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Wednesday, 2 December 2009

GOWLING LAFLEUR HENDERSON FIGHTING FOR PRIVATE PROPERTY RIGHTS


Following the absurd verdict from the Ontario Court of Appeal on the private club issue, Mike Kennedy displayed all the signs of a tired out, discouraged and disillusioned man. The system he believed in and defended with patriotic passion had once again let him down. What was most alarming to him is that the decision the three judges rendered against private smoking clubs is in essence an open invitation for the state to arbitrarily invade our privacy even into our own homes. ‘’This can’t be happening in my Canada’’ he told us in total disbelief.

Indeed, the verdict from the Ontario Court of Appeal has extended the definition of the term ''members of the public who need the protection of the state'' to include anyone who, after being forewarned of the nature of the legal activities that will take place, willingly accepts an invitation to a private gathering in a totally private setting. This is a very loaded verdict that gives the state the necessary power to cross that sacred line that separates private life from public life on the whim of potentially zealous elected officials that might see no problem in using the power such a decision grants them to shamelessly invade our most private spaces as long as they can proudly proclaim that they're doing it for our own good!

‘’I cannot let this happen’’, Mr. Kennedy told us after he picked himself up and dealt with the emotional blow the Ontario Court of Appeal served him ‘’but I just don’t know how I will manage to carry on with the fight. Where will I get the money to bring this case to the Supreme court?’’ he questioned with grave concern. For the first time since the beginning of his combat he felt that he might be forced to call it quits. But luckily for all of us, as the 60-day period to file for leave was coming to an end, a happy turn of events occurred. With a little help from friends with deep democratic values, Mike Kennedy was able to seek pro bono representation from one of the biggest lawyer firms in Canada - Gowling Lafleur Henderson - in his pursuit to protect private property rights in Canada through the highest court of the country. Only expenses will be charged to him which are estimated between three and five thousand dollars that he hopes to fund raise between now and the hearing if the leave is granted.

We commend Mr. Kennedy for his perseverance and courage to not only have prepared and personally presented his previous cases against a very powerful and wealthy bureaucratic machine, but to have the strength to carry on with the fight until he’s satisfied that justice has been rendered for privacy and democracy in his Canada - in our Canada. If the leave is granted, we will assist Mr. Kennedy every way we possibly can and stand alongside of him all through the final phase of his long battle. We hope every freedom loving individual in Canada and elsewhere, will too.

If you want to write or donate to Mr. Kennedy, please address your letter or pledge to
mikekennedy@cagecanada.ca and we will make sure he gets it and communicates directly with you if he so wishes.

You can read the Ontario Court of Appeal decision at: http://http://www.canlii.org/en/on/onca/doc/2009/2009onca685/2009onca685.html

3 comments:

Roberto said...

I have a better idea: why don't we start opening "private" clubs, where people are free to breath asbestos, toxins, volcanic ashes etc...?

I don't mean to be rain on your parade, but cigarette is banned indoors because it's a public health issue affecting everyone. Just like "private" restaurants that are still obliged to meet legal sanitary conditions.

I think a club can't get away with it by claiming it's "private" (nudge nudge wink wink...everyone can come in if they ask...)

C.A.G.E. said...

If people were stupid enough to create a private club to breathe in all these things you mentioned, who am I or you to stop them from doing what they willingly want to do if they’re all consenting and don’t harm anyone who disagrees? Much like swingers can do whatever they please between consenting adults behind closed doors of a private club! Would you feel sorry for anyone filing a complaint that immoral actions are taking place in such settings, or would you be telling them that they knew what they were getting into when becoming a member of such a club?

You are forgetting an important detail in your assessment: Tobacco is a legal substance. If you believe it is as hazardous as any of this other stuff, it should have been banned a long time ago and governments are the criminals for keeping it legal!

As for your ‘’nudge nudge wink wink’’ worry, now why would ‘’everyone’’ want to become a member of a private smoking club? Doesn’t the government continually tout that smoking bans are good for business and the great majority of people are happy with them because that’s exactly what they wanted?

Now looking at the forest behind the tree, this issue shouldn’t even have anything to do with smoking in anybody’s assessment. It has to do with how much government can butt in your private life to set its rules whichever they maybe. The Superior Court of Ontario has set a dangerous precedent with its absurd ruling that an individual is a member of the public no matter what he does in a private setting. Meaning that for his own good the individual must be protected anywhere and everywhere including in someone else’s home where he entered willingly! Taken to its extremes, the health department can enter someone’s home where there is a gathering and this without a warrant and start examining the foods you’re serving and fine the host for any irregularities that may be discovered. Absurd? Perhaps for now, but this type of ruling leaves the door wide open for potential government abuses in the future.

Iro

Roberto said...

CAGE,

I respect your opinion and your right to defend them. But after reading the ruling in detail, it's obvious the bar owners were fighting a lost battle.

It's not sufficient to put a sign that says "private" outside your restaurant/pub/tennis court to evade the law. It remains a public place of business.