So Sue Me ! Its more than just the name of a Kosher Sushi place. It is a throw down the gauntlet challenge that you don’t make unless you are a major corporation with infinite resources or you are absolutely sure you that your opponent will not take you up on it. Mark Steyn one of my favorite columnists is being attacked by Canada’s PC police for some truth he told in one of his books. Steyn’s answer to those who would silence him is if you think I am being inflammatory —Sue Me.
Mark Steyn: ‘Why don’t you sue me?’
National Post Published: Tuesday, February 05, 2008Re: ‘Extremists’ And The Muslim Debate, letter to the editor, Jan. 31.In their latest missive to you, Naseem Mithoowani, Khurrum Awan and Muneeza Sheikh refer to the excerpt from my book published in Maclean’s, as a “defamatory article”. OK, if it’s defamatory, why don’t you sue me? Cue crickets chirping.It’s precisely because the article is not defamatory that the “plaintiffs” have had to rig the game by going to (at last count) three of Canada’s many “human rights” pseudo-courts. In none of their plaintive reprises protesting that they’re only looking for a chance to “start a debate” have they or their patrons at the Canadian Islamic Congress questioned the accuracy of a single specific fact, quotation or statistic. If they wanted to “start a debate,” they could start one, via a blog, column or book. Instead, they started a “human rights” complaint, which is what people do when they want to end the debate.This isn’t merely a “freedom of speech” issue. Canada’s Charter, much to its shame, explicitly abridges freedom of expression. However, it does not abridge the presumption of innocence, which is guaranteed by the Charter, as well as by the UN Declaration on Human Rights and Magna Carta. Yet there is no “presumption of innocence” in Section 13 “hate” cases. Au contraire, there is a presumption of guilt, which is why no one hauled before the CHRC under Section 13 has ever been acquitted — with the exception of the “Canadian Nazi Party,” which got off scot-free on the quaint grounds that it did not, in fact, exist. (The fact that Richard Warman, “human rights activist” and the CHRC’s serial plaintiff, is reduced to suing entirely fictional entities tells you a lot about how necessary Section 13 is to the Queen’s peace.)Alas, if you do have the misfortune to exist in what passes for the real world at the CHRC, then your chances of bucking the spectacular 100% conviction rate are a lot slimmer. So Maclean’s and my book will be convicted because that’s the only menu option available. Section 13 and its administration are a public scandal. I hope Canadians will support Dr. Keith Martin, MP, who has introduced a private member’s bill calling for its abolition.As for the Osgoode Hall students’ patron – and, in fact, the real “complainant,” at least in the British Columbia suit — the Canadian Islamic Congress is headed by Mohamed Elmasry, who declared on TV that he approved of the murder of any or all Israeli civilians over the age of 18. Good for him: I don’t begrudge him his freedom of speech. But, if he can dish it out so enthusiastically, shouldn’t he be able to take it just an eensy-teensy-weensy bit?Mark Steyn, Montreal.
For those of you who are going to CPAC in Washington this week..Make sure you go to the Ambassador Ballroom at 1PM on Thursday for a Double Treat–Mark Steyn as speaker, introduced by my friend the wonderful Pamela Geller of Atlas Shrugs.