I couldn't possibly comment - Macleans.ca
 

I couldn’t possibly comment


 

Jason Kenney comments, and yet does not comment, on the plight of Toronto grocer David Chen.

“He is a victim of crime, of property crime, petty crime. Crime that is costing his business at least $50,000 a year,” Kenney said of Chen. “He employs 10 people and has a family of four. And it is not easy to make ends meet.”

… Still, Kenney tread carefully and stopped short of commenting on whether Chen should have been charged in the case. “I can’t comment as a Minister of the Crown on particular investigations or particular cases. That would be inappropriate. It would violate the convention of sub judicie (before the courts),” Kenney said. “But I can say that I regard Mr. Chen as a victim of crime and, similarly, these other shop owners are. And we need to keep that in mind.”

… Police Chief Bill Blair could not be reached for comment today. An unidentified man answering the phone at Blair’s office told a Star reporter to call back in the morning and then cursed “Christ!” before hanging up the phone.


 

I couldn’t possibly comment

  1. Small businessman David Chen should have the right to defend his enterprise as any shopowner should. (This wouldn't be an issue in Texas if the perpetrator were assaulted, disabled, or even killed during the apprehension.) In Canada, we have freedoms, yes, but more often the laws are designed to protect criminals' rights. Mr. Chen and his associates are most likely well-schooled in martial arts, so a "take-down and hold" process should be acceptable, without penalty, until law-enforcers arrive at the scene.

    • "Mr. Chen and his associates are most likely well-schooled in martial arts"

      You've been watching a few too many Jet Li films

    • And if the shop owner was, say, Italian-Canadian, would you have remarked on his and his associates talent for knee-capping or otherwise disposing of those trangressing them?

      Sheesh.

  2. Very passive-aggressive appearance by Kenny there.

    He's right, of course, and Chen was in the right.

  3. I agree with Chen that of course a shopowner must be able to apprehend shoplifting suspects outside of the store. It isn't shoplifting if they're still in the store! Changing this part of the criminal code is something I can't see anyone being upset about, except the shoplifters, of course.

    However, that does not excuse this, to my mind blatant, election stunt. I especially liked the part at the end about "how come he was the only one to show up." How did the other parties even know about this, not being privy to letters or phone calls sent to the Minister of Justice?

    • What's inexcusable about it?

      Sure, it's political, but if I were facing an unjust prosecution, I'd very much like to have a prominent political visit and publicly say that my case was in his thoughts, even if he couldn't say any more than that.

      Means the Crown attorneys and judges will think twice before doing anything silly.

    • What's inexcusable about it?

      Sure, it's political, but if I were facing an unjust prosecution, I'd very much like to have a prominent political personage visit and publicly say that my case was in his thoughts, even if he couldn't say any more than that.

      Means the Crown attorneys and judges will think twice before doing anything silly.

      • Oh no, that part's okay as long as it isn't skating too close to the line about commenting on cases before the courts (which I'm not at all certain of), it's the 'none of the other political parties care about the victimized shopowners' meme I'm objecting to. And before you say it, yes I know that it was the shopowner's association, not Kenney, saying that. But we don't know what things were said in that closed door meeting, do we? I mean to say, it sounded a little pat to my mind. Sure, be happy that a senior cabinet minister took the time to come and talk to you about the issue. I think most everyone would leave it at that.

        • How dare the government try to rally public opinion in favour of a substantive change in the Criminal Code.

          Clearly illegitimate actions!

          If the other parties are so concerned about the matter, obviously we can expect to see this issue dealt with before the end of this parliament — take it off the table as a weapon for the Tories in the next election.

    • Are you saying that Ministers/govt officials should only intervene when Canadians get into trouble when they are out of the country, but in Canada, let the law handle it?

      • Are you saying we should jerry-pick which laws apply to which Canadian citizens? On the one hand, you have laws which this government ignores, and on the other hand you have laws which this government would like to ignore. Change the law, by all means, but nobody gets to ignore laws they don't like. In theory, at least.

        • The law is not being ignored, this case is being used as a means to possibly change the law,
          because like so many or our laws, they punish the victim more than the confessed criminal.

          We, the people, make the laws, through instruction to our MPs.
          Our enforcement agencies carry out the laws we made, and our courts interpret the laws we made.
          But make no mistake, WE are not bystanders here.

          • Kenney and his team should just fund the RCMP to the level they promised in 2006 and try to ease up on turning every crime scene into a CON commercial. Maybe if they've rounded up all the 'criminals' and the people who study the criminal system, they can then turn their ever shifting net on Nuffy donut lovers…

      • What evidence do you have that the government intervenes when Canadians get into trouble when they are out of the country anymore?

        Unless you mean they "intervene" to either A) make sure Canadians get into trouble, or B) make sure they stay in trouble once they get in trouble. 'Cause those two things they clearly do.

  4. Kenney has a history of inapptopriate comments. The issues surrounding this visit are not even relative to his portfolio. I espect that both the Toronto Police Services who "investigated" and charged this shop keeper and the Ontario Courts who have been blindsided by Kenney will have something to say.

    • Our Parliament instructs both law enforcement and the courts.
      If our laws and the interpretation of them is not satisfactory to Canadians,
      then they must change.

      I think Canadians have forgotten who the Boss is,
      it is us, we the people.

  5. I see nothing particularly controversial or noteworthy in Kenney's comments.

    I get the feeling that Wherry simply wishes that Jason Kenney would never comment on anything ever again.

    • Does Mr Wherry actually write? I've only seen cut and paste of other people's stuff.

  6. Kenney is grandstanding, again – for votes. Others, from all political stripes have been working on this for some time.

  7. Jason Kenney is to the Conservatives what Dennis Coderre is to the Liberals.

    Loud. Bombastic. Reckless. Careless. And ultimately, useless.