Roger Hayes from The British Constitution Group wrote and asked a short and simple question to which I had to give a long answer, so as to to put the issue of Royal assent in Canada into the context of political and governmental evolution in Canada.
Yes, the act of interest is the Ontario Domestic Violence Act 117 (Year 2000).
The full title of the Act is:
An Act to better protect victims of domestic violence Assented to December 21, 2000 Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of Ontario, enacts as follows: Definitions 1.
The abstract in the preceding quote indicates that Bill 117 received Royal assent 2001 12 21, but that is erroneous, or at least it was when Gwendolyn Landolt wrote to me about it. That was a few years after the year 2000, if I remember right. I then checked the website of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario for the status of the bill, and Royal assent had not been given at that time. The exact time when that was escapes me. I would very much appreciate it if Dave Ellison could provide me with a copy of the message in which I reported on the missing Royal assent — if he still has it. Failing that, I could post an information request for that to my mailing list.
Normally, whenever any legislative act is passed in Canada, the history of the progress of a given piece of legislation, whether it is federal or provincial, includes the last stage of approval: Royal assent.
(Alberta) Family Law Statutes Amendment Act, 1999 (Sponsor: Victor Doerksen)
First Reading 799 (Mar. 30 aft.)
Second Reading 1027-33 (Apr. 14 eve.), 1239-47 (Apr. 26 aft.)
Committee of the Whole 1416-18 (May 3 eve.), 1517-18 (May 5 eve.)
Third Reading 1727-28 (May 13 aft.)
+ Royal Assent (May 19 , outside of House sitting)
In the case of Ontario Act 117, Royal assent had been withheld, for quite some years, although it seems that it has now been written into the record. However, many of the provisions for administrative and judicial changes that were to be based on the act’s passing were nevertheless put into motion already in 2000.
One of those provisions was zero-tolerance arrest policies in cases of intimate partners warring in cases of domestic- or family-violence. Those administrative procedures for zero-tolerance were in place, but before the act they were used only against men and not against women, regardless whether the men were bleeding and the women standing there with blood-dripping knives in their hands. The Ontario Act 117 could have been used to apply zero-tolerance policies to both partners in domestic violence cases; which was for the feminist ideologists that had caused the Ontario Act 117 to be launched clearly an unwanted consequence.
As far as I know, Royal assent is ostensibly given (almost always) or withheld (very seldom) by the Lieutenant Governor (if it is Provincial legislation) or the Governor General (when it is Federal legislation).
I can only give you my opinion on the rest of it, to give a feeling for what is happening here in that regard. If you wish to obtain a far more informed summary of what is going on with Royal assent in the case of Ontario Act 117, you need to get in touch with someone like Gwendolyn Landolt, of REAL Women of Canada, a lawyer and, as of 2006, the executive director of REAL Women. I don’t know her current position but you can write to REAL Women to contact her; use the preceding link to find the e-mail address you must use for that.
REAL Women is a conservative organization that is a thorn in the side of the feminist forces that promote the socialist-feminist re-engineering of Canadian society by pervading and dominating the non-elected Canadian government administration at all levels of government, Federal, Provincial and Municipal. REAL Women is such a thorn that it has to my knowledge not ever received a single dollar in government funding, while radical feminist (a.k.a. socialist- or Marxist-feminist) organizations and causes received many billions of dollars in funding and grants over the years. After all, to my knowledge and as Erin Pizzey correctly observed in about 1998, Canada is the only country in the world (aside from the USSR), where the feminist ideology did not grow from the grass roots to political power but was imposed by the government on the people. (For more on that see: IMPOSING FEMINISM IN CANADA)
Legally and legislatively, Lieutenant Governors and the Governor General are officially the representatives of the Queen. Even though the Queen is only a figure head for Canada, her Canadian governors (appointed by Canada) have real and formal powers, such as giving Royal assent to new acts of legislation. Their powers to withhold Royal assent are very rarely used, but now and then they are used as a last resort by the government administration to override the will of the elected representatives of the people.
