[COMMENT1] Court File No. 0103‑14569
[This electronic file (as converted to MSWord) was supplied by the commercial court reporter employed, not scanned by me from printed copy as were the first two discoveries for Ms. Laframboise--FC]
IN THE COURT OF QUEEN'S BENCH OF
JUDICIAL DISTRICT OF EDMONTON
B E T W E E N:
‑ and ‑
THE NATIONAL POST COMPANY, NP HOLDINGS COMPANY, GLOBAL COMMUNICATIONS LIMITED and DONNA LAFRAMBOISE,
‑‑‑ This is the Continued Examination for Discovery of DONNA LAFRAMBOISE, a Defendant herein, taken at the offices of Atchison & Denman Court Reporting Services Limited, 155 University Avenue, Suite 302, Toronto, Ontario, M5H 3B7, on Monday, the 21st day of October, 2002.
Bradley J. Willis For the Plaintiff
F.S. Kozak For the Defendants
TABLE OF CONTENTS
INDEX OF EXAMINATIONS:
DONNA LAFRAMBOISE; Previously Sworn................. 250
EXAMINATION BY MR. WILLIS: (Cont'd)................ 250
INDEX OF UNDERTAKINGS
Undertakings are noted by U/T and are found on the following pages: 253, 256, 301
‑‑‑ Upon Commencing at 10:07 a.m.
DONNA LAFRAMBOISE; Previously Sworn.
MR. WILLIS: Ms. Laframboise, you acknowledge that you're still under oath?
THE DEPONENT: Yes.
EXAMINATION BY MR. WILLIS: (Cont'd).
1. Q. I'd like to begin today by referring specifically to the counterclaim in these proceedings, and I would refer you, first of all, to the initial paragraph, paragraph 27 in which it is alleged that Mr. Christensen sent an e‑mail containing in which it's alleged he falsely and maliciously published defamatory words. Now, that e‑mail ‑‑ perhaps we can ‑‑ I believe that's Item 8. A copy of that e‑mail is produced as Item 8 in the plaintiff's affidavit of productions. Is that the e‑mail to which you are referring?
A. Yes, it is.
2. Q. Now, what portions of the quoted words do you claim are false?
A. Well, I think these two lines that we've put into the counterclaim are the ones at issue.
3. Q. I'm sorry?
A. "You have no idea of the harm you are about to do." And then the second line, "If you care anything about journalistic integrity, if you care anything about whether the movement in Edmonton is destroyed, you will hold off until you hear the other side of the story."
4. Q. I'm trying to understand. What is said there that is false?
A. I'm sorry. I'm not a lawyer, so I'm not clear on whether I'm supposed to be offering legal opinion. And whether the issue is false or whether something is defamatory and false, I'm not sure legally whether those are equal or not.
5. Q. All right. Let me help you out there. There's an allegation that "you have no idea of the harm you are about to do." And did you understand that you were about to do something that might cause harm?
A. The implication is that I am ‑‑ the allegation "you have no idea of the harm you are about to do" implies that I am recklessly doing something without any concern for the consequences.
6. Q. All right. When I asked you a general question, you said you had some difficulty giving what you referred to as legal answers. Now, I'm asking a specific question, and you answered a little bit different one. My question is simply this: On March 22, 2001, did you have some idea that you were about to do something that was going to cause harm or might cause harm?
7. Q. All right. So you had no idea that anything you were going to do was going to cause harm?
A. Not harm.
8. Q. Thank you. And secondly, on March 22nd, 2001, the story I presume that we're talking about is the story that culminated in the article which is the subject of these proceedings, but the story that you had heard at this point was a story that you heard from your informant Louise Malenfant, correct?
A. I'm sorry, but on March 22nd, I'm fairly certain that I had spoken to a number of people.
9. Q. All right. In fact, when we talk about ‑‑ let me ask you this: So were you satisfied that on March 22nd you had heard enough of, quote, "the other side of the story" that you had satisfied whatever your concept of journalistic integrity is?
10. Q. All right. Did you consider it in some way inappropriate for Dr. Christensen to suggest that you hold off until you had heard the other side of the story?
A. I considered it inappropriate for him to suggest that I would not hold off until I had conducted proper research.
11. Q. So as of March 22nd, 2001, had you not informed people that you were about to publish an article or that you had drafted an article?
A. I don't remember exactly. I certainly spoke to people telling them that I was doing research for an article that would be pending in the near future.
MR. WILLIS: Off the record.
‑‑‑ Off‑the‑record discussion.
MR. WILLIS: Can you advise me how many drafts of your article were made and when they were completed?
THE DEPONENT: I'm sorry, I don't know.
MR. WILLIS: Can you check your records, and let me know.
