Law

  • US Supreme Court rules business isn't a religion-free zone

    The controversy is over the contraceptives mandate in the 2010 health care reform law, which requires employers' health plans to cover a wide range of contraceptive drugs and devices, including some the companies and others regard as abortifacients. Churches are exempt from the mandate; after widespread protest, religious nonprofits such as colleges and hospitals were offered an "accommodation": the insurer provides to the organization a health plan excluding objectionable contraceptives and then announces to the employees that those contraceptives will be paid for by the insurer.

    The US Supreme Court yesterday vindicated two Christian-owned companies, Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Woods, that have a pro-life objection to including in their employee health plans certain contraceptive drugs and devices. In a 5-4 decision, the Court ...

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  • The Secular Democracy and its Victims

    Surely it is possible, within a liberal democracy, that we can, without bloodshed, lay bare some deep rifts between value systems. But we're only fooling ourselves—playing with house money—if we don't constantly scrutinize and re-evaluate the "why" questions beneath our differences. The preoccupation with "what" questions in the ongoing Trinity Western University (TWU) community covenant debate has left the "why" questions unanswered.

    If our freedom of religion and our freedom to associate mean anything all, surely they allow those who disagree to coexist, without coercing each other.

    Surely it is possible, within a liberal democracy, that we can, without bloodshed, lay bare some ...

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  • Prostitution, Advocacy, and Canada's Bill C-36

    Most Canadians know little about prostitution, but still feel strongly about it. Few see prostitution as a healthy thing for Canadian women, children, men, or communities. Even those who do, generally don't want the women (and it's overwhelmingly women) walking their street. And as Canada's laws on prostitution were challenged in the courts, more Canadians became aware that upward of 90 percent of those marketed in the world's oldest profession are commodities of sexual pleasure against their will.

    ...

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  • The Right to be Forgotten

    Last week, a European court ruled that Google had a legal obligation to comply with a Spanish man’s request that certain unflattering online references to him not show up in Google searches. The digital edition of a 1998 newspaper included the notice of his...

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  • De-Register the Liberals, Anyone?

    With tongue firmly in my cheek, I want to propose that all tolerant, open-minded Canadians join me in my quest to de-register the Liberal Party of Canada. I don't propose we do this lightly. But just as various law societies are deciding (after carefully co...

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  • The Public Square Must Be Controlled

    Last year, I overcame my nature-and-nurture revulsion toward the Trudeau name.  Setting aside my reflexive loathing of Pierre Elliott Trudeau as a prime minister, I praised his son—despite the many sins of the father—for his immediate and pointed rejection of Quebec's odious Charter of Values.

    Dismiss this if you like as the churlishness of a Westerner who has lived many years in Quebec, but Justin Trudeau reminds me of a one-eyed inebriate playing whack-a-mole. On the rare occasions when he scores a clean hit, he celebrates by thumping himself i...

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  • Regimes of Tolerance

    The Law Society of Upper Canada and the Nova Scotia Barrister's Society have decided that while the institution that teaches lawyers in British Columbia—TWU's forthcoming law school—is constitutionally acceptable, its graduates are not fit to practice law. That is, neither LSUC nor NSBS have submitted that Trinity Western's code of conduct policy is unconstitutional—they know this because the Supreme Court ruled very clearly that it is constitutional. They also are fully aware that in the same decision, regarding teachers who were taught at TWU and were required to sign the same Community Covenant, there was, as Albertos Polizogopoulos put it last week, "no evidence that TWU's students, who had signed and abided by the Community Covenant, demonstrated any discriminatory behaviour in the exercising of their duties as teaching professionals."

    If law societies are, so to speak, the marrow which supplies blood to our legal system—a society which has, as its very raison d'etre the "duty to protect the public interest, to maintain and advance the ...

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  • The Chance to Speak Up

    Related: Cardus covered in today's National Post Summary briefing of the case from last week (free PDF) "Loyola's Freedom of Religion" Paul Donovan explains the importance of the case (YouTube)  

    Cardus has covered the issues involved in Loyola et al vs. the Attorney General of Quebec on many occasions. Always our position is that the organizations of civil society, including those that are religiously motivated, must be free to participate...

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  • Corporate Faith

    Yet when the Supreme Court of Canada hears arguments next month in the dispute between Loyola High School and the government of Quebec, the implications will be at least as far reaching as TWU's bid to marry an evangelical Christian ethos with accreditation of our next generation of lawyers. . . .

    Debate over Trinity Western University's bid to open a new law school in B.C. has overshadowed the religious freedom fight faced by a 166-year-old Montreal high school.

    Yet when the Supreme Court of Canada hears arguments next month in the dispute be...

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  • The York University Question: It's not about sex—it's about the law

    All of these characterizations are, in my opinion, wrong. Here's why. There is no question of, nor threat to women's equality rights in the accommodation request of an online university student. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

    There has been much talk about York University's decision to accommodate the religion...

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  • The Opposition's Might Suggests the Cause is Right

    While the rest of the country ponders what it means for a religious institution to be granted a public-serving law school, the news this week has been illustrated rather more personally for me. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

    This country is to have a new law school—one unlike any other existing accredited Canadian legal institution: On Wednesday, British Columbia's Minister for Advanced Education, Amrik Virk, announced that his department would follow ...

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