The rise of feminism to power in Canada began in the ‘sixties. It began with the forces that eventually put Pierre Elliot Trudeau into power. Trudeau used his position of prime minister of Canada to push feminism, multiculturalism, homosexual rights and, amongst many other things, the Canadian Court Challenges Program, whereby individuals or NGO activists can use taxpayer funding to sue the taxpayers, all to promote a left-wing agenda. Under our current prime minister, Stephen Harper, the Court Challenges Program received severe cuts in funding and far smaller budget allocations, intended to force the scope of its operations into the direction of what it was ostensibly created to achieve: the addressing of complaints of discrimination against individuals or minorities, in regard to hiring and rental accommodations.
Within the scope of the accelerated social engineering imposed and launched by Trudeau there was the establishment of a Royal Commission on the Status of Women. The article at the preceding link reflects a government-approved view, but note the many references in it to minorities of all shapes, shades, origins and sizes — without exception in the context of women as victims. That is a reflection of the intertwining of feminism and multiculturalism in action. For a more objective, conservative view on the subject, take a look at what REAL women of Canada has to say about it.
One of the recommendations in the report of the Royal Commission on the Status of Women was that a government department on the Status of Women be established. That then happened in 1973. Although it fell short of having a women’s minister, Canada then became “blessed” with a Secretary of State for the Status of Women, who had an office with a staff of about 200 women and one homosexual man as an executive assistant to the Secretary of State for the Status of Women. (Note also that the very first time that the term “status of women” was promoted and much publicized was through Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels.)
I would love to quote a men’s rights organization or activist on those issues, but Canadian men’s rights activists rarely, if ever, write about such issues, they seem to be preoccupied with the fallout of the destruction of the family, not with the marginalization of men but with negotiating the terms of surrender – from the position of the losers – in the war against the family. Furthermore, it was Gwendolyn Landolt who brought the issue of the missing Royal assent in the case of Ontario Act 117 to my attention. Although I had informed a large number of Canadian men’s rights activists of the issue, not one ever responded or commented on it.
At any rate, although our governors are ostensibly representatives of the Queen, those governors are not employees of the Queen, and the Queen exerts no real and official powers through them in Canada. The governors are political tools of the powers who put them into office. At times they become tools of last resort for those powers, to thwart the passing of legislation that does not go their way.
Canadian governors are appointed by negotiation and consensus between ruling parties and the government bureaucracy. They are used sparingly for opposing legislation and are but one of many tools by which the bureaucracy promotes its agenda, regardless of which political party is in power.
The real political power in Canada (and that is true of all developed nations in the world, true even of the 400-year history of modern Germany) rests with the government bureaucracy, not with the elected representatives. For all practical purposes, governors are not representatives of the Queen, instead, they are straw men (and women) that give the will of the bureaucratic powers that rule our country the appearance of legality when necessary to go against the will of the elected legislature.
I do not recall that anyone, not even in the media, ever raised a hue and cry over that. Perhaps that is because it is not polite or “Canadian” to oppose “the will of the Queen”.
You may have a point by writing that “If it [the withholding of Royal assent] is true then it is not only extraordinary but politically explosive because on this side of the water the Queen through her personal secretary is telling British subjects that she is no longer able to withhold Royal Assent.”
Nevertheless, I doubt it very much that any constitutional lawyer in Canada will be found willing to take this on. I am not a lawyer, but even if I were, who would pay me to question the presumption of Royal powers by governors in the face of the fact that the Queen rescinded (or was forced to rescind) all such powers in her home country? To fight that situation in the courts would require hundreds of thousands of dollars. Besides, I would not live long enough to see the case through. I am 73 years old.
A few last thoughts on all of that:
The issue of Royal assent in Canada is very murky, illogical and muddy, but is it only a tiny shard of a tile in a mosaic depicting a massive program for social change. That exists in many different ways and forms in all developed nation (and in many of the developing ones). All of those programs are variations of a common theme: the implementation of Marxism (or communism or socialism, if you will) in action; through the systematic deconstruction of all existing social institutions, including our religious denominations and even our families, by invading them and subverting them from within.