U/T MR. KOZAK: That will be undertaking 27.
‑‑‑ Off‑the‑record discussion.
BY MR. WILLIS:
12. Q. Had you drafted an article by March 22nd, 2001?
13. Q. Now, in Exhibit 8, Dr. Christensen refers, if I can refer you to the second last paragraph, he says, quote, "You don't know Louise. From a distance, one only sees her good work, not her dark side; I learned that the hard way when I dug into my old‑age savings to bring her here last fall." Before you got this e‑mail from Dr. Christensen, did you know that he had subsidized Ms. Malenfant's activity for some period?
14. Q. What did you know about that?
A. To the best of my recollection, I knew that he had approached her when she was in Winnipeg, suggested that she come to Edmonton, and suggested that he would pay her a modest salary to do the kind of activist sort of work that she'd done in Winnipeg. [I paid her to do research and
writing, not activism. (That involved investigating accusations of various kinds of child and spouse abuse and assault.) But the reporter knew Ms. Malenfant's Winnipeg work was with sex accusations.] [Back]
15. Q. Did you know what he paid her and for how long?
A. I have no first‑hand knowledge of that.
16. Q. Well, what information did you have?
A. To the best of my memory, I think she suggested he was paying her a thousand dollars a month.
17. Q. And what did you know about the ‑‑ before at least you got this e‑mail, Item 8 in our productions from Dr. Christensen ‑‑ what did you know about the termination of that relationship?
A. I understood from Ms. Malenfant that the relationship had soured, that there was a great deal of animosity and hostility between the parties.
18. Q. And why was that? What was your understanding of why that had occurred?
A. Ms. Malenfant suggested to me that the occasion that had sparked the parting of ways had to do with her asking Mr. Christensen, Professor Christensen, what he felt he would accomplish by picketing an Edmonton newspaper and that he had not responded well to being challenged. [This is absurd. The real reasons for our split are shown in great detail in e-mails
between Ms. Malenfant and me, submitted to the reporter's lawyers during their discovery of me.]
19. Q. Anything else?
A. Sorry, the original question was?
20. Q. What did you know about the termination of the relationship between Dr. Christensen and Ms. Malenfant?
A. I wasn't terribly interested in paying attention to the details. I understood that there was a great deal of e‑mail exchanged between them.
21. Q. So that was the extent of your understanding?
A. Yes, I think she suggested to me that at a certain point she was receiving multiple e‑mails from him every day and that had caused her some concern and anxiety. [This too can be fairly well proved to be a huge lie.]
22. Q. Anything else that you can recall?
A. Not that I can recall.
23. Q. Now, when we spoke last, it appeared that all of your tapes of your interviews with Ms. Malenfant had been taped over. Is that correct? We haven't located any other tapes or records of your interviews with Ms. Malenfant?
A. I don't think they were all taped over because I think you received a portion of one.
24. Q. Or rather the second tape had been taped over, correct? Help me out here?
MR. WILLIS: Let's go off the record.
‑‑‑ Off‑the‑record discussion.
BY MR. WILLIS:
25. Q. When we last met, you'd indicated you'd provided to your counsel all the tapes that were in your possession, including whatever was left that hadn't been taped over of your telephone interview with Ms. Malenfant and with the Law Society person. And you were going to check your tapes to see how much of both of those interviews remains and provide me with an accurate transcript. Did you do that, and have you got one?
A. I'm sorry, as you noted, that undertaking was not pulled out by the court reporter. So we did not specifically address that issue.
MR. WILLIS: All right. So could I specifically ask for that undertaking, then, that we'll see whether we can clean up Item 20 in your production and provide whatever there is?
U/T MR. KOZAK: Yes, we'll give you that undertaking. [Next]
BY MR. WILLIS:
26. Q. Now, just following up on that while we're roughly on that topic. One of your undertakings was to inquire from Louise Malenfant ‑‑ this was your undertaking No. 26 ‑‑ to provide copies of any correspondence from you to her and any notes she has of any conversations. As of September 13, 2002, you said she had not responded to a request for the materials. Has she responded since?
27. Q. Have you spoken to Ms. Malenfant at any time since we last had our examinations for discovery?
A. Once, shortly after the discovery.
28. Q. In what context? Was anything said that was relevant to these proceedings?
A. I'm sorry. I don't remember precisely. I think I mentioned to her that I'd been out in Edmonton. But that it being such a strange visit with alarm bells going off in the middle of the night that I hadn't, in fact, contacted anyone when I was there including her. I'm sure I mentioned to her that the discoveries had taken place and that they were not complete.
