provided, including thanks from the girls’ mother for the wonderful Christmas the Baars gave her daughters, the foster home was shut down. The couple was effectively prevented from ever taking children into care again.
Goodman found this to be a serious violation of the Baars’ charter rights to religious freedom and freedom of expression. He delivers a stinging rebuke to the idea that the state can use its awesome force to oblige citizens to disavow their beliefs, proclaim things they don’t believe or speak when their preference is silence.
“The purpose of the society’s actions was to control the Baars’ attempts to convey meaning, namely their attempts to convey their opinion and values with regard to lying. ... ( T)he right to freedom of expression prohibits compelling anyone to express opinions not their own,” Goodman writes.
Every politician and state agent should reread those words daily. They are particularly suited to the Canada Summer Jobs program debacle, where the federal government wants Canadians to just tick the box on a funding application form attesting that they support a non-existent right to abortion.
Such obligatory box requires, of course, ignoring one’s true opinions and values regarding abortion. But failure to tick the box means no federal funds to hire summer students, just as refusing to affirm the reality of the non-existent Easter Bunny meant the Baars losing their foster children and their foster home.
As with the Baars, legal action is now proceeding over the Canada Summer Jobs perfidy. We can only hope Goodman’s decision serves a noble purpose in that process.
More, moving beyond the specific story line before the courts, we can be infinitely grateful there are Canadians who simply won’t lie down when the state tells them to lie. -TROYMEDIA