Monthly Archives: September 2015

Parliament Can Still Criminalize Assisted Suicide

Earlier this year, Canada’s Supreme Court struck down the Criminal Code prohibition on assisted suicide in its landmark Carter v. Canada ruling. Parliament’s only option now, many believe, is either to implement a circumscribed “right to die” or invoke the Charter’s notwithstanding clause. But the actual legal reasoning underlying the Court’s invalidation of the law makes possible another path. The ...

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Banning “Hate Speech” is Beyond Provincial Power

Hate speech is back in the news. The Quebec government has recently tabled Bill 59, which, among other things, would prohibit “hate speech” – a term that is not defined. Anyone who “engages in or disseminates” hate speech is liable to be fined up to $10,000 for the first utterance and $20,000 for the second.   The Bill would also ...

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The Hard Truth – “the contract said what it said”

MacQuarrie v. National Bank Life Insurance Company is a noteworthy decision for those interested in the “textualist” debate – namely, whether words reduced to writing, whether it be in the form of a policy of insurance, a statute, a commercial contract, or otherwise – should be interpreted according to their plain and ordinary meaning. In MacQuarrie, an insured sought payment ...

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