May 22, 2015

Richmond Hill banned O Canada. We're fighting back.

Rebel Staff

On May 11th, Richmond Hill’s town council voted 5 to 4 against singing "O Canada" to start council meetings. You won't believe some of the weird excuses they've given. 

Ezra Levant thinks this decision is crazy.

If you agree, there's something you can do:

SIGN THE PETITION to reverse this ridiculous decision at

PLUS: PLEASE DONATE to help us crowdfund an independent, professional poll that will let the community express its views on this issue.

Stay tuned to The Rebel as we follow this story!


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commented 2015-05-26 14:26:32 -0400
It would be interesting to know who comprises the 34.7% that are happy with the council’s decision.
commented 2015-05-26 07:12:50 -0400
James, I assume your assertion about the “stupid laws made on a whim, by the Supreme Court”, is based on your legal analysis of the law and precedents that led to the court’s decision. Can you share for us your thoughts on where the court went legally wrong?
commented 2015-05-25 21:25:59 -0400
This is the unintended consequence of stupid laws made on a whim, by the Supreme Court. I would like to see this taken to court, taken all the way back to SCOC, stupid laws, stupid outcomes.
commented 2015-05-25 16:17:21 -0400
I agree.
commented 2015-05-25 15:33:58 -0400
Actually, I may not like the vote, but they can vote however they want. I think this whole thing is a tempest in a teacup. However, if I were a member of a Town or City Council, and I wanted to say a prayer or sing ‘O Canada’ before a Council meeting, I’d say a prayer or sing ‘O Canada’ before a Council meeting. I wouldn’t care what the SCOC or the Mayor had to say. Nobody’s going to deprive me of my freedom of conscience or religion, or thought, belief, opinion and expression guaranteed under the Charter. That’s why I personally could never run for political office, for ANY Party. I could never tow ANY party line, for ANY Political Party. I have a real problem with people telling me what to do, just as I have a problem telling others what to do. I don’t have a problem telling them what I think of their decisions, mind you, just telling them what to do.
commented 2015-05-25 14:58:09 -0400
Good point. So – as an articulate and thoughtful contributor to this site, what DO you think of a campaign to overturn a community council’s vote? My own take is that communities should govern themselves within the limits of their authority (which this decision appears to be), and the electorate will decide at the ballot box next time round. What do you think?
commented 2015-05-25 14:46:44 -0400
Sorry, Terry. I don’t think you can point to any of my posts here that support that accusation. I think, if you bothered to read them, you’dl find they are all conversations with other bloggers that are actually off topic.
commented 2015-05-25 14:29:05 -0400
Nor on democratic governance by council, I see? :)
commented 2015-05-25 14:26:34 -0400
No, Terry. Not real big on gardening.
commented 2015-05-25 14:01:44 -0400
Good, Maurice, good. How you doin’? Get the tomatoes in okay, didja?
commented 2015-05-25 13:58:13 -0400
Yup, Terry, that about sums it up. How’r doin’ today? Good to see ya’.
commented 2015-05-25 11:06:10 -0400
So for clarity’s sake – a group of ideologues from outside Richmond Hill is petitioning to rescind a decision made by the democratically elected government of the community (because we don’t like their decision), as a way to display your commitment to democracy?
Yes, that makes sense.
commented 2015-05-25 08:37:17 -0400
They banning O Canada and the Lords prayers, symbols of our identity but allowing the hijab and burka, symbols of Muslim identity. What next? Banning democracy, the foundation of western society and allowing Sharia?
commented 2015-05-24 17:20:14 -0400
The members of the council who voted against the singing of O Canada should renounce their seats in a government within the country that stands under that anthem. Further, these people should renounce their Canadian Citizenship and leave Canada for a nation that would suit their hedonistic values!
commented 2015-05-24 10:56:04 -0400
Maurice thanks for the research. I believe you have found the answer – HEDONISM. I believe it is the new religion of many of the PROGRESSIVES. I will get back to Bill Clinton for a moment. In each chapter in his book he mentions God and even quotes a verse. However in each chapter he talks about all the parties and holidays he deserves to go to or takes and does the opposite to the verse he quotes. Hedonism is very religious as when it is played out there is a new god and that is the INDIVIDUAL. So it is logical then that God must go from the anthem or the prayer as there is a new god that must be worshipped -SELF.
commented 2015-05-24 03:49:52 -0400
Ron Zager, I really hadn’t given the concept of “progressivism” much thought. I suppose that’s because I’ve always associated it with Atheistic Socialist Marxism and Elitist Liberal Entitlement, and I’ve never wanted to spend too much time dwelling on either of those themes. But if we’re going to toss terms around, I suppose we should really do the leg work and delve into their meaning, both their traditional and contempoary meaning. Thanks for the chalenge, Ron.

