Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of April 21, 2008
Magazine racks up human rights legal fees
Catholic Insight faces hate complaint
By DEBORAH GYAPONG
"Many Catholics have been asleep at the switch."
Eventually they received 16 articles that provided the context for the complaint.
De Valk admitted "there is vigorous language in some of them," but pointed out each article contained counterbalancing commentary in the Catholic tradition.
The articles opposed the agenda of homosexual activists, but "weren't attacking any individual persons."
Catholic Insight decided to go public last December after human rights complaints against Maclean's Magazine became the subject of many columns and editorials.
Maclean's faces human rights complaints from the Canadian Islamic Congress for an excerpt of Mark Steyn's book America Alone entitled "The Future Belongs to Islam."
De Valk has also been following the news concerning former Western Standard publisher, Ezra Levant who faced complaints to the Alberta Human Rights Commission two years ago for republishing the Danish cartoons of Mohammed.
But de Valk sees Catholic Insight's battle as much more difficult because the "gay drive for equality under the guise of its being a right" has been popular.
Steyn and Levant are perceived to be fighting Islamic extremists, and "have the wind in their sails."
De Valk said most Canadians believe the battle for gay rights is of no consequence to them. "Many Catholics have been asleep at the switch, not interested," he said.
"It (secularism) is not just a neutral thing," he said. "Secularism is aggressive."
The rapid change in the traditional definition of marriage over a short period of time is one example, and de Valk worries that religious freedom and freedom of speech is next.
He is concerned that the Canadian Human rights Act "does not accept truth as a validating criteria." Under the act, "when my feelings are hurt, you pay; you are spreading hatred."
He is also concerned about last November's Alberta Human Rights Panel decision in the case of pastor Stephen Boissoin, who wrote a letter to the editor critical of gay activists.
The panel chair determined that the "right" to be protected from "hatred and contempt" trumped the charter's guarantee of religious freedom.
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