PDA

View Full Version : Canada allows daggers in schools...



BrianW
03-02-2006, 09:04 PM
"OTTAWA (Reuters) - Multiculturalism and religious freedom trumped safety concerns in a Canadian Supreme Court decision on Thursday that will allow orthodox Sikh students to carry traditional daggers to school."

"Religious tolerance is a very important value of Canadian society," Justice Louise Charron wrote in reasons for the decision"
Link to article (http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20060302/india_nm/india239031)

Seems strange to me that they are allowing only a certain percentage of the school population to be armed, based on religion.

""If some students consider it unfair that Gurbaj Singh may wear his kirpan to school while they are not allowed to have knives in their possession, it is incumbent on the schools to discharge their obligation to instill in their students this value that is ... at the very foundation of our democracy."

Apparently there is no seperation of church and state in Canada. Guess we won't hear about that concept from our brothers up north. ;)

JimD
03-02-2006, 09:31 PM
The student will still be under the watchful eye of the RCMP:

http://www.imagestation.com/picture/sraid201/pd7577bab7a3d273698518e930adcf55c/eff9828b.jpg :D

Domesticated_Mr. Know It All
03-02-2006, 09:31 PM
I carried a swiss army knife to school every day back in the 70's. ;)
I managed not to stab anybody, tho I was tempted a few times. tongue.gif
I mostly used the tweezers for a roach clip. :D

Dolly Varden
03-02-2006, 09:37 PM
odd that. i drove to high school nearly every day with a shotgun or rifle in a rack in plain sight in my jeep. walked into the school always with a knife in my pocket. most of the rest of the male kids did as well. never heard of a stabbing or shooting back then. whats changed?

Meerkat
03-02-2006, 09:39 PM
Is it illegal to put a knife in a fish? ;)

uncas
03-02-2006, 09:41 PM
Meer...not if you are only turning it over in the frying pan to brown the other side...
Dutch...when are you leaving...?

[ 03-02-2006, 09:41 PM: Message edited by: uncas ]

marwesmed
03-02-2006, 10:14 PM
I don't see a reason why all the students should not carry knives.

BrianW
03-02-2006, 10:23 PM
Originally posted by Braam Berrub:
Actually Brian your troll is quite disappointing - but then I have come to expect this from you...no matter what I think of the court decision it has nothing to do with separation of church and state...now the separation of reality and your trolling requires a thread all its own :rolleyes: Care to explain there o'sensitive one? We can discuss every country in the world, but mention something stupid in Canada and all of a sudden braam is disappointed.

The subject of middle-eastern religions, and their influence in various western countries has been a hot topic here lately. Also the subject of seperation of church and state. This thread combines both.

Care to join in with an intellegent reply?

mmd
03-03-2006, 12:09 AM
Brian, your commentary on Canadian laws and customs is valid, but trying to make a case for state-sanctioned religious expression is a bit out in left field. An ultra-orthodox Sikh wears a ceremonial kirpan as part of his religious identity much the same way as an orthodox Jew wears a skullcap or a Christian wears a cross. In 2001 the kid involved accidentally dropped his kirpan in the schoolyard and a bunch of (IMHO) overly-anxious parents who heard about it tried to get the school board to outlaw them on school property. The school board didn't want to get in the middle of an argument that pivots on the Canadian Constitutional right to freedom of religious expression, so kicked it through the courts until it reached the Supreme. They ruled that the accroutrements of religious identity are protected by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, even if the religious symbol is a knife. No intermingling of church and state, merely state affirmation of the freedoms codified in the Constitution. Sorta like your American right to bear arms, eh? ;) :D

The kirpan that Sikh schoolboys carry, by the way, has a blade about as big as a jacknife.

Erasmus B Dragon
03-03-2006, 12:20 AM
Originally posted by Dolly Varden:
odd that. i drove to high school nearly every day with a shotgun or rifle in a rack in plain sight in my jeep. walked into the school always with a knife in my pocket. most of the rest of the male kids did as well. never heard of a stabbing or shooting back then. whats changed?I wonct wint ta scul wit ma grate unelz trap dawer 45-70. Ahz alays gutz ma nife.

Diz place chainged.

htom
03-03-2006, 02:16 AM
Yet another reason for the First Church of John Moses Browning.

BrianW
03-03-2006, 02:32 AM
mmd,

My statements are only based on this article.

The Candanian Supreme court ruled that one class of citizen can carry knives in school, based strictly on religion.

