Canada’s Parliament has passed motion M-103 condemning Islamophobia and acknowledging the government’s responsibility to “develop a whole-of-government approach to reducing or eliminating systemic racism and religious discrimination including Islamophobia.”
Good intentions aside, what many are finding troubling with motion is that the word “Islamophobia” is undefined, therefore leaving it open to any interpretation the government sees fit to attach to it.
Passage of the motion, which was confirmed by a margin of 201 to 91, was in large part due to the strong support it received from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party government. However, a recent Angus Reid poll of Canadians has found that if the motion had been up for a public vote it would have failed with 71% saying they would have voted against it.
Critics of the motion have singled out the special attention it pays to Islam. Why, they question, not craft a motion against prejudice towards all religions? The real concern however is that it could now potentially restrict any valid criticism of Islamist based terror and even limit legitimate critical study of the Islamic faith. Such investigations regardless of intentions could now be labeled Islamophobia and restricted without legal recourse.