Tuesday, March 30, 2010


I will be out of the country for a month and will resume blogging in May.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Oh, Ann. Say it ain't so.

Word is circulating that American conservative political commentator, Ann Coulter, is considering making a complaint to the Canada Human Rights Commission because she was “threatened” by a letter from the Provost of the University of Ottawa.

Coulter is on a three-University speaking tour. She spoke at the University of Western Ontario without a lot of fuss and she was supposed to speak at Ottawa yesterday, but her appearance was cancelled because about 2,000 protestors showed up to try to prevent her from speaking. They succeeded.

The Provost sent her a letter prior to her travels to Canada lecturing her on responsible speech and advising her to bone-up on Canadian free speech limitations and libel law before she opens her mouth. Some people think the disclosure of this letter in the media and blogosphere probably encouraged the protestors to go out and close her down.

Coulter is now claiming she is a victim of discrimination and abuse because of this letter.

My advice to Coulter is to nix the complaint.

I didn’t read the letter as threatening in any way. It was stupid, no doubt about that. And maybe the real complaint should be why the taxpayers are expected to fund Ontario universities when they employ people of the limited intellectual caliber of this Provost. But, that is not Ann’s issue.

The reason I would advise against proceeding in this manner is that she will just act to legitimize the HRCs. Mssrs. Ezra Levant and Mark Steyn have spent a lot of time “de-normalizing” (Levant’s conceit) these PC monsters and by submitting to their jurisdiction, Coulter gives them license to once more try to stifle free speech.

I think the Provost was perfectly entitled to express his opinions, just as Coulter was. She should not be an agent acting to prevent his right to free speech by resorting to the government to enshrine her “victimhood”.

The larger issue, which we need to consider, is how we prevent mobs from shutting down free speech on our campuses. Clearly, it is a problem the universities are unable to solve. We have to solve it for them. No longer should we view them as these private enclaves of entitlement governed solely by their own rules.

ADDENDUM: When I wrote the foregoing, I was unaware that Allan Rock was the President of the University of Ottawa. Now the scales have fallen from my eyes and I understand why this whole event got completely out of hand.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I guess we will just have to wait for the 22nd century for the rubes to catch up

In the 21st century it is amazing how the world of magic still pervades the most scientifically and technologically advanced societies.

When I first saw the documentary Jesus Camp, I scoffed at the fundamentalist Protestant Reverend Rebecca Fletcher, putting defensive spells (blessings) on her laptop computer and the building’s electrical panel so that the Devil wouldn’t screw with her PowerPoint presentation. Later she is seen admonishing her young charges to avoid Harry Potter, a young man in fiction known to put defensive spells around his friends to ward off evil.

Yet here we are again, with a recent interview with the Vatican’s chief exorcist, telling us of all the demons he has cast out from people they possessed. He claims to know of 70,000 cases where demons possessed humans.

Such people are only a brain cell or two away from considering the burning of witches to be a heritage ceremony to be lamented for its decline.

I have just finished reading Richard Dawkins’ excellent new book, The Greatest Show on Earth, which is a tour de force in setting out the scientific evidence for evolution, 200 years after the birth of its discoverer, Charles Darwin.

In an appendix, Dawkins reports a number of polls that have been conducted in the United States, the United Kingdom and worldwide asking people, in different ways whether they think evolution is true. Depressingly, scientifically and technologically advanced nations such as the U.S. and the U.K. score poorly, with more people doubting evolution as described by Darwin’s natural selection than other explanations. He shows Turkey as being very low on the evolution acceptance scale with only 27% accepting evolution and 51% rejecting it.

U.S. and U.K figures are not much better, but Dawkins suspects that the Turkish numbers would be typical for Islamic countries. He cites the case of an organization in Britain called the Al-Nasr Trust which has produced leaflets that are distributed by Muslim medical students claiming Darwin’s theory is false. He point out that the ANT is a registered charity, so it is a tax-subsidized entity arguing against solid science within scientific education facilities. There isn't anything useful in science produced from Islamic societies in the last 1,000 years, but there they are mocking the discovery of one of the most important scientists of all time, and being fiancially rewarded by the government of the U.K. for their efforts.

