Here’s your Canadian Atheist Weekly Update for to .
 Religious Law Schools Are Common in the States. Canada? Not So Much.
A fascinating revelation on Law.com: Trinity Western University’s law school would (if it actually comes to fruition) be the first religious law school in Canada. Meanwhile, in the States, a quarter of all law schools are religious. One has to wonder if that’s part of the reason their courts and their laws are so fucked up compared to ours.
 Canadians love diversity, just not the change that comes with it: survey
The results are hardly surprising, but the article title works a nicely succinct summary of Canadians’ attitude toward diversity: they love the idea, they love the benefits they get from it, but they grumble whenever they have to do actual work toward it.
 Supporting GSAs is in Canada’s best interest
Excellent opinion piece about the Alberta UCP-inspired lawsuit about banning schools from notifying parents when kids join GSAs. As Wells, says:
If you want to know whether your child attends a GSA, ask them.
 Court ruling a victory for opponents of hate speech
Kevin Johnston’s legal troubles grow, although this is technically Ron Banerjee’s loss. Amusingly Banerjee tried to throw Johnston under the bus to wiggle out from the charges.
 ‘Hot Dog Water’ seller in Vancouver gets laughs to prove point
This story has not only caught international attention, it has been widely shared in atheist and freethinker circles. And why not: it’s a hilarious story. Just… don’t turn off your skeptical brain just because this story happens to push all the right buttons. Everything publicly reported in this story comes from a single source: the prankster himself. It is wildly unlikely that all or even most of the people who bought the “hot dog water” actually believed that it was magical. More likely than not, they bought it because it was fucking hilarious. The “testimonials” mentioned all bear the hallmark of people thinking they were sharing in the joke, and not the butt of it.
 On TWU, the SCC made the right decision for LGBTQ+ rights
Nice overview of the TWU law school decisions in the Canadian Bar Association’s official magazine.
 Quebec Charter of Values a factor in radicalizing foreign fighters: study
I’d say “I told you so”, but… nobody is really surprised by this. People whose heads aren’t up their asses have seen plenty of evidence leading to this conclusion all along, and the bigots… they just don’t care. In fact, they want more Muslims to radicalize, because then it will fulfill their “predictions” about the menace of Muslims and Islam.
 Vatican convicts ex-diplomat of distributing child pornography from Ontario church
This made international news, and for good reason: it was the first time any moderately high-ranking Catholic official had ever been tried – never mind convicted – for child porn. (The Vatican didn’t even have a law for it until 2013.) But this is not near over. First, while he’s been convicted of the criminal charge by the Vatican, he’s still a priest. Second, he’s only been convicted by the Vatican; the places where he actually broke the law – which includes Canada – have yet to make extradition requests, or give any sign that they intend to press their own charges.
 Public Schools of Saskatchewan calls for broad discussion on education
I’m so glad to see the public school systems are fighting back on this. And it really looks like the law is going to be on their side.
 Anti-LGBT activist released on bail
Wow, check out the dude’s bail conditions! I’m not the least bit sympathetic though; he absolutely deserves them. He has demonstrated outright contempt for the law in the past, and has used deception and other tactics to infiltrate LGBT events where he was not welcome and harass the people there. Fuck yeah hard ban him from even going near them.
 Sentencing two polygamists and child abusers to house arrest is no punishment at all
I have commented on multiple occasions about the Winston Blackmore case, and particularly the cowardice of several attorneys general of BC in declining to lay charges against him out of fear that the polygamy law wouldn’t withstand a Charter challenge. The right thing to do would have been to lay the charges, and let the courts decide whether the law was constitutional or not – the reason the Crown refused to do that for thirty years was because losing the case would make them look bad. So for thirty years they either a) let an unconstitutional law stand unchallenged; or b) let a criminal not only get away with breaking the law, he was bragging about it. And all the while, children were being abused. Fucking craven pieces of shit – both Blackmore and Oler, and all the attorneys general and prosecutors and MPPs who declined to uphold the law. Turns out I’m not the only person who thinks so. Daphne Branham has been following this ugly story for decades, and she is justifiably disgusted by how it eventually shook out.
 Judge suspends Quebec face-covering ban, says it appears to violate charter
Talk about your last-minute save! The veil ban was going to go into effect tomorrow (from when this is being published). Note that it hasn’t been struck down entirely; it’s just been struck down pending a formal decision about it (which is slowly working its way through the courts).
 Accused priests. Millions in quiet payouts. And it was all kept on a list
Holy. Shit. These numbers seriously need putting into context. First, we’re talking about $15 million in settlement/hush money alone – that doesn’t include legal fees. Second, we’re talking only about abuses over an 8-year period in the ’60s, and even then, only about ones that were settled within the last 18 years. Third, we’re talking only about the Diocese of fucking London, Ontario – this isn’t all of Canada, it’s not even all of Ontario… it’s not even all of the GTA. And there are 12 abusers listed (with victims as young as 6!!!)… the whole fucking diocese only has around a hundred-fifty priests, and that’s today; it was certainly much less in the ’60s. And let’s not forget how this data even came out: we only know this because the London Diocese was taken to court by their insurance company, who didn’t want to pay out those large settlements because liability insurance only covers unintended liability… not knowingly enabling and facilitating rapists’ rape sprees. And, and! Three of those rapists had their crimes so well covered up that The Star hasn’t even been able to find anything out about them! And the Diocese is still covering for them! This is fucking mind-blowing. And it’s just one out of the 50+ dioceses in Canada.
 Effort to halt enforcement of Alberta’s GSA protection law tossed out by Medicine Hat judge
The first legal victory in this fight! Note that all that was won was that an attempt to block the Alberta NDP’s law banning schools from telling parents if kids join GSAs until it could be challenged in court was thwarted. The court challenge itself still has to happen. But at least the kids are safe for now.
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Wow. Just. Wow.