Tuesday, August 31, 2010

"Drawing the Line--Balancing Religious Vilification Laws and Freedom of Speech"


Geoff Holland, Drawing the Line--Balancing Religious Vilification Laws and Freedom of Speech, 8 UTS L. Rev. 9 (2006).

This interesting article examines the hypothetical question "Would publication of the [Danish Mohammed] cartoons in Australia have amounted to religious vilification under current legislation?" (p. 9) The article begins with a good summary of the cartoons and their publication in Denmark, and includes the interesting fact that Denmark had (and has) a blasphemy statute that prosecutors decided not to use against the cartoons. Here's the statute: "Any person who, in public, mocks or scorns the religious doctrines or acts of worship of any lawfully existing religious community in this country shall be liable to imprisonment for any term not exceeding four months."

The article concludes that the key to answering the hypothetical is whether publication in Australia of the cartoons took part in the context of a debate over the cartoons or the phenomenon of self-censorship. If published as part of such a debate, then there would be a credible argument that the cartoons were published "reasonabl[y] and in good faith" under Australian religious vilification laws. However, the author argues, "the publication of the cartoons, removed from the context of the public debate on self-censorship that occurred in Denmark, would not likely meet the requisite standard of reasonableness." (p. 18)

Monday, August 30, 2010

"Religious Vilification Laws: Quelling Fires of Hatred?"


Dermot Feenan, Religious Vilification Laws: Quelling Fires of Hatred?, 31 Alternative L.J. 153 (2006).

Feenan's paper adds to the debate over the religious vilification laws which exist in three Australian states. With a primary focus on Victoria's Racial and Religious Tolerance Act 2001 and the subsequent Catch the Fire Ministries case, the article suggests that religious vilification laws may be over-broad. As Feenan explains,

"The danger in framing religious vilification as a wrong lies partly in the fact that it may capture views which represent legitimate disagreements about the appropriateness of different religious beliefs or practices. Arguably, the inclusion in the Act of the words 'serious contempt for, or revulsion or severe ridicule' of another person or class of persons on the ground of religious belief or activity may be infringed by the trenchant condemnation of beliefs or practices on which people may reasonably take opposing views." (p. 156)

The article provides a brief summary of some international human rights instruments and cases on balancing freedom of expression with other values. It also mentions England's recent "religious hatred" law and suggests that it is narrower in scope than Victoria's religious vilification laws because it limits itself to "threatening" words or behaviour. (p. 157)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

"The Constitutional (In)validity of Religious Vilification Laws: Implications for Their Interpretation"


Nicholas Aroney, The Constitutional (In)validity of Religious Vilification Laws: Implications for Their Interpretation, 34 Fed. L. Rev. 287 (2006)

This article is a balanced, nuanced discussion of whether the religious vilification laws enacted in three Australian States (Victoria, Queensland, and Tasmania) comport with the Commonwealth Constitution under the High Court's doctrine of "implied freedom of political communication." The article states, as a threshold matter, that "[t]here is no a priori reason . . . why speech that happens to be about religious matters cannot simultaneously be characterised as political communication for the purposes of the implied freedom." (p. 303) However, Aroney argues that the religious vilification laws at issue are probably constitutional on their face because they contain three key limitations: (1) the incitement of hatred, contempt, ridicule, etc. must, under the terms of the statutes, be serious or severe; (2) the laws are aimed at hatred of persons, not criticism of beliefs; and (3) the statutes include special "good faith" exemptions for artistic, scientific, religious, or other types of communication. (pp. 313-314) The article is careful to distinguish between a judgment on the constitutionality of religious vilification laws and a judgment on whether such laws are good policy, and notes that statutes that may be constitutional on their face will not necessarily be constitutional as applied in the real world.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

"Quotations from newspaper Spartakus entitled 'Sandwiches'"

"Department of Agriculture--Quotations from newspaper Spartakus entitled 'Sandwiches'", RG13, Justice, Series A-2, Volume 2012, File 1933-255, Access Code 32 (Library and Archives Canada)

One of the curious things I discovered while researching R. v. St. Martin (discussed in the previous post) was that the impugned publication in that case, "Spartakus", was the subject of an archived file originating from the Ministry of Agriculture (!) in 1933. It turns out that on the inside cover of "Spartakus" was a statement "Entered according to Act of Parliament in 1932, in the office of the Minister of Agriculture and Statistics, at Ottawa." This led to a confused Minister of Agriculture receiving complaints about the allegedly blasphemous nature of the publication, and therefore contacting the Department of Justice for help. The Department of Justice contacted the Commissioner of Patents and ascertained that no registration of copyright had been filed with that office, and then wrote back to the Ministry of Agriculture to say that, although the notice in Spartakus appeared to be misleading, no registration requirement appeared to exist. Two documents from the file have been scanned in below.

R. v. St. Martin (1933), 40 R. de Jur. 411 (Que. Sess. Ct.) (English Translation)

Here is my rough translation of R. v. St. Martin, another Quebec blasphemy case. This is a long opinion, made even longer by the odd tendency of the judge to repeat himself, and quotations from the evidence, in multiple places. As before, I've included both the original French writing, divided by paragraph and sentence, and then my translation following.

R. v. St. Martin (1933), 40 R. de Jur. 411 (Que. Sess. Ct.)

[1.1] L'accusé a été traduit devant cette Cour pour répondre à l'accusation suivante, à savoir:

[1.1] The accused was brought before this Court to answer the following accusation, namely:

[2.1] "Il est déclaré sous serment, que: A la Cité de Montréal, dit district, depuis le 1er jour d'octobre 1932, jusque le ou vers le 25 janvier 1933, Albert St-Martin, a publié des écrits blasphématoires, les dits libelles étant publiés sous divers titres, notamment, sous les titres de 'Sandwiches' et de 'Forum' dans cinq numéros du journal 'Spartakus' organe officiel des chômeurs, les dits numéros portant les dates: premier octobre, onze octobre, vingt-six octobre, neuf novembre, et huit décembre de l'année mil neuf cent trente-deux et étant produits au soutien du présent acte d'accusation comme exhibits P-1, P-2, P-3, P-4 et P-5, portant les lettres initiales E.A.B.L., Greffier de la Couronne, comme mettant par là, un acte criminel, etc."

[2.1] "It is declared under oath, that: In the City of Montreal, in the district of the same name, since the 1 day of October 1932, until around the time of January 25, 1933, Albert St-Martin, published written blasphemies, the said libels being published under diverse titles, notably, under the titles of 'Sandwiches' and 'Forum' in five issues of the journal 'Spartakus', official organ of the unemployed, the said issues bearing these dates: October 1, October 11, October 26, November 9, and December 8 of the year One Thousand Nine Hundred and Thirty-Two and having produced in support of the present formal charge the same [issues] as exhibits P-1, P-2, P-3, P-4 and P-5, bearing the initialed letters E.A.B.L., Clerk of the Crown, the same being placed here, a criminal act, etc."

[3.1] La preuve de la Couronne démontre par le témoignage de Mtre. D. Gilmour que l'accusé tant à l'enquête préliminaire que devant les jurés a admis être l'auteur des écrits prétendus libelleux mentionnés dans l'acte d'accusation, mais il a nié être l'auteur des écrits publiés dans le journal ou pamphlet connu sous le nom de 'Spartakus' sous la rubrique 'Forum'.

[3.1] The evidence of the Crown is proven by the testimony of D. Gilmour that the accused in the preliminary hearing that was before jurors, admitted to being the author of the writings claimed to be libellous [that were] mentioned in the formal charge, but he was not the author of the writings published in the journal or pamphlet under the name of 'Spartakus' under the heading 'Forum'.

[4.1] Les écrits mentionnés dans l'acte d'accusation ont été produits et sont actuellement au dossier sous la cote Nos 1 à 6 inclusivement et font partie de l'acte d'accusation.

[4.1] The writings mentioned in the formal charge have been produced and are actually on file under the designation Numbers 1 through 6 inclusive and make up part of the formal charge.

[5.1] La preuve démontre également qu'un grand nombre de copies de ce journal 'Spartakus' ont été saisies par la Police Provinciale au No. 2036 rue Fafard.

[5.1] The evidence equally demonstrates that a large number of copies of the journal 'Spartakus' were seized by the Provincial Police at No. 2036 Fafard Street.

[6.1] Devant moi, l'accusé St-Martin a admis également être l'auteur des écrits publiés dans 'Spartakus' connus sous le nom de 'sandwiches'.

[6.1] Before me, the accused St-Martin equally admits being the author of the writings published in 'Spartakus' known under the name of 'sandwiches'.

[6.2] Il a été également admis par écrit, signé par les deux parties qu'au nombre des priéres qu'enseigne la religion catholique, il en est une appelée:

[6.2] It is equally admitted by writing, signed by both parties that of a number of prayers taught by the Catholic religion, one requests:

[6.3] 'Bénissez-nous ô Mon Dieu ainsi que la nourriture que nous allons prendre.'; que dans certaines cérémonies religieuses de la religion catholique, il se fait un sermon.

[6.3] 'Bless us O My God and the food that we go to eat'; that in certain religious ceremonies of the Catholic religion, it is made a sermon.

[7.1] La plainte est basée sur l'article 198 of Code Criminel qui décrète que la question de décider si une matière publiée, constitue un libelle blasphématoire, est une question de fait dont la décision est réservée aux jurés.

[7.1] The complaint is based on article 198 of the Criminal Code that declares that the question of determining if a published matter constitutes a blasphemous libel is a question of fact whose outcome is reserved to jurors.

[7.2] Cet article décrète également qu'il est permis de discuter les sujets religieux même en public, pourvu que cette discussion soit faite de bonne foi et dans un language convenable.

[7.2] This article equally declares that it is permissible to discuss religious subjects even in public, provided that this discussion is made in good faith and in decent language.

[8.1] Nous devons faire remarquer immédiatement que notre article 198 est au moins, en apparence, plus étendu que le texte reconnu par la jurisprudence anglaise et le droit commun anglais.

[8.1] We must immediately remark that our article 198, at least in appearance, expands the text beyond that recognized by the English jurisprudence and the English common law.

[9.1] Dans notre droit, le libelle blasphématoire est commis dès qu'il attaque un sujet religieux quel-conque, de mauvaise foi et dans un langage indécent.

[9.1] In our law, blasphemous libel is committed by attacks on any religious subjects, in bad faith and in indecent language.

[9.2] Cependant, nous croyons pouvoir ajouter que même en Angleterre, le libelle blasphématoire existe également lorsqu'il a pour objet non seulement la divinité ou les Saintes Ecritures, mais aussi toutes personnes ou objets sacrés.

