Challenged Works


The Bible




Challenges

1997-Three men complained to the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission after they saw an anti-gay advertisement published in Saskatoon’s StarPhoenix. The ads, paid for by Hugh Owens, cited four Biblical verses that condemn homosexual conduct and displayed a drawing of two stick-men holding hands surrounded by a circle with a diagonal slash through it. A similar ad ran in Regina’s LeaderPost.

Objection—The Biblical citations, combined with the drawing, tended to expose homosexuals to hatred and ridicule.

Update—In 2001, a one-woman board of inquiry of the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission ruled that The StarPhoenix’s ad tended to expose homosexuals to hatred and ridicule. The newspaper and Owens were each ordered to pay $4,500 to the three complainants; Owens was forbidden from publishing similar messages in the future. In 2006, however, Saskatchewan’s Court of Appeal overturned the ruling. Justice Bob Richards declared that Owens’s ad, although “bluntly presented and doubtlessly upsetting to many,” did not violate the province’s human rights code.



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