Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Free Speech Still Under Assault

"The whole literature of the past will have been destroyed. Chaucer, Shakespeare, Milton, Byron -- they'll exist only in Newspeak versions, not merely changed into something different, but actually changed into something contradictory of what they used to be. Even the literature of the Party will change. Even the slogans will change. How could you have a slogan like "freedom is slavery" when the concept of freedom has been abolished? The whole climate of thought will be different. In fact there will be no thought, as we understand it now. Orthodoxy means not thinking -- not needing to think. Orthodoxy is unconsciousness.' "

--Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-Four

I may be one of the few left-leaning bloggers to take up this issue (I doubt it), but I'll be damned if I'm going to let this pass by. In Canada, a freedom-hating douchebag named Richard Warman has decided to sue bloggers with political views he does not like, namely one Kathy Shaidle, of the blog Five Feet of Fury. He's also gone after other conservative bloggers, like Ezra Levant, Kate McMillan, Jonathan Kay, and the conservative chat site Free Dominion. He uses the Canadian Human Rights Commission, which by all appearances is a misshapen beast right out of Stalinist Russia, along with some rather misconstrued laws, to go after his political opponents. He used to work for the HRC, and Levant has been battling this kangaroo court for a while now, namely over his role in publishing the Muhammad cartoons.

Levant himself has all the specifics of the lawsuit.

Michelle Malkin has more.

I was taken aback by this, on Shaidle's blog:

Richard Warman's friends at the Canadian Human Rights Commission say "freedom of speech is an American concept" they refuse to recognize.

Riiight. That's outrageous, and yet I fear that there are Americans who refuse to recognize the concept as well.

Let me say that I'm willing to do my part to fight this assault, and I'll donate straightaway, and those who can should do so as well. Some may no doubt wonder why a center-left liberal like myself would care about righty bloggers being silenced. As I see it, either we have free speech for everybody, or we don't have free speech. In other words, I wouldn't be much of a liberal if I didn't stand up for the rights of bloggers who are being being silenced, right, left, or whatever. If doing so puts me in common cause with those who may hate my political views, then so be it.

Just so you know, this isn't going to stop with Canada, and believe it or not, it's not going to stop with righty blogs.

UPDATE: It's already here, folks.

HT: Tully