[9.2] Nevertheless, we believe in addition [?] that even in England, blasphemous libel equally exists for objects, not only the divine or the accounts of the Saints, but also all persons or sacred objects.

[10.1] Nous citons immédiatement sur ce point, une partie du sommaire du jugement rendu par la Cour d'Appel d'Angleterres, dans la cause de: Rex v. Ramsay, 24 avril 1883, Cox Criminal Law Cases, Vol. 15, page 231:

[10.1] We immediately cite on this point, one part of the summary of the judgment returned by the English Court of Appeal, in the case of Rex v. Ramsay, April 24, 1883, Cox Criminal Cases, Vol. 15, page 231:

[10.2] [English original] "The mere denial of the truth of the Christian Religion or of the Scriptures is not enough per se to constitute a writing a blasphemous libel so as to render the writer or publisher indictable. But indecent and offensive attacks on Christianity or the Scriptures or sacred persons or objets [sic] calculated to outrage the feeling of the general body of the community, to do [sic] constitute the offense of blaspheming and render writers or publishers liable at common law to criminal prosecution."

[11.1] Ce jugement est trés important puisqu'il a servi de base aux codificateurs des lois de la rédaction de l'art. 198 du C.C. 20 Commission Royal, p. 117.

[11.1] This judgement is very important since it served as the basis for the codifiers of the laws compromising article 198 of the 20th Royal Commission on the Criminal Code, p. 117. [I'm guessing what the "C.C. 20" refers to]

[12.1] Dans le même volume, à la page 217, nous trouvons également la même doctrine.

[12.1] In the same volume, on page 217, we similarly find the same doctrine.

[13.1] La jurisprudence canadienne est bien pauvre en décisions sur le point que nous occupe.

[13.1] The Canadian jurisprudence is indeed poor on decisions on this point that we deal with.

[13.2] Cependant, il serait injuste de passer sous silence, l'ouvrage de Mtre. E.J. Murphy, que nous trouvons rapporté au Volume 48, C.C.C., pages 1 à 22, dont nous extrayons ce qui suit:

[13.2] Nevertheless, it could be unfair to pass silently over the work of Mister E.J. Murphy, who we find reports in Volume 48, C.C.C., pages 1 to 22, from which we extract what follows:

[14.1] [English original] "Destroy or discredit or weaken the sense of religion in a people and you remove the best guarantee of government, undermine the force of law and open the way to all sorts of lawlessness and abuse. Government is founded on law and law in its last analysis rests on religion. Where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths which are the instruments of investigation in Courts of Justice. All tends to shake the fabric of society which is built on Christian ideas. Governments are fully justified in prosecuting the blasphemer or him who would destroy religion and thereby make room for anarchy, by breeding and fostering mischief."

[15.1] Examinons maintenant les divers articles publiés dans le journal 'Spartakus' qui a été distribué à un grand nombre de personnes dans la Cité de Montréal.

[15.1] Examine now the various articles published in the journal 'Spartakus' that are being distributed to a great number of people in the City of Montreal.

[15.2] Il suffit d'en lire la derniére page pour reconnaître un grand nombre de nos amis, chez les juges, chez les avocats, chez les politiciens, etc. à qui ce journal a été adressé par la malle ou autrement.

[15.2] It suffices in reading the last page for recognizing [that] a great number of our friends, judges, lawyers, politicians, etc. are being addressed in this journal by the mailbag or otherwise.

[15.3] Les extraits des exhibits produits qui vont suivre, d'après la preuve, ont été rédigés et signés par l'accusé et publiés, sinon uniquement par lui-même, au moins sous sa direction et avec sa collaboration.

[15.3] The extracts of the exhibits produced that are to follow, after the evidence, have been written and signed by the accused and published by himself, or at least under his direction and with his collaboration.

[16.1] Extrait de l'exhibit P-1, page 1:

[16.1] Extracts of exhibit P-1, page 1:

[16.2] "Quand je pense à la duperie dont vous avez été la victime de la part de tous les politiciens; quand je pense à l'injure criante que l'on vous fait, à l'humiliation dégradante que l'on vous impose en vous infligeant l'opprobe de l'odieuse, de l'infâme, de l'ignoble charité; . . ."

[16.2] "When I think of the deception of which you have been the victim on the part of all the politicians; when I think of the flagrant injuries that they have done to you, of the degrading humiliations that they have imposed on you; [and the] infliction of shameful, odious, infamous, and ignoble charity; . . ."

[17.1] Extrait de l'exhibit P-2, page 6:

[17.1] Extract of exhibit P-2, page 6:

[17.2] "Nous entendons attaquer la charité comme palliatif et démontrer, que ce moyen est inique, cruel, inhumain; que, fatalement ceux qui distribuent ces aumônes sont et seront toujours des barbares hypocrites, des voleurs fieffés, des criminels éhontés; que ceux qui les subventionnent sont leurs complices . . ."

[17.2] "We intend attacks on charity as a palliative and demonstrate that its ways are iniquitous, cruel, [and] inhumane; that, inevitably the ones that distribute those alms are and always will be barbaric hypocrites, utter thieves, [and] shameless criminals; that the ones that subsidize [them] are their accomplices."

[18.1] Même exhibit, page 7:

[18.1] Same exhibit, page 7:

[18.2] "R.--Vous m'avez demandé ce que je pensais de ces ensoutanés; j'ai répondu: Pouvez-vous 'voir des voleurs plus fettes', ils volent l'estomac des pauvres . . ."

[18.2] "R.--You I have asked what I think of those in vestments; I have responded: You can 'see those thieves celebrate', they steal from the stomach of the poor . . ."

[18.3] "R.--Ils sont pires que tous ceux-là; ils ont des prêtres qu'ils nomment 'Paid-organizers', et comme les prêtres; ils ont une échelle de degrés; à mesure que ces 'paid-organizers' montent en grade, ils sont payés plus cher, pareil comme pour les évêques, les archevêques; dans leurs assemblées, c'est une collecte par-ici, une collecte par-là. . ."

[18.3] "R.--They are worse than all those here; they have the priests who they call 'Paid-organizers', and like priests, they have a scale of degrees; to measure when these 'paid-organizers' climb in grade, they are paid extravagantly, likewise for the bishops, [and] archbishops; in their assemblies, some collect for this, some collect for that. . ."

[19.1] Extrait de l'exhibit P-3, page 12, OPIUM:

[19.1] Extract of exhibit P-3, page 13, "OPIUM":

[19.2] "Ecoutons le sermon d'un prédicateur prônant la charité; il faut d'abord se rendre compte des circonstances concommittantes qui accompagnent ce sermon; c'est dans une salle à voûte très élevée, où les sons sont donc amplifiés; il y a là un pénombre qui porte à l'indécis, instigateur de mysticisme; tout-à-fait en avant, des lumières sur lesquelles les regards se rivent et nul n'ignore l'effet hypnotique de la fixation du regard sur un objet brillant, luisant ou lumineux."

[19.2] "Listen to the sermon of a preacher extolling charity; he first takes it upon himself to give an account of the concomitant circumstances that accompany that sermon; it is in a very high vaulted auditorium, where sounds are therefore amplified; it is a dim light which brings to the undecided [this] instigator of mysticism; absolutely in front are lights on whom everyone's eyes are riveted and nobody can ignore the hypnotic effect of the fixed looks on a bright object, shining or luminous."

[19.3] "Pour exercer une influence magnétique sur les assistants, l'orgue a inondé la salle de ses effluves; les assistants eux-mêmes ont été depuis leur naissance soumis à l'influence hypnotique, magnétique et avilissante de la répétition; depuis des années, on les a habitués à venir faire certaines gestes, prononcer certaines paroles, écouter religieusement, avec vénération les exhortations qu'un homme, vêtu autrement que les autres, pour faire croire qu'il n'est pas comme les autres, vient leur débiter . . ."

[19.3] "To exert a magnetic influence on those present, the organ floods the auditorium with its exhalations ; the audience members themselves have started to fall under its hypnotic influence, magnetic and enervating by repetition; after years, some of these regulars come to make certain gestures, say certain words, listen religiously with veneration, to the exhortations of a man, dressed differently than others, who makes them believe that he is not like the others and has come to their deliverance . . . "

[19.4] "Le terrain est donc tout préparé pour recevoir la semence de l'habile hypnotiseur, ce dernier, qui a passé sa vie à étudier l'art de faire faire [sic] aux hommes ce qui ne fait pas l'affaire de ces derniers mais qui est bénéficiable à celui qui les endort, connait bien son métier."

[19.4] "The ground is therefore all ready to receive the seed of the skilled hypnotizer, the last act, who spends his life in the study of the art of making men who do not bustle about in these final [performances], but who is beneficial to those who sleep, knowing well their job."

[19.5] "Il commence par diviser son auditoire pour mieux régner."

[19.5] "He begins by dividing his audience for better control."

[19.6] "Il s'adresse d'abord aux riches; s'appuyant sur de prétendues paroles d'autant plus fausses qu'elles auraient été prononcées depuis long-temps: Malheur aux riches . . ."

[19.6] "He first addresses the wealthy; he relies on spoken claims altered so much that they are uttered for a long time: Misfortune to wealth . . ."

[20.1] Même exhibit, à la page 12, également:

[20.1] Same exhibit, also on page 12:

[20.2] "Et là ces accusés commencent à retirer des quatre mains; c'est un tronc de Saint-Antoine par-ci, un tronc du pain des pauvres par-là, partout des troncs pour les pauvres, jusque dans le greffe de la Court du Recorder: les fidèles émus subjugés, souscrivent avec empressement qui $0.50, qui $1.00, qui $100.00, d'autres adressent des habits, de la nourriture, du pain de 4 cents, retour du front, d'autres, de la 'swash', et là au cri de Amen, Amène, Amènes, les millions affluent dans les coffres des institutions de charité."

[20.2] "And these accused begin to remove four hands [?]; it is a collection of Saint Anthony by a collection of bread for the poor, everywhere collections for the poor, even in the office of the Court of Records: the faithful move clerks to subscribe with eagerness to $ 0.50, to $ 1.00, to $ 100.00, and others address clothing, food, 4 cent bread, the return of the face [?], others of the 'swash' [?], and to the cry of Amen, Give, Give, the millions rush into the coffers of the institutions of charity."

[21.1] Même exhibit, à la page 11:

[21.1] Same exhibit, on page 11:

[21.2] "Oui, par la charité, vous voulez exterminer chez l'homme ce qu'il y a de résistant, de lutteur . . ."

[21.2] "Yes, by charity, you expect to exterminate from mankind those who are resistants, fighters . . ."

[22.1] Même exhibit à la page 10:

[22.1] Same exhibit on page 10:

[22.2] "Mais les bons frères, les très chers frères, révèrends chers frères, que faisaient-ils donc pendant que l'un d'eux lançait ainsi les sandwiches à la 'swash'.