Dawkins says it is very easy for a religious organization to obtain charitable status under Britain’s laws (which were copied nearly verbatim in Canada), whereas a bona vide charity (one that actually does real charitable work, such as advancing education) must jump through a number of hoops in order to obtain the same status.

He writes:

I recently established a charitable foundation dedicated to promoting “Reason and Science”. During the protracted, extremely expensive, and ultimately successful negotiation to obtain charitable status, I received a letter from the British Charity Commission…which contained the following: “It is not clear how the advancement of science tends towards the mental and moral improvement of the public. Please provide us with evidence of this or explain how it is linked to the advancement of humanism and rationalism.” Religious organizations, by contrast, are assumed to benefit humanity without any obligation to demonstrate it and even, apparently, if they are actively engaged in promoting scientific falsehood.

In light of the magic spell casting, still conducted by elements of the Christian faith one could add to that, “even if they are actively involved in spreading about the most archaic and nonsensical ideas.”

Friday, March 12, 2010

My kind of guy -- off with the mask and down with the gauntlet

International wars sometimes start in strange ways.

World War I started with the murder of a member of the Austrian nobility by a Serbian nationalist, which was followed by a declaration of war amongst the major European powers of the day. Nobody really saw that one coming.

Franklin Roosevelt tried to interfere with Japan’s takeover of Manchuria and pretty much guaranteed that Japan would eventually attack the United States, end its neutrality and ensure its entry into World War II. It is arguable that most Americans didn’t really see that one coming either.

Nineteen Muslim airline hijackers sent the American military into Afghanistan and Iraq. Saddam Hussein was as surprised as anybody when the U.S. tanks and aircraft rolled into his country.

There is a new conflict brewing and it receives almost no attention in North America. It also started with an innocuous beginning.

In 2008, Hannibal Gaddafi, the son of Libyan dictator, Muammar Gaddafi, was arrested in Geneva, Switzerland for allegedly assaulting two of his servants. The old man erupted, arresting two Swiss businessmen in Libya for violating “residency” rules.

According to the February 26, 2010 edition of the Wall Street Journal:

Then, last November, Swiss voters approved a referendum to ban the construction of minarets on mosques. Some analysts in Switzerland said they believed the strong vote in favor of the ban—58% of voters supported the referendum—stemmed in part from resentment in Switzerland over the issue of the businessmen in Libya. Soon after the election, Libya's government-controlled news agency Jana branded the vote "racist."

But while the vote raised the ire of political and religious leaders in the Muslim world, it hasn't generated violence or a backlash against Swiss interests abroad, as the Swiss government had originally feared.

After the vote, Swiss efforts to convince Tripoli to release the men failed, and political observers said Libya's continued refusal to release them was in reaction to the minaret vote. Earlier this week, Libya freed one of the men after a court overturned his conviction on appeal, and he has returned to Switzerland. The other man, Max Göldi, the country head in Libya for Swiss engineering group ABB Ltd., has begun a four-month prison sentence in Libya.

Bern has restricted the granting of Swiss visas to Libyan citizens. That, in turn, has prompted Tripoli to block the entry of some European citizens into Libya. Tripoli has stopped issuing visas to citizens of the Schengen passport-free zone, which includes most of the European Union as well as Switzerland.
On Thursday, Italy said Libya may renege on a deal to help control the flow of undocumented immigrants into the EU because of the visa spat with Switzerland. Libya is often used as a departure point by such immigrants for southern Europe, particularly Italy.

Italy, which has close business links with Libya, has accused Switzerland of misusing the Schengen agreement and taking its members "hostage" by instituting the ban, which had forced other Schengen nations to bar travel by Libyans as well.
Italian Interior Minister Roberto Maroni said the quarrel put the Schengen zone at risk and could further strain relations with Libya. Swiss Justice Minister Eveline Widmer-Schlumpf met with EU ministers on Thursday to discuss possible solutions to the travel situation.