As per the article, the same judge says other students cannot carry knives at school based on their religion (that being non-Sikh.)

Then she directs educators (usally paid by some form of government I'm guessing) to enforce and intruct all students on this policy.

No, it's not state mandated religion in that sense, but it opens the road to more rulings of that type.

Some parents seem concerned.

Ron Williamson
03-03-2006, 06:47 AM
I saw that kirpan on the news and it is quite substantial, BTW.
Sometimes they are very small and worn like a necklace and sometimes they are sewn or short-chained in place so they can't be taken out of the sheath.

Kind of pointless(pun intended),if you ask me,because the kirpan is supposed to be for "protecting the helpless" or some such.
I'm okay with it.
R

TomF
03-03-2006, 07:28 AM
Ever actually seen a ceremonial kirpan? I had one, as a kid, 'cause I thought they looked cool.

A wooden ruler's sharper. There is no edge to speak of; where an edge would be on a knife there's a radiused curve. With chrome plating over - attempts at sharpening would ruin the faux engraving on the sides. While arguably there's a point, it would be less effective than a moderately pointed stick as a stabbing tool.

As MMD said, this case is not about separation of church and state - it's about the constitutionally protected right to religious freedom. I'd anticipate that any state-provided "education" on the issue would be to (1) talk about religious symbolism, including Sikhism along with other religions, and (2) perhaps having a Sikh child show the other students just how dangerous his kirpan actually is.

huisjen
03-03-2006, 07:52 AM
The Kirpan in Sikhism

by Santbir Singh

Kirpan literally means “Giver of Grace”. This “Giver of Grace” has been a source of conflict with government authorities ever since Sikhs were mandated to arm themselves during Guru Hargobind’s reign in the 17th century. So it should come as no surprise that the Kirpan is yet again the centre of a controversy.

As you all know, the issue this time revolves around 12 year old Gurbaj Singh, who has not been allowed to attend school since November 19th of last year. He is an amritdharee Sikh, who wears a small three-inch Kirpan under his shirt.

With this issue having become such a dramatic news story here in Montreal, and now across Canada, questions concerning the Kirpan have increased dramatically.

It does grow tedious answering the same questions about one’s appearance for so long as those of us who have grown up Sikh can attest to. One begins to form standard responses to these questions that are asked again and again, responses that grow so mechanical in nature that you don’t even think about what it is you are saying.

The one I’ve been using for years concerning the Kirpan is,

“No it’s not a knife. It’s a Kirpan, a ceremonial sword, and it is an essential part of my religion, which is Sikhism. It is a symbol of a Sikh’s duty to defend the helpless, the poor and the downtrodden. A symbol of our daily fight against injustice and tyranny.” The article is much longer than that, but seems to make interesting reading. It argues that 'ceremonial' kirpans aren't in keeping with the true meaning of the religion. A true kirpan should be at least a foot long and sharp. Otherwise it's kind of like saying you're upholding the right to bear arms by carrying a wooden gun that shoots rubber bands.

www.sikhs.ca/kirpan/kirpanarticle.html (http://www.sikhs.ca/kirpan/kirpanarticle.html)

Dan

[ 03-03-2006, 08:07 AM: Message edited by: huisjen ]

TomF
03-03-2006, 08:58 AM
That's a fascinating article, Dan. And yes, the author's arguing that a kirpan should not be a "symbol," but an actual, sizeable weapon. That's not, however, what the boy in question was carrying - nor is it the common practice. It sounds to me like an interesting, perhaps more "authentic" voice within the Sikh community, but it's certainly not the dominant one.

As I say, I once owned a kirpan - two actually. One had a 6" blade, while the other was full sword-length. I've seen many others. None of the kirpans I've seen/handled had sharpened edges, or were even made of tempered steel. They were very clearly ceremonial, symbolic.

I'd feel differently if the court advocated carrying 12" sharpened blades, as the author of the article would prefer.

marwesmed
03-03-2006, 10:32 AM
They should make the Kirpan out of wood and paint them to look real. This should be no problem since they are already altered to be just simbolic.

paladin
03-03-2006, 12:51 PM
I betcha I could kill ya faster with a wooden pencil....

WWheeler
03-03-2006, 12:56 PM
Apparently there is no seperation of church and state in Canada. Guess we won't hear about that concept from our brothers up north. There's also protection for minorities.

BrianW
03-03-2006, 01:41 PM
Lot's of good stuff in that link huisjen. Thanks.

