Mark Steyn: “If the alternative is surrendering our liberty over death threats, to hell with that!”

This morning Mark Steyn testified as a witness at a hearing on “online hate” held in the Canadian House of Commons by the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights. As you might expect, the occasion was one in which sanctimonious progressive pols hectored, badgered, bullied, and otherwise coerced witnesses to fall in line with Party doctrine on immigration, Multiculturalism, Islam, etc.

Mr. Steyn, however, refused to be bullied. He repaid his tormentors in kind, and threw in extra invective just for them.

He was superb. The next time I run into him I’ll say, “Steyn, you magnificent bastard! I heard your testimony.”

No video was allowed at the committee hearing (see Vlad Tepes’ post below for more on that), so the video below is audio-only, to which photographs have been added.

Before you watch it, a word on the cast of characters: Besides the witnesses, committee members are present in the hearing room. However, since I can’t see their faces, I can’t identify any of them. I assume the committee chair, Anthony Housefather, is one of those asking the questions.

Below is a list of committee members, taken from Wikipedia:

Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights

Anthony Housefather, Chair (Liberal)
Randy Boissonnault (Liberal)
Ali Ehsassi (Liberal)
Colin Fraser (Liberal)
Iqra Khalid (Liberal)
Ron McKinnon (Liberal)
Arif Virani, Parliamentary Secretary (Liberal)
Michael Cooper, Vice-Chair (Conservative)
Michael Barrett (Conservative)
David MacKenzie (Conservative)
Tracey Ramsey (New Democratic)

You can also find a list of members on the House of Commons website.

The “Mr. Garrison” mentioned in the transcript is Randall Garrison, an MP for the New Democratic Party, who for some unexplained reason was allowed to ask questions, even though he’s not a member of the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights (he sits on the Defence Committee).

The article by Mark Steyn referenced in one of the questions is “The Future Belongs to Islam”, which was published by Maclean’s on October 20, 2006.

I transcribed and timed this four-minute excerpt, and Vlad Tepes was kind enough to subtitle it:

Below is Vlad’s take on Mr. Steyn’s appearance before the Star Chamber parliamentary committee:

Short segment of parliamentary committee badgering Mark Steyn on ‘hate speech’

This morning an odious procedure took place in Canada’s increasingly Soviet-like parliamentary committee on ‘hate speech’, where three worthy witnesses, Lindsay Shepherd, John Robson, and Mark Steyn, defended freedom of speech, which is to say they are against the Trudeau government’s proposition that Section 13 of the Hate Speech Act be reinstituted into the criminal code of Canada.

A reporter from RAIR Foundation, at the hearings this morning, explained to me that had they committed an actual crime and been on trial for it, their lawyer, and quite probably the judge, would never have allowed the defendant to be treated the way these volunteer witnesses for freedom had been treated.

Before you watch the video, it may help you to understand the intentions and fairness of this committee to know two things.

1.   The Committee voted before this started not to televise the video of it. So there is only audio of it. We can only guess as to why they chose not to broadcast video, as it was a “non-debatable motion” not to broadcast to which most agreed not to broadcast, and one abstained.
2.   They passed another odd motion: not to name the New Zealand shooter and not to quote from his manifesto, even though it was irrelevant to this hearing. However it does relate to an event last week where a conservative MP used facts from the manifesto to counter a false claim, and for which he was immediately reprimanded. This second motion, as I see it, is Orwell’s last prediction. Loosely quoting: “The future is a boot on humanity’s face for pretty much all eternity”.

Video transcript:

0:01   Mr. Steyn, I think you essentially admitted to the fact that
0:05   you have said obnoxious and hurtful things in the past. Would you stipulate it?
0:11   —I’ve been in this business a long time, and I don’t think you’d find anyone, including
0:16   most of my editors, who would find me anything other than obnoxious, unpleasant, and hurtful.
0:22   —OK. So would you agree that the article you wrote in Maclean’s, “The Future Belongs to Islam”,
0:29   where you stated, “It’s the end of the world as we’ve known it.”
0:33   Would you agree that’s alarmist? That’s obnoxious?
0:36   —Well, actually, that’s a bit of a problem. This is what the — and with respect to Mr. [Randall] Garrison
0:41   thinking this is all academic and mumbo-jumbo — that’s what the — m’learned friends would call
0:46   “res judicata”: The thing has been adjudicated.
0:49   I was taken to three… —Would you say that that’s obnoxious and… —I was — no.
0:53   No, I was taken to… —I thought I asked you… would you say… would you admit that…
0:56   —three human rights tribunals, and I won, sir. I won. If you wanna take me to court for a fourth time…
1:01   —I asked you a question, a very specific question… —I won. No. That’s been adjudicated,
1:05   and I’m in the clear. I beat the rap. On — in British Columbia, at the federal commission, and in Ontario…
1:11   —I don’t think it’s been adjudicated as to whether you were obnoxious, or you were hurtful.
1:15   —No, as I said, it’s so stipulated, sir. —No, but, that’s not what
1:18   you were adjudicated… [?]… —That is… that is… —Would you agree with that?
1:22   The — am I obnoxious? I sat… —whether you were obnoxious or not…
1:25   I sat in the Robson Street [Square] courthouse in Vancouver… —Yup…
1:28   —and heard an expert witness flown in from Philadelphia discourse on the quality of my jokes,
1:34   some of which are indeed obnoxious, hurtful. I think that is better left to… —Thank you for that…
1:39   —an article in “The Literary Review of Canada”. —Sure. Absolutely. Now, you also objected to
1:43   Chris Cuomo, the CNN commentator, saying, “The real problem is white supremacists in America.
1:50   They’re the real monsters.” You took issue with that. Why did you take issue with that statement?
1:55   Well, actually, I’m not sure I have any particular…
2:01   Here’s the thing: I’m not… My QC in that case, Julian Porter — also the prime minister’s QC —
2:07   he took the position… —Would you stick to Mr. Cuomo? Why are you [?]… —I’m answering your question.
2:12   He took the principled position that we have nothing to defend under Canadian law.
2:18   I am not here, sir, to justify to you words I have used on TV in the United States,
2:25   radio in Australia… —I just [?] Mr. Cuomo… —And I do not intend to do it.
2:29   The words I chose are the words I chose… —[?] Mr. Cuomo? —And you are free to interpret them as you so wish.
2:34   —I want to ask you a very simple question: Why did you [?] Cuomo? —No. You’re doing
2:37   what is the most, perhaps the most repugnant aspect of this… —No, I asked you a question;
2:40   it’s an open-ended question… —No. You’re doing what is the most repulsive aspect of this committee,
2:46   which is, you’re trying to force people to deny certain things they said five, ten, fifteen years ago…
2:52   —I’m asking questions; that’s my job here… —As if there is only one correct position
2:57   on Islam… —No, I’m just [?] asking you a question; I think that’s my job here… —on immigration, on climate change,
3:01   on transgender bathrooms, on same-sex marriage.
3:05   We cannot keep going on saying, “This is the correct line,
3:08   and if you don’t… —Mr. Steyn, I have to say… —you’re not willing to sign on to that, you’re a hater.”
3:12   —that I completely agree with Mr. Garrison. This isn’t an abstract exercise, and I’m just asking you a simple question.
3:17   —Well, I’ll tell you something with respect to that, too. I’m not going to bandy death threats
3:21   with Mr. Garrison; I take it he’s had them. I appeared on stage at the Danish parliament,
3:27   had to be protected by Danish secret police, security service, the secret service.
3:33   The British Foreign Office and the United States Department of State said it was not safe
3:38   for British nationals or U.S. citizens to go near that event. When I appeared there five years before,
3:44   in the five… I was on stage with four… —Mr. Steyn, I [?] a simple question. —I was on stage with four other people,
3:48   one of whom had her restaurant firebombed, the other of whom had… —Could you answer the questions, Mr. Steyn?
3:52   —had his event shut up… —Could you kindly answer the question?
3:55   No, I’m telling… I’m telling you that there are all kinds of people who get
4:00   death threats. And if the alternative is surrendering our liberty… —No, that’s not what I’m [?]…
4:04   —over death threats, to hell with that, sir! —Thank you, thank you, thank you…

28 thoughts on “Mark Steyn: “If the alternative is surrendering our liberty over death threats, to hell with that!”

  1. Ah, Mr. Steyn, among the Left in Canada, there is only “one correct position” – it is the missionary position. But you were too polite to say so.

    I must say, their attempts to force-feed you their received opinions is rather like the socialists here, and they’ve dispensed with being all- Canadian-nice about it. What a shame. Used to be one could depend on Canadian niceties to get one through the sticky parts. But these days, it’s all sticky parts, sir…

    Overbearing, self-righteous twits.

    [Hope you go on Tucker Carlson and give us a blow-by-blow… but we have to get past those sillies in Old Blighty first, their endless hot air blowing up big balloons into which we can punch large economic holes.]

  2. Looks like Canada has been taken over by Fascist Nazis one wonder how much blood money from the George [Soros] Nazi project these people have taken?

      • Indeed. They’re still not putting people in jail (à la Tommy Robinson) here, just screwing them up financially.

        It’ll come, though, if things continue down the same path.

        I don’t think that salvation has much of a chance to come from within, at least in many parts of the country.

    • Nah, Canada has been digging this hole on its own for at least a generation; not all God’s evils are to be laid at the foot of George.

      I often wonder if the deaths of manly men in WWII was the proximate cause.

  3. I recall that Obama sent his back-room boys up to Canada to “advise” the Trudeau campaign, prior to the election that saddled us with that poor excuse for a sentient human being as our Prime Minister. And the CBC waged war on Harper for 2 years in the run-up to the election.

    This is the end result … a Cabinet full of half-wit, p.c. non-entities, as unqualified for their positions as Trudeau is for his, he being someone else’s sock-puppet, and they being Trudeau’s. All determined to remake the country according to globalist dictates.

    Canadians are rapidly but unknowingly losing their freedoms, largely because virtually all of our “mainstream” media are thoroughly bent to the Left, and keep the populace in ignorance.

