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Monday, February 02, 2009

University of Calgary brings trespassing charges against anti-abortion group members

The saga of the University of Calgary administration's attack on the expression of a campus anti-abortion group continues. Three student members Two students and one other member of the group have been charged with trespassing, which carries a maximum fine of $2000. The Calgary Sun reports:

Representatives from the Campus Pro-Life club say three of the court orders have been issued by police so far, and three other club members are anticipating similar charges to be filed against them.

The accusation of trespassing comes after a conflict with university officials, who took issue with graphic signs displayed by the pro-lifers at demonstrations on November 26 and 27, where abortion was equated with genocide.

The charges were expected — university officials at the time said they would ask the Calgary Police Service, “to issue the appropriate summonses to the individuals ignoring the notice of trespass or to take other appropriate steps.”

Part of the "Genocide Awareness Program," the graphic signs which have photographs of aborted fetuses and victims of the Holocaust and Rwandan genocide can be viewed here. Leah Hallman, president of Campus Pro-Life, believes the university is applying a double standard and targeting the group for their political opinions. She told the National Post that she believes the administration:

...endorses a prejudice against anti-abortion groups by regularly permitting graphic images to be displayed for some causes -- in November, another, nearby exhibit displayed upsetting photographs of Falun Gong members allegedly tortured by Chinese authorities -- while prohibiting images of abortion.

John Carpay, executive director of the Canadian Constitution Foundation and #11 on the Liberty 100, the Western Standard’s ranking of Canadians who made a contribution to economic or personal liberty in 2008, agrees and will continue to provide legal advice and representation to the students:

“These students have paid their tuition fees, and they have the same right as everybody else to express their views,” said Carpay.

“What the university is doing is censoring one viewpoint that they disagree with.”

Carpay said the Canadian Constitution Foundation is offering the students free legal service, not because of their abortion stance, but because the university is denying them freedom to express that stance.

Following the latest developments, Hallman made an impassioned speech on the steps of the university library, framing the group's defiance as a struggle against censorship and a defense of Canada's liberal traditions:

"The road to the liberty we enjoy in Canada was long and fraught with deadly peril. Many brave men and woman took it upon themselves to bear upward the sacred torch of freedom to greater heights... Once more, Canada faces a challenge to test her commitment to the ideals upon which she was founded, and upon which her society now stands."

Posted by Kalim Kassam on February 2, 2009 in Campus watch | Permalink


I don't often get worked up over such things, but it really is a scandal how radicalized our educators have become. They claim to be supporters of tolerance, but all that really means is that they support viewpoints mainstream society opposes. They persecute what they consider heresy with all the zeal of a 16th-century witch-finder. They maintain blatant double standards, and when called on it, mouth off with a bunch of emotional call-to-arms bullshit that our Charter Rights was designed to protect us from. Thanks to their ilk, our universities have abandoned any pretence of free speech and have even appointed thought police to wander our halls of learning and sniff out dissenting opinions.

That's just at the university level, but regular teachers are little better. They're stubborn, disobedient, insubordinate, petulant, and for the life of them can't understand why the rules should apply to them. They defy the rulings of the courts, of the Labour Relations Board, and regularly hike up their skirts and flash Victoria. They mob handicapped government negotiators, giving tongue like wolves, shrieking like the damned. They stage illegal strikes that cost the economy millions, wear black armbands in class to mourn the "death of their contract," defy orders from all levels, and consider any ministerial initiative that does not directly benefit them to be a vile waste of time and money. They shrink from accountability, hurl bile at the Fraser Institute and their school-ranking, all the while maintaining that a 41K starting salary and 90K top-out puts them way, way below the poverty line.

My youngest is in kindergarten this year. I foresee some memorable teacher-parent interviews in my immediate future.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-02-02 11:22:24 PM

The university is supposed to be a community of scholars. Those who support the exclusion of different positions lose the right to call themselves "educators". They are, in fact, indoctrinators and propagandists. They should be ashamed of themselves.

