July 03, 2015

Trinity Western's loss a clear case of anti-Christian bigotry

Ezra LevantRebel Commander

The Ontario Superior Court has upheld an anti-Christian ruling against Trinity Western Law School. The Law Society says TWU discriminates against gays and lesbians because they're a Christian college.

The judges had to twist themselves into knots to come up with this decision. It's truly bizarre.

Did you know there are lawyers in Ontario who attended Jewish and Muslim law schools? Why is a Christian law school illegal?

I'm particularly angry about this decision, because only a few generations ago, Canadian law schools had Jewish student quotas. How is this any different?

We've been helping Trinity Western fight their legal battles and we'll continue to do so. Watch to see how you can help, too.

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commented 2015-07-08 19:42:05 -0400
Here is a link to the Federation’s National Requirement:
Also, there is an overlooked, but clear distinction to be made between TWU’s (or any other university’s) Code of conduct/behaviour and students’ holding/expressing their personal beliefs, views and opinions. Actions and words are not equivalent, and TWU’s Code is specifically directed at its students’ actions.
commented 2015-07-08 05:44:25 -0400
I loathe the modern tendency to increasingly abbreviate, short-form and condense written communication to incessant, meaningless “tweets” of 140 characters or less that are barely sentences, let alone phrases, and riddled with atrocious spellings engaged in an entropic, verbal dance with random strings of unfamiliar and mysterious acronyms that I haven’t a snowball’s chance in hell of ever deciphering.
Don’t you?
commented 2015-07-08 05:18:52 -0400
Sorry for the long post. And for the record, I’m not digging at or agreeing with any of you. All the commenters, as far as I can tell, have made at least one smart statement, and without naming names, some more than others.
The post’s not actually THAT long, but there are a lot of quotes. I tried to denote the start and end of each quote with “-——”.
Enjoy :)
commented 2015-07-08 05:07:59 -0400
This discussion has veered way off topic. Have any of the commenters read the Ontario Supreme Court’s decision? I urge you all to do so. It can be found here: http://www.ontariocourts.ca/scj/files/judgments/2015ONSC4250.pdf
In my view, the “learned” justices erred by first confirming the jurisdiction of the Law Society of Upper Canada to even decide the issue. The Law Society Act, RSO 1990, c. L-8 is not that broad. It states:
Education programs and law degrees
Education programs
60. (1) The Society may operate programs of pre-licensing education or training and programs of continuing professional development. 2006, c. 21, Sched. C, s. 85; 2010, c. 16, Sched. 2, s. 4 (3).
Law degrees
(2) The Society may grant degrees in law. R.S.O. 1990, c. L.8, s. 60 (2).
The Law Society of Upper Canada (LSUC) can make bylaws in respect to certain matters. Notably, it can make bylaws “governing the licensing of persons to practise law in Ontario as barristers and solicitors and the licensing of persons to provide legal services in Ontario, including prescribing the qualifications and other requirements for the various classes of licence and governing applications for a licence”. The key word is “persons”.
The LSUC does have a bylaw that states:
1. The applicant must have one of the following:
i. A bachelor of laws or juris doctor degree from a law school in Canada that was, at the time the applicant graduated from the law school, an accredited law school.
ii. A certificate of qualification issued by the National Committee on Accreditation appointed by the Federation of Law Societies of Canada and the Council of Law Deans.
Note that the requirement is for ONE OR THE OTHERNOT BOTH. So even if the LSUC doesn’t recognize TWU as an accredited law school, TWU graduates can still apply for a certificate of qualification from the Federation.
Nowhere in the Ontario Act does the LSUC have any express authority over the accreditation of universities or other law degree-granting institutions. This is entirely within the jurisdiction of provincial post-secondary legislation.
The Federation of Law Societies of Canada’s Common Law Degree Approval Committee is the entity mandated to apply the national requirements to law schools that law societies themselves approved in 2009. The Approval Committee already issued preliminary approval to TWU, with final determination pending graduation of its first class of students.
Throughout this issue, it seems that the power of he LSUC and other provincial law societies to make this decision was simply taken for granted. On reviewing the legislation, however, this ostensible authority appears to be nonexistent, at least in Ontario. The only possible conclusion is that the LSUC overreaches its authority on this matter. It’s amazing to me on reading the decision that TWU’s lawyers failed to challenge the LSUC’s jurisdiction over law schools.
At least in Alberta, saner heads prevailed. The Law Society of Alberta, having approved the national requirements for applicants to provincial law societies, affirmed that the Federal Approval Committee’s determination is final on whether an application meets that requirement. Accordingly, it plans to abide by the Federal Approval Committee’s ultimate determination.
The Ontario Supreme Court’s decision even implicitly acknowledges the limitations on the LSUC’s authority by noting that the LSUC would still be “duty-bound” to consider individual applications by potential, future TWU law school graduates on a case-by-case basis:
126 Another aspect of this question that deserves attention is the fact that there remains the possibility that TWU will proceed with its law school, notwithstanding that it has not been accredited by the respondent. While we were told by counsel for TWU that the law school would likely not proceed in those circumstances, we were also told that there has not been a firm and final decision made, so the possibility of the law school proceeding remains.
127 We mention this possibility only to observe that, if that eventuality should occur, and as we have alluded to, individual graduates of the law school might still seek to be admitted to the Bar of Ontario. Should that situation come to pass, the respondent will be obliged to have a fair and timely process in place to evaluate and rule on those requests for admission. Apart from the conclusion regarding TWU’s application as an institution, the individual graduates have their own rights and a proper consideration of those rights requires that form of accommodation.
128 In making that observation, we recognize that the respondent has never been asked, by either of the applicants or by anyone else, what its position would be if an individual graduate of a TWU law school made his/her own application for admission. We simply raise the issue to make it clear that the interests of individual graduates may arise at some future point and, if they do, the respondent will be duty bound to properly consider their accreditation requests, in order to ensure that the religious rights of any graduate of TWU’s law school are minimally impaired.
The bottom line is that the individual provinces have their own, distinct statutes governing the post-secondary education accreditation, law societies and the legal profession in particular. This court broadly interpreted its own legislation while narrowly interpreting comparable legislation of other provinces like Nova Scotia, which is notable for already having determined a virtually identical case. The ONSC (incredibly) found that the Nova Scotia Barristors Society “did not have an express mandate “to maintain and advance the cause of justice and the rule of law”. The NSBS also did not have the degree of control over legal education requirements for admission to the Bar that the respondent has historically exercised in Ontario.” (paragraph 129). Such a mandate is paramount in all provincial law societies, whether or not it is made express, and to assume otherwise, as the ONSC did, is simply idiotic.
Just when I thought this decision couldn’t get any more illogical, the justices took issue with the Nova Scotia court’s balancing of rights in favour of Christian law students. That justice found that TWU’s law school would add 60 new spots in Canadian common-law law schools, which currently total around 2,700 annually. The justice concluded, quite rationally, that adding barriers to admission to the law society for the handful of those 60 TWU graduates that want to practice in Nova Scotia in no way helped to improve the proportion of LGBT lawyers. “Even if it did, placing a barrier before Evangelical Christians or those willing to associate with them, so that the proportion of LGBT lawyers is increased, would be so inappropriate and wrongheaded that it could not possibly be what was intended.” (quoted at para 133).
Which brings me to the actual objectives of the LSUC in particular and law societies in general. All law societies, regardless of express statements, are duty-bound to maintain and advance the cause of justice and the rule of law, to facilitate access to justice, and to protect the public interest. These objectives are right out of section 4.2 of Ontario’s Law Society Act, and despite being quoted several times, apparently went right over the heads of the ONSC justices.
60 more law school spots is a GOOD thing, especially when some 10,000 applications are received by Canadian law schools each year, and there are only around 2,700 spots available.
Every university has rules and codes of behaviour. Each and every one. In Alberta, The Post-Secondary Learning Act gives the U of A’s General Faculties Council (GFC) responsibility, subject to the authority of the Board of Governors, over “academic affairs” (section 26(1)) and “general supervision of student affairs” (section 31), including authority concerning “student discipline.” Translation: the university is empowered by the provincial legislature to oversee and regulate the conduct of its students.
TWU’s Community Code is no different. In fact, the ONSC even acknowledged that:
15 TWU does not overtly ban or prohibit admission to lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered students or faculty or encourage discrimination of any kind against LGBTQ individuals. TWU says that its community offers an environment in which sexual minorities are supported, loved, and respected. This is required by evangelical beliefs that each human being is created by God and therefore has intrinsic dignity that demands respect. Every evangelical
Christian has an obligation to love their neighbor as themselves. Any form of harassment or prejudicial treatment is contrary to the Community Covenant and to TWU’s evangelical Christian beliefs. Consistent with evangelical Christianity, members of the TWU community are required and accountable to “treat people and ideas with charity and respect” and “demonstrate concern for the well-being of others”. Harassment, shaming, ostracizing, contempt, humiliation, intimidation or insults are intolerable at TWU. Homophobic, disrespectful or discriminatory
remarks or behaviour is strictly unacceptable.
The court then goes on to make numerous assumptions and contrary, stereotypical conclusions about Christianity, despite the evidence. Please, read the decision for yourself before commenting about what it says or what it means.

