Friday, February 20, 2009

The LGBT community is "probably the greatest threat to America...I know of," says Utah politician...

Canadians swooned yesterday over U.S. President Barack Obama's quick visit to Ottawa. Most Canadians believe that the new president represents the best of American life and share the immense hope for the future he symbolizes, despite these troubled economic times.

Such good sentiment can make it easy to forget the ugly side of America, as embodied clearly by Utah State Senator Chris Buttars who recently called the LGBT community "probably the greatest threat to America...I know of."

Hmmm, what do you think reasonable Americans should do to the LGBT community if it constitutes the greatest threat to America? Ban gay rights? Smash their heads with baseball bats? Burn their houses down? Maybe.

The Human Rights Campaign, God bless them, has taken up the cause and urged action.

Speaking of promoting hatred, once again the 'Right to Defame' movement in Canada continues to rear its ugly head. The National Post is hopeful that ongoing deliberations over changes to Alberta's human rights code could make it easier for hate mongers to get away with their crimes.

For the 'Right to Defame' movement, the rights of minorities to live without fear of persecution or sudden, unprovoked attack is less important than the right for anyone to broadcast the message, "Kill all gays!" Such statements are merely "subjective", writer Colby Cosh seems to believe. He also writes today about how Alberta might be close to pulling off a sophisticated statutory two-step that contains something for both the left and right.

Writes Cosh: "In 1998 the Supreme Court (in Vriend vs. Alberta) demanded that sexual orientation be “read in” to Alberta’s human rights act, and it became a forbidden grounds for discrimination despite not appearing in the text. Liberals, including the Chumir Foundation, would like the words “sexual orientation” actually inserted into the HRCMA as a gesture of acceptance, and [the Alberta Tory government minister in charge] has spoken in favour of doing so. Since the Vriend battle was lost by the Alberta government, acknowledging the defeat might be a small price to pay for Alberta’s conservatives to secure the most fundamental freedom of all — the freedom to think, teach, preach and opine without fear."

For the record, the freedom to think, teach, preach or opine without fear is already well-protected and not threatened by existing legislation. It's the right to incite violence against identifiable groups that Cosh and others are trying to restore.

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