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Question 4&7 poli exam final.docx

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Political Science
Todd Alway

Question 4: Section 33  The Charter attempts to manage a tension between democracy and rights  Section 33 “Notwithstanding clause” of the Charter allows government to violate rights regardless of Supreme Court Power of Courts:  Judicial decisions are just as political as they are legal  Judiciaries are appointed therefore unaccountable (transferred power by parliament itself therefore unaccountable and free existent)  Judiciary unrepresentative of Canadians as a whole (problematic in coming from a legal background attempted to make decisions based on morals and ethics)  Institutions not equally accessible (wealth pay a role in being able to access justice and influence the court; ability to hire a lawyer) Power of Parliament:  Laws have to be passed through 3 levels: Crown, House of Commons and Senate  Parliament in each element has the ability to shut down a law (House of commons especially)  Majority government, new agendas are very likely to succeed  Difficult for minority agendas to have a chance in being heard  Senate to have individuals act on behalf of provinces, but they don’t represent the regions interests or even worry about having to be elected  Senate often seen as a place where little work is done Distribution of power:  This section allows democratically elected governments to override rights with an attempt to balance court power and democratic power  Parliament and courts have unequal power, as Parliament can vote on any issues and have it succeed while courts can only work with issues that have came up and aren’t completely understood by Parliaments initial decision  Less likely that smaller groups will have their voices heard because of the little/no power they have to comment on the charter  Section 33 is for smaller groups to get around that issue  Majority vote from 14 jurisdictions can create an override of certain rights  Allows for provinces to dismiss certain rights if deemed better for population  Human rights issue because the government can take away certain rights Affected aspects of Charter:  Fundamental Rights: a. freedom of conscience and religion b. belief, opinion and expression c. peaceful assembly d. association  unionize but not strike  Legal Rights: right to life, liberty and security i.e. abortion rights  Equality Rights: no discrimination of race, age, class, sex, origin, ethnicity Cannot affect:  Mobility Rights: move between provinces  Democratic Rights: right to vote  Language Rights  Section 33 used by Quebec in 1989 when their Equality rights were restricted (freedom of expression) Courts interpreted this to mean a list of rights that can be override by government Conclusion:  Until 1993, all signs in Quebec were written in French. This use of Section 33 was later deemed to be against Human rights.  Only beneficial in respect to national emergency, and a 5 year limit which makes in not appropriate for long-term
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