Doug Christie (1946-2013)
Dave Killion — March 13, 2013
The passing of noted defence attorney Doug Christie has received enough attention that there is no reason for me to repeat the story of his life, or recount the history of his cases, either of which can be found in any one of many articles. But if you’re looking for a mainstream media article that isn’t slanted against Mr. Christie, I can’t help you. This is one of the better ones, but even so –
“Christie has always been careful not to publicly support the views of his clients, insisting his cases were about protecting the right to free speech.”
In fact, there appears to be no evidence that Mr. Christie ever supported the views of his clients, publicly or privately. But why say that, when you can suggest that he not only supported those views, but was so enthused he had to be careful not to let it slip out publicly! And make sure that when you write about his career, write that he defended holocaust deniers, white supremacists, neo-Nazis, and hate-mongers. That’s more exciting, and most people won’t notice that what he was actually defending was the right of all of us to not only speak, but to hear.
As for Mr. Christie’s critics, the less said, the better. I have seen, repeatedly, condemnations based on the fact that he never defended the free speech of any non-white. Well, when the time comes that hate crimes are charged against a Muslim, a feminist, a Black Canadian, an aboriginal, or anyone other than a white Christian male, then I will give this criticism more weight.
The fact is, there are people who so hate what they believed Mr. Christie’s clients to be, that they hated him for the simple fact that he defended them. Even the ones found innocent. And there is no one who could have defended those clients who would not have been subjected to the wrath of these hate-filled people, such was their rage, their contempt for due process, and their desire to strike down anyone who says something they don’t like. These are the people who truly threaten us, and it was Doug Christie who stepped forward to battle them on our behalf. We have been more fortunate than we deserve.
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