[22.2] "But the good brothers, the very dear brothers, dear reverend brothers, they make do for themselves [wild guess] while one of them throws the same sandwiches to the 'swash'."

[22.3] "A 4 pattes les Canayens".

[22.3] "The 4-handed Canadians".

[22.4] "Un autre exemple, celui-ci photographié, lithographié et publié par le journal 'La Presse'".

[22.4] "Another example, this photography, lithography and publishing by the journal 'The Press'".

[22.5] "Avant de permettre aux chômeurs de manger les délicieux sandwiches au béloné, on les force à se mettre à genoux, les bras étendue en croix, pendant qu'on prononce une évacation à l'être suprême pour le remercier des faveurs dont il les a comblé, pour exprimer leur reconnaissance à Notre Sainte Mère l'Eglise qui vient à leur secours, grâce à la charité."

[22.5] "Before allowing the unemployed to eat delicious garfish sandwiches, they are forced to get on their knees with their arms crossed, during which they evocatively tell the Supreme Being thanks for the gifts with which they have been showered, expressing their gratitude to Our Sainted Mother Church which comes to their assistance, graceful in charity."

[22.6] "Quand, épuisés de fatigue, les malheureux laissent enfin tomber leus bras, on les contraints à rester à genoux, les mains derriére le dos."

[22.6] "When, exhausted with fatigue, these unfortunates finally let fall their arms, somebody forces them to stay on their knees, their hands behind their backs."

[22.7] "Et là pour jouir curellement en véritable sadique théocraque, de sa domination sur ces oprimés, on place devant chacun d'eux l'un de ces fameux sandwich sur une chaise, précisément où l'on pose le postérieur des gens."

[22.7] "And then for enjoyable cruelty in a genuine sadistic theocracy [and] its domination over these oppressed [people], they place in front of each of them those famous sandwiches on a chair, precisely where they put the men's rears."

[22.8] "Puis, défense de toucher des mains au précieux sandwich de la charité; il faut que les malheureux grignotent de leur mieux, saisissant rien qu'avec leur lèvres, la langue et le bout des dents, comme ils peuvent, des deux morceaux de pain, et, pour ne rien perdre; eh, bien, ils lèchent volontairement le fond de la chaise . . ."

[22.8] "Then, defend touching the precious sandwich of charity; they take those unfortunates nibbling their best, biting nothing with their lips, tongue and the tip of their teeth, like they must for two morsels of bread, and without anything to lose; oh, well, they voluntarily lick the bottom of the chair . . ."

[22.9] "Pendant ce temps, le gros frère jouit de son triomphe; il a bien raison de se réjouir: une nation qui tolère une institution de charité, mèrite d'ètre traitée avec un tel mépris . . . dans le tas des affamés?"

[22.9] "During this time, the fat brothers enjoy their triumph; they have good reason to rejoice: a nation that tolerates an institution of charity, merits being treated with such contempt . . . in the starving masses?"

[22.10] "Ils etaient le nez aplati dans les vitres, riant à gorge déployés, la bédaine ébranlée par la rate, leurs éclats de rire sonore se faisaient entendre jusque de l'autre côte de la rue et, ils avaient raison; quel triomphe, voir l'humanité abrutie, aveuglée, soumise à la domination de l'Oligarchie des 'sépulcres blanchis' assassinant les hommes au moyen de l'invention diabolique de Saul de Tarse (alias Saint-Paul) Caritas; Caritas; qui remplit les coffres de ces très chers frères de trèsors inouis."

[22.10] "They are the flat nose in the window, cheerful to gorge openly, paunches shaking in the spleen, their bursts of ringing laughter making themselves heard up to the other side of the street, and they have reason; what triumph, see exhausted humanity, blinded, submit to the domination of the Oligarchy of 'white sepulchres' [and] assassinate men by means of the diabolical invention of Saul of Tarsus (alias Saint Paul): Charity; Charity fills the coffers of those very dear brothers with unprecedented treasure."

[23.1] Même exhibit, à la page 10, également:

[23.1] Same exhibit, also on page 10:

[23.2] "Et là, pour jouir cruellement en véritable sadique théocratique, de sa domination sur ces opprimés, on place devant chacun d'eux l'un de ces fameux sandwich sur une chaise, précisément où l'on pose le postérieur des gens."

[23.2] "And then for enjoyable cruelty in a genuine sadistic theocracy [and] its domination over these oppressed [people], they place in front of each of them those famous sandwiches on a chair, precisely where they put the men's rears."

[23.3] "Puis, défense de toucher des mains au précieux sandwich de la charité; il faut que les malheureux grignotent de leur mieux, saisissant rien qu'avec leur lèvres, la langue et le bout des dents, comme ils peuvent, les deux petits morceaux de pain, et, pour ne rien perdre; eh! bien, ils lèchent volontairement le fond de la chaise." référez à la page 6-A.

[23.3] "Then, defend touching the precious sandwich of charity; they take those unfortunates nibbling their best, biting nothing with their lips, tongue and the tip of their teeth, like they must for two little morsels of bread, and without anything to lose; oh! well, they voluntarily lick the bottom of the chair." Refer to page 6-A.

[24.1] Extrait de l'exhibit P-4 page 13.

[24.1] Extract of exhibit P-4, page 13.

[24.2] "Tout crime a un mobile: celui des institutions de charité est évident: c'est pour din de lucre et de profit se composant de la différance entre les sommes fabuleuses qu'elles reçoivent de tous les gogos, y compris nos législateurs et l'insignifiante pitance qu'elles donnent aux nécessiteux . . ."

[24.2] "Every crime has a motive; that of these charitable institutions is evident: it is for making money and profit that composes the difference between the fabulous sums which they receive from the gullible (including our legislators), and the insignificant pittance that they donate out of necessity . . ."

[25.1] Même exhibit, à la page 14:

[25.1] Same exhibit on page 14:

[25.2] "Pieux dévots, cruels bigots, chanteurs de gesta Dei per Franco voyez ce fleuve de sang qui crie vengeance contre vous."

[25.2] "Pious devotees, cruel bigots, singers of Gesta Dei per Franco, look at this river of blood that cries vengeance against you."

[25.3] "A vous seuls vous en avez fait couler plus que tout autre."

[25.3] "On your own you have brought down everyone."

[25.4] "Veuillez donc simplement vous abreuver de pater, d'ave, d'oremus, car il est temps enfin de suivre le conseil de votre maître."

[25.4] "Would you please simply water down the Lord's Prayer, the Hail Mary, and the Oremus, because if it is finally time to follow the counsel of your master."

[25.5] "Celui qui se sert de l'épée . . ."

[25.5] "He who lives by the sword . . ."

[26.1] Extrait de l'exhibit P-5, page 17:

[26.1] Extract of exhibit P-5, page 17:

[26.2] "Surtout les institutions de charité, comparaissez et défendez-vous; car vous ne sauriez croirre les conséquences terribles qui pourraient découler de votre sinistre silence."

[26.2] "Particularly the charitable institutions, come forth and defend yourselves; because you do not know the terrible consequences that could come from your sinister silence."

[27.1] Même exhibit, à la page 18:

[27.1] Same exhibit, on page 18:

[27.2] "Le prêtre est à ses fidèles ce que le père de famille est à ses enfants."

[27.2] "The priest is to his congregation what the father of a family is to his children."

[27.3] "Le premier endort la méfiance de sa clientèle par des menaces diaboliques et infernales; l'autre oblige ses enfants à se coucher de bonne heure en menaçant ses petits de les faire manger par le loup-garou."

[27.3] "The first deadens suspicion in his clientele by diabolical and hellish threats; the other makes his kids go to sleep at the right time by threatening his children of being eaten by the werewolf."

[27.4] "Et pourtant le prêtre ne croit pas plus à l'enfer ou au ciel que Baptiste au loup-garou ou bonhomme Sept-Heures."

[27.4] "And at Seven O' Clock, even the priest does not believe in the Baptists' heaven or hell for good fellows or werewolves."

[27.5] "Que d'hypocrisie, mes aieux . . ."

[27.5] "What hypocrites, my friends . . ."

[28.1] Même exhibit, à la page 18, également, signé: S. CLAVE:

[28.1] Same exhibit, also on page 18, signed S. CLAVE:

[28.2] "La religion est l'art d'exploiter la crédulité, la crainte, l'espoir et l'ignorance de ses semblables."

[28.2] "Religion is the art of exploiting the credulous, the fearful, the hopeful, the ignorant, and others like them."

[28.3] "Débarassons-nous au plus sacrant de ces trois vices sociaux."

[28.3] "We've left and cleared away these three social vices."

[29.1] Extrait de l'exhibit P-6, page 1:

[29.1] Extract of exhibit P-6, page 1:

[29.2] "Quand je pense à la duperie dont vous avez été la victime de la part de tous les politiciens; quand je pense à l'injure criante que l'on vous fait, à l'humiliation dégradante que l'on vous impose en vous infligeant l'opprobe de l'odieuse, de l'infâme, de l'ignoble charité . . ."

[29.2] "When I think of the deception which you have been the victim of on the part of all the politicians; when I think of the flagrant insults that they have made [said] to you, the degrading humiliation that they have imposed on you, the odious opprobrium, the infamy, of ignoble charity . . ."

[30.1] Même exhibit, P-6, 11 octobre 1932:

[30.1] Same exhibit, P-6, October 11, 1932:

[30.2] "Q.--Et comme vous êtes charitable, vous donnez à la très révérende soeur, toute la 'swill' que vous ne pouvez pas vendre, au prix de une cent la livre . . ."

[30.2] "Q. And as you are charitable, you give to the very reverend nuns, all the 'swill' that you couldn't sell, priced at one cent per pound . . ."

[30.3] "Q.--Je n'ai jamais tant regretté qu'il n'y ait pas d'Etre Suprême et de séjour éternel, pour vous récompenser, vous et la très révérende soeur, comme vous le méritez . . ."

[30.3] "Q.--I haven't ever regretted that you do not receive the Supreme Being and eternal rest for your reward, you and the very reverend sisters, just like you deserve . . ."


[30.4] "R.--Oui, parce qu'il n'y a guère que les institutions affiliées à Rome, comme les prêtres, les frères, les soeurs qui donnent de la 'schwass, aux pauvres, parce qu'ils sont partisants de la charité; les autres sont moins pieux, ils ne nourissent pas les gens à la chouasse."

[30.4] "R.--Yes, because they are like the institutions affiliated with Rome, like the priests, the brothers, the sisters that donate the 'schwass', to the poor, because they are supporters of charity; the others are less pious, they do not nourish the men to failure."