I guess I should start with the traditional meaning: If I can plagiarize Wikipedea, progressivism is a broad philosophy based on the Idea of Progress, which asserts that advancement in science, technology, economic development, and social organization are vital to improve the human condition. Sociologist Robert Nisbet defines five “crucial premises” of the Idea of Progress as being: 1) Value of the past, 2) Nobility of Western civilization, 3) Worth of economic and technological growth, 4) Faith in reason and scientific and scholarly knowledge obtained through reason, and 5) Intrinsic importance and worth of life on earth. You will note that this definition is very atheistic in nature, but apart from that It’s aspirations are quite noble.

Now let’s examine the contemporary definition of progressivism. I’m sure that the Atheistic Socialist Marxists and the Elitist Entitled Liberals would claim that they adhere to the traditional meaning, but we can examine the five “crucial premises” one by one and see how contemporary progressivism stacks up: 1) Value of the past…. No, definitely not. Any traditional way of thinking, such as traditional family values, Judeo-Christian ethics, and belief in absolutes, such as objective truth are all passé, in favor of relativism; you do your thing and I’ll do mine. Actually, I think it’s an excuse to embrace hedonism. Any and all philosophies and world views are acceptable except the Judeo-Christian world view on which this nation was founded and became great. 2) Nobility of Western civilization…. Most definitely not! In their mind, Western civilization is the problem, not the solution. They bask in self guilt and the racism of lowered expectations. Colonialism ruined the simple noble savage. They sit in their Ivory towers, sipping their Chablis, congratulating themselves on how self-loathing they are, and how enlightened they’ve become, which in fact is just a reverse way of showing their arrogance and pride. 3) Worth of economic and technological growth…. Definitely not, again. Green Peace, Sierra Club, David Suzuki, Kathleen Wynne, Al Gore, Global Warming, etc., etc., etc. I could go on and on, but I don’t think I need to. All of these organizations and people are anti-economic growth, and all are embraced by contemporary progressives. 4) Faith in reason and scientific and scholarly knowledge obtained through reason…. I have to say no again. Universities and most, if not all Institutions of Higher Learning have ceased being safe places for the free exchange of ideas long ago. They’ve become bastions of indoctrination. That indoctrination comes at the hands Atheist Marxist Professors who instill in the minds of their students a philosophy of entitlement, a focus on their “rights” with no reference to “responsibilities”. There is no such thing as a right without a corresponding responsibility. It just logically follows that this indoctrination will eventually lead to the complete collapse of western civilization. If everyone’s entitled, who’s left to be responsible to pay for the entitlement? 5) Intrinsic importance and worth of life on earth…. Once again, no! There is no intrinsic value to human life as long as there is unlimited abortion, and the “progressives” pushing for Euthanasia and Doctor assisted Suicide.

