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Lecture 11

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McMaster University
Political Science
Greg Flynn

FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION: Missing Tests for FOE, Does expression fall within 2(b), and limitations by government 1. Purpose: a. Pursuit of Truth: Mill said the only way we can uncover truth is by putting it in front of a panel of adverse opinions. Allowing people to say what is on their mind, their opinions, their beliefs. Outcomes: i. You might confirm the existing belief ii. You may be able to refute it, but confronting existing knowledge iii. By taken two different truths we learn it comes to lie somewhere in the middle (often the case**) b. Democratic Participation: democracy is premised on the idea that its citizens are allowed to base and dicuss its ideas. It requires a public forum where public discussion can take place. Justice is not done until it is seen in society. The ability to speak truth to power, to be able to stand up to the state and say that something is not right, and not fear the state. c. Individual self- fulfillment: Individuals are able to explore the boundaries of themselves and their ideas. It includes speech and thoughts as a whole, and one’s actions as a whole. i. Irwin Toy: manufactures toys in Quebec and sells them in Quebec. Took issue in Quebec law on advertising, felt it infringed on their freedom of expression. ii. Quebec did not allow companies to advertise during children’s cartoons by using cartoon figures. Aimed at reducing the exploitation of children iii. Court looked at all 3 aspects of the purpose of 2b (pursuit of truth.. good activity…participation should be fostered and encouraged.. self- fulfillment and human flourishing ought to be cultivated in an essentially tolerant and welcoming environment not only for the sake of those who convey a meaning but also for the sake of those for whom it is to be conveyed). This is important because its not just about the individual providing the content but its about those who are consuming the content and how it affects them. In order to assert these rights they must show that their case falls in these 3 forms. Found to be a violation of expression, but it was upheld by section 1. 2. Expression: broken down into form & content and how they are protected by freedom of expression. a. Form: how you say something. Includes physical gestures (excluding violence). i. Ford v. Que Montreal 1. An issue of language. At the time bill 101 in Quebec (charter of French language, used to protect the language). Required individuals to attend French schools, primary language of business, be on all advertising and business signs, and required French business names. 2. Ford was warned she violated bill 101 along with 2 others, and 2 others had been charged. Raised it as a charter offence, and sued the government over its laws. 3. Court first examined section 33, whether how much of section 33 had been used in relation to bill 101. Found that it applied to bill 101. 4. The court held that language is so intimately related to the form and the content of expression that there cannot be freedom of expression relating to a lang
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