Charges dropped against University of Calgary pro-life student group

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The Canadian government dropped trespassing charges today against six members of Campus Pro-Life at the University of Calgary.  The students were charged with trespassing after they refused to turn pro-life billboards inward during a campus display in November 2008. 

I’ve previously commented about the outrageousness of this situation, but it is worth noting the simplicity of the students’ defense:  “‘It confirms our position that we do have the right to be on our own campus,’ said club president Leah Hallman.”  How sad that the students had to suffer trespassing charges and retain a lawyer just to fight for the right to speak equally and freely on their own college campus. 

The government made the right call in this case, but the University and the police should never have brought these charges.  Unfortunately, the University told reporters that it will take time to “reflect on this development.” 

Let me offer a possible reflection:  protect the marketplace of ideas by allowing all speakers equal access to the campus and do not censor viewpoints, no matter how much they dislike it.

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2 Responses to “Charges dropped against University of Calgary pro-life student group”

  1. ADF Alliance Alert » No trial for University of Calgary students in pro-life display dispute Says:

    […] David Hacker at the Academic Freedom File Blog […]

  2. Boyd Jahnke Says:

    You couldn’t be more correct ~ “protect the marketplace of ideas by allowing all speakers equal access to the campus and do not censor viewpoints, no matter how much they dislike it.”

    The fact that the Crown dropped the charges is significant. It follows the successful defenses by Ezra Levant and Mark Steyn against the jackboot of the Human Rights Commissions and the rising repugnance with which most Canadians view the Commissions and so-called Hate Crime legislation.

    I sense a resurgence of free speech and liberty of conscience in Canada along with a recovery of character and national purpose. An excellent development of that thesis may be found in “Fearful Symmetry: the fall and rise of Canada’s founding values” by Brian Lee Crowley.

    Highly recommended and cause for celebration that so incisive an overview of the way to recover our national purpose and identity is being received with such enthusiasm by so many from all sides of the political and social spectrum.

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