Liberties

Russell, John (ed.)
Publisher:  New Star Books, Vancouver, Canada
Year Published:  1989  
Pages:  246pp   Price:  $14.95   ISBN:  ISBN 0-819573-91-6
Library of Congress Number:  JC599.C22B754 1989   Dewey:  323.4060711
Resource Type:  Book
Cx Number:  CX4128

Aside from the subject of civil liberties itself, the book addresses the civil libertarian approach to such issues as censorship and freedom of speech, victimless crimes, and police powers. Specific articles target AIDS testing, legal aid, drug use, and psychological testing by employers.

Abstract:  Liberties is offered up to the Canadian public in the hope that its collection of 17 articles, briefs, essays, and other pieces will help promote and safeguard our civil liberties.

Aside from the subject of civil liberties itself, the book addresses the civil libertarian approach to such issues as censorship and freedom of speech, victimless crimes, and police powers. Specific articles target AIDS testing, legal aid, drug use, and psychological testing by employers. The editor has deliberately selected contributions from a wide range of media "in an effort to indicate the ways in which these ideas enter public discussion and inform our thinking and actions."

One of the articles explores the dilemma of pornography: "if, as the feminists argued, pornography was at once the symptom of inequality and actually productive of oppression, then the classical civil libertarian arguments against censorship were no longer relevant." The debate over the nature of pornography heated up in the seventies, as did "the time of sorrow for civil libertarians", whose ranks split over the issue. The anti-censorship position was buttressed by sociologist Thelma McCormack, whose research disputed the relationship between violence and pornography. Since then, the contributor writes, women artists, writers, and film-makers are having to lean "into a relentlessly resistive set of cultural and political forces" in order to discover what women want. The article ends with the thought that "we cannot afford not to let one another at least imagine what we want. Because imagining what we want is the way in which human beings both discover and decide what is wanted. And it we aren't free to give expression to our figuring, we will neither know what to hope for nor what to give."

[Abstract by Ulli Diemer]



Table of Contents

Editor's Introduction

The B.C. Civil Liberties Association, by Robert Rowan

I. Freedom of Expression

The Bessie Smith Factor, by John Dixon

The Porn Wars, by John Dixon

Response to the Fraser Committee Recommendations on Pornography, by Alister Brown

The Keegstra Case: Freedom of Speech and the Prosecution of Hateful Ideas, by John Dixon

Dissent and National Security: Testimony to the Federal Justice and Legal Affairs Committee on Proposals to Establish the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, by David Copp and John Russell

Hair and the City Licence Inspector, by Reg Robson

II. Due Process

Public Interest Intervention Before the Courts, by Philip Bryden

Report on Criminal Legal Aid, by T. G. Ison

Policing the Police, by John Russell

Capital Punishment, by Alister Browne

III. Discrimination

Submission to the Special Committee on the Participation of Visible Minorities in Canadian Society, by Lynda Hird

AIDS: The Practical Case Against Mandatory Testing,, by Stan Persky

AIDS and Civil Liberties, by Philip Bryden

IV. Administrative Decision-Making

Psychological Testing in the Workforce, by Dale Beyerstein

Comments on the Treatment and Management of Methadone Patients in Private Care in B.C.: A Response to the Join Advisory Committee on the Treatment Uses of Methadone, by John Russell

V. Private Offences

Prostitution, Solicitation, Bawdy Houses and Related Matters, by David Copp

Brief to the Le Dain Commission of Inquiry Into the Non-Medical Use of Drugs, by Don Brown


Subject Headings