But the issue has escalated beyond mere visa and passport fiddling.

In February, 2010 Gaddafi called for “jihad” (holy war) against Switzerland:

We will not give up Jihad, because it is a religious duty. Jihad constitutes a religious duty and self-defense. It is the defense of the religion, fighting for the sake of Allah, defense of the Prophet Muhammad, of the Koran, of the mosques. … Whoever destroys the mosques of Allah before the eyes of the Muslims is worthy of having Jihad launched against him. If Switzerland were situated on our border, we would fight it, for destroying the mosques of Allah. Jihad against those who destroy the mosques of Allah and their minarets is [true] Jihad, and not terrorism. … Switzerland is an infidel and sinful country which destroys mosques. Jihad, with all possible means, should be declared against it.

Any Muslim who buys Swiss products is an infidel. Let Muslims all over the world know this. There are people here from all over the Islamic world. Any Muslim anywhere in the world who deals with Switzerland is an infidel against Islam, Muhammad, Allah, and the Koran. If you continue to have dealings with Switzerland, and the people who portrayed the Prophet Muhammad in the most abominable way in their newspapers. … If you continue to have dealings with them, to buy their products, to support them, to accept their tourists, to accept their planes, to accept their ships, and to host their embassies — you are not Muslims. Any Muslim must boycott them.

Boycott Switzerland, its products, its planes, its ships, and its embassies. Boycott this sinful infidel community, which attacks the mosques of Allah. The Muslim masses must head towards all the airports in the Islamic world, and prevent any Swiss plane from landing. They should head to the ports, and prevent any Swiss ship from coming in. They should comb the shops and markets and remove the Swiss products. Allah said: “Let them find harshness in you.”

This might pass for the normal, fatuous, ravings of a megalomaniac dictator except:

Qaddafi’s government has cut its oil supplies to Switzerland, withdrawn Libyan capital from Swiss banks, and moved to close all Swiss companies active in Libya — Swiss Air having already been shut down. And within a week, by Thursday, March 4, Qaddafi’s call for jihad against Switzerland — manifested as economic jihad, for now — was endorsed by Arab League ministers meeting in Cairo. Ministers from Somalia, Sudan, Egypt, Morocco, Mauritania, Algeria, Djibouti, Syria, Yemen, Bahrain, Kuwait, the UAE , Jordan, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Tunisia each signed a document in support of Libya’s actions, which also denounced Switzerland as “racist.”

Qaddafi’s jihad-sanctioning diatribe and its endorsement by the Arab League ignore the Swiss electorate’s legitimate concerns expressed through their political leadership, notably the Swiss People’s Party (SVP). These actions towards the Swiss and Western Europe in general by Qaddafi, his Arab League supporters, and other Muslim political and religious leaders illustrate simultaneous denial and imperialistic threat — archetypal Islamic behaviors toward infidel civilizations.

The Swiss plebiscite did not disenfranchise any Muslims from worshipping or building centers of worship, it was only aimed at the architectural adornment of a minaret, and did not deal with those that have already been built.

It is possible that Gaddafi’s call to jihad may do more to unite Europe against the world of Islam than a 100 Geert Wilders ever could.

If your knowledge of Gaddafi is somewhat scant, go to this website for a more intimate look.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Gilders -- worth repeating

"Freedom must prevail, and freedom will prevail"

Geert Wilders
Speech House of Lords, London
Friday the 5th of March 2010

Thank you. It is great to be back in London. And it is great that this time, I got to see more of this wonderful city than just the detention centre at Heathrow Airport.

Today I stand before you, in this extraordinary place. Indeed, this is a sacred place. This is, as Malcolm always says, the mother of all Parliaments, I am deeply humbled to have the opportunity to speak before you.

