Saturday, January 27, 2007

Does Coren have the right to say what he thinks isn't 'normal'?

Where does Freedom of thought, opinion, speech or religion end and hate speech begin? Michael Coren goes out on a legal limb in today's Sun.

Since my wrist is still causing me some problems I'm keeping this short, but I thought it might be interesting to discuss. Please keep it civil. Thanks.

29 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well, if he doesn't have the right to say what he said in his column, then none of us have the right to say anything either.

Hate is shown in actions. His opinion is not hateful because his actions are not hateful. He clearly stated what he believes, and he did it in a respectful way.

We have to remember that it seems "hate speech" only comes up when someone speaks out on certain topics, whereas other topics are full of hate speech....as in "kill the infidels"...why isn't "hate speech" brought up then?

anon #83

Anonymous said...

I suspect no one will have the guts to launch a complaint against him. Why? Because of the potential media coverage. It's one thing to launch a complaint against a small-town councillor. Quite another to launch a complaint against a nationally-read columnist.

Sheena said...

If Coren isn't the biggest old closeted queen in Canada, I'll drink a Yellow Tail Chardonnay.

Road Hammer said...

LOL Sheena.

If one supports the right of the Western Standard to publish the Mohamed cartoons, then they have to support Coren's right to express his views on homosexuality - if they want to be consistent, that is.

Anonymous said...

joanne, what's so controversial here?

in human society, at present anyway... heterosexuality is the norm.

homosexuality is a deviation from the norm.

now i'm sure saying this, will set off a shitstorm of accusations that i am simply homophobic.

hey... if i put a spoonful of raisins in my mouth, i would gag. i simply cannot stomach raisins.

would that make me grapophobic?

i don't overly care whose anus you want to penetrate... as long as it ain't mine.

homos contemptuously refer to straights as breeders... does anyone label them heterophobic?

so rainbow coalition and loony leftbots... get over yourself.

*

Anonymous said...

Coren's comments are ultra mild compared with what Elton John has said. He'd like to ban organized religion.

Anonymous said...

"in human society, at present anyway... heterosexuality is the norm.

homosexuality is a deviation from the norm."


What makes it "the norm". Is it the percentage of population?

Then following that logic, in Canada, white skin is the norm. Dark skin is a deviation from the norm.

liberal supporter said...

Coren plays the old "right wing persecuted by left wing intolerance" card again. He just sounds so, wounded, at the same time as he gleefully spews. And as usual, he invokes the fact that millions died for our freedom of speech, which he would have us believe is threatened in this situation.

But Coren is quite safe, spewing his "opinions" in a newspaper column on the editorial pages. I used quotation marks on "opinion" for the same reason he referred to the lesbians in the KofC case as having a "wedding".

And of course he misrepresented the KofC case, since in that case, they did not refuse initially, as was their right, but instead did not do their homework and only after discovering the women were lesbians, did they try to renege on a signed contract.

Comparing his situation to that of a city councillor wishing to exclude a part of the community, is also typical of his attempts to cloak it all in the mantle of freedom threatened.

Coren is an opinion columnist, his opinions are his own, and his writings do not directly affect people. He is not breaking the laws about inciting violence against anyone. He is certainly hateful in my view, but that is not a hate crime.

The councillor, on the other hand, is a public official. Since city councils do proclamations of various sorts, it is basically a service provided by the city, and to deny one to the faggots is institutionalized state discrimination. This would lead people to believe it's quite ok, and state sanctioned, to discriminate against the queers in whatever ways you see fit.

liberal supporter said...

^^ my free speech is threatened by blogger showing my comment as anonymous

clare hoy said...

Coren has the right and freedom to say whatever he chooses but that doesn't mean he can do so without consequence. Not everything he utters is worthy of uncritical tolerance and I have every right to label him a bigot if the shoe fits.

Anonymous said...

"Coren has the right and freedom to say whatever he chooses but that doesn't mean he can do so without consequence. Not everything he utters is worthy of uncritical tolerance and I have every right to label him a bigot if the shoe fits."

....and that goes for all of us as well. None of us is above being called something, even though the the shoe might "not" fit except to the person doing the calling.

Just because someone uses the word "bigot" doesn't mean that the person actually "is" a bigot.

I don't think Coren is, and I think he stated his case without "name-calling" which deserves a name of its own...as soon as I come up with one, I'll pass it around. The idea that people can freely say "bigot", "racist", "redneck", "neo-con" ....the people who use those words freely, deserve to be labelled themselves.

That's all I'm saying on this however. Coren has plenty of defenders.

anon #83

Anonymous said...

not controversial. absolutely, people can think like that and talk like that.

sheena's sort of right though, if he thinks he's rocking a boat then he must think we are a nation of sherry driking widows.

Spinks said...

Um, why is his article a big deal? There's nothing hateful there. It's a respectful, well-thought out column.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Neo, please. Do you have to use such graphic language?

Anonymous said...