[30.5] "R.--Mais les 'chariteux' donnent ce qui ne leur coûte rien . . ."

[30.5] "R.--But these 'charities' give [only] when it doesn't cost anything . . ."

[31.1] Il est évident que l'accusé s'attaque à la religion pratiquée par la majorité du peuple de cette province, et qu'il se sert pour cette discussion d'un language indécent et blessant les sentiments religieux du peuple chrétien qui habite non seulement notre province mais notre pays.

[31.1] It is evident that the accused has attacked the religion practiced by the majority of the people of this province, and that he has used in this discussion language indecent and hurtful to the religious sentiments of the Christian people who reside not only in our province but in our country.

[32.1] Tel que dit ci-dessus notre loi, et l'article 198 prohibent la publication de tout écrit sur un sujet religieux lorsque le language employé dans ces discussions est indécent, de mauvaise foi et de nature à blesser le sentiment religieux du public, catholique ou chrétien.

[32.1] As was said before, our law and article 198 prohibits the publication of all writing on a religious subject when the language used in those discussions is indecent, in bad faith, and of a nature hurtful to the religious sentiments of the public, Catholic or Christian.

NOTE: At this point, for some weird reason, the judge begins to quote passages that he has already quoted. I've cut & pasted the same translations & indicated where the original quotation is.

[33.1] Dans les articles susdits, dont nous relatons les extraits ci-dessus, l'accusé s'attaque aux prêtres en les traitant de 'pieux dévots, curels bigots; et à page 14 de l'exhibit P-4: 'Veuillez donc simplement vous abreuver de pater, d'ave, d'oremus, car il est temps enfin de suivre le conseil de votre maître. Celui qui se sert de l'épée . . '[the first phrase quoted is from paragraph 25.2, and the second quotation is from paragraphs 25.4 & 25.5]

[33.1] In the aforementioned articles, which we related in the prior extracts, the accused attacked priests with the name 'pious devotees, cruel bigots'; and on page 14 of the exhibit P-4: "Would you please simply water down the Lord's Prayer, the Hail Mary, and the Oremus, because if it is finally time to follow the counsel of your master. He who lives by the sword . . ."

[34.1] Dans un autre endroit, "le prêtre est à ses fidèles ce que le père de famille est à ses enfants. Le premier endort la méfiance de sa clientèle par des menaces diaboliques et infernales . . . . . .Pourtant le prêtre ne croit pas plus à l'enfer ou au ciel que Baptiste au lop-garou [sic] ou bonhomme Sept-Heures." [the quotations are from paragraphs 27.2 to 27.4]

[34.1] In another part, "the priest is to his congregation what the father of a family is to his children. The first deadens suspicion in his clientele by diabolical and hellish threats . . . . . . .At Seven O' Clock, even the priest does not believe in the Baptists' heaven or hell for good fellows or werewolves."

[35.1] "La religion est l'art. [sic] d'exploiter la crédulité, la crainte, l'espoir et l'ignorance de ses semblables." [this quotation is from paragraph 28.2]

[35.1] "Religion is the art of exploiting the credulous, the fearful, the hopeful, the ignorant, and others like them."

[36.1] Exhibit P-3, page 12: OPIUM, parlant des sermons, l'on note spécialement:

[36.1] Exhibit P-3, page 12: OPIUM, speaking about sermons, of special note:

[37.1] "Les assistants eux-mêmes ont été depuis leur naissance [. . .] habitués à [. . .] écouter religieusement [. . .] les exhortations d'un homme, qui n'est pas vêtu comme [. . .] les autres, pour faire croire qu'il n'est pas comme les autres, vient leur débiter . . . Le terrain est donc tout préparé pour recevoir la semence de l'habile hypnotiseur [. . .] qui a passé sa vie à étudier l'art de faire faire [sic] aux hommes ce qui ne fait pas [. . .] lui-même." [these quotations are from paragraphs 19.3 and 19.4, with some words omitted and some words added, alterations marked in bold]

[37.1] "The audience members themselves have regularly started to fall under and listen religiously to a man who is not dressed like the others, who makes them believe that he is not like the others and has come to their deliverance . . . The ground is therefore all ready to receive the seed of the skilled hypnotizer who spends his life in the study of the art of making men do what he won't do himself."

[38.1] Et plus loin:

[38.1] And further:

[38.2] "Au cri de Amen, Amène, [. . .] les millions affluent dans les coffres des institutions de charité." [this comes from paragraph 20.2]

[38.2] "To the cry of Amen, Amen, the millions rush into the coffers of the institutions of charity."

[39.1] L'accusé a non seulement insulté et vilipendé le ministre de la religions catholique, mais aussi les institutions de charité et les institutions religieuses qui sont, à bon droit, considérées comme de puissants auxiliares de la religion chrétienne.

[39.1] The accused not only insulted and vilified the ministers of the Catholic religions, but also the institutions of charity and the religious institutions which are rightly considered as strong auxiliaries of the Christian religion.

[40.1] Ainsi en parlant des frères: [from 22.2:] "Pendant que l'un d'eux lançait des sandwiches à la 'swash' [from 22.9:] dans le tas des affamés, [from 22.10:] ils etaient le nez aplati dans les vitres, riant à gorge déployée, la bédaine ébranlée par la rate, leurs éclats de rire sonore se faisaient entendre jusque de l'autre côte de la rue et, ils avaient raison; quel triomphe, voir l'humanité abrutie, aveuglée, soumise à la domination de l'Oligarchie des 'sépulcres blanchis' assassinant les hommes au moyen de l'invention diabolique de Saul de Tarse (alias Saint-Paul). Caritas: qui rempli les coffres de ces très chers frères de trèsors inouis."

[40.1] Thus in speaking of brothers: "While one of them throws the same sandwiches to the 'swash' in the starving masses, they are the flat nose in the window, cheerful to gorge openly, paunches shaking in the spleen, their bursts of ringing laughter making themselves heard up to the other side of the street, and they have reason; what triumph, see exhausted humanity, blinded, submit to the domination of the Oligarchy of 'white sepulchres' [and] assassinate men by means of the diabolical invention of Saul of Tarsus (alias Saint Paul). Charity: it fills the coffers of those very dear brothers with unprecedented treasure."

[41.1] A la page 1, de l'exhibit P-6, parlant de la charité:

[41.1] On page 1 of exhibit P-6, speaking of charity:

[41.2] "Quand je pense à l'injure criante que l'on vous fait, à l'humiliation dégradante que l'on vous impose en vous infligeant l'opprobe de l'odieuse de l'infâme, de l'ignoble charité . . .";[from paragraph 29.2]

[41.2] "When I think of the flagrant insults that they have made [said] to you, the degrading humiliation that they have imposed on you, the odious opprobrium, the infamy, of ignoble charity . . ."

[42.1] Plus loin:

[42.1] Further:

[42.2] [From 17.2:] "Ceux qui distribuent ces aumônes sont et seront toujours des barbares hypocrites, des voleurs fieffés, des criminels éhontés; . . . [from 18.2:] Ce que je pense de ces ensoutanés: C'est que ce sont des voleurs plus 'fettes', ils volent l'estomac des pauvres. [from 18.3:] Les prêtres sont des 'paid-organizers'; montant en grade, ils sont payés chers selon leur degré d'hiérarchie comme les évêques, les archevêques, dans leurs assemblées, c'est une collecte par-ici, une collecte par-là. . ."

[42.2] "The ones that distribute those alms are and always will be barbaric hypocrites, utter thieves, [and] shameless criminals; . . . This is what I think of those in vestments: it is that they are [fettes?] thieves, they steal from the stomach of the poor. The priests are 'paid organizers'; climbing in grade, they are paid extravagantly according to their rank in the hierarchy, likewise for the bishops, [and] archbishops; in their assemblies, it is a collection by place, a collection by individual . . ."

[43.1] Parlant de Soeur Bonneau:

[43.1] Speaking about Sister Bonneau:

[43.2] [from 30.2:] "Et comme vous êtes charitable, vous donnez [. . .] toute la 'swill' que vous ne pouvez pas vendre, au prix de une cent la livre. [from 30.3:] Je n'ai jamais tant regretté qu'il n'y ait pas d'Etre Suprême et de séjour éternel pour vous récompenser, vous et la très-révérende soeur comme vous le méritez. [from 30.4:] Il n'y a guère que les institutions affiliées à Rome, comme les prêtres, les frères, les soeurs qui donnent de la schwass, aux pauvres. [from 30.5:] Ces chariteux donnent ce qui ne leur coûte rien."

[43.2] "And as you are charitable, you give all the 'swill' that you couldn't sell, priced at one cent per pound. I haven't ever regretted that you do not receive the Supreme Being and eternal rest for your reward, you and the very reverend sisters, just like you deserve. They hardly ever [?] when the institutions are affiliates of Rome, like the priests, the brothers, the sisters that donate the schwass to the poor. These charities give [only] when it doesn't cost anything. "

[44.1] Le 9 novembre:

[44.1] November 9th:

[44.2] "C'est la théocratie qui des l'enfance prépare cette mentalité; c'est elle qui forme la structure mentale des électeurs pendant l'enfance l'adolescence et ainsi continue à contrôler le cerveau des adultes."

[44.2] "It is theocracy which in childhood prepares that mentality; it's what forms the mental structure of the voters during childhood and adolescence, and thus continues to control the minds of adults."

[44.3] "Il est donc nécessaire d'acheter l'influence de la théocratie pour toute personne pour se faire élire."

[44.3] "It is therefore necessary to purchase the influence of the theocracy for everyone that wins an election."

[45.1] "Le haut clergé, la haute finance et la haute politique sont les trois principales tentacules d'une même pieuvre qui empoisonnent la société actuelle."

[45.1] "High clergy, high finance, and high politics are the three main tentacles of the same octopus that poisons current society."

[46.1] Dans l'exhibit P-3, page 10:

[46.1] In exhibit P-3, page 10:

[46.2] "Et là, pour jouir cruellement en véritable sadique théocratique, de sa nomination [a misspelling--it should be "domination"] sur ces opprimés, on place devant chacun d'eux l'un de ces fameux sandwich sur une chaise, précisément où l'on pose le postérieur des gens." [this is the third time this passage has been quoted, see paragraphs 23.2 & 22.7]

[46.2] "And then for enjoyable cruelty in a genuine sadistic theocracy [and] its domination over these oppressed [people], they place in front of each of them those famous sandwiches on a chair, precisely where they put the men's rears."

