Saturday, February 02, 2008

As my grandmother would say …


Show me your friends and I’ll show you who you are. A veritable who’s who of the Blogging Tories glitterati (Christ, that makes me giggle) have come out in support of Liberal MP Keith Martin and his private member’s bill to repeal Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act. Mr. Martin has received spittle-flecked kudos from KKKate, Jarret Plonka, Joanne, and the Canadian Sentinel to name just a raving few. Thankfully, reinforcements are on the way.

Liberal MP is being hailed as a poster boy for free speech on a white supremacist website. Victoria MP Keith Martin was praised Friday on stormfront.org, a website that proudly displays the logo "White pride world wide" and links to radio addresses by former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke.

Sweet dancing Jesus, this is beyond funny. But it gets soooooo much better.

Martin earned the dubious distinction after giving notice that he plans to introduce a private member's motion calling on the government to repeal Section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act.

The controversial section prohibits electronic communication of anything deemed "likely to expose a person or persons to hatred or contempt." It is at the heart of investigations by human rights tribunals into complaints against former Western Standard publisher Ezra Levant and Maclean's magazine for publishing material some Muslim groups found offensive.

The cases of Levant and Maclean's writer Mark Steyn have sparked much furious debate, nowhere more so than among right-wing bloggers. They point to the cases as proof that the Canadian Human Rights Act is being used to gag free speech in general and Christian conservatives in particular.

The extreme right adherents at stormfront were clearly thrilled to find a member of the Liberal party, which introduced the act and prides itself as the party of the Charter of Rights, joining their crusade.

"The sordid Soviet-style reign of terror by the Canadian Human Rights Commission is now out in the open," declares Paul Fromm in a posting on the website. "The CHRC reign of thought control looks like a drying pool of vomit on the dirty floor of some dingy dive. Yes, it stinks and good men are beginning to speak up."

Well ... that is some outstanding rhetorical imagery, Paul. Did you come up with that all by yourself or is there a handbook for neo-Nazis? Don’t worry, calling him a neo-Nazi is actually a compliment. Some of Paul Fromm’s career highlights via Wikipedia:

In the 1990s, Fromm spoke at several Heritage Front events, including a celebration of Adolf Hitler's birthday. A video surfaced of him addressing rally and referring to Canadian fascist John Ross Taylor as a "hero". Taylor was one of two Canadian Nazis interned by the government during World War II. The video shows Fromm standing beside a Nazi flag during the Heritage Front's "Martyr's Day". The rally included shouts from the audience of "Sieg Heil!", "white power", "Hail The Order!" and "nigger, nigger, nigger, out out out". Fromm, a high school English teacher at the time, was reprimanded by the school board after videos of him speaking at white supremacist rallies, including a celebration of Adolf Hitler's birthday, surfaced in 1992. He was transferred to an adult education centre by the board in 1993 pending the outcome of an investigation into his activities and then fired by the school board in 1997.

In 2000, a published report alleged that developer Martin Weiche, a former leader of the Canadian Nazi Party, was one of Fromm's major financial backers. Fromm has shared a stage with Holocaust denier David Irving, and has organized rallies in support of Holocaust denier Ernst Z√ľndel. B'nai Brith legal counsel Anita Bromberg has said "Fromm is the one who has put himself out there most directly as supporting Zundel. He looks as though he's waiting in the wings." In 2004, Fromm was associated with David Duke's efforts to unite white nationalists with the New Orleans Protocol.

In January 2005, Fromm defended himself at a disciplinary hearing of the Ontario College of Teachers against charges including "failure to maintain professional standards; not complying with college regulations and bylaws; disgraceful, dishonourable, unprofessional and/or unbecoming conduct; and practising while in a conflict of interest." Following three days of hearings, further deliberation were postponed. The hearing resumed in the spring of 2007 and on October 31, 2007, the college rendered its ruling stripping Fromm of his license to teach in the province of Ontario.

You know, there are times when I almost feel sorry for Stephen Taylor and his little blogging experiment. Then something like this comes along and it just reinforces my view that he’s getting exactly what he deserves.

