Justice and Freedom

07 Aug 2008 Letter: ‘Sacred texts’ can’t be hate speech

National Post - 2008.07.23Re: "The Company Muslims Keep," Jonathan Kay, July 22.In the midst of the points communicated by Jonathan Kay is a comment on Canadian law that is in need of clarification. While the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission did find the passage from Leviticus to be hate speech, their decision was overturned by the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal. The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada intervened in the case to attain the decision that "sacred texts" cannot in and of themselves be considered hate speech....

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24 Jul 2008 The Harm of Harm Reduction Philosophy

By Neil Dykstra, coordinator of Langley ARPA "Therefore, do not let sin reign in your mortal body, so that you obey its evil desires." (Rom 6:12)Addictions are the closest thing in our day and age to slavery. Whether it involves drugs, sex, alcohol, gambling or other behaviors, addictions are a psychological and sometimes physical dependence on something. Without taking into account the morality of the subject of the addiction, scripture clearly portrays slavery to the mortal body as the antithesis of godly life. In Genesis 1:28, God’s first commands to man are to be His image-bearer in creation, subduing the earth and everything in it. How can we subdue the earth when we let it subdue us?
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23 Jul 2008 EFC’s Report on Religious Freedom in China

BROKEN PROMISES: The Protestant Experience with Religious Freedom in China in Advance of the 2008 Beijing Olympic GamesWith the Olympics coming up soon, the EFC has prepared a special report about persecution in China's protestant churches. Here is a quote from the report. Read the full report here. "Unfortunately, behind the buzz of the Olympic-ready nation lie unacceptable incidents of persecution, torture and death. The Communist Party of China (CPC) has worked tirelessly to subdue any perceived form of criticism that may damage the image they have worked hard to...

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14 Jul 2008 A Powerful Sermon

Listen to this sermon online, or download it onto your computer or MP3 player, and learn how the story of Daniel and the lion's den can teach us a lot about Christians and politics. (Pastor James Visscher, Langley Canadian Reformed Church, July 6, 2008) Scripture Reading: Daniel 6: Theme: The Living God stages a most dramatic rescue. It involves: a) a singular servant; b) a zealous opposition; c) a surprising outcome. [To listen online, click the blue arrow and select the Daniel 6 sermon. To download it to you...

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17 Jun 2008 The Bible and politics: How do they mix?

by Mark Penninga (First Appeared in Reformed Perspective magazine, June 2008) Consider this scenario: You have received an official-looking letter in the mail. It is addressed from the Honourable Prime Minister Stephen Harper and inside is a memo that explains that you have been selected to appear before a special Parliamentary committee that must make a decision about whether Canada will sign onto an international coalition fighting global warming. Your fear of public speaking is irrelevant – you have been summoned and must fly to Ottawa next week. “What am I going to say to this panel?” you ask your family and friends. “I don’t believe in this whole global warming thing – and I’m no scientist!”
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13 Jun 2008 Save $1 Billion and 800 Lives: CAMH’s “Avoidable Costs of Alcohol Abuse in Canada 2002” Study released

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health: For Immediate Release – June 11, 2008 (TORONTO): The economic burden of alcohol abuse costs each Canadian $463 per year. In fact, the direct health care costs for alcohol abuse in Canada exceed those of cancer.Released today by the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), the Avoidable Cost of Alcohol Abuse in Canada 2002 report estimates that, even under very conservative assumptions,implementing six reviewed interventions would result in cost savings of about $1 billion per year and a savings of about 800 lives, close to 26,000 years of life lost to premature death and more than 88,000 acute care hospital days in Canada per year. This pioneering study is Canada’s first systematic estimate of the avoidable costs of alcohol abuse, and the first study of its kind worldwide.
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10 Jun 2008 Alberta Pastor Fined $7000 and Ordered to Publicly Apologize and Remain Silent on Homosexuality

Says he won't apologize - "I stand by what I said." Will appeal decision.By Tim Waggoner [Lifesitenews.com] OTTAWA, June 9, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - On Friday, the Alberta Human Rights Commission ordered Alberta pastor Stephen Boissoin to desist from expressing his views on homosexuality in any sort of public forum. He was also commanded to pay damages equivalent to $7,000 as a result of the tribunal's November decision to side with complainant and homosexual activist Dr. Darren Lund. The tribunal has also called for Boissoin to personally apologize to Lund via a public statement in the local newspaper. The remedy order demands the pastor to pay $5,000 to Lund personally for the "time and energy" he has expended and for the "ridicule and harassment" he has faced. Combined with that financial burden, Boissoin must also pay up to $2,000 in expenses to one of Lund's witness, provided she produces records of such costs.
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05 Jun 2008 Afternoon at the BC Human Rights Tribunal

Mark Penninga - ARPA Canada - June 4, 2008The third day of the hearings for Mark Steyn and Maclean's magazine wrapped up today in Vancouver and I was able to catch some of the show. The case is a result of a complaint by the Canadian Islamic Congress that Steyn's book America Alone (pictured on the right) and a Maclean's magazine article, which came from the book, are "anti-Muslim". Instead of giving a run-down of what was said (check out Andrew Coyne's blog for that) I thought I would give a brief analysis from an inexperienced onlooker's perspective. The court room was quite small - with the three member panel of the BC Human Rights Commission in the front (Heather MacNaughton is the Chair), the lawyers from both sides in front of them, and then about twenty people in the audience. Mark Steyn himself showed up shortly after I did. He hasn't spoken before the tribunal yet, and it doesn't look like he will. In fact, the Maclean's side has not put forward any expert witnesses in their defence yet, possibly as a protest against the ridiculous nature of the the tribunal itself.
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03 Jun 2008 What we now know about marijuana

by Margret Kopala (with permission) First Appeared in the Ottawa Citizen - May 31, 2008 Leading the recent National Post debate on cannabis, columnist Barbara Kay can't have anticipated Vancouver's safe injection site, rather than legalized cannabis, would be the Trojan Horse for the legalization of all addictive drugs. This week, the right of addicts to continue use of illicit drugs was upheld by the B.C. Supreme Court even though no treatment of which I am aware uses the substance that caused the problem to cure it. Smokers use nicotine gum, not more cigarettes, to kick the habit, don't steal to feed their habit and if heroine and cocaine are so helpful, why aren't doctors prescribing them in pill form? At least we know something about cannabis. In fact we know a lot. And now a paper published in Nature places the medicinal, the harmful and the recreational aspects of cannabis in a perspective that has implications for how we treat all addictive substances.
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16 May 2008 Human Rights Complaint Forces College to Permit Pro-Life Group Official Club Status

VANCOUVER, May 15, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) –The Capilano College Heartbeat Club and the Capilano Students Union (CSU) have reached an agreement that will see the pro-life Heartbeat Club achieve CSU club recognition, pending they submit an application in the fall. The parties released a joint statement shortly after the agreement had been made: "The Heartbeat Club filed a Human Rights complaint against the Capilano Students' Union. The Club and the CSU have entered into a settlement agreement which is confidential. The parties agree that there is no admission of liability by the CSU and that the Heartbeat Club will be entitled to CSU club status if they apply."
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