Thank you Lord Pearson and Lady Cox for your invitation and showing my film 'Fitna'. Thank you my friends for inviting me.

I first have great news. Last Wednesday city council elections were held in the Netherlands. And for the first time my party, the Freedom Party, took part in these local elections. We participated in two cities. In Almere, one of the largest Dutch cities. And in The Hague, the third largest city; home of the government, the parliament and the queen. And, we did great! In one fell swoop my party became the largest party in Almere and the second largest party in The Hague. Great news for the Freedom Party and even better news for the people of these two beautiful cities.

And I have more good news. Two weeks ago the Dutch government collapsed. In June we will have parliamentary elections. And the future for the Freedom Party looks great. According to some polls we will become the largest party in the Netherlands. I want to be modest, but who knows, I might even be Prime Minister in a few months time!

Ladies and gentlemen, not far from here stands a statue of the greatest Prime Minister your country ever had. And I would like to quote him here today: "Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith. No stronger retrograde force exists in the World. It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step (...) the civilization of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilization of ancient Rome." These words are from none other than Winston Churchill wrote this in his book 'The River War' from 1899.

Churchill was right.

Ladies and gentlemen, I don't have a problem and my party does not have a problem with Muslims as such. There are many moderate Muslims. The majority of Muslims are law-abiding citizens and want to live a peaceful life as you and I do. I know that. That is why I always make a clear distinction between the people, the Muslims, and the ideology, between Islam and Muslims. There are many moderate Muslims, but there is no such thing as a moderate Islam.

Islam strives for world domination. The Quran commands Muslims to exercise jihad. The Quran commands Muslims to establish shariah law. The Quran commands Muslims to impose Islam on the entire world.

As former Turkish Prime Minister Erbakan said: "The whole of Europe will become Islamic. We will conquer Rome". End of quote.

Libyan dictator Gaddafi said: "There are tens of millions of Muslims in the European continent today and their number is on the increase. This is the clear indication that the European continent will be converted into Islam. Europe will one day soon be a Muslim continent". End of quote. Indeed, for once in his life, Gaddafi was telling the truth. Because, remember: mass immigration and demographics is destiny!

Islam is merely not a religion, it is mainly a totalitarian ideology. Islam wants to dominate all aspects of life, from the cradle to the grave. Shariah law is a law that controls every detail of life in a Islamic society. From civic- and family law to criminal law. It determines how one should eat, dress and even use the toilet. Oppression of women is good, drinking alcohol is bad.

I believe that Islam is not compatible with our Western way of life. Islam is a threat to Western values. The equality of men and women, the equality of homosexuals and heterosexuals, the separation of church and state, freedom of speech, they are all under pressure because of islamization. Ladies and gentlemen: Islam and freedom, Islam and democracy are not compatible. It are opposite values.

No wonder that Winston Churchill called Adolf Hitler's 'Mein Kampf' "the new Quran of faith and war, turgid, verbose, shapeless, bur pregnant with its message". As you know, Churchill made this comparison, between the Koran and Mein Kampf, in his book 'The Second World War', a master piece, for which, he received the Nobel Prize in Literature. Churchill's comparison of the Quran and 'Mein Kampf' is absolutely spot on. The core of the Quran is the call to jihad. Jihad means a lot of things and is Arabic for battle. Kampf is German for battle. Jihad and kampf mean exactly the same.

Islam means submission, there cannot be any mistake about its goal. That's a given. The question is whether we in Europe and you in Britain, with your glorious past, will submit or stand firm for your heritage.

We see Islam taking off in the West at an incredible pace. Europe is Islamizing rapidly. A lot of European cities have enormous Islamic concentrations. Paris, Amsterdam, Brussels and Berlin are just a few examples. In some parts of these cities, Islamic regulations are already being enforced. Women's rights are being destroyed. Burqa's, headscarves, polygamy, female genital mutilation, honour-killings. Women have to go to separate swimming-classes, don't get a handshake. In many European cities there is already apartheid. Jews, in an increasing number, are leaving Europe.

