"Where else would you go when you have an ax to grind?"

Thursday, June 04, 2009

I may move back just to vote against these jerks

As a Canadian who has lived outside of Canada for a dozen years (and yes Mom, we are coming back eventually, honest) this kind of headline turns my blood to frozen concrete.

Ottawa says it has no duty to protect Canadians outside country

A lot has been done to help Khadr in Guantanamo: Justice Department

ServiceJune 3, 2009

Canada's legal duty to protect its citizens, even children, ends at the border and there is nothing in domestic or international law that obliges the government to seek Omar Khadr's repatriation, say federal arguments filed in court.
The government contends it has done plenty to ensure the "well-being" of the Guantanamo Bay detainee - from supplying him with magazines to ensuring he receives medical treatment and facilitating contact with his family - and any further protection is at the discretion of the state, not the courts

This is not happy-making news for all us expats, especially those of us who live in countries where "the usual suspects" means anybody foreign.
This could mean I am one misunderstanding away from life imprisonment since the government of Canada doesn't feel that they have any duty to assist me in any way should the police pick me up and imprison me for any reason at all.
And that does happen in a lot of countries. Police in Tokyo routinely stop foreigners riding bicycles to confirm the bike isn't stolen. Bikes here are supposed to be registered and usually carry a sticker with the owner's name - and if your bike happens to be registered in your Japanese wife's name, well, welcome to jail in Japan, where you don't have a right to a lawyer during police interrogation and are not even officially presumed innocent. This hasn't happened to me, but it does happen.
And that's in Japan, a nice civilized G8 country. Anyone care to try their luck in Central America or Africa or Saudi Arabia without any assistance from "Canada's New Government"?


Shinigami Kayo said...

This is part of my fear of visting nations where I am not fully knowledgable of their customs. I sooner travel with a local who knows the way around. Still, I am surprised to find the Canadian government trying to distant itself of any responsiblities to its people. Its so like..going to another country? Have fun, and don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

Anonymous said...

Did not the Supreme Quart of the US just strike down the decision that a lawyer HAD to be present if requested during the interrogation of a 'suspect' in the good 'ol USofA?

ian in hamburg said...

Considering how incompetent the Canadian government is at most things except wasting taxpayers' money, I'm not at all concerned.