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Letter: Posters did not constitute hate speech

I write in reference to the column written recently (Oct. 11,2017 “Islamophobia, made right here”) by Pam Frampton about the so-called anti-Islam posters put up by some unknown person at Memorial University.

I also write in reference to the recent article about the same matter published in The Telegram the day before. I lament that it is left to me, as an ordinary citizen, to defend the right of free expression in this situation. No one from our established elites, whether academe or legal or political or the media, have stepped forward to remind all that we have in this country the right of free speech/expression. The posters do not cross the line into “hate speech.”

It is plain the posters do not breach the Criminal Code section regarding so called “hate speech.” The posters express an opinion about Islam. An opinion some would find offensive, perhaps. Yet I believe there are many who agree with the poster’s sentiments. Disagree with the poster? Well, put up your own poster then, but do not interfere with the free expression of others. The author of the poster has the constitutional right to express that opinion publicly.

The woman professor had no right to take down these posters merely because she found them offensive. The posters were not her property to take. Some Canadians — especially on the self-righteous left — believe “hate speech” is any speech they do not agree with.

The posters express an opinion about Islam. An opinion some would find offensive, perhaps. Yet I believe there are many who agree with the poster’s sentiments.

It is precisely because of this current atmosphere of suppression and persecution of those criticizing the federal immigration policy, especially at Memorial University, that the person putting up the poster did not identify himself or herself. It is precisely because of the liberal academic elites, leftists and media intolerance that contrary opinions are being driven “underground,” as Frampton unctuously claims she fears.

It is pathetic I have to remind The Telegram — a newspaper — of the right to free expression. The Telegram has attempted to demonize the individual who put up the posters as liable for a hate crime. This, quite frankly, could put The Telegram in the position of a defendant in court on a lawsuit of defamation. No crime was committed in this situation.

Frampton intones about “Islamophobia,” but what are her credentials to proclaim about this topic? Has she read the Qur’an? Evidently not. There is plenty to be fearful about the tenets of a so called religion like Islam which is based on relentless jihad/war on non-Muslims. Frampton does not even define what she means by “Islamophobia.” Nothing to fear about Islam, Telegram? Well, then, I challenge you, Telegram, to publish a cartoon of Muhammad. After all, there is nothing to fear, Telegram is there? It is just a cartoon after all.

The parade of poltroons and cowards of the Memorial University elite declaiming about safe spaces and diversity have apparently thrown away the right to free expression.

They make me sick.

 

Robin Reid

St. John’s

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