[46.3] "Puis défense de toucher des mains au précieux sandwich de la charité; il faut que les malheureux grignottent de leur mieux, saisissant rien qu'avec leurs lèvres, la langue et le bout des dents, comme ils peuvent, les deux petits morceaux de pain, et,pour ne rien perdre; eh! bien, ils lèchent volontairement le fond de la 'chaise.'" [same as paragraphs 22.8 and 23.3]

[46.3] "Then, defend touching the precious sandwich of charity; they take those unfortunates nibbling their best, biting nothing with their lips, tongue and the tip of their teeth, like they must for two little morsels of bread, and without anything to lose; oh! well, they voluntarily lick the bottom of the 'chair.'"

[47.1] De l'analyse que nous venons de faire des divers écrits signés par l'accusé et dont il est responsable en loi, il est facile de venir à la conclusion qu'ils se rapportent tous à des sujets religieux.

[47.1] The analysis that we have just done of the various writings signed by the accused and for which he is responsible in law, [makes] it is easy to come to the conclusion that they relate to religious subjects.

[48.1] La charité est une vertu théologale que nous trouvons bien définie dans la Sainte Ecriture: "'Aimez-vous les uns les autres,' dit Notre Seigneur."

[48.1] Charity is a theological virtue that we find well defined in Holy Scripture: "Love your neighbour as you love yourself,' said Our Lord."

[48.2] Elle fait partie de la croyance non seulement des adeptes de la religion catholique, mais aussi de la religion des peuples chrétiens.

[48.2] It makes up part of the beliefs not just of followers of the Catholic religion, but also of the religion of the Christian people.

[49.1] Les prêtres sont les ministres qui prêchent la religion catholique, qui l'enseignent, la défendent, et forment par conséquent, partie intégrante de la religion catholique et chrétienne.

[49.1] Priests are ministers that preach the Catholic religion, that teach [it], that protect [it], and [they] consequently form an integral part of the Catholic and Christian religion.

[49.2] Pour les catholiques, ils sont les représentants du Christ.

[49.2] For Catholics, they are the representatives of Christ.

[50.1] Les institutions religieuses forment également partie de la religion pratiquée par la majorité du peuple de cette province.

[50.1] Religious institutions similarly form part of the religion practiced by the majority of people in this province.

[51.1] Les sermons délivrés par nos prêtres sont également une coutume religieuse qui existe depuis des siècles et qui mérite d'être respectée.

[51.1] The sermons delivered by our priests are likewise a religious custom that has existed for ages and that merits being respected.

[51.2] Le 'Bénédicité', prière récitée avant les repas depuis des siècles, non seulement par les catholiques mais aussi par les chrétiens fait aussi partie de la religion que l'être humain pratique à l'égard de son Créateur.

[51.2] "Grace", the prayer recited before a meal for ages, not only by Catholics but also by Christians, makes up part of the religion that a human being practices to respect his Creator.

[52.1] Or l'accusé a écrit et publié des articles sur tous ces sujets religieux regardant directement la religion ou intimement liée à cette dernière en des termes indécents, inconvenables et pour me servir de son expression favorite: "Diaboliques."

[52.1] Now, the accused wrote and published these articles entirely on religious subjects looking directly at religion or intimately linked to the latter in indecent, inappropriate terms, and it serves me to use his favourite expression: "Diabolical."

[53.1] Il aurait pu discuter les questions contenues dans ces articles libelleux d'une manière digne et honnête, sans pour cela, tomber sous le coup de la loi.

[53.1] He could have argued the questions contained in these libellous articles in a dignified and honest manner, without it falling under the scope of the law.

[53.2] Notre loi est très large sur la discussion des choses ou des questions religieuses, mais elle exige deux conditions "sine qua non"; la bonne foi et un langage convenable.

[53.2] Our law is very broad on the discussion of religious things or questions, but it demands two conditions "sine qua non"; good faith and decent language.

[54.1] L'accusé a choisi une mauvaise époque pour publier ces écrits où il insulte à gogo des hommes respectés et vénérés, et des institutions sans lesquelles des milliers de pauvres et de malheureux seraient sans abri et sans nourriture.

[54.1] The accused has chosen a bad time for publishing these writings when they frequently insult respectable and venerable men, and [also] institutions without which millions of the poor and unfortunate would without shelter and food.

[54.2] Le peuple, à l'heure qu'il est, et surtout à Montréal, souffre, est inquiet, énervé, et ce n'est pas avec des écrits libelleux comme ceux publiés par l'accusé que l'on pourra l'apaiser et lui procurer la paix et la tranquilité auxquelles il a droit.

[54.2] The people, at this time, and particularly in Montreal, suffer, apprehensively, restlessly, and it is not with libellous writings like those published by the accused that one could calm and provide the peace and tranquility to which they have a right.

[55.1] L'accusé n'a oublié personne: la religion, la politique, la haute finance, tous ces corps publics, importants et indispensables à notre organisme social, ont été l'objet de son courroux.

[55.1] The accused is not a lost individual: religion, politics, high finance, all the public bodies, important and indispensable to our social system, are the object of his anger.

[56.1] Il me semble pourtant que nos législateurs, nos politiciens fédéraux, provinciaux, et même municipaux font leur possible pour procurer autant de bien-être à la population qui souffre, et qu'ils ne méritent pas d'être vilipendés d'une manière aussi fielleuse que l'accusé l'a fait dans les écrits produits en cette cause.

[56.1] It appears to me, however, that our legislators, our federal, provincial, and municipal politicians alike, make it possible to bring much well-being to the population that suffers, and that they do not merit being vilified in a venomous manner that the accused creates in the writings produced in this case.

[57.1] Evidemment en ce qui concerne notre clergé et nos institutions religieuses, l'accusé semble bien mal renseigné, car la vérité admise par tout le monde de bonne foi, c'est que sans ces corps religieux, la foi, la moralité, la charité et l'honnêteté, je pourrais dire la conscience sociale auraient fait naufrage depuis longtemps.

[57.1] Obviously, in that which concerns our clergy and our religious institutions, the accused appears very misinformed, because the truth accepted by the whole world, in good faith, it that without these religious bodies, faith, morality, charity, and honesty, the social conscience I speak of would have been cast away a long time ago.

[58.1] Nous croyons qu'il est de notre devoir de bien définir ce qui est la loi en matière de libelle blasphématoire.

[58.1] We believe that it is our responsibility to define well the law on material that is blasphemously libellous.

[58.2] Notre loi, comme en Angleterre, ne défend pas la libre discussion sur des sujets religieux, pourvu que cette discussion soit faite de bonne foi et dans un langage approprié au sujet traité.

[58.2] Our law, like in England, does not forbid unrestrained discussion on religious subjects, provided that discussion is made in good faith and in language appropriate to the subjects treated.

[59.1] Odgers, page 404, sur le libelle dit:

[59.1] Odgers, page 404, on spoken libel:
[59.2] [English original] "What the law censures or resists is not the mere expression of anti-Christian opinion, whatever be the doctrines assailed or the arguments employed. It only interferes where our religious feelings are insulted and outraged by wanton and unnecessary profanity and there surely it is right that some provision should exist to prevent such an offence to the highest and noblest instincts of our nature."

[60.1] La définition d'après cet auteur, du libelle blasphématoire est comme suit, page 386:

[60.1] The following definition by this author of blasphemous libel is as follows, on page 386:

[60.2] [English original] "It is a misdemeanour, punishable by indictment and by criminal information, to speak, or write and publish with intent to shook [sic] and insult believers, any scurrilous or profane words vilifying or ridiculing God, Jesus Christ, the Holy Ghost, the Old or New Testament, or Christianity in general (Bowman v. Secular Society, ltd., 1917, A.C. 406; 86 L.J. Ch. 565; and see Nokes on Blasphemy, pp. 95-98)."

[61.1] Et plus loin, le même auteur dit:

[61.1] And further, the same author said:

[61.2] [English original] "The intent to shock and insult believers is an essential element in the crime . . . The existence of such an intent is a question of fact for the jury, and the onus of proving it lies on the prosecution. The hest [sic] evidence of such an intention is usually to be found in the work itself. If it is full or [sic] scurrilous and opprobrious language, if sacred subjects are treated with offensive levity, if indiscriminate abuse is employed instead of argument, then a malicious design to wound the religious feelings of others may be readily inferred. But where the work is free from all offensive levity, abuse and sophistry, and is in fact the honest and temperate expression of religious opinions conscientiously held and avowed, the author is entitled to be acquitted; for his work is not a blasphemous libel."

[62.1] Un grand nombre d'hommes de loi sont sous l'impression que le libelle blasphématoire n'existe que lorsqu'on adresse des insultes à la Divinité.

[62.1] A great number of men of law are under the impression that blasphemous libel does not exist when one addresses insults to the Divinity.

[62.2] C'est là, évidemment une erreur tant d'après la loi anglaise, que d'après notre loi.

[62.2] There is obviously an error here in following English law, [rather] than following our law.

[62.3] Il peut y avoir un libelle blasphématoire nous dit: Odgers, page 388, dans toute publication contenant des expressions grossières répugnantes et blessantes à l'égard de la religions, dépassant les limits d'une controverse décente et n'ayant pour d'autre but que d'outrager les sentiments de toute personne sympathisant avec la chrétienté, voici son texte:

[62.3] It could have be a blasphemous libel, [as] we said: [according to] Odgers, page 388, every publication containing expressions that are crass, repugnant, and hurtful to the regards of religion go beyond the limits of decent controversy and have no purpose other than to outrage the sentiments of every person sympathetic to Christianity[.] Here are his words:

[63.1] [English original] "The essence of the crime consists in the publication of words concerning the Christian religion so scurrilous and offensive as to pass the limits of decent controversy, and to be calculted [sic] to outrage the feeling of any sympathiser with Christianity (R. v. Gott 1922, 16 Cr. App. Rep. 87)."

[64.1] Starkie, libelle, 4ième édition, page 599, résume dans les lignes suivantes: le critérium ou le test par lesquels nous pouvons reconnaître l'existence de ce libelle:

[64.1] Starkie, Libel, 4th edition, page 599, summarizes in the following lines the criterion or the test by which we can recognize the existence of this libel:

[65.1] [English original] "It is the mischievous abuse of this state of intellectual liberty which calls for penal censure. The law visits not the honest errors, but the malice of mankind. A wilful intention to pervert, insult, and mislead [an]other, by means of licentious and contumelious abuse applied to sacred subjects, or by wilful misrepresentations or wilful sophistry, calculated to mislead the ignorant and unwary, is the criterion and test of guilt. A malicious and mischievous intention, or what is equivalent to such an intention, in law, as well as morals . . . a state of apathy and indifference to the interests of society . . . is the broad boundary between right and wrong."

[66.1] Cependant pour décider cette cause, il n'est pas nécessaire de prendre en considération la fausseté des faits contenus dans les articles libellés produits en cette cause.

[66.1] However, for deciding this case, it is not necessary to take into consideration the falsity of the statements contained in the libellous articles produced in this case.