To wrap up a long post, TWU has been around for decades. In 1984, it was granted full membership in the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC), and in 1985, the British Columbia legislature established TWU as a university. It’s recognized by the U.S. Department of Education, and has received numerous awards and accolades. TWU is consistently ranked among the top two universities in Canada for Educational Experience by the National Survey of Student Engagement (according to Maclean’s magazine), and it received an A+ in quality of education for seven consecutive years in The Globe and Mail’s 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012 Canadian University Reports – the only university to achieve this result.
Finally, TWU is already a proven leader in the fields of education, nursing, psychology and business, and no argument has been advanced suggesting these degree programs are discriminatory or in any way limit the career educational or opportunities of LGBTQ individuals. If TWU graduates can become good teachers and nurses, despite being Christian and having made the conscious choice to attend a private, Christian-based university that requires its students to sign a Christian code of conduct, certainly they can become good lawyers.
commented 2015-07-07 17:19:18 -0400
Terry, you’re dodging again. Every time we have a discussion about something at some point I bring up a question that you just don’t seem to be able to understand, or understand that it is a question that I would like answered. You talk about other aspects, or some other point I made in my ramblings, and just … ignore the question like it was never asked. I can’t help but think that it’s just you not wanting to draw attention to the fact that your opinions on the subject don’t agree with the concept my questions bring up, so you put on the blinders and say “la la la I can’t hear you”, and just carry on like it never happened. That’s the “thick” reference. If you don’t want me to say that, how about trying to actually answer the question? This isn’t you “understanding and responding to the substantive point their opponent is making”, this is you dodging the question, again. The first time I wasn’t sure if you were doing this or just didn’t understand my question, so I rephrased it for you. And…you still haven’t answered it. You’ve decided to take your ball and go home instead. Okay, then. If you do decide to respond, please refer to the last post I made, and make some effort to actually answer my question instead of deflecting it or announcing, again, that you don’t like my “old school sparring”.
commented 2015-07-07 14:45:53 -0400
hahahaha….another kangaroo decision from another kangaroo court….another example showing what a complete toilet canada is and has become…..
commented 2015-07-07 11:54:29 -0400

I guess that’s the point – anything like that is not possible, but conservatives rant and rave about the slippery slope of bestiality or pedophiles becoming legal in North America. Let me assure that no politician will campaign on those issues and such laws would never pass. Stop equating gay people with pedophiles and those that like to fuck animals.
commented 2015-07-07 07:52:15 -0400
Sorry, TC, that was dismissive. Let me rephrase. Real discussion requires that both parties are trying, in good faith, to understand and respond to the substantive point their opponent is making. At this point, you’re not. I occasionally enjoy Usenet-style, old school sparring, but not in this thread.
commented 2015-07-07 07:45:29 -0400
" Or were you being deliberately thick there, kind of hard to tell."
Time for you to take a break, I think.
commented 2015-07-06 23:28:39 -0400
Terry, you must have missed the part where I said that the various law societies have the ability to do the same thing to any grad from any school, regardless of the location. Or were you being deliberately thick there, kind of hard to tell. To explain it further, just for you: why doesn’t the law society of Ontario tell grads of law schools in the middle east that have much more serious rules regarding homosexuality than the simple abstinence rule at TW that they are also not able to practice law in Ontario, for the same reasons they give for not allowing TW grads to practice law in Ontario? They have that ability, and now, thanks to the court, they also have the mandate. By not doing this it looks a lot like it’s less a gay rights thing as much as it’s an anti-Christian thing or even an anti-Canadian law school thing. If gay rights do trump Christian rights, then why aren’t the law societies going after grads of any school, anywhere that have some kind of double standard for gays? Sorry, I’m running out of obvious ways to describe it here, hope that’s detailed enough for you to understand it.
commented 2015-07-06 20:10:01 -0400
I look at the decision of the Ontario Superior Court against Trinity Western Law School as criminalizing Christianity. I’m tired of Christians being characterized as being hateful, “bigots” or “homophobic” just for disagreeing with gay “marriage”. It has to do with Natural Law and it is hypocritical and disingenuous for the Law Society to pretend otherwise. The decision is unfair, ill conceived and should be against the human rights of ALL individuals. They could have avoided offending all concerned simply by having gay couples be given equal benefits as are afforded common law couples but No, all lawyers from Trinity Western must be punished, so sayeth they! In my opinion the powers that be in the Ontario Superior Court should be disbarred for making such an illogical, indecent and outrageous decision which may be beyond their authority to do so.
commented 2015-07-06 16:30:24 -0400
Jimmy says, "Maybe Liberals will pass a law making it legal to burn Christians – you know, like they did in the past. "

I don’t think the Liberals did that in the past, but I assume that it is your grammar that is bad here and you did not mean to imply that Liberals burned Christians in the past. But you know, I guess anything is possible, but they would have to burn their own as there are a lot of Liberals that are Christians.
commented 2015-07-06 15:12:27 -0400
“So, I could have a law degree from Karachi, but the law society has no problem with that. But Trinity Western, well, damn, how dare those dirty Christians tell their students who they can have orgasms with?”
Huh. I wasn’t aware that universities in Karachi had to comply with our Charter of Rights. However, Token – Canadian institutions do. It’s pretty simple.
commented 2015-07-06 15:01:58 -0400
Howdy again, Terry Rudden, spreading it around I see. Here’s your take on Ezra’s rant: “Any law school in Canada that” … and so on. Perhaps you don’t realize that the law societies have the same kind of power over all practicing lawyers in a given province. Even those who were educated in other countries. Including those universities Ezra talks about in Muslim countries, where gay sex isn’t only banned, it earns you a death sentence. Those societies could place exactly the same restrictions on grads from those schools, but they don’t. So, I could have a law degree from Karachi, but the law society has no problem with that. But Trinity Western, well, damn, how dare those dirty Christians tell their students who they can have orgasms with? There’s one big difference right there. Muslim universities have actual victims of their policies, TW doesn’t.
It doesn’t matter where you run to make your phony arguments Terry, the questions still remain, and remain unanswered. Name the victim. Identify the source of the right of the societies and yourself to pass such judgement on those engaging in commerce that doesn’t affect you in any way. And now, thanks to your nemesis Ezra, justify the dichotomy between the treatment given to a future graduates of a domestic Christian school and those from a blatantly and openly homophobic foreign school. If you are actually going to answer these questions, please don’t provide your usual boilerplate “gay rights are more important than religious rights” copied squawk from the Ontario appeals court. Name the victim Terry. Or just shut up. No victim = no argument.
commented 2015-07-06 13:52:17 -0400

Lots of crazy shit was done in past history when we didn’t know any better. That has no bearing on what happens today. Maybe Liberals will pass a law making it legal to burn Christians – you know, like they did in the past.
commented 2015-07-06 08:40:53 -0400
Jimmy asked, “Is this really the future you see and the laws that will be passed?”

No, Jimmy I don’t. I was just pointing out that your usual response to someone’s post is to insult and denigrate them rather than just simply addressing their comment.

However, now that you ask, legalized bestiality has been done before in other countries, so the possibility of it being legalized here in this country is not an impossibility.

In addition, pedophilia has been suggested in some academic circles as a valid sexual preference, so the issue of its legalization is not that far off the mark since it is the academic community that often paves the way for the direction a society might take.

But as for legalizing gay marriage as a precipitous action to all this, certainly not directly I doubt it, but could be symptomatic of the possible direction in which a pattern of societal behaviour becomes normalized to include the depravities mentioned above.
commented 2015-07-05 20:58:15 -0400

I don’t know what you do for a living – but I hear the word fuck 50 times before lunch in the industry that I work in. It’s just common place. Part of the vernacular. Part of the culture.

Yes I talk to people like that – as they talk that way back to me. I am not in an interview here or trying to impress people – I am shooting the shit with people on a comments page.