Posted by: DML | 2009-02-02 11:36:16 PM

DML, you can't shame the shameless.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-02-02 11:51:58 PM

They are showing grotesque, violent imagery, where showing such images usually warrants some sort of disclaimer in other channels. It’s the content that is in question here, not their right to free speech and all that other “Liberty” and “freedom” BS.
I am not too sure about the whole trespassing charges, and I doubt anyone will ever be sure about them as we do not have the full story. There has to be a reason why they are being charged.
In the end though, it all stems from the showing of said graphic images. If they don’t show the offensive images, then they won’t be bothered, simple as that.

Posted by: indian | 2009-02-03 12:45:18 AM

The problem, Indian, is that universities routinely allow the display of graphic images if it's for a politically correct cause the administration approves of; e.g. Iraqi war dead, famine in Africa, child amputees in landmine-infested Asia, and so on. The censorship is selective, is an ongoing pattern at multiple universities, and is highly indicative of a radical feminist bent. Trespassing was merely the only bona fide charge they could come up with, and as the group's defence attorneys charge, it's totally bogus, because students have the right to access their own campus.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-02-03 9:37:47 AM

Shane, I think you nailed it.

Posted by: TM | 2009-02-03 10:26:35 AM

Spot on, Shane. I had to laugh at the claim that they are showing grotesque, violent imagery when in fact they are simply "images" of the reality of abortion. I suppose it is much easier to deny the facts than to admit what takes place during an abortion.

These establishments of indoctrination would make any committed communist proud indeed. They have regressed back to the 1400s during the inquisitions.

Posted by: Alain | 2009-02-03 11:49:34 AM

For years under the slogan "freedom of choice" the slaughter of the child in the womb has been covered up. "Choice" sounds nice, but now that these young courageous students are showing the truth of this heinous atrocity, the elites of political correctness are trying to suppress and punish them. Over 100,000 innocents are slaughtered yearly by the human butchers in Canada. One of these butchers even got the "Order of Canada." What a sick and depraved society we have become.
See the slaughter of the innocents at: http://www.AbortionNo.org

Posted by: Stephen J. Gray | 2009-02-03 12:45:36 PM

It does make sense what you say, be it a little on the extreme side, but it makes sense. But I don't know what university's you have gone too, but during my college days, I had yet to see any non-politically correct causes with out them being immediately snuffed by the administration, perhaps you are referring to Quebec colleges?

But I still stand by the cause of, if you know its going to insight any sort of opposition, don't show it. Sometimes I think these people are asking for trouble. No one wants to see that nasty stuff. I say, let the slaughter continue, nobody gives a s*** about it anyway. And will it open eyes? Yes, but not in the way they are trying to express.

Now when you say "Highly indicative of a radical feminist bent", I call BS, men rule the university's through and through.

Posted by: indian | 2009-02-03 11:48:41 PM

Men rule the university? Ummm, go count the genders of support staff and high ranked managers.

Professors and Deans don't run the show, they are puppets.

As well I'm sure most Professors are...

Oh never mind.

Posted by: tomax7 | 2009-02-04 9:20:09 AM


1. That first paragraph is so poorly structured I'm not sure whether you're saying that politically correct displays were shut down, or only politically incorrect ones.

2. The whole point of universities is freedom to debate or express ideas. You do not have to censor yourself just because someone else disagrees with what you have to say. Certainly university students in the 60s never did, nor since, and today's faculty being those same 60s-era students, ought to know better. Our Charter rights are not contingent on other people liking what we have to say.

3. You have NEVER been to a university if you buy that line. When I went to UBC in '90, the welcome brochure to the residence said that "the first 150 parking spaces will be assigned to women. The rest will be divided up among male and female residents." In addition, there was a shuttlebus to the residences from the library, but men were allowed to use it only if it was not full of women; females got first pick. This in spite of the fact that women are victims of violence at only a third the rate men are. Speech codes, conduct codes, paid spies who infiltrate student conversations to steer them away from politically incorrect discussions...Give it up, Indian. You don't know the female mind if you can't recognize female-inspired policy.

