mathewpower.net

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Stop Overreacting Over Bill C-309

In my last post, I praised the reaction to bill C-30. It was certainly a wonderful example of democracy working as intended. I of course also called for a similar reaction to bill C-11 and other copyright legislation that will be rather likely to come our way in the near future. However, this is not the reaction we need for every little thing that parliament does.

In this case I’m referring to bill C-309. I’ve seen plenty of talk about it on the web. People are claiming that it makes protesting with a mask on illegal. This is simply not the case. Looking at the bill, it does exactly what Conservative MP Blake Richards says it does. Importantly, it does not make it illegal to wear a mask while protesting. It simply makes it illegal to do so while participating in a riot or unlawful assembly. You can still wear a mask if your protest is peaceful and lawful. Additionally, it makes exemptions for religious and medical concerns.

I do think this bill is largely unnecessary, as participating in riots/unlawful assemblies is already illegal, however, I don’t think this bill warrants the public response it’s been getting, especially considering that the bill does not do what people are claiming.

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