Are you offended when comedians use curse words? Do R rated movies offend you or do you just not watch them?
commented 2015-07-05 20:48:24 -0400

Ron’s point was moronic – there is no point to counter. Yes – gay marriage is going to bring forth the legalization of bestiality in Canada. That is certainly a rational point. Do you people actually believe this shit – that people will be married to animals and it will be totally normal that after a hard day at work, people are going home to fuck their dog/cow/sheep, etc.

Is this really the future you see and the laws that will be passed?
commented 2015-07-05 20:23:52 -0400
JIMMY, I guess according to your worldview it’s okay to be offensive. Because it’s 2015? Do you talk to people you like and people you want to impress in that way. Would you speak like that for an interview for an important job? Do you speak or did you speak to your parents in that way?
In any event, you are evading the question I had asked. Again, with your worldview (humanist religion) would it be wrong for an adult to have sex with a child or an animal?
commented 2015-07-05 20:20:15 -0400
Typical Jimmy, Ron Voss tries to make a point and Jimmy replies with insulting Ron rather than countering Ron’s point. Typical. You are such a towering intellect, Jimmy!
commented 2015-07-05 19:45:53 -0400

You do realize it’s 2015 right? And why are you so easily offended? You do know that what you a foul mouth is just normal dialogue today. Did you come here in a time machine?
commented 2015-07-05 16:39:42 -0400
JIMMY, you mention common sense which isn’t too common with you and your foul mouth. Again, according to your worldview and religion of humanism, why not? We get an answer from Princeton’s bioethicist Peter Singer. Singer with his evolutionary humanist worldview, presumably your ‘scientific’ view as well JIMMY, has defended bestiality concluding that the proscription against sex with animals was merely a vestigial “taboo” from a more sexually repressed era. After all according to evolution, says Singer, “We are great apes. This does not make sex across the species barrier barrier normal, or natural, but it does imply that it ceases to be an offence to our status and dignity as human beings.”
commented 2015-07-05 09:52:54 -0400
“.in your view would a client seeking legal services regarding a divorce procedure be committing something illegal, immoral, unethical or unhealthy…by selectively seeking council who’s views on the subject of marriage were in concert with and harmonious with those of the prospective client? "
Please continue, with an explanation of how this question relates to Trinity’s proposed discrimination.
commented 2015-07-05 06:04:40 -0400
To be clear, this link and the one immediately below works.


Only the first link I posted in this thread about Ontario PC leader, Patrick Brown at the 2015 Toronto Pride march didn’t work.

This one also works. Check it out: http://www.lgbtory.ca

Queers aren’t sorry they are Tory; they too are the Conservative story!!

There is nothing, absolutely nothing, mutually exclusive about Christianity and queers. God loves all sinners. Get over the visceral hatred of queers. It is a big huge blind spot.
commented 2015-07-05 05:59:29 -0400
The link below doesn’t work but never mind. Here is the Toronto Sun story about Ontario PC leader, Patrick Brown, at the 2015 Pride parade – with the same photo -


Again, that is Lisa MacLeod on his left.

Check out the site they are advertising: http://www.lgbtory.ca

All sorts of very successful Conservatives are queer. Don’t shoot yourselves in the political foot by alienating their vote with bigotry and ushering in an NDP government.
commented 2015-07-05 01:35:18 -0400

By your way of thinking – black people should still be slaves and women shouldn’t have the right to vote, because that’s how things were at one time. Why can’t you view gay marriage as just the next human rights issue in history. In the future, people will talk about changes for black people, women’s rights and gay rights. I just don’t see any difference. It’s just another landmark change in history.

Nobody will give a shit a few years from now when it just becomes the norm and conservative realize that it’s a war that they lost and move on to something else.

Considering the divorce rate is near 50%. Straight people have done more damage to “marriage” than gay marriage ever could.
commented 2015-07-05 01:24:16 -0400

Yes, because that’s gonna go through. I never said people won’t bring up crazy shit that they want to do – but really, do you actually think adults are going to legally be able to fuck children and animals. Gay marriage isn’t remotely the same as this.

Cool it with the hyperbole and the bat shit crazy slippery slope. Try some common sense. It was common sense and understandable to allow gay people to marry. The fear mongering you are talking about isn’t.
commented 2015-07-05 01:19:13 -0400

Don’t worry – I will get to you. I have many ongoing discussions and fans.