As you undoubtedly all know, better then I do, also in your country the mass immigration and islamization has rapidly increased. This has put an enormous pressure on your British society. Look what is happening in for example Birmingham, Leeds, Bradford and here in London. British politicians who have forgotten about Winston Churchill have now taken the path of least resistance. They have given up. They have given in.

Last year, my party has requested the Dutch government to make a cost-benefit analysis of the mass immigration. But the government refused to give us an answer. Why? Because it is afraid of the truth. The signs are not good. A Dutch weekly magazine - Elsevier - calculated costs to exceed 200 billion Euros. Last year alone, they came with an amount of 13 billion Euros. More calculations have been made in Europe: According to the Danish national bank, every Danish immigrant from an Islamic country is costing the Danish state more than 300 thousand Euros. You see the same in Norway and France. The conclusion that can be drawn from this: Europe is getting more impoverished by the day. More impoverished thanks to mass immigration. More impoverished thanks to demographics. And the leftists are thrilled.

I don't know whether it is true, but in several British newspapers I read that Labour opened the door to mass immigration in a deliberate policy to change the social structures of the UK. Andrew Neather, a former government advisor and speech writer for Tony Blair and Jack Straw, said the aim of Labour's immigration strategy was, and I quote, to "rub the Right's nose in diversity and render their arguments out of date". If this is true, this is symptomatic of the Left.

Ladies and gentlemen, make no mistake: The left is facilitating islamization. Leftists, liberals, are cheering for every new shariah bank being created, for every new shariah mortgage, for every new islamic school, for every new shariah court. Leftists consider Islam as being equal to our own culture. Shariah law or democracy? Islam or freedom? It doesn't really matter to them. But it does matter to us. The entire leftist elite is guilty of practising cultural relativism. Universities, churches, trade unions, the media, politicians. They are all betraying our hard-won liberties.

Why I ask myself, why have the Leftists and liberals stopped to fight for them? Once the Leftists stood on the barricades for women's rights. But where are they today? Where are they in 2010? They are looking the other way. Because they are addicted to cultural relativism and dependent on the Muslim vote. They are dependent on mass-immigration.

Thank heavens Jacqui Smith isn't in office anymore. It was a victory for free speech that a UK judge brushed aside her decision to refuse me entry to your country last year. I hope that the judges in my home country are at least as wise and will acquit me of all charges, later this year in the Netherlands.

Unfortunately, so far they have not done so well. For they do not want to hear the truth about Islam, nor are they interested to hear the opinion of top class legal experts in the field of freedom of expression. Last month in a preliminary session the Court refused fifteen of the eighteen expert-witnesses I had requested to be summoned.

Only three expert witnesses are allowed to be heard. Fortunately, my dear friend and heroic American psychiatrist dr. Wafa Sultan is one of them. But their testimony will be heard behind closed doors. Apparently the truth about Islam must not be told in public, the truth about Islam must remain secret.

Ladies and gentlemen, I'm being prosecuted for my political beliefs. We know political prosecution to exist in countries in the Middle East, like Iran and Saudi-Arabia, but never in Europe, never in the Netherlands.

I'm being prosecuted for comparing the Quran to 'Mein Kampf'. Ridiculous. I wonder if Britain will ever put the beliefs of Winston Churchill on trial... Ladies and gentlemen, the political trial that is held against me has to stop.

But it is not all about me, not about Geert Wilders. Free speech is under attack. Let me give you a few other examples. As you perhaps know, one of my heroes, the Italian author Oriana Fallaci had to live in fear of extradition to Switzerland because of her anti-Islam book 'The Rage and the Pride'. The Dutch cartoonist Nekschot was arrested in his home in Amsterdam by 10 police men because of his anti-Islam drawings. Here in Britain, the American author Rachel Ehrenfeld was sued by a Saudi businessman for defamation. In the Netherlands Ayaan Hirsi Ali and in Australia two Christian pastors were sued. I could go on and on. Ladies and gentlemen, all throughout the West freedom loving people are facing this ongoing 'legal jihad'. This is Islamic 'lawfare'. And, ladies and gentlemen, not long ago the Danish cartoonist Westergaard was almost assassinated for his cartoons.

