In late March, Canada’s federal government decisively passed a controversial Liberal-backed motion “condemning Islamophobia and all forms of systemic racism and religious discrimination.” This motion, coined M-103, purports to “quell the increasing climate of hate and fear” in the country, yet neglects to define the broad terminology behind this supposed hatred. Nonetheless, the House of Commons approved M-103 by a staggering 201 votes against an opposition’s measly 91.
The motion was introduced in the wake of the Quebec mosque attack, which resulted in the deaths of six Muslims by a Dylann Roof-styled gunman. While the brazen event was horrific in itself and the alleged shooter has been duly brought to justice, Justin Trudeau and his sitting Liberals refused to let this crisis go to waste.
The feminist Prime Minister assured the citizenry to “make no mistake, this was an act of terror”, even though no charges of terrorism were laid against the assailant. Soon after, M-103, which had been tabled by Liberal MP Iqra Khalid last fall, entered the fold of parliamentary debate. Backing the motion was a petition of seventy thousand signatures postulating that “extremist individuals do not represent the religion of Islam”.
On the glossiest of surfaces and without a moment of faint scrutiny, the motion seems perfectly reasonable. A horrible attack occurred against a religious group, so the government wants to investigate the potential rise in hate crimes against that group to determine if there is a pattern of bigotry against that group to, finally, promote the rights of said group.
But that is where any justification for this motion ends. Digging deeper, you immediately detect careless flaws in the motion, such as: What does it define as “Islamophobia” and how do you determine “all forms” of it and systemic racism without a comprehensive definition? Why prioritize the term “Islamophobia” and not other types of “religious discrimination”, especially when, as of 2016, most hate crimes in Canada are anti-Semitic in nature?
Why compel a committee to “contextualize hate crime reports” when the motion is already convinced of “an increasing climate of hate and fear” in the country? If hate crimes are on the rise (and without assuming many of them are hoaxes), what does the motion intend to solve when the Criminal Code already legislates against “public incitement of hatred” and the Canadian Human Rights Act prohibits such discrimination?
The reason: there is none. Like with Bill C-16 (the gender pronouns piece of legislation), M-103 uses vaguely defined verbiage that gets votes in parliament by seeming to uphold a protected group’s civil rights, while embellishing their victimhood in the whole of Canadian society. While not a proposed law, M-103 is undoubtedly an attempt to legitimize “Islamophobia” through gathering government-backed data on hate crimes in an effort to influence future public policies.
Beyond the politics, M-103 is also an apparent effort to mainstream “Islamophobia” into the culture—to not only legitimize the term for political impetus but for censuring public and private conversations on the hot and deeply relevant topic of Islamic extremism.
The nebulousness of “Islamophobia” purposely makes it a catch-all term for ideologues to apply impulsively as a silencing tactic against both informed and uninformed dissent. As University of Toronto Professor Jordan B. Peterson observed, “manipulation is built into its structure” (or lack of structure, really). “Islamophobia” is only “defined” according to its utility, which is to say its meaning is produced from the intent of its usage. It means whatever its spokesperson says it means.
We know this to be true based on the phrase’s arbitrary etymology: Islam is a religious doctrine; whereas, phobia is an actual anxiety disorder based on an irrational fear of something. For the two to correlate, all fear of Islam would have to be irrational and all of one’s criticisms of Islam would have to be motivated by that type of fear. Ultimately, “Islamophobia” is a postmodern, Orwellian definition that scrambles and distorts proper language use for political gain, which explains why the term collapses under basic rational examination.
Unlike agoraphobia or social phobias, “Islamophobia” has no prescribed treatment or method of self-help offered at diagnoses. According to M-103, the solution should be complete condemnation of the ailment; in Islamic theocracies like Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and Iran, “Islamophobia” comes in the form of blasphemy laws, where criticism of Islam or other recognized religions of the state result in penalties ranging from monetary fines to death.
Left-leaning publications Huff Post and Vice predictably dismissed this resemblance to theocratic blasphemy laws as a right-wing “attack” and “conspiracy theory” on the motion, emphasizing that M-103 is not a bill and bears no relationship to blasphemy laws or any form of Sharia.
However, none of these outlets mentioned that Canada already has a blasphemy law, one derived from English common law. Section 296 of the Criminal Code defines a “blasphemous libel” as “an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years”. This law includes a provision excluding published opinions on a religion that are “used in good faith and conveyed in decent language”.
But “libel” is not actionable toward an accused’s temperament of speech, but toward a false claim. Since Section 296 fails to define “blasphemous libel”, is it then legal to make a false claim about a religion calmly, but illegal to make a truthful claim angrily? Is it even possible to lie about someone or something’s character in good faith?
The danger here is that M-103 is a critically vague motion on religious discrimination that alludes to an equally vague blasphemy law that is currently a part of Canada’s legal code. Sure, few Canadians like M-103, but how far will their voices be heard?
With political correctness infesting the Canadian legislature, Islam creeping into its public schools, and the contemporary Islamification of Canada’s European counterparts, what is to say—with enough cultural accommodation and political capitulation—a blasphemy law targeting “Islamophobia” could come to pass, or an amendment to Section 296 that includes “Islamophobia” as grounds for prosecution.
Canadians must heed the late Christopher Hitchens warning on Islamification: “resist it while you can”. The now-passed motion of M-103 represents yet another example of the political correctness and national cuckoldry capturing the once-Great White North.
Read More: Islamophobia Is Perfectly Natural