...The HRT has at best dubious jurisdictional authority over this case. The Supreme Court of BC has ordered them to review their jurisdiction, but they decided to deal with that later. Raising the question, why bother going through a trial if you don’t know if your verdict will have any legal standing?I'm told Iranians don't much care for it. Why should we Canadians be any different? The whole situation is extremely ironic (also oxymoronic--a tragic comedy), however, given that Canada is famous for its comedians. Now, instead of being heralded for giving the world John Candy and Mike Meyers, we're becoming known as a cheerless land that can neither take nor make a joke.
The answer is that the trial itself is the punishment. It doesn’t really matter if Mr. Earle is fined or not, though I hope he isn’t. He has already had to pay plenty of legal fees and other costs to do with this case. He has already suffered.
Consider the position of a stand up comic who wants to make a lesbian joke. They may think that they could get away with it, but they would be worried that they will have to suffer the same process as Mr. Earle. Perhaps some of them will decide it isn’t worth it and make some other joke. We are now in a situation where comics are censoring themselves because they fear legal action.
Now ask yourself, do you want to live in a society where a comic can’t make a joke?...
Sunday, April 4, 2010
No More Funny Business
The Shotgun Blog's Hugh MacIntyre notes that the outcome of the comedy club/heckling lesbian case is largely irrelevant since (as critics have pointed out) the process is the punishment: