We may not like talk like that, or opinions like Mark Steyn's. But just because they offend us does not mean governments in a free society should stop them. Governments can no more control public opinion than King Canute could hold back the tide.
Now, Link Byfield is an executive of the Wildrose Party of Alberta. The Wildrose Party of Alberta is currently in the process of merging with their former Nemisis, the Alberta Alliance Party, into the "Wildrose Alliance". And (and here's my point) the remnants of the Alberta Alliance Party are issuing legal threats against an Alberta-based blog (the Alberta Alliance Watch) for reporting on this merger in unflattering terms. Specifically:
The response I did receive [from the AAAP] came in the form of a complaint about yours truly filed with another website. I hold an account on scribd.com, otherwise known as the "youtube for documents". It allows members to publish, share, and discuss all sorts of written files. As this post indicates, I uploaded some completely accurate copies of publicly available Alberta Alliance documents, namely, a copy of the Alberta Alliance's 2006 constitution, and 2006 Policy Book. The Alberta Alliance is now asserting that this amounts to a copyright violation, and are demanding that scribd.com pull the files.
The Alberta Alliance's complaint can be read here. They are apparently quite proud of it. Notice how Jane Morgan has redacted the URLs, and cc'd the thing to the Party President, Randy Thorsteinson.
The AAP wants to silence this guy. To that end, they're trying to stop him from hosting older version of documents that, in the case of their policy book, they have in the past and continue to give away for free via their websites.
Surprisingly, there's a plug for free speech pretty high up among their core principles.
So, Link, your new party is making a fool of you, and a mockery of its own principles. Step up and give 'em heck! And as for everyone else, LOOK! More hypocrisy from Conservatives over Free Speech! Oh My! I am SO shocked!
Update: Jane Morgan of the AAP speaks in the comments:
To set the record straight. One email was sent to "request" the old documents be removed. Period, end of story.Let me be crystal clear; NO legal action what-so-ever has been or will be taken.
Jane Morgan, CFO Alberta Alliance Party#3,
Thought the guy at AA Watch would panic, did you?