Despite the complexities of Amanda’s case, the global attention and activism surrounding her death has helped stir up Ottawa to write new anti-cyberbulling legislation, a cause the Conservative government has proudly tacked onto their public agenda. Along with the tragically high profile suicide of Amanda Todd is the case of Rehtaeh Parsons—the Nova Scotian teenager who took her own life after a photograph of her, unconscious and allegedly being sexually assaulted, circulated throughout her high school for almost two years without any meaningful intervention from her school or law enforcement. Unlike Amanda’s case, charges have been laid against Rehtaeh’s alleged tormenters.The heartbreaking stories of both Amanda Todd and Rehtaeh Parsons caused a palpable amount of outrage in Canada, which is why it may be relieving to read that the Conservative government is trying to pass Bill C-13, a law that Justice Minister Peter MacKay is presenting as a pre-requisite to fighting back against the “hurtful” proliferation of “intimate images” online. Bill C-13, however, appears to be a hybrid of some tightened protection for anyone who may find themselves at the receiving end of a revenge porn nightmare, increased online surveillance powers for law enforcement, and stricter punishments for those who steal cable TV signals—because apparently the content thieves of the 1990s are still out there splicing cable wires.
Southern Poverty Law Center
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