|Lethbridge, Alta. lawyer Ron McDonald believes Canada’s social conservative community faces serious potential danger in the coming months if Parliament passes Bill C-250, a federal law that would outlaw “hate” speech.
“C-250 is hugely problematic,” says McDonald. “If a pastor is convicted for speaking out about that (homosexual) behaviour, it could result in the assets of churches being seized.” To combat the risk, a conservative legal advocacy organization is taking shape.
The group will find plenty of work to do. From homosexual marriage to abortion on demand, Canada’s minority “squeaky wheels” have been getting the “grease” from judges, while receiving funding from a generous, taxpayer-funded Court Challenges Program.
Victories for these activists have often meant a corresponding loss of freedom for members of Canada’s faith-based communities.
A recent setback was the Supreme Court decision in the Surrey school board case. The court overruled the local school board and “read in” to the B.C. Schools Act the terms “tolerance” and “diversity,” forcing the school board to accept homosexual propaganda as teaching material for kindergarten and Grade 1 students.
“The judges are saying to parents, ‘We’re going to tell you what’s best,'” McDonald comments. “They’ve gone from being adjudicators of the law to writers of social policy. I don’t feel comfortable with a judiciary that is willing to erode religious freedoms.”
In response, he has agreed to chair Faith and Freedom Alliance, a national organization dedicated to training lawyers on issues involving life, family and religious freedom.
“We held our first three training session in Banff last year. Twenty lawyers attended,” McDonald reports.
The attorneys received the all-paid training weekend in return for a pledge to provide 120 hours of pro bono legal assistance annually for three years to individuals and groups confronting school boards, courts and human rights commissions over faith and freedom issues.
“For $60,000, we received a pledge of services equivalent to $1 million in legal fees,” Mr. McDonald says.This article originally appeared in the March 17 edition of Citizens Centre Report