This may be a good kid, but the courts rule doesn't affect just him. I wonder if the Sikh community didn't purposely pick this battle? Find a nice kid, with a known 'unscary' kirpan, and have him 'accidently' drop it?

After all, I don't think most folks would be afraid of that kirpan, although a couple dozen box cutters killed thousands in one day.

So, were's that religion that says my kid need to wear a handgun everyday? smile.gif

[ 03-03-2006, 01:42 PM: Message edited by: BrianW ]

BrianW
03-03-2006, 01:42 PM
There's also protection for minorities.And I do have to wonder if the courts would have ruled in his favor if he hadn't been a minority, and played the religion card?

[ 03-03-2006, 01:43 PM: Message edited by: BrianW ]

TomF
03-03-2006, 01:52 PM
Brian, if he'd not "played the religion card" there'd have been no dispute. If another kid had wanted to wear his hunting knife to class "just because," ...

The dispute is precisely about religious freedom, and how far the safety of the rest of the population should be compromised for the religious rights of the individual. Personally, I think it's hugely stupid that my kids can't take their pocketknives to school, but they can't. I'll regretfully respect that some dimwits think that's a safety issue.

But if someone told them that they couldn't wear a crucifix because it promoted torture ... or couldn't wear a skullcap for some other reason ...

mmd
03-03-2006, 02:13 PM
Brian, your kid can't wear his/her handgun to school because it isn't an object of religious symbolism.

Oh... Wait! Your American, aren't you?

Never mind...

;) :D

paladin
03-03-2006, 02:17 PM
Hey, Michael....the Colt 1873 single action and Winchester repeating rifle are the guns that won the west....are you saying we shouldn't be able to carry them fer personal protection from possible Canadian invasion????

TomF
03-03-2006, 02:19 PM
We pose such a huge threat ... :D

Alan D. Hyde
03-03-2006, 02:20 PM
Here's a kirpan---

http://www.mef.qc.ca/images/kirpan.gif

***

Alan

mmd
03-03-2006, 02:28 PM
Chuck, we burnt that big white house in Washington once, and you seem to have learned your lesson well, so we're pretty content with your manners since then and have no plans to come down there to slap yer bottom again. ;)

TomF
03-03-2006, 02:33 PM
Originally posted by Alan D. Hyde:
Here's a kirpan ...

AlanHere's another - identical to the larger of the two I once owned. http://www.afraalkahira.com/Images/sword%20covers%20redgold5_small.jpg Virtually all the kirpans I've seen Sikhs wear are this style - the 6-inch blades you more usually see look like minature versions of this one - brass handle with a lion's head pommel. Singh, after all, means "Lion." Can't even fit 3 fingers into the hilt.

paladin
03-03-2006, 02:36 PM
Ya never can tell...I wuz sitting in a bar in St. John's, Newfyland (the only place open at the time of night) having a cuppa coffee when a local feller came over and whacked the hell outta me with a very disparaging remark about yanks....I figgered they might have followed me back across the border so I need pertekshun....
and in S.E.A. my kicker carried a Kukhri, buffalo horn handles and all....a wicked weapon.....and sharp..

[ 03-03-2006, 02:39 PM: Message edited by: paladin ]

BrianW
03-03-2006, 02:38 PM
Originally posted by Alan D. Hyde:
Here's a kirpan---

http://www.mef.qc.ca/images/kirpan.gif

***

AlanThat would be the kirpan of the high school senior next fall. You know the kid, the one who likes to kick kittens in the alley.

Thank goodness the Canada Supreme court upheld his right to carry that lil'thing in school.

[ 03-03-2006, 02:52 PM: Message edited by: BrianW ]

TomF
03-03-2006, 02:46 PM
Whatever ... believe what you bloody well please.

mmd
03-03-2006, 02:56 PM
I guess we had better start worrying about those Scots, too - they carry daggers in their socks (Sgian Dubh), you know!

WWheeler
03-03-2006, 02:57 PM
http://www.dtfbooks.com/shop/images/Khanda%20Kirpan%203D%20Pearl_big.jpg

Size: 3in.

JimD
03-03-2006, 02:58 PM
And I do have to wonder if the courts would have ruled in his favor if he hadn't been a minority, and played the religion card? If he hadn't been a minority the issue probably would never have come up in the first place.

And a perhaps funny, but not too valid comparison: If a Scotish kid showed up for class wearing a kilt should he be sent home for cross dressing?

