Friday, February 13, 2009

Keeping Canada Wholesome, Censorship and Canada Customs

It is hard to believe in the 2009, I am writing such a piece. Yet here I am. I do not believe in collective rights but rather in the rights of individuals to decide what is right or wrong for themselves. I grew up in William Davis's Ontario that is to say a Province run by fellow that believed that all you had to do was pass a law against something and problem solved. One of his creations was a commission headed by one Judy Lemarche, she was tasked to study obscenity and porn blah blah blah. But if that wasn't enough Davis acted upon her recommendations and implemented them viz the Ontario Censor Board. In Ontario the average person was not mature, intelligent nor worldly enough to make such decisions for themselves oh heck no. Worse was Davis was arrogant enough to justify the censor board by saying Ontarians want to be protected. Oddly enough you could watch as much violence as you wanted as long as no one got naked in the process. The Censor board could edit films or out right ban them if the film makers didn't agree to the changes. It was during the 70's and as a teen with a strong independant streak decided that censorship was wrong. I spoke out against censorship as best I could, in school and in my personal life. I can honestly say that I have always been against government imposed limits on freedom. I first heard of a book store in Vancouver that was being charged with possesion of obscene material back in the late 80's. Canada Customs as it was then known as was confiscating began stopping shipments of books to them at the border. Information was passed along to police who raided the book shop confiscated and charged them. This book store specialized in gay and lesbian literature but the offending books were leaned toward the rough trade BDSM. The part that raised my ire was that they felt the should be excepted from the law because they were GAY. Which for me is niether here nor there, no one is above the law. If the is wrong then task yourselves to getting the law changed for everyone not just your special interest. Moving along to 2009 to and the age of the information super highway, this same book store is still having its shipments stopped at the border. However any other book store can get the materials shipped to them no problem. Canada Customs seems to only open boxes addressed to them. Now this is just plain wrong. Not only that it is just plain stupid in this day and age of the internet borders no longer exist were information and media are concerned.

The CPC has a bill that will alow police access to your internet communications. It is being packaged and being sold as an update to a law that was written in the age of rotary phones. It is also being sold as means to combat crime and terrorism. I highly doubt it. Never trust the government with such power. While the internet may be viewed as a safe haven for the undesirable elements of society, you and I use it every day to convey information and opinions. Opinions that might one day attract attention from the authorities, would you want to be watched every time you surf? Would you want the Govenrment watching what you consider to be annonymous and private affairs? Write your MP and tell them no. They cannot guarantee that it would not be abused.

1 comment:

  1. Truly. Just because something is illegal to posess, what makes us think that criminals will start abiding by these laws? Because murder is against the law, too, but it still happens.

    The US is facing large overstepping by its government in the name of the "war on terror", against our constitutional rights. It sounds as though the same things are creeping in in Canada, too. You're right to encourage folks to write to their government. Keep it up.