Wednesday, March 24, 2010

NOW Toronto Columnist Defends Coulter's Banishment

I caught Megyn Kelly's interview with Susan G. Cole, a columnist for NOW Toronto. Cole defends Ann Coulter's banishment from the University of Ottawa last night.

Let me highlight several of Cole's statements and provide commentary.

I don't think she's really an appropriate choice to be speaking on campuses in Canada.

Well, is it really for Susan G. Cole to tell the Conservative club at the University of Ottawa who they can and cannot invite to speak on campus? Do they require her permission to pursue their activities?

Up here we're trying to create an enviroment which is a safe place to think and to learn.

The University of Ottawa certainly wasn't a safe place to think and learn on Tuesday night. There were people who wanted to hear what Coulter had to say. Instead, there was a mob of people who created an environment of intimidation where people were rendered unable to hear Coulter because they wouldn't permit Coulter access to campus.

It was inappropriate for those who invited her to invite her because she wasn't going to contribute to an actual conversation.

Again, who is Susan G. Cole to decide what is and isn't an actual conversation? Why does she begrudge people who want to hear Coulter? They are free to accept, reject or ignore Coulter's arguments as they see fit.

They could have that conversation. It's not clear why they would have to have it on the campus except they knew they were going to provoke people to have this kind of action. Have it at a conservative think tank. Have it at a lecture hall. The campus has to be a place and there are all kinds of ways in which these things are made evident. Students sign off on all kind of agreements as to how they'll behave on campus in order to respect diversity, equity. All of the values Canadians really care about and those are the things that drive our political culture. Not freedom, not rugged individualism, not free speech. It's different and for us it works.

The campuses have to be a place for what? I thought university campuses was a place of learning. Last I checked university campuses have lecture halls including the University of Ottawa. As for diversity, as a friend once told me, "The Left believes in diversity in everything except for opinion."

Well, we don't have that same political culture in our country and that's exactly what the Provost at the University of Ottawa was trying to tell Ann Coulter when he advised her to be careful what she said because she could indeed violate some of our hate speech laws. So here in Canada we don't have a first amendment, we don't have a religion of free speech. It hasn't been etched in stone for over 200 years the way it is in the United States of America. Very different. It's exactly the information she needed to know before she came.

Hmmn, so if Coulter was in danger of violating hate speech laws on campus then why wouldn't she be in the same peril if she spoke off campus? How disingenuous. They just don't want her to be heard. Period.

Cole also denies Canadians have freedom of speech. Yet according to Part 1, Section 2(b) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms everyone has:

freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication.

Surely this would apply to Ann Coulter.

Section 2(c) guarantees "freedom of assembly" which the mob gathered at U of O violated by preventing Coulter from speaking and the audience from listening.

As for Ann Coulter, here is her take on the whole sordid affair.

Finally, on a personal note, on Saturday I will have been in this country for exactly ten years. Given the sorts of things that are going on in my home and native land it would appear I made the right decision in coming to America.

1 comment:

gr1776 said...

Thank you. I completely agree and could not believe the lame arguments posed by the columnist during the interview. Of all places to be intolerant, a university. Just points to the fact that the left is well entreched in education and our youth is being indoctrinated by it. Of course, the same is true of the major media of which this columnist is a perfect example.