  4. War is coming…A very violent nasty Social War…..
    Communist Globalist scum against the rest of us.
    Dear God how I loathe these thieving Socialist creatures. Their self-appointed importance and condescension are nauseating.

    They’ll die just as easily like the rest of us. Billions will perish in this last great Marxist Revolutionary phase. Hopefully, then it might occur to the survivors the truly vile nature of these envious moronic loser creeps.

    Only Islam can beat their death toll…
    Islam 400,000,000’s; Socialism in both forms 170,000,000’s (The ones we know about)

    If I had my way I would ban both from any form of political participation.

    Both are just simple murder and robbery dressed up as ideology.

    Still thievery.

      • An apologist for Islam are you?

        Read Shakespeare on “Equivocators”……


        What next, conversion?


        • [ad hominem redacted]!

          A simple request for the source of your figure is met by this absurd deflection.

          You must feel entitled to pull claims out of the air and not be challenged on them…[redacted].

          • I am well aware of that figure of 270 million from Bill Warner.

            What is the basis of your claim of 400 million?

            (GoV – I dispute that my first sentence was ad hominem. It was about the claim not the claimer)

          • There are ways of characterizing a person’s statement that do not so readily lead to increased hostility and further name-calling in response.


            “Your information is incorrect.”

            “I believe you are mistaken.”

            “Your statement does not reflect the facts as I understand them.”


          • Like Dr Warner I am an acdemic-still working. I have found Dr Warner’s work first class. I also researched my own figures over many years. I am doing my best to remain civil in your case. You are either [redacted] or [redacted]. I have no time for either of them.

            Neither your obfuscation, nor implication by shoving the Koran in my face as evjdence via an URL will change my views. You and your kind are my enemy and I will resist unto death despite any implied threats etc, from you [redacted]. I also hold awards from my work and Doctorate in my subject that does a lot more than shove URL
            pictures of this plagiarised rot in my face to attempt to prove your point and initimidate-or so it seems….

            I can also [redacted]. There is nothing “holy” about the Koran, nor its prophet. I am also an Old Catholic Bishop and you presume to feel that I need lessons from the Koran?

            I will say the same to you as I have all those that fear the truth of the depradations of this cult and its evil. Don’t commit acts of evil! Neither will I fear you and your kind. People have tried to threaten me before but I am old school-….Yes one of those!

            I have even been arrested for standing up to your kind. It only makes me resist more! Get the picture?

            I say what I mean and mean what I say!
            Count on every word.

            I forgive your presumption though as the Bible instructs.

          • There is no possibility of you producing a source for your claim of 400 million dead is there, only bluster and deflection.

            I have produced no URL here nor even mentioned the Koran; nor have I made implied threats.

            I regret expressing myself this way, but I am forced to it…your statements do not reflect the facts as I understand them.

  5. 1:43 Chris Cuomo, the CNN commentator, saying, “The real problem is white supremacists in America.
    1:50 They’re the real monsters.” You took issue with that. Why did you take issue with that statement?

    He should have answered the Cuomo question in my humble opinion – he is right in everything else he is saying, but he avoided a direct answer; as all politicians he himself despises do, all the time, in disdain for the people asking such questions.

  6. Canada is NaZi police terror country!!

    I visited Canada several years ago. We landed at Calgary airport, I was diverted to a customs area, where for 8 hours I was threatened, abused. Threatened with jail, threatened to unlock my smartphone, had my computer searched, insulted, by a gang called CBSA. I HAD 200€ also stolen from me a CBSA thug, who took my money away and returned it with 200€ missing.

    The CBSA force people under threat of violence and prison to hand over passwords and access to phones, computers, and they steal, download all your data. These CBSA have murdered many people at airports in Canada, in cold blood, one was Robert Dezinisky, murdered at the Vancouver airport by CBSA nazis and nazi Canadian police murderers. It’s on youtube, google it.

    The CBSA is unaccountable, and are a state terror mafia gang, of violent thugs, they have abused millions of visitors to Canada at ports, airports, etc., they continue to this day doing the same! Canada is Nazi country, and now with this Trudeau islamist, it’s game over for Canada. Until we remove this cancer of islam and our own traitors who are supporting this vile murderous barbaric stone age bogus religion, our lives, cultures, our children are at risk of murder.

  7. Mark Steyn is one of my Knights in Shining Armor when it comes to all matters pertaining to free speech. He is witty, brave, most articulate, well spoken- everything that his tormentors are NOT.

    I could listen to him all day and thank goodness that he’s on Tucker’s show all the time so we can experience his brilliant defense of liberty on a regular basis.

    Oh that there were more like him!

  8. I don’t think this was as good as it could have been. Why not answer all of the questions? “Do you believe that this is the end of civilization as we know it?” “ABSOLUTELY!” He could have said. “Just look around you.”

    We need to be more forthright about our existential crisis and what it means for civilization. Do we want all of our artistic treasures blown up? Do we want libraries and bookstores to evaporate? How many bookstores are there in Saudi Arabia anyway? Is that our model for civilization?

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