ruling, rejecting a complaint against the anti-Semitic Sid Ryan because the complainant is not Jewish, is entirely at odds with the well established racket of non-Jews like Richard Warman shaking down neo-Nazis for anti-Semitism or non-gays like Darren Lund shaking down the Reverend Stephen Boissoin for homophobia. Oh, and here's a bizarre intervention by the CHRC into national-security "data collection" And The Ottawa Citizen's Robert Sibley rounds up recent developments on thought-policing in Europe - and where we're headed in Canada and America.
So we still have a long way to go. For now, let's congratulate Ezra on being one of the few Canadian media figures willing to stand up and face down a very real threat to the Dominion's liberties, and let's hope Shakedown shakes things up. And don't forget, if you order the book from the SteynOnline bookstore, I'll be happy - as Ezra's Deputy Hatemonger - to autograph my intro to you or a deserving friend.
BY MARK STEYN
25 MARCH 09
Barack Hussein Obama aka Barry Soetoro
is a usurper
because he is not eligible to be President of the United States
because he is not a Natural Born Citizen
as required by Article Two, Section One, Clause Five
of the United States Constitution regardless of
where he was born (Mombassa, Hawaii, Chicago, or Mars)
because he was not born of TWO PARENTS
BOTH OF WHOM WERE UNITED STATES CITIZENS
at the time of his birth. His father was a subject/ciitizen
of Kenya/Great Britain
and his mother was too young to pass on her citizenship
according to the law in effect when he was born.
Check it out:
His usurpation cannot be corrected by Congress,
it can only be corrected by his removal
by an amendment to the Constitution.