29. Q. Did she call you, or did you call her?
A. I am not certain. I probably called her in response to an e‑mail that she sent to me, but I could not tell you.
30. Q. And is that ‑‑ did you produce a copy of that e‑mail to your solicitor?
31. Q. Would you do so so that he can determine whether it's relevant to these proceedings?
A. No, I'm sorry. I would not have kept it, it would have just been a general e‑mail what she was sending out to people and what her activities were at the moment. There would have been no reason to keep it.
32. Q. So she sent a general e‑mail about her activities, and in response to that, you called her you're saying?
A. I hadn't spoken to her in some time.
33. Q. But when was that that you called her?
A. I don't remember. It would have been after the discoveries.
34. Q. And did you keep notes of your conversation?
35. Q. Did you ask her to fulfill the undertaking that was given, undertaking No. 20, to provide her notes and materials?
A. No. I felt it was proper for my counsel to do that.
36. Q. What was your discussion about then? Tell me everything you can recall about your discussion?
A. I think I covered the bases. I was in Edmonton. I did not contact her. I did not see her. It was a rushed visit.
37. Q. And where was she when you spoke to her?
A. I presume that I phoned her at home. That would be to the best of my recollection.
38. Q. Do you know where she is now?
A. No clue.
39. Q. I'm just surprised that you called her. You told me earlier that you don't consider yourself her friend. Why did you call her?
A. Well, whether we like it or not, she's a part of the lawsuit. We are going to, at some point, encounter her in the context of the lawsuit. I thought it was a courtesy.
40. Q. So it wasn't appropriate for you to talk to her about the undertaking, but it was appropriate for you to call her because of the lawsuit? What I'm trying to understand is why would you speak to this witness yourself. She's not a friend. She's no longer a news source.
A. I'm sorry. I don't remember what was in my mind then.
41. Q. Now, then in paragraph 28, you refer to ‑‑ well, just before we get to paragraph 28, on March 22nd, 2001, you had spoken to Brian St. Germaine, Carolyn Vanee, Bob Bouvier, and you had received a phone call from [Tim] Adams. Other than Louise Malenfant, is there anyone else you had spoken to about the events which subsequently became part of the article?
MR. KOZAK: I'm sorry, Mr. Willis. You asked about a number of interviewees and gave some dates, but I assume that you were looking at a document.
MR. WILLIS: Oh, yes. I'm looking at your e‑mail dated Friday March 23rd, your e‑mail to Dr. Christensen, dated Friday March 23rd, 2001.
MR. KOZAK: Is that a document from our production?
MR. WILLIS: It's in both of our productions. It's Item 14 in our production. The source of my information is there is the first paragraph of Item 14.1 in our production. Now, is there anyone else with whom you had spoken other than the people there mentioned?
MR. KOZAK: The reason that I had asked is because I think the dates that you had put to Ms. Laframboise is March 21st. The date of this e‑mail, I believe, is March 23rd. And specific dates and conversations that occurred are set out in undertaking No. 17. I think some of the people that you suggested Ms. Laframboise had spoken to on March 21st had not yet been spoken to on that date.
MR. WILLIS: I think the date that I was using was March 22nd, the date of Mr. Christensen's memorandum. Yes, that was the date of Mr. Christensen's memorandum, March 22nd.
MR. KOZAK: Well, in any event, certainly, on March the 23rd, 2001, it appears from your document 14 that Ms. Laframboise had spoken to a number of individuals.
BY MR. WILLIS:
42. Q. All right. Now, in fact, Ms. Laframboise both Bouvier and Adams had called you rather than you calling them, correct?
A. No. I remember that I left a message for Bob Bouvier.
43. Q. But in fact, when he called you, he hadn't got your message. Rather, he had heard that you were planning to write this article, and that's why he called you, correct?
A. I couldn't tell you. I do know that I left a message for him prior to receiving a call from him.
44. Q. Whereas with Mr. Adams, he simply called you after?
A. Within a few hours of me starting to make initial inquiries, yes.
45. Q. Now, so referring next to paragraph 28, that's Item 19 in our productions. Now, the first sentence of paragraph 28 of your counterclaim reads, "None of this is good faith much less honest, journalistic investigation." The previous paragraph recites the first paragraph 14.1.
MR. KOZAK: The previous paragraph in the counterclaim?
MR. WILLIS: No, the previous paragraph in Dr. Christensen's e‑mail, Item 19, recites the paragraph to which I just referred you, that is to say, the first paragraph of 14.1. And then in context, that is to say ‑‑
THE DEPONENT: Sorry, 14.1 is where?
