I'm been unforgivably lax in my schadenfreude. I've taken far too long to note the public humiliation of the loathsome Richard Warman, Canada's censorious serial litigant and crusader against incorrect speech, a man whose contemptible excesses we have covered before.
Warman's weapons and sources of income are Canada's Human Rights Commission and its Human Rights Tribunals, upjumped bureaucratic star chambers with the power to punish various species of bigoted and moronic speech if it offends anyone — even if Warman is the only one to read and be offended by it. But now Canada's professionally censorious human rights apparatus — already under heavy fire from left and right — has turned on its one-time favorite son. Ezra Levant, a long-time foe and critic of Warman, notes that the Human Rights Tribunal has sharply and publicly criticized Warman. Why? Because Warman likes to hang out on racist internet sites under an alias and post racial invective, hoping to draw out similar invective from others so that he can haul them before the Tribuna, to his profitl. Warman, in other words, is a professional race-baiter.
The decision came in the matter of the Northern Alliance and Jason Ouwendyk. Ouwendyk is a racist twit who wrote sub-literate screeds against various ethnic and religious groups and posts them on internet sites for like-minded troglodytes to read. Ouwendyk is ultimately pathetic, a living (sort of) rebuke against the notion of white adequacy, let alone white supremacy. But no bigoted moron on the internet is so pathetic that Richard Warman will not try to make a buck and some headline ink off of him. Warman filed complaints against Ouwendyk and his Northern Alliance, citing racist drivel they had posted between 2002 and 2005. When the matter reached the Human Rights Tribunal, the Human Rights Commission bailed — ostensibly because Ouwndyk's words could no longer be found on the internet, but possibly because they smelled what was coming. Warman insisted on proceeding alone.
In typical fashion, the Tribunal found that Ouwendyk had violated Section 13 of Canada's Human Rights Act by saying things that exposed identifiable groups to hatred. In typical fashion, there was no analysis of whether the expressions threatened imminent lawlessness or physical harm to anyone. The Tribunal opined that hate rhetoric threatens emotional harm to its targets, but there was no analysis of whether any of those targets were ever exposed to the writings. That doesn't enter into the analysis, you see. Being Canadian means always having to say you are sorry.
Warman demanded three remedies: a permanent injunction against the defendants prohibiting them from exposing identifiable groups to hatred, a penalty, and compensation — from which Warman would profit. The Tribunal, in typical fashion, prohibited the defendants from "any other messages that are likely to expose a person or persons to hatred and contempt by reason of the fact that a person or persons are identifiable on the basis of a prohibited ground of discrimination" — a broad and hopelessly vague order the breach of which can be punished criminally.
But here's where the wheels fell off Warman's censorious wagon.
The Tribunal refused to levy the penalty and compensation, leaving Warman with empty pockets. Why? Because the Tribunal didn't like that Warman was posting bigoted stuff himself under aliases, didn't like that Warman initially lied about doing so, and didn't like Warman's subsequent lame excuses:
During his cross-examination, Mr. Warman admitted (after initially denying) that he had participated in communicating messages on Internet Websites similar to the Northern Alliance Website utilizing pseudonyms such as "Pogue Mahone" and "Axetogrind".
. . . .
Mr. Warman stated that the communications quoted in the previous two paragraphs did not "cross the line" into hate messaging nor did they provoke hate messages by others. He stated that the inclusion in his postings of possible hate messages from others were inadvertent slips by him in sending messages over the Internet. He further stated that his postings were intended to assist him in his quest for information about persons using the Internet to communicate discriminatory hate messages.
 I do not see any acceptable reason for Mr. Warman to have participated on the Stormfront or Vanguard sites, since there appears to be ample easily obtained messages on these sites available without his involvement. Moreover, it is possible that his activity in this regard, could have precipitated further hate messages in response. His explanation for including other hate messages in his postings by mistake seems very weak to me.
 Mr. Warman has, with the assistance of the Commission, instituted most of the s. 13 (1) complaints under the Act that have come before the Tribunal. He has been very successful in these cases and has garnered accolades for his work in this regard. The evidence in this case of his participation on Internet sites similar to the Northern Alliance site is both disappointing and disturbing. It diminishes his credibility. For this reason and because the activities of the Respondents have ceased for a lengthy period of time, I will not make any further Orders in this matter.
This may not seem like the harshest rebuke a court has ever delivered. But for the Tribunal's fair-haired boy, it is devastating. It implies that Warman committed perjury, dismisses his excuses as unconvincing, and paints an ugly picture of a little man gleefully spewing racial invective in order to generate more cases and make more fame and money. In short, Warman has grown so entirely contemptible that even the Tribunal — which has heretofore turned a blind eye to all sorts of wrongdoing — has been forced to take notice.
It's a start. And, I hope, it is the beginning of the end for Warman.
Last 5 posts by Ken White
- A Response To Marc: Institutions, Agendas, and the "Culture War" - January 13th, 2016
- Lawyering Is About Service, Not Self-Actualization - January 11th, 2016
- Lawsplainer: Was FAU Prof. James Tracy Fired in Violation of His First Amendment Rights? - January 7th, 2016
- Defy, Defy, Defy. - January 7th, 2016
- President Obama And The Rhetoric Of Rights - January 5th, 2016