Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Officer Bubbles the Cry Baby

So, in yet another act of oppression that has made people more aware of how Canadian authorities are acting more and more like fascists, one of the stormtroopers at the G20 Toronto summit has sued YouTube over videos criticizing it.

For those of you who are unaware, Toronto police officer Adam Josephs was caught on video threatening to arrest a young female protester for assault, just because she was blowing ordinary bubbles at him. The video went viral (at least among those of us who hated what the cops did at G20), and he was nicknamed "Officer Bubbles". At around the same time, satirical cartoons were posted on YouTube making fun of this policeman, basically making fun of his image as a total power-tripper who will arrest anyone for simply breathing around him.

Well, apparently Mr. Josephs has finally been made aware of these cartoons, and has intimidated YouTube into taking them off of the site (though they have been mirrored many times over). According to his attorney, this is because commentators on the videos have made threatening remarks towards the Josephs family -- and if that were true I would be all for suing to have those remarks removed. However, the lawsuit specifically orders the videos to be taken down, and a small list of users suspended/sued, not for harassment or threats, but for defamation.

For those of you who don't know what that means, I'll explain. "Defamation", is basically a legal term for lying about someone in mass media. I have seen at least some of these videos, and they and the majority of the criticisms of Officer Josephs, do not accuse him of anything he did not do (parody notwithstanding, because that is an acceptable defense). All that the videos do, is make fun of actions he truly did commit. All that the vast majority of comments do, is wish for this so-called public servant to be stripped of badge, for what most of us would agree is excessive and unprofessional behaviour. That is all.

That being said, there are some remarks that do threaten or unreasonably malign him. If the lawsuit went after only those users, specifically for threats, I would be fine with that. But they don't. Not only that, but quite frankly Officer Josephs made some dishonest statements himself in his Statement of Claim, by referring to the majority of G20 protesters as heavily-armed thugs in the "Black Bloc" (all of which is well-known to be false). In other words, not only could he be potentially counter-sued for harassment and infringement of freedom of speech, but if he had been stupid enough to name any of those so-called militants in this SoC he could've been sued for libel himself! And that case could probably be won!

In any event, it would seem that Officer Bubbles here, needs to have a couple of things explained to him... things that I either figured out on my own, or had explained to me when I was young enough to be a fan of the Power Rangers. First of all, when a lot of people know about you, you're going to be made fun of. That's a fact of life -- get over it. Second of all, if you want people to stop criticizing you on public forums, maybe you should stop making an ass of yourself in public, by trying to arrest or litigate people for totally absurd reasons. Incidentally, I've seen your Facebook profile -- the one where you proudly describe your job as "Cleaning up human garbage" -- so it truly is stupid to expect the public to respect you, when you apparently have no problem with attacking and insulting them just because you feel like it.

That's it for me.

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