The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Empty promises.
Article 2a of the charter guarantees freedom of conscience and religion
for all Canadians. Unfortunately however, this "freedom" is virtually
impossible to assert;
One aspect of "freedom of conscience" might be the right/freedom to behave in an
ethical manner, and as such, not contribute to harming or causing discomfort to
others. While one may, to an extent, act in a compassionate manner,
endeavor to direct one's spending, a proxy for one's labour,
compassionately, etc., this is not possible with regard to the
dispersement of one's tax contributions. An obvious/extreme example of this might be
where as the result of foreign policy, bullets purchased by Canadian taxpayers find there
way into children abroad. Certainly there are aspects to our collective
conduct through both foreign and domestic policy which every single
Canadian would find atrocious.
If every Canadian taxpayer were to be made aware of, or, receive a tally
of unethical conduct committed in their name, funded by their labours and
best intentions, a body count so to speak, every single one of us would be
appalled. "Freedom of conscience"? It seems more like "Freedom of
conscience within the existing social framework", which is effectively
worthless.. The lack of any such ethical audit/accounting, in itself,
seriously impedes one's ability to ascertain/establish one's ethical
Atrocious foreign policy is simply one example of many which illustrate
how collectively we violate fundamental ethical principles of every
individual in the collective.
Finally, the most demoralizing aspect of this unpleasant situation is the
fact that, should anyone wish to assert/establish their "right" to freedom
of conscience and religion, they have absolutely no ethical mechanism
of recourse available to them as the justice system itself is a Bastion of
I suppose one could ultimately hideout in the woods and subsist on
berries in order to live with a clear conscience in Canada but somehow I
expect that the right to freedom of conscience and religion was reasonably
intended to be asserted in a more social context.
Jamie Miller - 2007