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From jamie@voyager.net Sun Mar  3 20:01:43 PST 1996
Article: 25972 of alt.revisionism
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From: jamie@voyager.net (Jamie McCarthy)
Newsgroups: alt.fan.ernst-zundel,alt.censorship,alt.revisionism,can.politics,alt.society.civil-liberties
Subject: Re: Neo-Nazi spin on upholding of Canadian "hate-speech" law
Followup-To: alt.revisionism
Date: Sat, 02 Mar 1996 21:22:28 -0500
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Rich, here's the story as I understand it.

Zuendel was charged in 1984, tried in 1985, with two counts of violating
the "false news" statute, which made it illegal to knowingly publish
material that was known to be false.  He was acquitted on one count (for
the pamphlet "The West, War, and Islam").  He was convicted on the other
(for "Did Six Million Really Die?").

Note that the conviction meant that a jury of twelve people unanimously
decided not only that Zuendel's material was false, but that he
published it _knowing_ that it was false.  One may fairly say that
Zuendel has been convicted of dishonesty in a court of law.

He was sentenced to 15 months in jail, but the trial was nullified due
to procedural error and a new trial ordered.  That second trial was in
1988.  It was a much larger production, a real circus.  Same result: 
conviction on "Did Six Million Really Die?"

He appealed the case all the way to the Supreme Court, which struck down
the "false news" statute as unconstitutional.  This made it legal once
again to be dishonest in Canada without fear of legal punishment. 
Zuendel refers to this as an "acquittal" -- nonsense, all it means is
that the Supreme Court has decided that it's legal for him to be a liar.

James Keegstra was also charged in 1984, but under a different statute,
commonly known as the "anti-hate law."  This one's key phrase is
"willfully promoting hatred against an identifiable group."  I'm pretty
sure this is the law that Rimland refers to as "designed to snap around
good people's hearts and minds like hand cuffs."  So far as I know, the
only "good person" charged to date has been James Keegstra.

Keegstra was a schoolteacher who was telling his students that Jews were
evil and treacherous and so on:

   Eventually, in open court, Keegstra's former students would read
   from these notebooks that Jewish people are "out to bury" Christians
   and secretly planning to build a world where "everyone would be
   slaves to the Jews."
   
   _Ottawa Citizen_, February 29, 1996

I've heard that students who failed to write papers that agreed with
Keegstra's unusual notions about Jews were given poor grades, though I
can't give a source on that at the moment.

I do not know if Keegstra was a public- or private-school teacher.

Keegstra was convicted, and appealed to the Supreme Court.  The claim in
the appeal was that the burden of proof for the veracity of Keegstra's
claims should be on the target group (Jews) rather than on Keegstra
himself.  The Court essentially laughed that off, 9-0, without even
needing to hear the Crown's arguments.  So his earlier conviction
stands.

Thus, it is still illegal in Canada to "willfully promote hatred against
an identifiable group."

It goes without saying that I agree with you, Rich, that this is an
unfair and unjust law.  While I recognize that Canadian citizens have
their own priorities of how they want to run their society, I am glad
for the First Amendment protecting my right to free speech.

I must say that I would certainly have no problem whatsoever with
Keegstra being stripped of his teaching credentials for life;  that
kind of crap shouldn't be taught to children.  But jail time is too
harsh, in my opinion.

Posted (followups to alt.revisionism);  emailed to Rich Graves;  Cc'd
to people who I hope will fact-check me:  Ernst Zuendel, Ken McVay,
Hilary Ostrov, and Gordon McFee.
-- 
 Jamie McCarthy          http://www.absence.prismatix.com/jamie/
 jamie@voyager.net     Co-Webmaster of http://www.almanac.bc.ca/
 Unless you specify otherwise, I assume pro-"revisionism" email
 to be in the public domain.            I speak only for myself.



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