Canada is on the verge of passing what amounts to Islamic blasphemy laws.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Government is quickly proceeding to address unproven increases of “Islamophobia”— and he’s going to do it by curbing the right to free speech.
The government’s anti-Islamophobia initiative began in the form of a seemingly innocuous online petition presented to Canada’s House of Commons. Citing no evidence whatsoever, the petition made a bold claim that Islamic terrorism has been used as a pretext for a “notable rise of anti-Muslim sentiment in Canada”.
The petition called upon the House of Commons to recognize that terrorists are not real Muslims by condemning all forms of Islamophobia, with no exact definition of what they meant by the term.
That request — with no evidence, not a single case of Islamophobia cited, virtually no public input, and zero attention from the mainstream media — received unanimous consent by Canadian MPs.
The petition was followed in rapid-fire fashion by a second motion sponsored by Liberal MP Iqra Khalid which called for the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage to produce findings and recommendations within 240 calendar days of the motion’s acceptance. Titled “Systemic Racism and Religious Discrimination,” the Motion M-103 demands that the government not only condemn Islamophobia in word but that it also develops a whole-of-government approach to reducing or eliminating Islamophobia.
Motion M-103: That, in the opinion of the House, the government should: (a) recognize the need to quell the increasing public climate of hate and fear; (b) condemn Islamophobia and all forms of systemic racism and religious discrimination and take note of House of Commons’ petition e-411 and the issues raised by it; and (c) request that the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage undertake a study on how the government could (i) develop a whole-of-government approach to reducing or eliminating systemic racism and religious discrimination including Islamophobia, in Canada, while ensuring a community-centered focus with a holistic response through evidence-based policy-making, (ii) collect data to contextualize hate crime reports and to conduct needs assessments for impacted communities, and that the Committee should present its findings and recommendations to the House no later than 240 calendar days from the adoption of this motion, provided that in its report, the Committee should make recommendations that the government may use to better reflect the enshrined rights and freedoms in the Constitution Acts, including the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
The Liberal Party of Canada has opted to support an “anti-Islamophobia” motion (M-103) in Parliament which calls on the government to “condemn Islamophobia and study the best ways to quell an ‘increasing public climate of hate and fear.’” M-103 is the second anti-Islamophobia motion tabled. The first was unanimously approved and passed, but M-103 has stirred up questions and opposition by some Conservative Members of Parliament.
Huffington Post Canada ran an uninformed article that blamed opposition to the motion on “right-wing activists”:
“Right-wing activists are attacking a motion in Canadian Parliament intended to combat anti-Islamic racism and religious discrimination as a crackdown on free speech.
It doesn’t outlaw anything. Nevertheless, conservative websites have condemned it as a “war against free speech” and a “modern day blasphemy law.”
Among those “right wing activists” mentioned was Jihad Watch. There are those who disparage “right wingers” without actually identifying any legitimate reasons why they’re doing so. The first “anti-Islamophobia” motion was passed because few knew about it. Now, due to “right-wing” reporting about the historical and current truths about the “Islamophobia” ploy, opposition began. A rally with little planning time to organize drew about 1,200 people at Canada Christian College in Toronto; it included some Conservative MP’s and admirable, hardworking advocates for freedoms
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On December 12, the Conservative Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Theresa May, gave a fulsome speech to the annual Conservative Friends of Israel lunch. Before a roomful of 800 pro-Israel Conservative MPs and party supporters, she lavished praise on the Jewish state. She praised Israel’s achievements and castigated its enemies. She said that Britain would be marking the centenary of the Balfour declaration “with pride.” She also stressed that cooperation and friendship between Britain and Israel was not just for the good of those two countries, but “for the good of the world.”
For many of the people listening in the room, there were just two discordant notes. The first was related to the focus on anti-Semitism in May’s speech. As she used the opportunity rightly to lambaste the Labour party for its anti-Semitism problem, she extended the reach of her own claims for herself. While boasting of her success as Home Secretary in keeping out the prominent French anti-Semite Dieudonné and finally deporting the Salafist cleric Abu Qatada al-Filistini back to his native Jordan, she also used the opportunity to congratulate herself for banning Pamela Geller, Robert Spencer and Pastor Terry Jones from coming to the UK. “Islamophobia comes from the same wellspring of hatred” as anti-Semitism, she explained.
This is a serious category error for a Prime Minister to make. It puts critics of a religion, such as Geller and Spencer, on the same plane as people wanted for terrorism (Qatada). It blurs the line between speech and action, and mixes people who call for violence with those who do not. The comparison also fails to follow the consequences of its logic to its own illogical conclusion. The comparison fails to recognise that anyone who objects to Islamic anti-Semitism is immediately known as an “Islamophobe.” Therefore, someone hoping to come to Britain would have to accept being attacked by Muslim extremists for fear of being banned from entering the UK. These are serious and basic misunderstandings for a Prime Minister to propagate.
There was, however, a clear political sense to them. A Prime Minister in a country such as 21st Century Britain might believe that he or she has to be exceptionally careful not to appear to be criticising any one group of people or praising another too highly. So for the time being in Britain, a moral relativism continues to stagnate. If the Jewish community complains of anti-Semitism, then you must criticise anti-Semitism. If the Muslim community complains of “Islamophobia,” then you must criticise “Islamophobia.” To make value judgements might be to commit an act of political folly. Wise leaders in increasingly “diverse” societies must therefore position themselves midway between all communities, neither castigating nor over-praising, in order to keep as many people onside as possible.
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Islamist front groups in Canada and the West have dragged the media and the political “elites” into their extremist messaging. Rather than learning about why extremism and terrorism come out of their religion, Islamists instead concentrate on preventing the victims of their violence from speaking out. They do this by shouting “Islamophobia” at every opportunity, and do so most loudly at modernist or secular Muslims.
The Parliament of Canada, for example, passed an “anti-Islamophobia” motion on October 26, 2016. Samer Majzoub, the president of the Canadian Muslim Forum, was the person behind the Parliamentary petition against “Islamophobia”; it generated some 70,000 signatures. The sponsor of the motion in the House of Commons was MP Frank Baylis.
What is the real intent of Samir Majzoub, the Canadian Muslim Forum and its exploitation of the over-hyped concept of “Islamophobia”? As noted, Islamists, including Majzoub, have a long history of dragging prominent people and organizations into their arguments about extremism, terrorism and radicalization. These Islamists do not use their influence to drain the resources of Islamic terrorism in Canada and elsewhere, nor do they seek to stop young Canadians from joining ISIS. They did not stop suicide bombers in Canada such as Aaron Driver or Calgary-based Salma Ashrafi, who became a suicide bomber in Iraq. They do not use their knowledge or money to dismantle the infrastructure of extremism, nor do they attempt to dismantle the historical and religious arguments in favor of terrorism. Rather than do any of this, they instead make it their priority to intimidate, harass or sue those who speak out against Islamist extremism and its accompanying terrorism.
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