The topic of hate speech vs. gay rights is still present long after SSM debate in parliament is over. Thanks Joanne for the article, I had not heard about it before today. Today I blogged about something similiar: bleeping out God out of in flight movies and the study of gay sheep.

Zac said...

I suspect no one will have the guts to launch a complaint against him. Why? Because of the potential media coverage.

They won't because that is what he wants. He would love to be dragged in front of a human rights board. It would make his year. The guy likes to stir the pot, anyone who's heard his radio show knows that. He just argues with everyone. He likes the controversy.

Oh, and Sheena is right. Coren is so far in the closet he's finding Christmas presents.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

I wonder if Michael Coren would be allowed to use the word inferior here?

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Coren better not go to the U.K. either:

"...In December, a Home Office report recommended that schools and teachers who failed enthusiastically to endorse homosexual “rights” should be reported to police. The paper on "homophobic hate crime" defined homophobia as "resentment, or fear, of gay and lesbian people" which "can be just a passive dislike of gay people".

Anonymous said...

Actually, he is correct in that it is not natural. How could it be? Life would have stopped at the first generation.

'Normal' is a more vague term as it kind of depends on what is going on around you. If you live in a neighbourhood where everyone wears bright purple pants, then wearing them is normal and not wearing them is deviant. Normal is a very subjective term and quite meaningless.

Coren's column, unfortunately, is not nearly the hot potato he'd like it to be. I think we've pretty much come to accept that some people are gay, some aren't and no one I know could care less about it either way. We've all moved on.

After all, it's not mandatory.

liberal supporter said...

They just can't resist putting the word "rights" in quotation marks, can they?

Not because they are referring to the word "rights" as I am here, but because they are wanting to be clear that believe homosexual rights are somehow not real, just as Coren referred to the lesbian wedding as a "wedding".

Anon 7:04, you're right about "normal", just as I referred to the idea that the dominant skin colour in a country could be seen as "normal" and all others as deviant. I think your example was better, not so inflammatory.

But "natural" has the same problem. Is something "unnatural" because only humans do it, and not animals? Are humans not "natural"? One could say religion is "unnatural" since no other species has been seen to have any kind of religious activity. Some animals may appear to do special things to their dead, but none have shrines or anything of that nature.

The "unnatural" view of homosexuality might be that it is a mental disorder. Is mental disability in general "unnatural"?

The "natural" view of homosexuality is that it does occur in other species, and it may be part of natural population control.

liberal supporter said...

"...In December, a Home Office report recommended that schools and teachers who failed enthusiastically to endorse homosexual “rights” should be reported to police. The paper on "homophobic hate crime" defined homophobia as "resentment, or fear, of gay and lesbian people" which "can be just a passive dislike of gay people".

Why should Coren fear going to the UK. He is not a teacher.

Does the Home Office actually say "enthusiastically"? It looks to me more like they cannot distinguish between "passive dislike" and simply being neutral, which would likely be fine.

Dianne said...

I think Coren is giving us a good example on what we should all be doing and how to do it. He has lost his job before trying to do this, but he keeps doing it. The conservatives should court him along with Cam Wooley.

Chris form Winnipeg said...

My reading Michael Coren's column has the main point being not so much whether homosexuality is natural or not, but the difference between the reactions to a person's opinion and the voicing of it.

Why can I say that homosexuality is natural but I can't say it is un-natural? Both are opinions and are valid. Why the difference in reaction?

If it was a discussion of fact, ie: "2 + 2 = 4 or 2 + 2 = 5" then there is reason to dispute and correction. If, however, I state an opinion, "The Toronto Maple Leafs have the worst line-up in the N.H.L.", that is a valid statement because it is just an opinion. I have every right to state my opinion as does someone who has a differing view of things.

Just because we do not agree about what is an opinion based statement does make either party right or wrong.

Zac said...

The conservatives should court him along with Cam Wooley.

I second that one. You guys should run out and get Coren to run for you. While at it, you should pick up Rondo Thomas and Charles McVety to round off that "moderate" image.

"The Toronto Maple Leafs have the worst line-up in the N.H.L.",

Leaf's Rule! Whoooooo!

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Zac, regarding Coren, I have to agree with you inasmuch as that's the last thing the Conservatives need right now. It's too bad that someone with religious values is politically taboo in our 'progressive' and secular society.

Zac said...

It's too bad that someone with religious values is politically taboo in our 'progressive' and secular society.

Ouch, a parting shot, but I would note that it is not his religious views that would make him "taboo", just his regular views. Ever listened to his show? That's not all just his religious views.

BTW, I'm having a hell of a time trying to leave comments...your word verification is busted.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

BTW, I'm having a hell of a time trying to leave comments...your word verification is busted.

Thanks for letting me know, Zac. I guess New Blogger is giving me problems there. I'll have to check out the settings.

Zac said...

It may not be new blogger, but the word verification picture just doesn't always come up. You have to try a few times to see it.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Zac, I was having the same trouble on a different blog. Is it just mine that you are having that problem with?