In the days since I first reported on the Calgary Chief Constable’s outrageous use of the civil courts to stifle criticism of his administration, the mainstream media seem to have gotten the whiff of scandal in their nose.
Broadcast media stories have appeared on Calgary’s A Channel and CBC as well as the CBC National has picked it up. Conspicuous in their absence on this story is the Calgary Sun and Global TV.
In the interim, the Chief has come out of hiding and given an interview to CBC’s Rick Boguski in which he said he was just trying to protect the morale of the police service.
Really? If that was his aim, then why won’t he lift the stifling traffic ticket quota of 20 “stats” per month off the patrol division? Because I can tell you that one thing has got the rank and file perpetually angry at the management of the CPS. But that is such a small thing really. Unless of course, you are on the receiving end of a cheap ticket issued so a patrol officer doesn’t get “negative attention” from his supervisor.
But there’s so much more affecting morale in the Calgary Police Service that using that as the driving factor for attacking the publisher of a website critical of the Chief is laughable.
This whole sordid chapter in the history of the once-proud force would be laughable were it not such a serious breach of the fundamental freedom of speech inherent in any democracy. But this Chief would trample that right and he must be stopped. And that is no laughing matter.
Tomorrow, lawyers for various media outlets will be making application to the courts to have the offensive order sealing the civil documents lifted. Let’s hope the courts have more sense in hearing that application than the judge who actually enabled Chief Jack Beaton to make mince meat of the Charter.