Lethbridge Pressures Edmonton Hotel to Cancel 3rd Option Conference
The enemies of freedom have declared all-out war on independent thought in this country. There’s a witches’ brew of corruption. Start with professional liars and smear artists, add cowardly hotel owners who care not a jot for legal contracts or liberty, and stir in a largely supine press that, at least in the case of the Edmonton Journal, refuses to even tell its readers that the main censor — David “bare bum” Lethbridge of Okanagan College in Salmon Arm is an outspoken member of the Communist Party of Canada. The result is repression of free speech worthy only of some banana republic or the bad old days behind the Iron Curtain. The Third Option for National Unity Committee planned a two day conference for October 18-19 in Edmonton. The venue was to be the Coast Terrace Inn, the same place they had held their conference last October! Firstly, it must be clearly understood that the Third Option Committee is arguing in favour of a return to the British North America Act’s emphasis on provincial powers as a third option to our present constitutional mess: status quo which isn’t working or Quebewc or Western separation.
In mid-September Lethbridge, the high priest of censorship and thought control in Salmon Arm, swung into action. “The hotel acted after receiving a 10-page memo about the group from the Salmon Arm Coalition Against Racism. Coalition Chair David Lethbridge also sent a copy to the Canadian Jewish Congress. … Hotel manager Werner Simm confirmed that the group met at the hotel last fall. ‘They had a meeting at the jhotel a year ago. But we had no idea who they were at the time. We only learned a little while ago when we were made aware by the Salmon Arm Coalition Against Racism.'” (Edmonton Journal, September 21, 1996) As a source of reliable information, that’s up there with consulting the flat earth society for information about flight navigation! In a September 20 press release, the Coast Terrace Inn stated that they had cancelled their legal contract after they were “advised by the Alberta Human Rights and Citizenship Commission that the organizers of the conference and main speakers are well known promoters of anti-semitism and racism.
The Coast Terrace Inn … [does] not approve of, or in any way condone, racist or discriminitory views.” Well, bully for them. Of course, discrimination on the basis of lies, smears and politically incorrect views is fine! The statement continued: “‘As the organization advances ideas that are contrary to the principles of the Alberta Human Rights, Citizenship and Multiculturalism Act, we acted quickly to cancel the bookings, ‘ said Roxanne Graham, director of marketing and sales for the Coast Terrace Inn. ‘We were not aware of the nature of the Third Option Committee or the purpose of the meetings at the time of the booking. Had we known, the booking would never have been accepted in the first place.'” In a September 18 letter to Wanda Gostick of the Third Option Committee, Roxanne Graham wrote: “We have been informed that the purpose of your seminar and meetings … is to promote anti-Semitism and other discriminatory topics which we have been told are contrary to the law.” This outrageous untruth is a clear example of prior restraint and taking the word of the Third Option’s mortal enemies as gospel. How can a discussion of the constitution be anti-Semitic or discriminatory? If there was any truth to the allegations, why wasn’t the Third Option or its speakers charged last year? The malign influence of the tax-funded Alberta Human Rights Commission is also noteworthy.
The hotel “cancelled the booking after the human rights commission warned that some of the speakers are ‘well-known promoters of anti-Semitism and racism’ Commission chair [that probably refers to a chairman not an item of their office furniture] Charlach MacKintosh said he advised hotel manager Werner Simm to cancel the booking because of some of the speakers involved. … ‘People are free to meet and discuss things, but that doesn’t extend to the promotion of racism and hatred. It’s just what these people specialize in,’ he said.” (The Edmomnton Journal, September 21, 1996) None of the speakers has ever been charged or convicted of promoting “hatred”. As for racism, that yet isn’t against the law. If it were, scores of provincial and federal politicians who passed racist employment equity laws ought to be in prison. The fatuous MacKintosh continued: “‘We were also advised there was the possibility of demonstrations which might easily lead to some violence.'”