B. Parkes
03-04-2006, 07:26 PM
Let's be real about our nutty northern neighbors: Just as Canada is bilingual everywhere except Quebec, tolerance for religion and multiculturalism exists only if you're not white, Christian, heterosexual and male. What a silly, fatuous, craven society! Canadian diplomats have been running around the globe for decades groveling to third world terrorists like Mandela. Thank God my Grandfather left it.

Harry Miller
03-04-2006, 07:30 PM
Thank God my Grandfather left it. I'm pretty happy about it too.

Meerkat
03-04-2006, 07:40 PM
Originally posted by mmd:
Chuck, we burnt that big white house in Washington once, and you seem to have learned your lesson well, so we're pretty content with your manners since then and have no plans to come down there to slap yer bottom again. ;) Them wuz Brittish, not Canuckians. tongue.gif

TomF
03-04-2006, 09:26 PM
Originally posted by B. Parkes:
Let's be real about our nutty northern neighbors: Just as Canada is bilingual everywhere except Quebec, tolerance for religion and multiculturalism exists only if you're not white, Christian, heterosexual and male. What a silly, fatuous, craven society! Canadian diplomats have been running around the globe for decades groveling to third world terrorists like Mandela. Thank God my Grandfather left it.Speaking as one white, Christian, heterosexual male to (perhaps) another ... feel free to stay the hell away.

Canada's a "silly, fatuous, craven society" is it? And you'd characterize your own as ...

t.

Tristan
03-05-2006, 09:42 AM
Originally posted by marwesmed:
They should make the Kirpan out of wood and paint them to look real. This should be no problem since they are already altered to be just simbolic.Wood can be dangerous. Prison inmates frequently kill or wound each other with wooden "shanks" made of everything from pencils to rulers.

Osborne Russel
03-05-2006, 09:59 AM
Originally posted by JimD:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr /> And I do have to wonder if the courts would have ruled in his favor if he hadn't been a minority, and played the religion card? If he hadn't been a minority the issue probably would never have come up in the first place. </font>[/QUOTE]You're right, and so is Brian. So was Hermann Goering: "Every time I hear the word "culture", I reach for my pistol."

Anyone not a minority claiming freedom of religion wouldn't have gotten to first base. A minority claiming a religious basis for carrying arms is not a common situation but that isn't the point. What makes one "religious basis" more important than another? Am I only free to believe in a religion the state recognizes? What's the difference between that and state religion? I may believe in and practice more earnestly a religion I invented myself five minutes ago than any number of people may practice the oldest religion in the world. What's "old" got to do with it?

[ 03-05-2006, 10:00 AM: Message edited by: Osborne Russel ]

BrianW
03-05-2006, 03:40 PM
Originally posted by Braam Berrub:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by BrianW:

That would be the kirpan of the high school senior next fall. You know the kid, the one who likes to kick kittens in the alley.

Thank goodness the Canada Supreme court upheld his right to carry that lil'thing in school.Brian, is this the kind of intelligent posting you requested me to partake in? :rolleyes: </font>It could be, but apparently your having a difficult time with the task.

BrianW
03-05-2006, 03:43 PM
Originally posted by Braam Berrub:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by BrianW:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />There's also protection for minorities.And I do have to wonder if the courts would have ruled in his favor if he hadn't been a minority, and played the religion card?</font>[/QUOTE]"played the religion card" - another intelligent post, thanks Brian. :rolleyes: </font>[/QUOTE]Keep trying Braam. It's not that your getting any closer, but the effort is rewarding. ;)

WX
03-05-2006, 07:22 PM
Wouldn't be allowed in Oz, stabbings seem to be on the increase here...next thing you some silly bugger will be demanding the right to bear arms :D

uncas
03-05-2006, 07:24 PM
or arm bears...ooops...that middle school isn't it....

WX
03-05-2006, 07:29 PM
We tried arming our bears, but koalas are too drugged out on gumtree leaves to shoot straight :D

uncas
03-05-2006, 07:33 PM
yes, guess ya have to watch out for that eucalyptus leaves...thet have a certain air about them...

Ron Williamson
03-05-2006, 07:59 PM
We don't bare arms until April.
Is B.Parkes for real?
R

WX
03-05-2006, 08:25 PM
Ron, I think he's one of those scary Americans...the one's that when they open their mouths you swear you can hear the twang of banjos in the background.