The Shotgun Blog
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Live from Toronto, it's Ezra Levant!
Lest our dear readers despair for the future as a result of the present conversation about the "thought monopoly of Academia," let them take heart that opposition to the soft totalitarianism of the collectivists is not completely dead on the Canadian university campus. These are the flyers I'll be posting around the University of Toronto's downtown campus this weekend:
"For 900 days Ezra Levant fought the Human Rights Commission...."
Well, it was about 900 days between when the complaint was filed and when the HRC dismissed it, but for 899.9 of those days "fighting" consisted of doing nothing, as there was nothing to do. The other 0.1 day (less, really) he spent being obnoxious while being asked some rather simple background questions.
"He became the only person in the world to face legal sanction for printing those cartoons."
No, not really. The complaint named JMCK Western Publishing / The Western Standard as respondent. Ezra did not personally face any legal sanctions. And since the WS had gone out of print a year before the case was dismissed, there wasn't actually a respondant left, anyway. Just as a similar case years before against Alberta Report died when the publication did, this one was effectively dead except for the fact that Ezra insisted on keeping his martyr campaign alive.
"He was eventually acquitted."
No. Firstly, he was never the subject of the complaint. Secondly, the case was dismissed after the initial investigation without the "charges" being pursued. It would be more accurate (although still only metaphorically) to say the "charges" were dropped, not that he was acquitted. But I guess that does not make him sound heroic enough.
Posted by: Fact Check | 2009-09-10 10:33:04 PM
Mr. Levant has been fighting since the absurdity of the human rights commission's abuse of power became evident. He has spent his own time and money to do it, and it has brought results, not only for Canadians, but as a lesson learned around the world.
Sounds like a hero to me.
Posted by: lwestin | 2009-09-10 10:50:41 PM
FANTASTIC post. Ezra is an asshat. I beat him in a debate tournament in university and went back to the debate team years later as a journalist to do a story, and they told me I was known as "Better Than Ezra." Heh heh.
Posted by: Ispeakthettruth | 2009-09-10 10:52:47 PM
Do the pretend libertarians at Western Standard ever get tired of this neeeeeeeeeeeeeeever ending Ezra celebration?
I thought Ezra left WS? Why does his cult still linger here?
Mr Kassam, here is a newsflash for you; Ezra Levant is no libertarian. His foreign policy is fascist, and extends to killing child soldiers on sight; he opposes most libertarian impulses, and prefers a strong centralized court system that preserves and protects an elite he hopes to count himself amongst; he writes about a "war on fun" but somehow overlooks the tyrannical war on drugs and countless other offenses by the state; he is cop worshipper; I could go on and on.
But his claim to fame, that of victim of the HRCs, is fraudulent. Another poster has covered some key points, above.
But was ANY libertarian NOT against the HRCs BEFORE Ezra Levant was "victimized"? If you need Ezra -- a non libertarian -- to provide you with a point of view on the HRCs, then you aren't much of a libertarian, or weren't, to begin with.
Ezra does not support free speech. As one wag put it, he supports "me speech" , the me, being HE.
He is the most litigious, thin skinned foney in Canada. HRCs are a poor mans defamation court. They should never have existed. But neither should the defamation law of this country. But Ezra is the Richar Warman of the defamation courts. How many little people has he bullied and soaked for cash settlements?
If you care about freedom, and free speech, you will stop forcing Ezra Levant down peoples' throats. If you want to alienate people from freedom of speech and the libertarian cause, keep on putting Ezra Lavant in peoples faces.
Ezra Lavant believes in freedom for Ezra Lavant. He believes even more in attention for himself.
I am glad he "won" his battle with the HRCs; what makes me sick is all the wannabe libertarian groupies who hero-worship this guy. It sets libertarianism back decades.
Posted by: Phillip | 2009-09-11 12:43:06 AM
Funny (not ha, ha, funny) how these lightweight "libertarians" can only conceive of one freedom of speech issue in this country, namely the one Ezra Lavant tells them is important, because it helps Ezra Lavant get attention, which is why the Danish cartoons were printed in the first place. Good god I worry for the future of libertarianism in this country when Ezra Lavant is its prophet. A false prophet. Note to WS publishers: give up this Ezra obsession; let it go already. Your site is getting very, very old very very fast.