[67.1] Nous avons déjà déclaré dans ce jugement, que les expressions employées par l'accusé dans les articles publiés dans "Spartakus" dont il reconnait la paternité étaient grossières, blessantes, répugnantes et d'une nature à blesser les sentiments religieux du peuple chrétien qui habite non seulement notre province mais notre pays.

[67.1] We have again declared in this judgment that the expressions employed by the accused in the articles published in "Spartakus" of which he acknowledges the authorship, are crass, hurtful, repugnant, and of a nature to wound the religious sentiments of Christian people who live not only in our province but our country.

[68.1] L'accusé est un homme âgé de près de 60 ans, très instruit, ayant une grande expérience de la vie, connaissant les doctrines et les principes de la religion chrétienne, sachant que la grande majorité du peuple canadien appartient à cette religion.

[68.1] The accused is a man nearly 60 years old, very educated, having great experience in life, knowledgable in the doctrines and the principles of the Christian religion, aware that the great majority of the Canadian people belong to that religion.

[68.2] Comment par conséquent pouvait-il être de bonne foi, lorsqu'il a écrit les articles libelleux produits en cette cause.

[68.2] How in consequence could he be in good faith, when he wrote the libellous articles produced in this case.

[68.3] Il ne saurait invoquer à son secours, évidemment l'ignorance de la loi, ou l'inexperience de la vie.

[68.3] He cannot invoke for his assistance obvious ignorance of the law or inexperience in life.

[68.4] Il savait par conséquent qu'en insultant les prêtres de la religion catholique, les institutions religieuses, les prières et les coutumes et le dogme de la religion chrètienne, qu'il allait blesser les chrétiens qui professent cette religion; qu'il allait jeter un discrédit sur les dogmes et les principes religieux, que la chrétienté respecte et honore depuis des siècles.

[68.4] He knows by consequence that in insulting the priests of the Catholic religion, the religious institutions, the prayers and the customs and the dogmas of the Christian religion, that he wounds the Christians who profess that religion; that he hurls disrepect on the religious dogmas and principles, which Christianity respects and honours since ages past.

[68.5] C'est donc voluntariement qu'il a écrit et publié les articles incriminés sans se soucier des effets désastreux qu'ils pouvaient avoir sur l'esprit de la jeunesse, des faibles et des ignorants.

[68.5] It is therefore voluntarily that he writes and publishes these incriminating articles without his caring about the disastrous effects that they could have on the minds of youth, the poor, and the ignorant.

[69.1] Cette intention est d'autant plus claire et formelle, que l'accusé a répété maintes et maintes fois, ces mêmes affirmations fauses et libelleuses concernant la religion chrétienne en publiant à diverses reprises dans le journal "Spartakus" des accusations mensongères sur la charité, les cultes, les pratiques religieuses, les ministres du culte, de la majorité du peuple de cette province.

[69.1] This intention is quite clear and definite, as the accused has frequently repeated numerous times these same false and libellous statements concerning the Christian religion in various publications in the journal "Spartakus", [including] deceitful accusations about charity, worship, religious practice, [and the] religious ministers of the majority of the people of this province.

[69.2] L'accusé ne saura donc invoquer la bonne foi.
[69.2] The accused cannot therefore knowingly invoke good faith.

[69.3] Tout démontre la contraire.

[69.3] Everything demonstrates the contrary.

[70.1] A mon grand regret, je suis obligé de trouver l'accusé coupable et de le punir.

[70.1] To my great regret, I am obliged to find the accused guilty and punishable.

[70.2] L'accusé cependant a déjà fait plusieurs jours de prison dans une autre cause, et je sais que cette détention a eu un effet désastreux sur sa santé.

[70.2] The accused, however, already served several days in prison in another case, and I know that that detention had a disastrous effect on his health.

[70.3] J'aurai pitié de lui.

[70.3] I pity him.

[70.4] J'espère que l'accusé qui est un homme instruit, intelligent, cessera ses attaques contre les croyances bonnes et sincères de la majorité du peuple de cette province.

[70.4] I hope that the accused, who is an educated, intelligent man, ceases his attacks against the sincere and good beliefs of the majority of the people of this province.

[70.5] Et s'il n'obéissait pas à ce conseil de la Cour, le Ministère public sera obligé de revenir à la charge.

[70.5] And if he [the accused] is not obedient to the Court's counsel, the public prosecutor will be obliged to return with the charge.

[71.1] Je vous condamne à $100.00 d'amende et à défaut de paiement à trois mois d'emprisonnement et en plus à fournir deux cautions de $500.00 chacune, garantissant que vous garderez la paix, et à défaut de fournir ce cautionnement à trois autres mois de prison.

[71.1] I sentence you to a $100.00 fine, and in default of payment to three months imprisonment, and in addition to two bonds of $ 500.00 each, guaranteeing that you keep the peace, and in default an additional security of three additional months in prison.

[72.1] Huit jours vous sont accordés pour remplir les obligations contenues dans cette sentence.

[72.1] You are given eight days to carry out the obligations contained in this sentence.

END

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

"Should Blasphemy Be a Crime? The 'Piss Christ' Case and Freedom of Expression"


Bede Harris, Pell v. Council of Trustees of the National Gallery of Victoria: Should Blasphemy Be a Crime? The "Piss Christ" Case and Freedom of Expression, 22 Melb. U. L. Rev. 217 (1998)

This article discusses an Australian case from the mid-1990s over whether Serrano's "Piss Christ" (a crucifix suspended in the artist's urine) could legally be displayed at a gallery. The litigation was launched by a Catholic Archbishop, and one of the two major claims of the suit was that the artwork was blasphemous. As the article notes, the court refused to issue an injunction, stating that even if the common law crime of blasphemy still existed in the State of Victoria (an open question), there was no evidence that the artwork would lead to a breach of the peace, which the court indicated was an essential element of the offense. (ironically, the artwork was later vandalized)

Harris' article supports the judge's ruling, and discusses the relationship between blasphemy laws and religious vilification laws. Harris rejects the argument that blasphemy laws are a sub-set of vilification laws:

"[T]he anti-vilification argument is based on a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of blasphemy on the one hand and vilification on the other. . . . [B]lasphemy consists in vilification of Christian beliefs (rather than believers) in a manner likely to outrage believers. . . . [V]ilification consists of hostile expression directed towards a person on the basis of some characteristic. . . . There is, in short, a crucial difference between saying 'you Catholic bastard' on the one hand and 'Christ was a charlatan' on the other." (p. 224)

I've noticed this issue--whether criticism of beliefs can be distinguished between criticism of believers--recurring in the literature on blasphemy and vilification laws, and I think it goes to the heart of why segments of society think these laws should exist and the types of speech they think should be prohibited. However, I'm not confident that the distinction between criticism of beliefs and criticism of believers is capable of being drawn either legally or conceptually, and this is one of the issues I hope to address in my next article.

Monday, August 16, 2010

R. v. Kinler (1925), 63 Que. S.C. 483 (English Translation)

Here's my rough translation of R. v. Kinler (1925), 63 Que. S.C. 483, another Quebec blasphemy case. The case is noteworthy for holding that the Criminal Code's provision on blasphemous libel applies only to attacks on God, not to attacks on religious adherents or religious subjects generally, but this holding would itself be undermined by subsequent cases.
It wasn't until I did further research on a related topic that I realized the publication discussed here, The Golden Age, was an official publication of Jehovah's Witnesses.
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R. v. Kinler (1925), 63 Que. S.C. 483

[1.1] M. le magistrat Lemay.

[1.1] Mister Magistrate Lemay:

[1.2] Les accusées sont devant moi sous une accusation de libelle blasphématoire.

[1.2] These accused are in front of me under a charge of blasphemous libel.

[1.3] Elles ont répandu, dans la ville de Coaticooke et ailleurs un pamphlet intitulé "L'âge d'or".

[1.3] They have spread, in the town of Coaticooke and elsewhere a pamphlet entitled "The Golden Age."

[1.4] Cet imprimé contient, entre autres choses, un article ayant pour titre "Acte d'accusation contre le clergé."

[1.4] This printed material, includes among other things, an article having for a title "Certificate of accusation against the clergy."

[2.1] Les points les plus saillants de cet article sont qu'on y attaque les clergés des différentes dénominations, que l'on met tous au même rang, mais à un rang trés bas, sous le talon de l'auteur.

[2.1] The most salient points of this article are those that attack the clergy of different denominations, that puts them all on the same standing, but on a very low standing, under the heel of the author.

[3.1] On accuse le clergé de s'être laissé prendre aux suggestions de Satan, et de s'être joint à un complot avec le diable dans le but de perdre le monde; d'avoir renié la parole de Dieu, d'avoir refusé d'enseigner au peuple le message du royaume du Messie, d'avoir voulu établir le royaume de Dieu sans Dieu, d'avoir déclaré sa loyauté au diable, le dieu du mal; d'avoir recommandé et sanctionné la guerre, de s'être moqué du Seigneur, d'avoir fondé la Société des Nations dans le but d'en faire l'expression politique du royaume de Dieu ici-bas.

[3.1] They accuse the clergy of being themselves led by and taking the suggestions of Satan, and of being joined in a plot with the devil in the goal of ruining the world; of having repudiated the promises of God, of having refused to teach people the message of the kingdom of the Messiah, of having wanted the Kingdom of God without God, of having declared loyalty to the devil, the god of evil; of having recommended and sanctioned war, of being mocking of the Lord, of having found the League of Nations in the goal of creating the political expression of the Kingdom of God here on earth.

[4.1] Et plus loin on y attaque les dogmes de l'Eglise catholique, le droit de succession des papes et des évêques aux trônes de St. Pierre et des apôtres; le dogme de la Sainte Trinité; on nie à l'Eglise le droit d'interpréter la Bible; on nie la doctrine de l'immortalité de l'âme, et autres choses semblables.

[4.1] And further, they attack the dogmas of the Catholic Church, the right of succession of popes and bishops to the throne of St. Peter and the apostles; the dogma of the Holy Trinity; they deny the Church the right to interpret the Bible; they deny the doctrine of the immortality of the soul, and other similar things.

[5.1] Comme on le voit cet article comprend deux phases distinctes: les attaques contre le clergé, et, en second lieu, les attaques contre la doctrine.

[5.1] As such, one can see this article as composed of two distinct parts: the attacks against the clergy, and in second place, the attacks against doctrine.

[6.1] Je crois de mon devoir de faire remarquer immédiatement que les attaques dirigées contre le clergé sont absolument injurieuses et injustes.

[6.1] I think it my duty to immediate make a statement that these misleading attacks against the clergy are absolutely harmful and unjust.

[6.2] Le clergé protestant et catholique, en cette province, s'est toujours montré admirable de dévouement.