Ladies and gentlemen, we should defend the right to freedom of speech. With all our strength. With all our might. Free speech is the most important of our many liberties. Free speech is the cornerstone of our modern societies. Freedom of speech is the breath of our democracy, without freedom of speech our way of life our freedom will be gone.

I believe it is our obligation to preserve the inheritance of the brave young soldiers that stormed the beaches of Normandy. That liberated Europe from tyranny. These heroes cannot have died for nothing. It is our obligation to defend freedom of speech. As George Orwell said: "If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear".

Ladies and gentlemen, I believe in another policy, it is time for change. We must make haste. We can't wait any longer. Time is running out. If I may quote one of my favourite American presidents: Ronald Reagan once said: "We need to act today, to preserve tomorrow". That is why I propose the following measures, I only mention a few, in order to preserve our freedom:

First, we will have to defend freedom of speech. It is the most important of our liberties. In Europe and certainly in the Netherlands, we need something like the American First Amendment.

Second, we will have to end and get rid of cultural relativism. To the cultural relativists, the shariah socialists, I proudly say: Our Western culture is far superior to the Islamic culture. Don't be affraid to say it. You are not a racist when you say that our own culture is better.

Third, we will have to stop mass immigration from Islamic countries. Because more Islam means less freedom.

Fourth, we will have to expel criminal immigrants and, following denaturalisation, we will have to expel criminals with a dual nationality. And there are many of them in my country.

Fifth, we will have to forbid the construction of new mosques. There is enough Islam in Europe. Especially since Christians in Turkey, Egypt, Iraq, Iran, Pakistan and Indonesia are mistreated, there should be a mosque building-stop in the West.

And last but not least, we will have to get rid of all those so-called leaders. I said it before: Fewer Chamberlains, more Churchills. Let's elect real leaders.

Ladies and gentlemen. To the previous generation, that of my parents, the word 'London' is synonymous with hope and freedom. When my country was occupied by the national-socialists the BBC offered a daily glimpse of hope in my country, in the darkness of Nazi tyranny. Millions of my fellow country men listened to it, underground. The words 'This is London' were a symbol for a better world coming soon.

What will be broadcasted forty years from now? Will it still be "This is London"? Or will it be "This is Londonistan"? Will it bring us hope? Or will it signal the values of Mecca and Medina? Will Britain offer submission or perseverance? Freedom or slavery? The choice is yours. And in the Netherlands the choice is ours.

Ladies and gentlemen, we will never apologize for being free. We will and should never give in. And, indeed, as one of your former leaders said: We will never surrender.

Freedom must prevail, and freedom will prevail.

Thank you very much.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Those annoying Christians

So, how does your organization feel about the representation of Canada shown in the opening ceremonies of the Olympics? Inuit art was strongly featured and is totally blended with their religious culture. It was used to represent our northern culture but doesn't represent the majority of Canadians either...yet we show it off to the world as if it is somehow intrinsic to our Canadian existance. Why should their religious beliefs be shown to the world when you would like to quash any mention of our larger and still majority Christian beliefs? I'm sick of the minority telling the majority we have to be tolerant of their beliefs when they are openly hostile to those of the majority. Suck it up...our anthem is beautiful and "God keep our Land" reflects the beliefs of a majority of Canadians in "a" God. I question your statistics. Whether or not Canadians believe in the Christian God, most believe in some kind of higher power or "god" and thus the term God is not offensive to them. Even the Muslims believe in a God named Allah. True Atheists are a very small minority.

The foregoing was a comment -- reproduced exactly as received -- that came to me from a Christian regarding an old posting on this blog about the initiative of the Canadian Secular Alliance to get God written out of the National Anthem of Canada.

