Thursday, November 27, 2008

Killing Section 13 is Not Enough

There is a rapidly emerging political consensus that section 13 of Canada's Human Rights Act needs to be repealed. The Act regulates so called hate speech and has been used to attempt to silence individuals who have written a simple letter to the editor and more recently popular political commentators such as Ezra Levant and Mark Steyn.

Recently a review by Richard Moon, a long time supporter of the Human Rights Commissions, also recommended that Section 13 be repealed. Once again, Liberal MP Keith Martin has put forward a private members bill to do just that.

These are all excellent developments. Governments have no place deciding what is and is not fair political discourse. BUT, as the tide turns against the Human Rights Commissions, it's time for a complete overhaul of these kangaroo courts. These commissions have attacked individual liberty and promoted special interests particularly a homosexual agenda using many other avenues besides the infamous section 13. A Knights of Columbus hall was ordered to allow a Lesbian 'wedding' reception; numerous cities that were forced to declare gay pride day; and a private print shop that was ordered to print objectionable material are all victims of Human Rights Commissions gone wild using some of their other powers.

If there really is political will to reign in these commissions now is no time for half measures.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Pity the British

Say it ain't so:

LONDON (AP) - Britain is considering a ban on "happy hour" discounts at bars and
restaurants to curb drinking, a spokesman said Saturday, as health advocates warned that a rise in liver-related deaths among young people may signal a future epidemic.

Health officials will decide on whether to ban the happy hours - designated times for discount drinks - once an independent policy review is published in coming weeks, a health department spokesman said on customary condition of anonymity.

The proposal was one of several aimed at stemming a trend in binge drinking in recent years, particularly among teenagers and young adults. The government also plans to spend 10 million pounds ($15 million) on a new public awareness campaign, and wants to improve enforcement of laws against underage drinking.

Even worse:
They are considering a ban on a number of practices, including drinking games and speed-drinking events popular at some British pubs.
What's this world coming to?

Monday, November 24, 2008

Answered Prayer - Driving in Europe

I was recently on vacation for a few days in Portugal where we rented a car for a week, which was risky by itself. On the highway while I was driving 140 KM/h, I spent more time looking in my rear view mirrors than through the windshield, I'm certain cars passed me going over 200. Then there was that taxi ride down the massive hill in Coimbra through narrow one lane streets, but that's another story.

Through a series of events we found ourselves driving into Lisbon looking for our hotel on the night before we were going to catch an early morning flight. We had the street address for our hotel, but no map and no directions. To add insult to injury, I wasn't used to roundabouts at every intersection, and there seemed to be a distinct lack of street signs in the entire country. After we had circled the city once and stopped at a McDonald's for dinner and directions, the staff were very helpful and we thought we were on our way.

About 45 minutes later we realized we were hopelessly lost and we started praying that God would help us find our hotel somehow. We pulled into another McDonald's, this time I asked the girl at the counter if she spoke English, she said "a little" but it was clear no one behind the counter could understand a word I was saying. Then the guy beside me offered to translate, I told him I was trying to find my hotel and I showed him the address. He recognized this address but he said this is very difficult to get to from here. He started to give me directions but then he stopped.

Then, he said, "Why don't I lead you there?" We gladly accepted and we followed him through some crazy intersections and large roundabouts, all the time he was very careful not to lose us. As we drove we said to each other, God's really answered our prayers and sent us an angel to guide us home. After about 20 minutes he turned on his 4 way flashers and we pulled up beside him at an intersection and he told us this was the spot. We thanked him and asked him his name.

He smiled and said, "My name is Gabriel."

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Answered Prayers

I should have written this post a few weeks ago when the stories were more fresh in my mind. I was just going to let it go, but a recent experience has convinced me it's worth writing about.

First off I had a number of difficult phone calls to make at work one day, I was a little nervous so I said a prayer before making the calls. I don't know why or how but each call went far better than expected with the reaction being, "Yes! I was just going to call you about the same thing." Our interests coincided perfectly in each case even though there were several different issues.

On the drive home that night I was on a country highway going at a safe but healthy speed when I went over the hill I saw the police cruiser sitting on the opposite side of the road. I got a huge lump in my throat when the officer quickly spun around and started catching up with me, I prayed, "God please get me out of this!" The cruiser kept following me as we approached town I was certain the siren would turn on and that would be it. But the lights never turned on and I arrived home 5 minutes later with no ticket.

Later that evening a close friend called and I shared the story. They said, funny you should mention that, "My mother in law was in the hospital for the past 3 days with kidney problems and a serious reaction to her medication, she was going down hill fast and we stayed up all night praying that she would recover. Today she's awake and alert and the doctors say she may be ready to come home tomorrow."

Needless to say, that was an amazing, faith-building day. Hopefully I'll get the chance to write about the more recent cool story soon.