And Keith Martin? Well, let’s just say he’s less than pleased by his newfound supporters.

For Martin, receiving praise from a white-supremacist group was both unwelcome and ironic. "I'm a brown guy," he quipped in an interview. More seriously, Martin said: "I'm hardly their poster boy. I fight and rail against what they stand for at every turn."

9 comments:

Red Tory said...

Heh. I was too busy making fun of you being snowbound and then got tired, but was going to make a post in support of my guy, Dr. Martin. Now, I'm not so sure...

Raphael Alexander said...

Africentric schooling also got the attention of white supremacists. I don't really see the connection to ordinary bloggers.

Ti-Guy said...

I don't really see the connection to ordinary bloggers.

Odd coming from someone who supports a party for which optics is everything.

Or course, optics is immaterial to teh Boggin' Torees. That is, probably until a brighter light is shone upon them, at which point, I wouldn't be surprised to see all kinds of "free expression" being marginalised or "disappeared."

There are very few among the demographic the Conservatives wish to lure from the Liberals who care all that much about unfettered freedom of expression to have to end up being associated with the network of white supremacists (nourished from the roots of home-grown fascism in that bastion of free speech, the US) that's focusing on this latest brouhaha.

Now if, the free speech warriors would care to devote one half of their time (and their intellectual energy, such as it is) to exposing the bad ideas currently being amplified by the fascists who are hanging their stink on them, if they're not actually in their ranks, they might develop something the rest of us could recognise as a principled stand.

Red Tory said...

I would be absolutely fascinated to know what exactly the "ordinary blogger" is. Perhaps Mr. Alexander can illuminate us in this regard, because this could really be marketing gold.

LuLu said...

Well, it's certainly not me. I prefer to be known as an extraordinary blogger, thanks ever so.

And I'm not talking to you, Mr. Look-I-have-noooooo-snow.

KEvron said...

"I would be absolutely fascinated to know what exactly the 'ordinary blogger' is."

first, he is white....

KEvron

Raphael Alexander said...

What I'm saying is that lumping all BT's into one neat category is the staple of CC's intellectual dishonesty. That's for starters. And second, this issue is a non-partisan one although it tends to attract the more rightwing people to it. Make of that what you will. But to impugn the motives of any conservative who might actually defend Mr.Martin on similar reasons given by Martin Rayner on Scott's site would be, well quite simply dull-witted.

CC said...

The allegedly non-partisan Raphael Alexander writes:

"What I'm saying is that lumping all BT's into one neat category is the staple of CC's intellectual dishonesty."

Here's a thought, Raph -- why don't you go back through my posts so you can appreciate the enormous number of times I've demonstarted how the entire populace of BTs blogs in absolute lock-step in terms of carefully evading particular topics that don't fit their ideological world view.

Go ahead, Raph, knock yourself out. And there was the time when BT Aaron Lee Wudrick, to his credit, tried to get you folks interested in the pure evil that was the proposed DMCA legislation, and what he got for his troubles was a massive yawn, and a couple, "DMCA? Whuzzat?"

Yeah, Raph ... unfair generalization is what I'm all about. On the other hand, I single-handedly allow a vast majority of Canada's conservatives to conclude that all progressive bloggers are a bunch of vulgar, profane, unhinged, leftard moonbats.

You might want to rethink that argument, Raph. Seriously.

Raphael Alexander said...

I am anything but lockstep with the BTs [detainees anyone?]. I also wrote on the DMCA. And on any number of topics which may or may not have been in accordance with BT views. Your mocking tone of my non-partisanship is wearing thin just because I happen to be conservative.

And I've not accused you of being anything other than what you are: a vulgar and profane writer [with an obvious talent for snark] who uses only the most extreme examples of conservatism in order to paint every one of us with the same brush. Only once or twice have you written that you think I'm "reasonable" before you proceed to rather dishonestly berate me.

Would it kill you to give me, and others who happen to be conservative, the benefit of the doubt on an issue? That way you could actually refute ideas, instead of ideologies.