I am going to assume the writer to be male for the sake of clarity in what I say next.

I think he displays a level of bigotry towards those of different beliefs or non-belief that ought to be worrying when he couples it with a reference to majority rule.

This is a liberal democracy and one of its hallmarks is that society tries to balance different rights and expectations amongst the citizenry. Clearly, we don’t all share the same beliefs and some of us, like the writer above, disdain those that don’t conform to his own beliefs. He may be “sick” of this balancing act, but I would pass back to him the same advice he gave me; namely, suck it up, because you live in the best country in the world where people of all nations, creeds, cultures and ethnic origins freely go about their lives, cherishing the values, institutions and benefits of our liberal democracy.

Those of us who do not believe in a supreme being don’t wish to “quash any mention” of Christian beliefs. The writer is free to go to any street corner in any town and city in this country, or stand outside any liquor store, and sing Onward Christian Soldiers at the top of his lungs. I can always walk away from him if the lyrics offend me. He can go to his house of worship and do the same thing. I don’t have to enter it and listen. He can pray in his own home, office, car, boat, RV, tent, or what have you.

This is a free country and, even though I don’t believe in flapping angels, talking snakes and all the other colourful stuff handed down to us from the ancient sandal-wearing, Bronze Age, desert-dwellers, I support your freedom to believe any old wives’ tales, myths, legends or other magical kingdom nonsense as you wish.

I don’t have any issue with you freely practicing your religion anywhere with the exception that it should not intrude on public institutions or into public places and in public practices that ought to remain secular and free from religious dogma and to which I may wish to resort or enjoy without first having to pay deference to your deity.

The National Anthem belongs to all Canadians, not just Christian Canadians, or any other deists. So why, if I wish to express my patriotism by singing it in public, am I required to pay homage to God? The words were first penned in 1908 and it wasn’t until the 1980s that the Christians in Parliament decided to inflict their religious beliefs on the rest of us by inserting God into the song.

It is particularly galling to me since I used to sing it joyously at school when it was just a rousing anthem to the country and had not been converted into a song of prayer to the Christian God. Now, I don’t sing it because I find myself stumbling over the God line.

Christians ought to become more familiar with their own religious textbook, the Bible, if they intend spout off on this subject. Matthew 6:6 advises that prayer is supposed to be a private matter, not a public demonstration. You can’t get more public in prayer than invoking God to keep your country strong and free in its national anthem.

The writer displays that all-too-common Christian victim mentality; it is Christians who are being denied their rightful place in the firmament. Get over yourselves. The Roman Empire disappeared nearly two millennia ago. You have come a long way from days of being thrown to the lions, brothers and sisters.

It is pretty funny, not to mention highly annoying, when you consider that Christians are forever banging on your door wanting to push their literature at you. They accost you on street corners, or set up kiosks and booths at public events. They put up billboards declaiming all sorts of radical testimony about the Devil and Darwin. They have their own radio shows and television networks, and on Sunday mornings you really have to channel surf to get away from them.

When was the last time your peace and tranquility was interrupted by a pair of atheist strangers at your front door wanting to engage you in discussion about your beliefs and shoving their secular pamphlets into your hands?

When I drive out in the country I am treated to giant signs urging me to “Repent and accept Christ”. Barns are painted with “Christ is the Answer” slogans. I stop behind cars and read “Jesus is my co-pilot” bumper stickers. Just above that is the little fish symbol. When I spend the weekend at my in-laws in a little town of 500 population, my Sunday morning rest is shattered by loud church bells ringing from a half a dozen nearby Christian churches.

Everywhere I go my senses of sight and sound are assaulted by the Christian God, intruding on my enjoyment of the public space, and offending my sense of reason and my beliefs.

Yet, a year or so ago, when a group of freethinkers decided to have a little fun and launched a short bus ad campaign suggesting the non-existence of God, you would have thought they were advocating the destruction of western civilization. The evangelical leader, Charles McVety, thundered against them as “attack ads”, the Catholic Bishop of Calgary exclaimed how offensive he found these ads. Nearly half the municipalities declined to approve the application for the ads even though some of them had previously approved religious advertising on transit vehicles.