That strategy for social change and for the continuing spread of socialism was envisioned and promoted by Antonio Gramsci (the leader of the Italian Communist Party during Mussolini’s regime) as well as by the members of the Frankfurt Institute for Social Research (nicknamed the Frankfurt School), a communist think tank whose members were invited to the USA in the early 1930s, took (or were given) prominent positions in academe and politics and began their program of social engineering that spawned the social revolution of the 1960s that then spread throughout the world. Let there be no mistake, one of the aspects of that social revolution is the implementation of an international agenda for the planned destruction of the traditional nuclear family.
The dream of the social engineers who foster all of this on us is that out of the ruins and rubble of the resulting social destruction a new and better, socialist, feminist, global, totalitarian regime can be constructed.
Roger, given that I wrote perhaps far more than you cared to read, I have no idea whether you like to accept this recommendation, but if you do, you will never again be able to look at the world and what bothers you with it the way you do right now. Read “The Socialist Phenomenon”, by Igor Shafarevich, a friend of Alexander Solzhenitsyn and a world-renowned mathematician. I wrote an introduction to that book (the book, too, is accessible online), a book that examines the history of socialism throughout time and in many different localities throughout the world.
All the best,
It would seem that socialist ideology has the ability to stamp widely separated or even historically unlinked socialist currents with indelible and stereotyped markings.
It seems to us quite legitimate to conclude that socialism does exist as a unified historical phenomenon. Its basic principles have been indicated above. They are:
- Abolition of private property.
- Abolition of the family.
- Abolition of religion.
- Equality, abolition of hierarchies in society.
The manifold embodiments of these principles are linked organically by a common spirit, by an identity of specific details and, frequently, by a clearly discernible overall thrust.
Our perspective on socialism takes into account only one of the dimensions in which this phenomenon unfolds. Socialism is not only an abstract ideological system but also the embodiment of that system in time and space. Therefore, having sketched in its outlines as an ideology, we now ought to be able to explain in what periods and within what civilization socialism arises, whether in the form of doctrine, popular movement or state structure. But here the answer turns out to be far less clear. While the ideology of socialism is sharply defined, the occurrence of socialism can hardly be linked to any definite time or civilization. If we consider the period in the history of mankind which followed the rise of the state as an institution, we find the manifestations of socialism, practically speaking, in all epochs and in all civilizations. It is possible, however, to identify epochs when socialist ideology manifests itself with particular intensity. This is usually at a turning point in history, a crisis such as the period of the Reformation or our own age. We could simply note that socialist states arise only in definite historical situations, or we could attempt to explain why it was that the socialist ideology appeared in virtually finished and complete form in Plato’s time. We shall return to these questions later. But in European history, we cannot point to a single period when socialist teachings were not extant in one form or another. It seems that socialism is a constant factor in human history, at least in the period following the rise of the state. Without attempting to evaluate it for the time being, we must recognize socialism as one of the most powerful and universal forces active in a field where history is played out.
The Socialist Phenomenon, p. 200
See also: Abolition of the family (at Fathers for Life)
Frieze Frame wrote:
I was given your name by Dave Ellison with whom I had a long chat yesterday. Your name came up in conversation when I mentioned the fact that I was tryimg to get to the bottom of a story I had heard in relation to Canada’s political position re the granting of Royal Assent to Acts of Parliament.
Somebody told me that the Governor General (the Queens representative) had refused to give Royal Assent to an Act of Parliment and this was of recent times… is this true?
If it is true then it is not only extraordinary but politically explosive because on this side of the water the Queen through her personal secretary is telling British subjects that she is no longer able to withhold Royal Assent.
Can you throw any light on this?
Much appreciated if you can – sorry to bother you if you can’t.
Oh and keep up the good work for dads.
The British Constitution Group
00 44 151 650 2401