Toronto Star | 09Aug2010 | Orest Slepokura

Spielberg movie a harbinger?

Re: Harper’s Ottawa becomes Republican la-la land, Opinion Aug. 8, 2010

“In the future, criminals are caught before the crimes they commit.” That’s the premise behind Steven Spielberg’s 2002 sci-fi movie Minority Report. With some $9 billion to be allocated to putting Canada’s penal system on steroids by Minister Stockwell Day and other Tory law-and-order mavens, we have to seriously second-guess the stated reason for this.

Will, in fact, the additional prison space anticipated be used to house people whose criminal behaviour was predicated on vices like gambling, drugs, or prostitution -- or, can we look forward to a new Canada in which the category of political prisoner becomes commonplace?

Might “preventive detention” be in the cards for Canadians? The muscle displayed by security forces earlier this summer at the G-20 Summit in Toronto, with the hundreds of citizens arbitrarily arrested and detained, would suggest that this is very possible.

Orest Slepokura, Strathmore, Alta.