Were people making threats? If so, why weren’t the police called and those making threats charged? Does this mean that the Edmonton police are so inept that they cannot control some planned demonstration? If so, they should be disbanded and the Edmonton taxpayers rewarded with a tax cut. Finally, the Edmonton Jewish Federation “blitzed Edmonton hotels with copies of the Coast Terrace Inn news release … with the hope that they would also deny the group a booking, [EJF director Leslie Jacobson] said. ‘We sent it out because the group that made the original booking is a group that promotes hatred and racism.'” (Edmonton Journal, September 22, 1996) It is our understanding that some interesting legal action will flow from the trashing of free speech in Edmonton. The resolute organizers of the conference have, of course, made other arrangements for the meeting.
CAERS Bagged $232,600 from Canadian Heritage Dept. Over Five Years
It’s our firm belief that the professional anti-racists, like Alan Dutton, head of the now-nonexistant (legally, as it was deregistered as a B.C. society two years ago) Canadian Anti-Racism Education and Research Society never set foot outside their abodes without being paid to do so by the Canadian taxpayer. According to figures we’ve just received CAERS has received $232,600 from the Canadian Heritage Department since 1992. That’s the outfit headed by Sheila “we’ll scrap the GST” (just not in this lifetime) Copps. Whatever heritage it’s promoting, it’s not ours. The funding involved $44,500 in 1991/92; $44,500 in 1992/93; $40,500 in 1993/94; $53,550 in 1994/95; $34,245 in 1995/96; and $31,510 approved for 1996/97.
SOS-Racisme Loses Gov’t Funding
Freedom of speech is marginally safer in the Province of Quebec now that one of the vociferous minority anti-free speech groups has had its funding cut. “SOS-Racisme … is the latest victim of government funding cuts,” mourns columnist Thomas Schnurmacher. “The group has been informed that its annual grant from Quebec will not be renewed. Previously, SOS-Racisme operated on a budget of nearly $200,000, largely subsidized by the provincial government. Private donations, traditionally meagre for anti-racism groups, have continued to dry up.” (Montreal Gazette, August 21, 1996) That’s a telling point. Even the minorities these groups allege to serve and represent clearly don’t see much value in them.
Schnurmacher continues: “As a result, the organization’s president Gaby Luonga-Kombe, is issuing a public appeal for help … after his group’s telephones were cut off because it was unable to pay a $1,500 bill. For almost a year, the group has been trying to cut costs by reducing staff and relocating to a more affordable office, but the group now finds itself with a $3,000 overdraft.. … Part of SOS-Racisme’s mandate is to denounce racism. … As a result of the drastic government cuts and the weak support from the private sector, the group faces a bleak future.” A Monteal reader writes: Last year, the St. Jean Baptiste parade was held up for 20 minutes because Luonga-Kombe insisted on walking with the dignitaries dressed in African garb. Do French Canadians crash Caribbean festivals?
CJC Censors Fail to Stop Minister Farrakhan
Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan spoke to a crowd of 2,600 people in Toronto, Sunday, September 15, despite the efforts of the thought control brigade to prevent his entry into Canada. Again — as with the Third Option meeting in Edmonton — the excuse for censorship and prior restraint was what Farrakhan might say. Increasingly, one of the pillars of Anglo-Saxon law — the absolute presumption of innocence until guilt is proven beyond a reasonable doubt — is being eroded by the freedom-hatng termites.
“‘We are all working hard in this country to foster unity and a harmonious society. Mr. Farrakhan’s presence, and likely hateful remarks, could constitute an assault on these efforts,’ Goldie Hershon, president of the Canadian Jewish Congress, said in a statement sent to Immigration Minister Lucienne Robillard. The CJC and B’nai Brith lobbied unsuccessfully to have … Farrakhan denied entry into Canada on the grounds that his record of anti-Semitism provided a ‘reasonable likelihood that he will violate the anti-hate provisions of the Criminal Code.'” (Globe and Mail, September 16, 1996)