Governor General’s symposium on online hate echoes Liberal censorship agenda and leaves neutrality in the dust

Flying in the face of her apolitical mandate, Governor General Mary Simon hosted a symposium at her official residence to tackle online hate, echoing the proposed online censorship legislation being spearheaded by the Liberal government.

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The Governor General of Canada Mary Simon hosted a symposium on online hate at her official residence and workplace, Rideau Hall in Ottawa on April 11.

The purpose of the discussion was to “build a safe and respectful online world.”

The event featured two panels – one on the “lived experiences of online abuse” and the other, to discuss “solutions for a safer digital world.”

The panel primarily comprised of radical activists, government bureaucrats and Liberal MPs, showing a concerning lack of diverse perspectives on a topic reminiscent of the Justin Trudeau government's proposed legislation, the Online Harms Act, Bill C-63.

The act would create a unique hate crime offence by making amendments to the existing Criminal Code of Canada, which comes with hefty fines and even lifetime jail sentences imposed on Canadians found guilty of nonspecific “online hate” crimes.

The bill will create a new regulatory enforcement arm of the federal government through a digital safety commission, a digital safety ombudsman and a digital safety office of Canada, further bloating the Liberal/NDP bureaucracy.

This sweeping and ambiguous piece of legislation was discussed at the symposium by Liberal MP Arif Virani, he proclaims on X. Virani just so happens to be the minister of justice who introduced the act earlier this year.

The fact that the governor general, who has a constitutional duty to be non-partisan and apolitical, featured only those on the political left shows a lack of judgement and compromises her neutrality.

One of the most important roles that Simon has in her capacity as the governor general is to “ensure that Canada always has a prime minister and a government in place that has the confidence of Parliament.”

Simon is supposed to “offer valued counsel to the prime minister,” and act “as a democratic safeguard in Canada.”

In addition to this, she is supposed to “encourage excellence” and “bring Canadians together.”

So when the governor general decided to host a bunch of pretenders  like max vaxxed misinformation super-spreader Rachel Gilmore, a failed journalist fired from Global News for presumably being too awful to listen to, and Fae Johnston, who parades around looking like Gilmore’s opposite-sex doppelganger while thieving opportunities from real women — people were angered.

This event flies in the face of the governor general's once esteemed duties.

Gilmore gave a tour of the event, wherein she claims to be hanging out with “so many cool people,” yet they all appear to be weak-minded individuals playing the victim card for clout.

Take, for instance, panellist Theresa Tam,  the chief medical officer of health, who asked social media giants to direct traffic to her vanity social media account over the generic government accounts in early March 2020. Rebel News obtained these exclusive government documents through access to information requests.

Then Tam cried wolf and played the victim, as though she didn’t bring any criticisms or skepticism about her role in Canada’s failed pandemic response on herself.

This symposium has prompted reports like that of the National Post where it’s stated that Simon's conduct was “unbefitting of her office” and equates her as a head of state with the same behavioural expectations as a monarch.

“Monarchs face literal assassination attempts,” the article reads, “frenzied tabloid harassment and commentary that ranges from fair criticism to cruel harassment from separatists, republicans and communists. But Queen Elizabeth II wasn’t one to complain or lobby for censorship laws. She recognized that a head of state should be strong and unwavering, and should refrain from complaining about the inconveniences of office — which are far outweighed by the advantages.”

But this kind of criticism of the symposium led professional victim Rachel Gilmore to cry, a lot.

Meanwhile, others have stated that the governor general should immediately resign in shame to protect the integrity of her office.

“She put herself in the middle of a parliamentary and public debate on legislation still before Parliament, and in so doing demonstrated her support for the government and the aims of its proposed law,” a post on X from a Canadian lawyer reads.

Rebel News inquired with the governor general’s office about accountability questions around public funds, transparency into the proceedings of the event and how the symposium aligns with the apolitical mandate of Simon.

Lynne Santerre, Deputy Director for Public Affairs, responded that costs were covered by Canadian taxpayers.

Since turning off social media comments in February 2023, a priority of the Governor General is to shine a spotlight on the issue of online abuse and harassment, raise awareness of its impacts and empower people to stand up against toxic online discourse. As part of this initiative, the Governor General used her convening power to hold a Symposium at Rideau Hall.

The costs related to the Symposium are covered by the operating budget of the Office of the Secretary to the Governor General; related amounts will be disclosed in due course through Public Accounts and Proactive Disclosure. Participants were responsible for their own travel costs. However, the OSGG did help with travel costs for a small number of invitees who self-identified as needing assistance and could otherwise not have participated.

All expenses related to travel and hospitality were in accordance with the Government of Canada policies and directives.

When inviting participants, the Office of the Secretary to the Governor General (OSGG) worked to ensure that a diverse range of individuals and organizations with experience and expertise in dealing with online abuse were invited to the Symposium. Invitees included academics, journalists, government officials, gender equality advocates, mental health practitioners, tech industry representatives, youth leaders from across the country as well as Senators and Members of Parliament from the Conservative, Liberal and NDP political parties.

The Symposium provided an opportunity for participants to make connections and collaborate on potential solutions. The Online Harms Act was not on the Agenda or part of the panel discussions.

The OSGG will produce a report on the findings from the conference which will be publicly released in due course and will continue to support the Governor General in raising awareness of online abuse and harassment and promoting digital respect.

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