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-02-04 11:34:15 AM

"When I went to UBC in '90, the welcome brochure to the residence said that "the first 150 parking spaces will be assigned to women. The rest will be divided up among male and female residents." In addition, there was a shuttlebus to the residences from the library, but men were allowed to use it only if it was not full of women"

Holy crap, Shane! I've never attended a university with a policy like that: I'd probably have gotten kicked out.

I'm kind of with you on this: feminists tend to be the most vocal advocates of tyranny, disguised as liberation.

Fortunately, outside university campuses (and perhaps outside the confines of the HRCs), I don't think they have much power. But what is it about them that makes them both so willing to use the power they have and so blind to the consequences of that use?

My own hypothesis is that feminists tend to subscribe to a particularly narrow "narrative." In that narrative, women (especially lesbian, bisexual, and/or pro-choice women) are the heroes, and men (especially straight white men) are the villains.

That means (a) Anything to the benefit of women is good, and (b) There's no need to listen to men, or consider their objections, because it's already been decided that they are evil (in proportion to the whiteness of their skin, their support for the free market, and their opposition to abortion.)

Once someone has bought into a story like that, there's little you can do. Abortion opponents are framed as either "men who just want to tell women what to do with their bodies" or "self-hating women." People who object to policies like the one you described are "misogynists." And the principle of charity goes out the window.

Posted by: Terrence Watson | 2009-02-04 1:22:59 PM

I think it's even more basic than that, Terrence; women in general just like special treatment and their entire outlook is skewed to suit that viewpoint. Justice is not reward for virtue or punishment for wrong; it's what gets them what they want when they want it. It's an evolutionary imperative on the part of a nurturing parent to demand more from males who are evolutionary disposed to be anything but. There's no malice in it, but there's no malice in males playing the field either. I fail to see why one should be acceptable but not the other.

Of course, there's also one other dark secret that women try desperately to hide. Women are *afraid* of men, which is why they tend to congregate together like a bunch of does. Female bonding has a larger element of survival instinct than does male bonding. This fear breeds resentment and often hatred.

Put hatred and a sense of entitlement together in the same person, and you have someone who is completely unsuited to a position of power. I know there are exceptions to this, and I'd rather be led by a capable woman than a buffoon of a man, but all other things being equal, men make better leaders because men are more rational and just and are not as afraid. Hell, at the Marc Lepine massacre at Ecole Polytechnique, one of the first things female students demanded afterward was why men didn't come to their rescue.

Some of this is cultural as well. I can easily see a country woman (known derisively in Urbania as a "hillbilly woman" picking up a rifle to protect her family. An urban woman would hide under the bed and scream into her cell phone for help from (who else) MEN.

But I'm not bitter. :-)

Posted by: Shane Matthews | 2009-02-04 2:31:48 PM


The funny thing is, some feminists on the radical side will readily admit they're afraid of men. Some of the most radical support limiting male births, women-only communes, and other such ideas.

I suppose I can understand the impulse: it seems like the logical conclusion to the "men are evil and we should be afraid of them" idea.

It's the people who want it both ways I don't understand: they believe men are dangerous, but think that danger can be mitigated with excessive red tape. Well, no: if men are evil, and their main goal (admitted or not) is to terrorize women and keep them in submission to the patriarchy, then excluding them from the first 100 spaces in the university parking lot is going to do very little.

You can't believe both that all men are inherently dangerous rapists-in-waiting and that you can keep them in check with a campus speech code.

If men are that dangerous, every woman should own a gun, and limit her contact with men as much as possible.

Posted by: Terrence Watson | 2009-02-04 2:41:28 PM

ome of the most radical support limiting male births, women-only communes, and other such ideas.

There was a movie about that wasn't there?

Planet of the Apes? Nope, umm, Xena thing? Nope, just can't pin it.


Binoc's for sale...

Posted by: tomax7 | 2009-02-04 5:01:41 PM

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