Once again Canadians across the country are taking to the streets to express their concerns for bill c-51, which the Tories are still trying to push forward into seeing full implementation. Thankfully, support for the bill has continued to plummet over the past several months, due to the many outspoken professionals who have continued their efforts in warning Canadians about the dangers of this bill. Not only does it pose a threat to the privacy of every Canadian, but it also grossly undermines the rule of law in this country. This is a point which has been reiterated by many security and legal professionals, law professors, and others. Canadians aren't rolling over on this one, and despite the threats of Tories using their majority to push this bill through, citizens aren't ready to give up the fight just yet.
Having seen what has transpired throughout the years in the U.S. with the passage of its controversial NDAA and Patriot Act, some Canadians raise concerns rooted in the suspicion that we are headed down a similar path; littered with broad phishing expeditions which target unknowing and mostly innocent and peaceful individuals who are not suspected of committing any crime. Unfortunately, there have been some who've said that they don't mind if the government spies on their own personal information or that of their fellow citizens, because they don't have “anything to hide.” But the bold reality is that this sort of un-checked spying tarnishes any illusion that our country operates under the rule of law.
While the U.S. itself may want to toss billions of dollars down the drain in its war on terror, forcefully involving itself in multiple overseas controversies, these are not the footsteps that many Canadians want their country to follow in. For the most part, Canadians want the role of a peace-keeper, and it is stressed that they should focus their efforts more on humanitarian aid, then on trying to diffuse overseas dilemmas with violence. The U.S. has severely tarnished its reputation over the years, facing numerous claims that its agencies have violated the law and even committed crimes against humanity, so what good will it do Canada to follow the same path of destruction? Especially considering the fact that our nation is currently trillions of dollars in debt. Harper may have a vision to drive Canada down this path, but he is going to have a difficult time with it if the public has anything to say about it. One famous Canadian who is joining the fight against the bill is renowned poet, novelist, literary critic, essayist, and environmental activist, Margaret Atwood. She recently tweeted to her MP to “do the right thing” and encouraged him to vote swiftly against its attempted passage.
This will be the second national day of action against bill c-51 and rallies are planned to take place across the country in a variety of cities, from Vancouver to Ottawa people will be out there making sure that their voices are heard and not overlooked on this issue. If the Harper government pushes through this legislation despite the massive outcry from the public (including four former Prime Ministers), and the repeated polls confirming widespread discontent, then it is rather evident that they are operating outside the will of what the Canadian people want. As it stands, the Tories have yet to clearly demonstrate how (if at all) bill c-51 might make us any safer or how it might go about improving current methods of investigation at all.
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