[6.2] The Protestant and Catholic clergy, in this province, are always showing admirable dedication.

[6.3] Que se soit à l'école, à l'église ou prés du lit des mourants, jamais nos prêtres n'ont cessé d'enseigner la doctrine du Christ.

[6.3] Where there is a school, a church or a nearby death bed, never have our priests stopped teaching the doctrine of Christ.

[6.4] Et il est regrettable que des étrangers, qui ne connaissent rien de notre situation, viennent ainsi essayer de diminuer l'estime que notre peuple peut avoir pour ses prêtres.

[6.4] And it is regrettable that foreigners, who know nothing of our situation, have thus come to attempt to diminish the esteem that our people are able to have for their priests.

[6.5] Leur conduite mérite d'être flétrie.

[6.5] Their behavior merits condemnation.

[7.1] Mais, tout injurieuses et grossiéres que soient ces attaques, peuvent-elles constituer un libelle blasphématoire?

[7.1] But, are all the insults and vulgarities that constitute these attacks capable of constituting a blasphemous libel?

[8.1] Notre code criminel ne définit pas ce qui constitue cette offense; il se contente de dire que c'est une question de fait que de savoir si telle ou telle chose peut être considérée comme libelle blasphématoire.

[8.1] Our Criminal Code does not define what constitutes this offence; it is satisfied by saying that it is a question of fact to know if this or that thing can be considered as blasphemous libel.
[9.1] Il nous faut donc remonter au droit commun anglais, qui, comme on le sait est toujours en vigueur chez nous dans tous les cas non prévus par notre code.

[9.1] We therefore go back into the English common law, that, as we know, is always in force in cases not anticipated by our Code.

[10.1] L'interprétation donnée par les auteurs et la jurisprudence a subi bien des transformation avec les siècles.

[10.1] The interpretation provided by writers and the jurisprudence have undergone changes through the centuries.

[10.2] Autrefois on considérait comme libelle blasphématoire tout écrit ou toute parole s'attaquant non seulement à Dieu, mais même à l'église établie et à sa doctrine.

[10.2] In the past people considered a blasphemous libel to be anything written or anything spoken attacking not only God, but also the established church and its doctrine.

[10.3] Peu à peu, cette manière de voir s'est élargie; on en est arrivé à dire que l'on pouvait nier l'existence de Dieu sans que cela soit un blasphéme légal, et on a reconnu le droit à l'athéisme.

[10.3] Little by little, this way of looking at it widened; people came to say that anyone who could deny the existence of God without that [attack] was a lawful blasphemer, and people recognised the right of atheists.

[11.1] Si bien que de nos jours seule est considérée comme blasphème l'injure directe lancée à Dieu.

[11.1] It may well be that these days the only thing considered to be blasphemy is a direct insult hurled at God.

[11.2] L'on trouvera dans Odger, auteur anglais, un historique intéressant sur ce point, et qu'il serait trop long de réciter ici.

[11.2] One finds in Odger, the English author, an interesting history on this point, and one that is too long to recite here.

[12.1] Or dans la présente cause, nous avons des injures, et beaucoup d'injures, lancées à la tête de personnes respectables, à des ministres de Dieu.

[12.1] Now in the present case, we have insults, and a great many insults, hurled at the heads of respectable persons, the ministers of God.

[12.2] Au point de vue religieux, l'on pourrait peut-être dire que ces injures vont plus loin, et qu'elles atteignent Dieu Lui-même.

[12.2] From the point of view of the religious, people able to speak these insults go too far, and what they reach is God Himself.

[12.3] Mais, au point de vue légal, nous devons en arriver à la stricte conclusion que l'écrit incriminé ne contient rien en soi de blasphématoire contre la Divinité.

[12.3] But, from a legal point of view, we must arrive at the strict conclusion that the incriminating writing does not contain anything in itself blasphemous against the Divinity.

[13.1] Il en est de même pour la seconde partie, celle qui concerne les dogmes.

[13.1] It is the same for the second part, the one that concerns the dogmas.

[13.2] Une personne peut être absolument de bonne foi et différer d'opinion d'avec nous sur l'interprétation à donner à différents passages de la Bible.

[13.2] A person can be absolutely in good faith and differ in opinion with us on the interpretation to be given to different passages of the Bible.

[13.3] Je ne puis donc pas dire que cette personne a injurié Dieu si elle ne conçoit pas comme nous la mission du clergé, la vie future, etc.

[13.3] I do not, therefore, say that a person insults God if they do not think like we do about the mission of clergy, the future life, etc.

[14.1] Les témoignages donnés en cette cause par M. l'abbé Simard, théologien éminent, et par le Rév. M. Biggs, pasteur de l'église anglicane, confirment d'ailleurs mon opinion.

[14.1] The testimony given in this case by Mister Simard, the priest and eminent theologian, and by the Reverend Mister Biggs, pastor of the Anglican Church, further confirms my opinion.

[15.1] Je dois donc conclure qu'il n'y a pas ici de libelle blasphématoire, et je renvoie la plainte portée contre les accusés.

[15.1] I must therefore conclude that there is not a blasphemous libel here, and I dismiss the complaint brought against the accused.

END

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

R. v. Pelletier (1901), 6 R.L.N.S. 116 (English Translation)

Several years ago, when I first started researching the history of blasphemy in Canada, I translated some Quebec cases from the French. I am by no means an expert at the process, so please remain aware of the dangers of mistranslation. For this and other cases, I have numbered each paragraph and sentence, and provided both the original French and my translation.

R. v. Pelletier (1901), 6 R.L.N.S. 116.

[1.1] Les défendeurs étaient accusés d’avoir, en la cité de Montréal, le 1er juillet 1899, publié, dans une certaine publication périodique appelée “La petite Revue” e mis en circulation, un libelle blasphématoire contre la Divineté et plus paticuliérement contre N.S.J.C. le Divin foundation de la religion chréetienne.

[1.1]The defendants are accused of having, in the city of Montreal, on July 1, 1899, published, in a certain periodical in circulation named “The Little Review”, a blasphemous libel contrary to God and also contrary to Our Saviour Jesus Christ, the divine founder of the Christian religion.

[1.2] Ce libelle consiste en un dialogue entre l’auteur et sa servante au sujet du prétendu schisme entre les apôtres saint Pierre et saint Paul au commencement de la chrétienté, à propos du baptême des chrétiens.

[1.2] This libel consists of a conversation between the author and a servant on the alleged schism between the apostles Saint Peter and Saint Paul at the beginning of Christianity, regarding the baptism of the Christians.

[1.3] Il y est dit que saint Paul n’admettait que le baptême spirituel par l’eau, tandis que saint Pierre voulait que’le baptême fût matériel et sanguin par l’ablation..... ou cironscision.

[1.3] It is said it was Saint Paul who allowed spiritual baptism by water, while it was Saint Peter who wanted baptism to be physical and bloody by ablation . . . or circumcision.

[1.4] L’auteur dit que saint Paul eut raison contre saint Pierre malgré Jésus-Christ, et que, par conséquent, le baptême spirituel par l’eau prévalut dans l’Eglise chrétienne.

[1.4] The author said Saint Paul had got the better of Saint Peter despite Jesus Christ, and, consequently, spiritual baptism by water prevailed in the Christian Church.

[2.1] De plus, l'auteur prétend faussement que le morceau de peau ou chair divine enlevée du corps du Sauveur par la circoncision, est frauduleusement exposé à l'adoration des fidéles dans au moins 14 églises différentes en Europe.

[2.1] Also, the author falsely claims that a piece of divine skin or flesh was removed from the body of the Saviour by circumcision and fraudulently shown to the adoration of the faithful in 14 different churches in Europe.

[3.1] Le tous est exprimé de mauvaise foi, dans des termes moquers et dérisoires, dans un language inconvenant et vulgaire, de mainiére à ébranler la foi et à détruire la vertu.

[3.1] Everything was said in bad faith, in mocking and derisory words, in annoying and vulgar language, in a manner to weaken faith and destroy virtue.

[4.1] Le 13 mars 1900, l'Honorable juge Desnoyers, président la Cour des Sessions de la Paix, à Montréal, prononca contre les accusés la sentence suivante:

[4.1] On March 13, 1900, the Honourable Judge Desnoyers, President of the Court of Sessions of the Peace, in Montreal, pronounced the following sentence against the accused:

[5.1] "Vous avez plaidé coupables à l'accusation d'avoir publié un libelle blasphématoire contre la Divinité, et plus particuliérement contre Notre-Seigneur Jésus-Christ, le Divin fondateur de la religion chrétiene."

[5.1] "You have plead guilty to the charge of having published a blasphemous libel against God, and also specifically against Our Saviour Jesus Christ, the divine founder of the Christian religion."

[5.2] "Ceux qui vous ont conseillés d'agir ainsi, ont bien fait, car toute tentative de défense de votre part, à mon avis, n'eût pu qu'aggraver votre faute."

[5.2] "Those who have counselled you to act that way have done well, because all attempts to defend your role, in my view, only aggravate your mistake."

[6.1] "Cet article est écrit dans des termes capables de faire rougir tout homme respectable à quelque croyance qu'il appartienne."

[6.1] "This article is written in words capable of making blush all respectable men who are members of the faithful."

[6.2] "Des choses les plus sacrée y sont tournée en ridicule; le sarcasme apparaît à chaque phrase dans la forme la plus impie, et j'ajouterais, la plus obscène."

[6.2] "Sacred things have been turned into jokes; sarcasm appears in every sentence in the form of impiety, and, additionally, obscenity."

[7.1] "C'est, on le sent, la production d'un esprit libertin et d'un coeur gâté."

[7.1] "It is, one feels, the creation of a licentious mind and of a decayed heart."

[7.2] "On y trouve des expressions qui ne se comprendraient que sous la plume d'un païen mal appris."

[7.2] "One finds that these expressions can be understood only as the writing of a heathen espousing evil."

[7.3] "En citer même une phrase me répugnereait; le titre seul que je ne veux pas reproduire, est blasphématoir, et l'article entier, qui couvre au-delà de sept pages de la 'Petite Revue,' exhale le blasphème et l'immoralité."

[7.3] "I find it repugnant to quote these words; I do not even want to reproduce the blasphemous title, and the whole article, which covers seven pages of the 'Little Review,' breathes blasphemy and immorality."

[8.1] "La religion de Jésus-Chrit est une école de moralité et de vérité."

[8.1] "The religion of Jesus Christ is the school of morality and truth."

[8.2] "Le libelle en question essaie de la faire passer pour une école d'impudence et de mensonge."

[8.2] "The libel in question tries to make instead a school of impudence and falsehood."