So, Ron, from my perspective I would say there’s one Hell of a big difference between the traditional meaning of progressivism and the contemporary meaning, but I had to go back to the traditional meaning before figuring that out. You made me do a lot of work. I’m retired. I should be relaxing. And, Peter Netterville, I too appreciate all who post here, even the contrary ones. I always learn something, and I appreciate that…. like Ron, forcing me to do research.
commented 2015-05-24 01:17:44 -0400
Peter you probably know this comment President Reagan made and it fits in with what you are saying. He said there is no left or right wing. Instead there are those who want to take the country down and those who want to bring the country up.
commented 2015-05-23 21:55:36 -0400
When I read the comments posted on theRebel.Media and then I read the comments on the CBC, I see:

That here the comments are all part of a conversation that really can be quite enlightening and seem to carry on from one article to another. People tend to make educated comments on sometimes very unique perspectives, . . . and debate (usually without the insults and swears). Many even make reference to other articles where comments were made and it seems people here know the referenced comment. This implies a familiarity with the entire site.

Then I look at the CBC comments and I see a few intelligent comments but by-and-large the comments are insults, complaints, and Harper hate, mostly with bad spelling and grammar. And almost all of them are very left-wing. The ones that are right-wing typically are so very bland and boring that they are not really right-wing at all, probably because of the censorship.

Why do I post this? Well, not too sure other than a compliment to all that post here, even a compliment to the obvious left-wing commentors that post here. I appreciate the comments here because real conversation and debate appears to be fostered here.
commented 2015-05-23 21:34:02 -0400
Thanks Maurice for your comments on TOLERANCE. I like your reference to William E Buckley the founder of National Review. I wouldn’t mind hearing thoughts on the real meaning of PROGRESSIVE. I am just reading Bill Clinton’s memoirs and to him everything good is PROGRESSIVE.
commented 2015-05-23 18:30:06 -0400
Ron Zager, “Perhaps are most important value is TOLERANCE. We don’t want to offend anyone”. I think the biggest problem with the current culture is that we’ve forgotten what that word “tolerance” really means. This multi-cultural society we live in has come to interpret the word “tolerance” as meaning never saying that someone else’s views are wrong…. as long as those views are considered “progressive”. However, that entire politically correct notion of tolerance is wrong. The very concept of the word “tolerance” contains within it the notion of disagreement. Although I was never a big fan of Voltaire, when he said “I may not agree with what you say but I will defend to the death your right to say it”, he nailed it! That is precisely the definition of tolerance. Where there is no disagreement, tolerance is irrelevant and therefore nonexistent. Believing and stating that another person’s beliefs are false is not intolerant. In fact disagreement is absolutely essential for an atmosphere of tolerance to exist. Without it tolerance is a non-issue. True tolerance allows for differing views to have equal right to exist without fear of condemnation, or the threat of violence. Therefore, one can be truly tolerant without accepting another person’s beliefs as being true.

