Two interesting stories in the news today. One on legislation tabled by Harper's Justice Minister Rob Nicholson & the other on an event involving police in Montreal.
Nicholson's legislation would allow police to fingerprint & photograph anyone who's been arrested but not yet charged.
From Steven Chase at the G&M:
"The Harper government unveiled legislation yesterday that would change criminal law procedure so police can fingerprint and photograph people whom they've arrested but not yet charged – a measure that raises civil-rights concerns for opposition parties and defence lawyers.
The Identification of Criminals Act does not currently authorize police officers to fingerprint or photograph someone in custody until they are charged or convicted."
This will only give police, the RCMP, & Govt. Agencies, like CSIS, more information on anyone arrested even if innocent of any wrongdoing. A nice, convenient list where they can all keep tabs on Canadian citizens or anyone living here or even visiting.
The other story, out of Montreal, is of a woman arrested & fined for not holding onto an escalator handrail. What??!!??
From Les Perreaux, also in the G&M:
"Bela Kosoian, a 38-year-old mother of two, says when she didn't hold the handrail Wednesday she was cuffed, dragged into a small holding cell and fined."
"Ms. Kosoian, who studies at the Université du Québec à Montreal, was riding an escalator down to catch a 5:30 p.m. subway from the suburb of Laval to an evening class downtown when she started rifling through her backpack looking for a fare."
Under the proposed new legislation just tabled this woman would have had her fingerprints & photograph taken for not holding onto a handrail. This is insane. The events surrounding this incident are also insane - & dangerous. What is happening to Canada? Things under the Harper Conservatives appear to be devolving into a totalitarian state. One in which I, for one, do not want to live.
It's time to throw Harper & his thugs out & put in a Govt. that actually cares about it's people & their rights, & one that will clean up the messes in our police dept.'s the RCMP & CSIS & any other Canadian agency that has these powers, including the Govt. itself.
UPDATE: For more on this go read Impolitical.