Taking back our civil rights.

You hate to have to remind our Liberal government in Ottawa that one of the basic tenets of liberalism is human rights. It is as though the cabinet members get elected and then forget what party supported their election. It is even worse when the Liberals on the parliamentary committee on public safety have to remind the minister to do his job.

And if we have to trample over conservative Ralph Goodale, minister of public safety, so be it. The Saskatchewan Liberal(?) is noted for his ability to obfuscate on any topic but this is a topic in need of real action.

The Conservative government of Stephen Harper challenged our civil rights when it passed what is known as Bill C-51—the purported anti-terror law. Under the guise of protecting our citizens, the Conservatives trampled on numerous rights of individuals in our society.

It has long been the fashion of fascists to say they are taking away your freedoms to protect your freedoms. That seems like a good way to end up with no freedoms at all.

The smart way to go would be to refute everything in Harper’s Bill C-51 and start over. Mind you, one cannot disagree with the parliamentary committee’s request for drastic changes to the act. And they had a long list of them.

The recommendations ranged from a specific agency to oversee the Canada Border Agency to a combination of groups overseeing our security agencies.

But rather than discuss the specifics of the committee’s report, we need to look at the principles involved. The committee’s tendency was to refer individual rights to the courts to decide between infringement of rights and the protection of society. This is not in line with liberal principles.

Frankly, it makes no sense to put up barriers to the freedoms of our society because an occasional crazed individual runs amok and hurts someone. You are in more danger of being run over trying to cross the road ahead of an inattentive driver. And when you see people lined up with their shoes in hand to be searched before boarding an airplane we seem to have reached the zenith of our own stupidity.

The objective of terrorists is to spread fear. Why should we want to cooperate with them?

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Copyright 2017 © Peter Lowry

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