Posted by: Phillip | 2009-09-11 12:49:14 AM
Ezra is fighting the Human Rights Commission. The HRCs (and HRTs) should be opposed not just by libertarians, but by decent Canadians everywhere as an affront to our freedom of expression and speech. Whether or not Ezra is a libertarian on other issues is totally and completely irrelevant. The WS will continue to support Ezra in this particular battle, because this particular battle is a battle for greater individual liberty.
Posted by: P.M. Jaworski | 2009-09-11 7:06:48 AM
"The WS will continue to support Ezra in this particular battle, because this particular battle is a battle for greater individual liberty."
Kinda like how Stalin was our ally in WWII? It is interesting that the criticism of Rob Anders recent fliers not only came from the Muslim Council of Calgary, but also came from the Sheldon Chumir Foundation for Ethics in Leadership, an organization that also opposes Section 13. They recognize that Anders agreement with them about Section 13 does not mean that they should refrain from criticizing him when it is warranted.
Ezra also has only a vague familiarity with the truth. His style, while celebrated by his sycophants, is more likely to keep people who don't already agree with him from changing their mind. Alan Borovoy has been a much better spokesman. Borovoy promotes the cause. Ezra promotes his own cult of celebrity.
Be careful which wagons you hitch yourself to. If you get pulled into the muck, the stench can be hard to wash off.
Posted by: Fact Check | 2009-09-11 9:20:43 AM
So we have the usual number who are against freedom of speech and they use their personal dislike for Ezra Levant as a cover. Nothing new and typical of the Left. They only support free speech when you agree with them; otherwise they stop at nothing to suppress dissenting views.
Posted by: Alain | 2009-09-11 6:27:09 PM
Hey, Alain! Try reading the posts that are written. You have been drinking Ezra's bath water too long, you have become a charicature of one of his suck ups. Take a break, already!
I think most sane people would agree that if you want to grow support for Freedom of Speech in this country, you can not do it with a guy who goes around suing everybody who says things he doesn't like. That is for one thing. Secondly, you are not going to gain support for Freedom of Speech when you keep propping up a guy who everybody knows is just an opportunist who abuses the truth and who only care about freedom for himself. A website that promotes freedom should not be supporting someone who is not legit. They should be leading not following.
I support Freedom of Speech with every fiber of my being. I do not support Ezra Levant whatsoever.
Posted by: Tremonde | 2009-09-12 12:55:00 AM
Yes and it was the same Ezra free speech Levant that sued me,Merle Terlesky at QEB Calgary in a defamation suit to the tune of $100,000.
He settled for hos court costs of $5000.00
That tells me there never were any real damages to his terrible rep.
He is a phoney and a HYPOCRITE media whore!!!
How many times has thin skinned Levant sued someone?
I wrote a simple letter and he sued my ass!!!
Posted by: Merle Terlesky | 2009-09-12 1:55:41 AM
Alain as usual you seem to get the overall take on it right away. Yep, Libertarian critics look for fault in the tiniest of ways.
Ezra has done what very few others have been able to, and for that we all have reason to be grateful.
Someone has to beat back these kangaroo court commies at every turn, at every level.
And we could all do with a moral compass that tells us when to say no to Big brother.
Posted by: The original JC | 2009-09-12 5:23:45 AM
"I support Freedom of Speech with every fiber of my being. I do not support Ezra Levant whatsoever."
Posted by: Tremonde | 2009-09-12 12:55:00 AM
You just don't get it. If you really support free speech, you can't be selective. You have to actively support ALL speech, even that you don't agree with. Your statement tells me you only support speech you agree with. You miss the point, entirely.
I think Larry Flint is a disgusting degenerate, but he's been a beacon for freedom of speech. If average folks can support Larry, I don't see why we can't overlook Ezra's flaws.
Posted by: dp | 2009-09-12 8:54:56 AM
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