In reaction to the post-war McCarthyism of the early 1950’s, the intolerance pendulum has swung way too far in the other direction. To quote the late William F. Buckley Jr; “Liberals claim to want to give a hearing to other views, but then are shocked and offended to discover that there are other views”. There are indeed other views, and whether those views come from the right or the left of the political spectrum is totally irrelevant to whether or not they’re objectively true. Objective truth must always take precedence over tolerance. There is nothing intolerant about telling the truth. No one should ever be forced to suppress what they believe to be objective truth simply because it may offend someone else or go against that person’s religious beliefs, or lack thereof. And, by the way, being offended is a personal choice. There is no way I can offend anyone if they refuse to take offence. Also, I might add, if I were a member of a Town or City Council, and I wanted to say a prayer or sing ‘O Canada’ before a Council meeting, I’d say a prayer or sing ‘O Canada’ before a Council meeting. I wouldn’t care what the SCOC or the Mayor had to say. Nobody’s going to deprive me of my freedom of conscience or religion, or thought, belief, opinion and expression guaranteed under the Charter. I’d be willing to go to jail to defend that.
commented 2015-05-23 15:42:30 -0400
The City Council of Richmond Hill are, in my opinion, nothing more than a bunch of Spineless Gutless Weasels. This is a Christian Country, if Immigrants coming here do not like this, Eff Off. City Council is all afraid that the Muzzly Wuzzly’s is going to chop of their heads. In this case I would applaud them. The Councilors are nothing more than a waste of space.
commented 2015-05-23 15:18:46 -0400
It has just occurred to me that perhaps it is acceptable to sing the word God as in “God keep our land . . .” In that case just sing the Lord’s Prayer—or use a recording. Problem solved! Sing both, or use recordings of both. I would suggest that perhaps the endorphins would flow and the meeting continue apace. (correction in my previous post: minutiae, which I think is the correct plural.)
commented 2015-05-23 07:43:36 -0400
If they truly believe that singing O’Canada is against our charter, then they can do us all a favour and leave this country! But for sitting politicians being paid by the taxpayers of Canada, they insult the very people they pretend to govern over! I demand they reinstate this anthem and if they don’t like it they can leave the city of Richmond Hill and this fine country! Having them as our political masters is an insult to all Canadians!!!!!!!
commented 2015-05-23 07:37:06 -0400
It angers me to think our fathers and grandfathers fought and died to protect our right to believe or not believe what we choose only to see our politicians unconditionally surrender because of the threat of a possible lawsuit because some person or minority group might be offended if they encounter someone who vocally disagrees with their opinion. I also disturbs me deeply knowing that what the enemy could not accomplish from the outside we have lost because our education system has been subverted from within ensuring future judges will have the slant our comrades driving the universities want them to have. It is noteworthy to remember that nations who have tried to wipe God from their conscience have then gone on to perpetrate some of the worst genocides upon their own populace.
commented 2015-05-23 07:28:08 -0400
Mr Levant, the lawyer’s advice to NOT sing O Canada because of the phrase “God keep our land” is logical. The Supreme Court clomping into long-established TRADITIONS in this country have started this interpretation of the use of the word “GOD” in public. Let the intrusive group of nine tell us how illogical they have been. Do not berate a Council for attempting to follow the dictates of the Court. I recall when the phrase “God keep our land” was introduced decades ago to replace yet another repetition of “O Canada.” Then our Government of the day made that the official phrase. If my mind wanders during the singing, I often return to the earlier version of repeating the “O Canada, O Canada,” learned as a child eons ago. The Supreme Court has entered into a phase of assaulting our traditions. Ask them what they have in mind for Canadians. And stop denigrating council members. They are not actors reading from scripts. If someone is bothered by the word God being uttered, let them close their ears as they have no doubt done in many classrooms while not hearing the many teachers they have shut out. Let them think of DNA that miracle molecule of life. Let them think of carbon, that astounding atom that makes all life on this earth possible. If they choose not to think of a creator for that astonishing fact of life, fine; think of carbon dioxide, that harmless molecule taken by green plants to release oxygen for humans and all other oxygen users. Let them feel just a bit humble for such “accidents” of evolution. End of my rant; I will not sign your petition. Send one to the Court who are dabbling in the traditional minutia of our lives.
commented 2015-05-22 23:36:31 -0400
We’re going to need a police state to even begin to enforce these so-called laws. Until then, I’ll think what I think, and believe what I believe, regardless of what the Supreme Court tells me. The SCoC could rule that the moon’s gravity keeps the earth in orbit. Doesn’t make it true, and doesn’t mean I’ll believe them. They cannot outlaw individuality. Even with social pressure, they cannot govern what goes on between my ears!
commented 2015-05-22 23:28:04 -0400
Don’t these town councilors have enough town issues to deal with? Wasting their time on silly frivolous bs.
commented 2015-05-22 23:11:01 -0400
Peter you are absolutely correct, our whole western democracies are predicated on the Judaeo/Christian moral compass which enables us to enjoy freedom without being a totalitarian police state – if the Judaeo/Christian moral compass is ripped out by the un-elected activist courts our democratic systems fall apart.
commented 2015-05-22 20:39:34 -0400
Reminds me of Nero fiddling while Rome burned.