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Weekly Notes
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Blupete's Weekly Commentary

March 8th, 1998.

"The Vaunted Charter"

It never fails to impress me when I see the number of people that come and visit us here at "blupete." The average is running at 5,000 hits per day. By far and away most of the visitors are from the United States and Canada; but, also, significant numbers are coming in from the U.K, Portugal, Australia, Sweden, Germany, Ireland, Netherlands and Brazil. Genealogy is one of the most popular subjects, but philosophy and law are also very popular. I surmise a number of students are taking a look at my material in an effort to complete their assignments. I should tell you too that I get dozens of e-mails, every week. Most of these e-mails are complimentary and simply express thanks; some carry with them a plaintiff cry. I thought I would take one of these e-mails and my reply, and make them the subject of this week's commentary.

Date: Tue, 24 Feb 1998 10:41:14 -0800
From: Library login 2 <*******>
Organization: Queen Elizabeth Collegiate and Vocational Institute
Subject: Law Class - Charter of Rights and Freedoms Section 33
Hi. My name is Angie. My law teacher gave us a question, that the class is stuck on. If you would please try to help. It deals with the charter of rights and freedoms. The question is ... How many times has section 33 of the Charter been applied? By who? And why? We all are lost to find the information.
Please help.

Date: Mon, 2nd Mar 1998
Subject: S.33, Canadian Charter of Rights
Organization: Queen Elizabeth Collegiate and Vocational Institute
Dear Angie:
Thanks for your your note.
I am not aware that this section has ever been used, much less judicially considered. (It maybe that Quebec has invoked its provisions; it was put in there for them anyway.) It is a most unfortunate section put in by thoughtless politicians which allows parliament or any one of our provincial legislatures to abrogate the rights set out section 2, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, & 15 of our Charter. A citizen ought to be very concerned that government first "gives" and then reserves to itself the right to take away: freedom of conscience, freedom of religion, freedom of thought, freedom of belief, freedom of opinion, freedom of expression, freedom of the press, freedom of peaceful assembly, freedom of association: the right to life, liberty and security of the person: the right to be secure against unreasonable search or seizure -- in short, section 33 makes a mockery of the Charter: it guts it.
We have, however, the English common law which is absolute in respect to our rights and is the only real bulwark against governmental power; it is certainly not the vaunted Charter.
Cheers from Nova Scotia!
Peter Landry

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Peter Landry

March, 1998 (2019)