Some time ago, our Director, John Pacheco, sent a letter to his Member of Parliament, Marlene Catterall, about the imminent passage of Bill C-250. This odious piece of legislation seeks to add "sexual orientation" to the Criminal Code. Ms. Catterall has since e-mailed John her response. What follows here is John's response to Ms. Catterall's e-mail. Ms. Catterall's remarks are in italics.
Thank you for your response. Let me take a moment to comment on some of your remarks.
The Criminal Code currently prohibits acts of hatred or the promotion of genocide against identifiable groups in society, for example, based on race or religion. Bill C-250 would extend this provision to make it illegal to promote hatred or genocide based on sexual orientation. Whatever your religious views on homosexuality, I am sure you would not condone the promotion of acts of hatred or the promotion of genocide against homosexuals.
All crimes are, at least to some extent, motivated by some form of hatred. Under the current legislation, if a man kills his wife, he will not be charged under the current "hate crime" legislation. If, on the other hand, some crime is committed against a homosexual by a heterosexual, who just so happens to oppose his lifestyle, he may very well be charged with a "hate-crime." The invariable result of this, Ms. Catterall, is that you are placing crimes committed against a homosexual above those committed against a heterosexual. That is an elitist and fascist sentiment. In my example above, would you consider the woman's life any less worthy of defense than the homosexual's? If you do not, then please explain why the husband is facing less punitive legal measures than the homosexual's assailant?
This insipid legislation would exempt homosexuals from "hate crimes" on many fronts. For instance, consider the case of a homosexual committing a crime against another homosexual. This would not be considered a "hate-crime". How could it? They are both homosexuals! However, if that same crime was committed by a heterosexual against a homosexual, the courts would automatically consider the Prosecution's allegation that the crime was motivated by "hate" - simply by the mere fact that both parties had opposite "orientations". And if the heterosexual held anti-homosexualist beliefs, the "hate-crime" card would become even more effective as a legal weapon. Furthermore, by introducing "sexual orientation" into the Criminal Code, it will be used to intimidate and harass people who speak out against the homosexual lifestyle. And if you want to suggest that there is no legitimate threat to our population, please pay close attention to this news item:
Ms. Catterall, would you consider this a "hate-crime" perpetrated by homosexuals against a heterosexual? If not, then would it be permissible for a heterosexual to do the same thing against a homosexual without it being considered a "hate-crime"? Yes or no? Furthermore, in your political estimation, is it your sober and informed judgement that a heterosexual will be able to successfully sue a homosexual for a "hate-crime"?
The Criminal Code expressly protects the freedom of religious expression in subsection 319(3), which states: No person shall be convicted of an offence . . . if, in good faith, he expressed or attempted to establish by argument an opinion on a religious subject. There is additional protection in that no criminal proceeding under sections 318 and 319 of the Criminal Code may be instituted without the consent of the Attorney General. This will prevent frivolous or trivial prosecutions.
Ms. Catterall. Please give me your opinion. If I say that the homosexual behaviour is "perverse", would you consider that a "hate-crime"? Yes or no? Moreover, considering such a leftist judiciary in this country who can strike down such a venerable and necessary institution as marriage by judicial fiat, do you believe us to be so naive as to think our right to freedom of speech is necessarily guaranteed? And, if that Attorney General you mention above turns out to be homosexual or an active proponent of that lifestyle, would you have us believe that this person would protect us from frivolous or trivial prosecutions? In fact, the homosexual activist lawyer, Mr. David Corbett, was recently appointed to the Ontario Superior Court. His most famous case was defending Marc Hall, an Oshawa high school student who filed a discrimination claim and launched a $100 000 lawsuit against the Durham Catholic District School Board. The board refused to allow Hall to bring a homosexual date to prom but was ordered by a court to permit the homosexual date. Is this the kind of individual you have in mind for protecting my religious freedom, Ms. Catterall?
The Justice Committee held public hearings and reviewed the Bill in detail. I know it was particularly concerned about the protection of the right to express a religious position and quote religious texts. Unfortunately, the filibustering by Mr. Robinson did not allow the Justice Committee to consider amendments before the deadline for the Bill being reported back to the House of Commons. The Bill has now had its final two hours of debate in the House of Commons. An amendment has been proposed to protect the freedom of religious expression. The amendment and the Bill can only be voted on when Parliament resumes in September.
Ms. Catterall. Since you are obviously ill informed on these matters, please consider the following instances of religious discrimination below. And kindly take note that this has already occurred without so-called "hate-crime" legislation being passed into law.
In light of the aforemetioned cases, Ms. Catterall, is it your informed and shrewd political opinion that these kinds of cases perpetrated against Christians in the name of "equality" will actually decrease over time? Is it your opinion that these instances do not endanger the freedom of religious liberty? Is it your opinion, Ms. Catterall, that there is a clear and measurable difference between a Catholic businessman who refuses to capitulate to the promotion of homosexuality on the one hand, and a Catholic priest who refuses to marry two homosexuals on the other? Isn't it true, Ms. Catterall, that the real motivation behind these laws is to push homosexualism out of the closet into the public domain while simultaneously removing religion from public life and pushing it into the closet? You cannot elevate homosexuality to legitimacy while at the same time preserving authentic freedom of speech. There will come a time where inevitably these values will clash. In the Surrey B.C. public school board case, parents and their democratically elected trustees unanimously rejected homosexual intrusions into their children's education, but the Supreme Court of Canada overruled them. What kind of democracy is this? I will tell you - it is "democracy" ruled by fascist feminists.
Do you really believe that your constituents are so na´ve and clueless as to what is going on, Ms. Catterall? Is that the reason why, in your Summer Newsposter, you completely ignore reporting on Bill C-250 and the issue of "Gay-Marriage"? Why is that, Ms. Catterall? Because you think these issues are not that important to your constituents; that they are somehow inconsequential to the very foundation of society and their rights as citizens of this country? Along side promoting your tea-socials in your newsletter, do you not think there should have been some room for reporting on the enormous implications of these legislative and political initiatives? Is this the kind of representation we can expect from you in the future? We have a right to know.
I intend to vote for the amendment and for the Bill because I believe that crimes motivated by hatred based on such characteristics as race, religion, ethnic origin, gender, age or sexual orientation are a denial of the basic human right to dignity, equality and respect. I also believe, however, that the right to religious freedom requires that individuals be free to express their opinions on moral issues and quote religious texts.
Thank you for sharing your views with me.
Marlene Catterall, M.P.
As I pointed out to you above, Ms. Catterall, your assent to this legislation is simply providing political and legal cover for a group who is aggressively wanting to promote, and demand that we accept, their sex deviancy. If they want to advocate their lifestyle, that's fair game. But please don't give them a political and legal stick to beat us back when we choose to offer resistance. Let us play by the same rules. I don't think that is much to ask, do you?
My advice to you, Ms. Catterall, is to reconsider your position. If you vote for this legislation, I can only presume that, in light of the information that I have provided to you above, you are no friend of religious liberty and freedom of speech. And I will make it a high priority to make sure that your constituents know it.
Yours very truly,
Catholic Apologist and father of three young children.
July 1, 2003