[8.3] "Le sacerdoce y est indignement outragé; les souvenirs les plus vénérables de la Rédemption y sont mis cyniquement en comparaison avec les objets les plus vulgaires."

[8.3] "The priesthood suffers outrageous indignities; the revered relics of the Redemption are placed in cynical comparison with vulgar objects."

[8.4] "L'auteur exagère et défigure les traditions et les faits pour pouvoir ensuite se moquer plus à son aise, et tout cela sans aucun propos, sous forme de dialogue, avec une servante aussi repoussante qu'éhontée, dans le seul but d'insulter à la foi des chrétiens."

[8.4] "The author exaggerates and distorts the traditions and facts to allow him then to mock them at his leisure, and all of this is done under the guise of a dialogue with a servant as disgusting and shameless as he is; this is repulsive and shameful on its own, but also insults the faith of Christians."

[8.5] "C'est un crime que les lois eussent, jadis, puni par les châtiments les plus sévères."

[8.5] "It is a crime that has for many years been punished by severe penalties."

[9.1] "Vous avez déclaré sous serment que vous êtes ni l'un ni l'autre les auteurs de cet article."

[9.1] "You have sworn under oath that you are not the authors of this article."

[9.2] "Je le crois sans peine, car je ne crois pas qu'une plume canadienne soit capable de produire de pareilles obcénités."

[9.2] "I believe that without difficulty, because I do not believe that a Canadian writer is capable of producing similar obscenities."

[9.3] "Une plume étrangére a dû commettre cet horreur."

[9.3] "Only a foreigner could perpetrate such horror."

[10.1] "Vous avez également juré que vous n'aviez pas lu cet article avant sa publication."

[10.1] "You have equally sworn that you did not read this article prior to publication."

[10.2] "Je dois vous croire, puisque vous l'affirmez sous serment; mais au moins, pourquoi ne l'avez vous pas répudié quand vous en avez pris connaissance?"

[10.2] "I must believe you, since you have affirmed it under oath; but nonetheless, why didn't you repudiate it [the article] after you became aware of it?"

[10.3] "Pourquoi, par la suite avez vous encouragé l'oeuvre de ces tristes écrivains que vous connaissez et dont vous avez refusé de donner les noms?"

[10.3] "Why do you continue your endorsement of the work of these sad writers whom you knew and whose names you have refused to give?"

[10.4] "Je comprends que vous cherchez, par ce moyen à atténuer votre faute, mais votre responsabilité d'éditeurs publicistes reste ici tout entiére."

[10.4] "I know that you look by this way to mitigate your mistake, but your responsibility as publisher for everything printed here is complete and total."

[11.1] "Songez au mal que de pareils écrits peuvent faire en pénétrant au milieu des familles, et surtout parmi la jeunesse."

[11.1] "Consider the evil similar writings would create in reaching the realm of family, and especially among youth."

[11.2] "Vous avez admis, à l'enquête, que la circulation de votre Revue est d'un millier."

[11.2] "You have admitted, in the inquest, that the circulation of your Review is one thousand."

[11.3] "Le fait n'a été discuté ni vérifié, et surtout, pour l'honneur de nos populations il n'est aucunement démontré que cette circulation se fasse parmi des abonnes."

[11.3] "This fact cannot be debated nor verified, and specifically, for counting people it hasn't in any way been shown what circulation is made among the subscribers."

[11.4] "Dans tous les cas, si j'en prends votre parole, c'est donc à des milllers de personnes, que chaque quinzaine, vous envoyez de sang-froid, et de gaieté de coeur, le poison, capable de donner la mort à la foi et à la vertu."

[11.4] "In any event, however I construe your words, it is therefore in the thousands of persons who, each fortnight, you delivered calmly and with a cheerful heart this poison, capable of causing the death of faith and of truth."

[12.1] "Vous, Néciphore Pelletier, quel exemple vous donnez à votre fils!"

[12.1] "You, Néciphore Pelletier, what an example you gave your sons!"

[12.2] "Je ne connais pas d'homme plus coupable que l'auteur et le propagateur de mauvais livres et de mauvais journaux."

[12.2] "I do not know any man as guilty of writing and propagating such nasty books and nasty journalism."

[12.3] "Ce sont des scandaleux, des apôtres du mal, des corrupteurs publics, et les honnêtes gens, les pères de famille surtout, ne sauraient trop se mettre en garde contre eux et leurs productions."

[12.3] "It is disgraceful, these apostles of evil, these corruptors of the public, and the honest men, the fathers of families especially, do not know how much they should be on guard against them and their productions."

[12.4] "Ils ont la loi pour eux et ils font bien d'y recourir."

[12.4] "They have the law on their side, and they make a good appeal to it."

[12.5] "Aussi, dans la plainte faite devant moi par un citoyen de cette ville, j'ai vu la plainte du public honnête, du public chrétien tout entier."

[12.5] "Also, in the complaint made before me by a citizen of this city, I see the complaints of the honest public, of the Christian public in its entirety."

[12.6] "J'ai eu la visite de plusieurs péres de famille, à qui vous aviez adressé votre revue, et qui, après l'avoir parcourue, l'ont renvoyée avec indignation."

[12.6] "I've had visits from several heads of families, to whom you have sent your journal, and who, after having perused it, have returned it with indignation."

[13.1] "C'est au nom de ce public, au nom de ces pères de famille que je parle en ce moment."

[13.1] "It is in the name of the people, in the name of these heads of families, that I speak at this time."

[14.1] "L'article du Code Criminel, relativement au libelle blasphématoir se lit comme suit: 'Est coupable d'un acte criminel et passible d'un an d'emprisonnement, celui qui publie un libelle blasphématoire."

[14.1] "The article of the Criminal Code, concerning blasphemous libel, reads as follows: 'He that publishes a blasphemous libel commits a culpable criminal act liable to a year's imprisonment."

[15.1] "Quoique cet article statue absolument que tel libelle sera puni par l'emprisonnement, heureusement pour vous qu'un autre article du même Code m'autorise à n'infliger qu'une amende."

[15.1] "Although this article absolutely declares that such a libel will be punished by imprisonment, fortunately for you one other article of the same Code authorizes the levying of a fine."

[16.1] "Si vous étiez vous-mêmes les auteurs de l'écrit incriminé j'appliquerais cet article contre vous dans toute sa rigueur."

[16.1] "If you yourself were one of the authors of the incriminating writing I would apply this article against you in all of its severity."

[16.2] "Mais vous n'avez fait que le publier; de plus, celui qui vous a cités devant ce tribunal a avoué, dans un sentiment de charité chrétienne qui l'honore, tenir à ce qui vous cessiez votre oeuvre malsaine et non à vous voir conduire en prison."

[16.2] "But you haven't made that publication; furthermore, those who have spoken before this tribunal agree, in a spirit of Christian charity and honour, to be content without seeing you conducted to prison if you cease your evil work."

[17.1] "Je tiens compte de ces deux faits, et je mitige en conséquence la sentence que je dois prononcer."

[17.1] "I've weighed these two facts, and I consequently mitigate the sentence that I must deliver."

[17.2] "Vous êtes condamnés à payer comme amende la somme de cent piastres chacun, ou à défault de paiement, à rester en prison tant que l'amende n'aura pas été payée."

[17.2] "You are sentenced to pay the same fine in the amount of a hundred dollars each, or in default of payment, a stay in prison as long as that fine is not paid."

[17.3] "Croyez que la peine est douce en comparaison de celle que vous avez réellement méritée."

[17.3] "Understand that the penalty is soft in comparison of that which you have truly deserved."

[17.4] "Il n'y a pas bien longtemps, la cour du Banc de la Reine, n'a-t elle pas condamné un publiciste, de Montréal à six mois de prison, pour avoir publié un libelle diffamatoire contre un ministre canadien de Sa Majesté?"

[17.4] "Wasn't it not long ago that the Court of Queen's Bench condemned a publisher to six months in prison in Montreal, for having published a defamatory libel against the Canadian minister of Her Majesty?"

[18.1] "Mais je dois vous avertir que si vous continuez à publier des articles dans le même esprit qu'un grand nombre de ceux qui ont paru dans la 'Petite Revue', depuis sa fondation, articles railleurs, sarcastiques, calomniateurs contre la religion chrétienne et ses plus augustes représentants, vous pouvez vous attendre à être de nouveau traduits aux assises criminelles, et, cette fois, ce n'est pas à une simple amende que vous serez condamnés."

[18.1] "But I owe you a warning that if you continue to publish articles in a spirit similar to that of a large number of those that appear in the "Little Review", since its creation, articles by mockers, parodists, and slanderers against the Christian religion and its august representatives, you will await a new prosecution by the criminal courts, and, this time, it will not be a simple fine that you are being sentenced to."

[19.1] "J'espere que vous ferez disparaître de votre publication la gravure du frontispice, qui est loin d'être convenable et que vous vous veillerez à en faire une Revue honnête, respectueuse des croyances religieuses et de la moralité chrétienne."

[19.1] "I hope you will make disappear your writings engraved in the frontispiece that are a long way from being appropriate and that you attend to making an honest Review, respectful of religious beliefs and Christian morality."

END

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

"Truth, Civility, and Religious Battlegrounds: The Contest Between Religious Vilification Laws and Freedom of Expression"


Joel Harrison, Truth, Civility, and Religious Battlegrounds: The Contest Between Religious Vilification Laws and Freedom of Expression, 12 Auckland U. L. Rev. 71 (2006)


This is a strong, impassioned critique of the entire idea of religious vilification laws. Using two prosecutions as examples (Victoria's Catch the Fire Ministries and Ontario's R. v. Harding), Harrison argues that vilification laws inevitably require courts to decide contested questions of religious truth in a manner that is clearly outside of their competency and in a fashion that runs aground of the freedom of religion and expression values that are so central to modern democracies. Further, Harrison argues that the natural result of such vilification laws are that "high" speech (civil, balanced, decorous, academic-style debate) is allowed as "reasonable" or "made in good faith", while "low" speech (raucous, vulgar, polemical) is deemed out of bounds, thus drawing distinctions in allowable speech for what may be nothing more than the class, education, or zealousness of the speaker. Finally, it suggests that prosecutions for religious vilification almost invariably result in the impugned speaker becoming a "martyr" or otherwise far more popular than before.

An excellent article, full of persuasive arguments against vilification laws.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Is Facebook Blasphemous in Pakistan?

Howard Friedman's Religion Clause blog has this post about Pakistan's Lahore High Court entertaining arguments about whether Facebook should be permanently banned as blasphemous. Some of the controversy seems to stem from "Everybody Draw Muhammed" day and "Everybody Burn Quran" day among some members of the site. Those arguing for the ban have cited the U.N.'s Defamation of Religion resolutions as additional grounds for suppression.