Thursday, June 5, 2008
Springtime for Elmasry
Day Three of the BCHRT vs. Maclean's, Mark Steyn, and the internet in general has passed and Andrey Vyshinsky, er, I mean Faisal Joseph has yet to call an actual aggrieved muslim from British Columbia, which supposedly is what this is all about. The plaintiffs' case hasn't even begun to be proven, in fact, I'm not even sure if Faisal Joseph knows what he's trying to prove. Yesterday he called an expert on Bollywood who has written articles on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Queen Latifa. Now unless the legions of vampires Buffy kills are metaphors for muslims and Maclean's created her, I have little understanding of what she could possibly bring to the proceedings, but of course she was allowed to testify after the Grand Inquisitors retired to chambers in order to consult season 5 of Law and Order for the proper course of action. Predictably she saw abundant stereotypes throughout the Steyn article, and of course the cover, which is a picture of actual muslims, stereotypes them. Now everyone who reads her testimony and looks at her credentials can see she'd see a stereotype in a Bin Laden tape, but there's a larger point here. Are all books - or articles even - going to be dissected by a Tribunal if a "minority" deems them offensive? Is the government going to vet everything published in Canada? What is the standard used to decide what is publishable going to be? The testimony of an expert on Bollywood? This is comically fascistic, but fascistic all the same. Its as if Canadians have become trapped in "Springtime for Hitler". Funny sure, but would you want to live there? I'm sure most Canadians don't.