Growing concern in Canada over liberal policies benefitting Muslim extremists sheds light on why an “anti-Islamophobia” bill — proposed in the wake of the deadly January 17 Quebec City mosque attack and approved by parliament on March 23 — spurred such heated controversy there.
Motion 103, tabled by Liberal Party MP Iqra Khalid, a Muslim representing Mississauga-Erin Mills, calls on the Canadian government to “develop a whole-of-government approach to reducing or eliminating systemic racism and religious discrimination including Islamophobia.” Because the bill makes no mention of any other religious group targeted by bigots, it was opposed by most Conservative Party politicians and a majority of the public.
Ahead of what would turn out to be a 201-91 vote in favor of the motion, a petition was circulated asking MPs not to support it. According to the petition, Motion 103 would “lay the groundwork for imposing what is essentially a Sharia anti-blasphemy law on all of Canada.”
The petition further stated:
“…criticism of Islam would constitute a speech crime in Canada.
“This motion uses the term ‘islamophobia’ without defining it, and without substantiating that there is in fact any such widespread problem in Canada.
“This will lead to ideologically-driven overreach and enforcement against alternative points of view—including mature, reasoned criticisms of Islam.
- “Criticism of the treatment of women in Islamic-majority Middle Eastern countries could be criminalized;
- “It could be a punishable offense to speak out against the Mustlim Brotherhood, or to denounce radical Imams who want to enact Sharia law in Canada;
- “Criticism or depiction of Muhammad could be punishable by law;
- “Schools that teach the history of Islam’s violent conquests could be fined—or worse.
“That kind of content-based, viewpoint-discriminatory censorship is unacceptable in a Western liberal democracy.”
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