It is odd that these ads can be considered an attack on Christianity, but all of those public promotions of God and Jesus, so beloved of Christians, that I have mentioned, are never seen by them as an attack on atheists. They are.

If it were limited simply to that level of hypocrisy, it might be endurable. But that is not enough for them. Christians get themselves elected or appointed to various boards and commissions and immediately start trying to censor books from public libraries or school libraries that my taxes have paid for. They even go to the extent of trying to ban a writer’s work, not because he wrote anything particularly derogatory about a religion, but because he publicly declared himself to be an atheist.

When did you ever hear of an activist atheist on such a body trying to restrict the circulation of the Bible or other religiously-themed works, or trying to ban works that were not religious, but were written by authors who are Christians? In the United States the activism of Christians has effectively shut down the teaching of the science of evolution in public and high school science classes in many states.

One Christian denomination in Ontario has its own entire school system funded at public expense, even putting the nation in violation of an international treaty to which it is a signatory. Religion is protected as a public charity under the taxing statutes so that its income is sheltered from normal taxation. Its vast property holdings are free from municipal taxation. Religion, and particularly the majority Christian faith, live large and fat off the taxpayers of this country. And we, the non-religious, are expected to have to make up some of the shortfall in tax revenue as a result of these shelters for God with not only no thanks from Christians, but with a sneer.

Who is the real victim in all of this?

It is high time we put an end to the public subsidization of religion. Atheists and the other non-religious folks don’t give a rat’s rectum about your beliefs and your belief institutions, or your entitlement to them, but they should not have to pay for them. You can pay your own way. After all, as you say, you are the great majority, so it shouldn’t be that difficult for you to pony up enough to keep your crosses flying and your fish swimming without picking my pocket while you are scorning me in the process.

Atheists are in indeed a small minority, but including them amongst the category of people who declare no religious affiliation leads to a much larger number. The official statistics can be found in the 2001 Canadian census. Here is an extract from the government of Canada website encapsulating those census results:

In 2001, 7 out of every 10 people still identified themselves as either Roman Catholic or Protestant.

Census data showed a continuation of a long-term downward trend in the population who report Protestant denominations. The number of Roman Catholics increased slightly during the 1990s, but their share of the total population fell marginally.
At the same time, the number of Canadians who reported religions such as Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism and Buddhism has increased substantially.

Much of the shift in the nation's religious makeup during the past several decades is the result of the changing sources of immigrants, which has created a more diverse religious profile. As well, many major Protestant denominations that were dominant in the country 70 years ago, such as Anglican and United Church, are declining in numbers, in part because their members are aging and fewer young people are identifying with these denominations.

In addition, far more Canadians reported that they had no religion. This group accounted for 16% of the population in 2001, compared with 12% a decade earlier.
In 2001, Roman Catholics were still the largest religious group, drawing the faith of just under 12.8 million people, or 43% of the population, down from 45% in 1991. The proportion of Protestants, the second largest group, declined from 35% of the population to 29%, or about 8.7 million people.

Combined, the two groups represented 72% of the total population in 2001, compared with 80% a decade earlier.
The population of Canada in 2001 was 30 million, which means that 4,800,000 people ticked the “no religion” box on the form. This is the largest demographic grouping after Christians and is a far larger body of people than all the other religions combined. It is also the fastest growing demographic, as this 2008 Harris-Decima poll indicates.

The next religious census will occur in 2011 and I would fully expect to see much larger numbers of non-believers and a continued erosion of Christian dominance.

Addendum (March 8)

In response to a comment below by Bruce challenging my assertion that there are many states in the U.S. that do not teach evoloution, I reproduce this map that was first published in 2002 in the Scientific American. I do acknowledge, however, that I may be displaying a bias when I attribute the non-teaching to Christian influence on education.