BY MR. WILLIS:
46. Q. 14.1 is what I just referred you to, the first paragraph of your e‑mail to Christensen of March 23rd about the interviews you had conducted to, supposedly, hear the other side of the story. You'll note that in the e‑mail that is referred to in paragraph 28 of the counterclaim, the first paragraph quotes your e‑mail, quotes the first paragraph of your e‑mail which is 14.1 in our production. Then the second paragraph, the part that goes just before the none of this good faith extract is the one I'm just about to put to you. And it says ‑‑ and
[The following is a short example, one of many, of such obstructiveness during discoveries.]
let me just deal with this paragraph. First of all, it says, "Since none of these people ‑‑", that is to say, the people referred to in your e‑mail, "‑‑ knew anything about my book on pornography, you have not made any attempts to hear the other side regarding my aspect of you pending article." Now, that was true, wasn't it?
A. If you go back to the e‑mail that I sent, there is no mention in my e‑mail or, indeed, in Professor Christensen's previous e‑mail about his book. This was not a story about his book. [Queries 4, 5, 5.5 & 6 are on the book!
As for my previous email, I sent it before knowing she meant to attack my book or anything about me.]
47. Q. All right. I'm sorry, when you say, "this was not a story about his book", part of the story, certainly, already is about his book, wasn't it? For example, you had told Mr. Bouvier what you thought was in the book and asked for his response to it, correct?
48. Q. And you had done?
A. And I also told Mr. Bouvier that if it had just been the book, it would not be a news story, that the news story was [Tim] Adams.
49. Q. I only want you to agree with me this far that part of your story already was to be about Dr. Christensen and part of that was about his book, correct?
A. Part but not the main, by any means.
50. Q. All right. And in fact, Dr. Christensen, in this paragraph, says "Since none of these people knew anything about my book on pornography, you have not made any attempts to hear the other side regarding my aspect of your pending article." Now, at that point, Dr. Christensen's aspect of the pending article related to what you thought were his controversial views on pornography as set out in this book, correct?
A. The news story was about the election of someone with an unsavory background. That was the main focus of the interviews. That was the main topic of the interviews. [As we've seen, she told even her first interviewee (Source A) that the article was to
be about both Mr. Adams and me. (She accused me to him of having "questionable ideas", but said little else on my book. A likely reason: he had told the reporter he had read my ideas but rejected Malenfant's interpretations.) She queried him at length about the second support group and other actions by me.]
51. Q. With respect, I'm going to ask you this question again. Dr. Christensen e‑mailed you and said that you had not made any attempts to hear the other side regarding his aspect of the pending article ‑‑
A. I had not spoken to him at that point in time.
52. Q. And my question is simple. His aspect of the pending article was his views which you regarded as controversial about pornography as set out in his book, correct? Now, when I asked you that question, instead of answering it, you went on to tell me what you thought was the main thrust of the article. I understand what you're saying, but we're talking about Dr. Christensen's aspect of the pending article.
MR. KOZAK: Are you asking her what was in his mind?
MR. WILLIS: No. I'm asking her to confirm that it's correct that she had made no attempts to hear the other side regarding his aspect of the pending article. And when I asked that, she keeps saying yes, but that wasn't the main trust ['thrust'] of the article. Can I not get a simple answer to a simple question? [Etc....] [Next]
MR. KOZAK: I think that she gave you the answer that she had not spoken to him.
MR. WILLIS: No, no, that's part of the answer. But I need a clear admission, and that's what I'm looking for. Instead, the witness keeps wandering off the topic onto what she considered the main trust of the article at time. But I'm here for Dr. Christensen, and the admission that I sought was simply this: Dr. Christensen's aspect of the pending article at the time was ‑‑ and you understood it to be at the time ‑‑ what you thought to be his controversial views regarding pornography as set out in his book, correct?
THE DEPONENT: Yes.
BY MR. WILLIS:
53. Q. And in fact ‑‑
A. No, no, pardon me. His controversial views regarding children and sex as set out in his book, not regarding pornography. I never had a problem with the pornography part.
54. Q. And in fact, it was true that you've made no efforts to hear the other side regarding that at that point?
A. I had not yet contacted Professor Christensen, and he would be the person to discuss what he meant by certain passages in his book.
55. Q. And although you had not yet contacted him, yet, you had made representations to Ms. Bouvier and Ms. Vanee and Mr. St. Germaine about what was said in the book about child pornography?
A. I think that's fair. You had a text in front of me. You can speak with some confidence.
56. Q. And then Dr. Christensen goes on to say, "As for [Tim]'s aspect, none of the other three persons named above has anything but the vaguest knowledge of [Tim]'s work with the support group. And Brian and Caroline have been out of activity in ECMAS for a long time." As far you knew, was that statement true?
A. None of the people I spoke to had any direct knowledge of Mr. Adams? I think that's correct.
57. Q. Now, in fact, the names of Brian St. Germaine Caroline Vanee. Those names you got from Louise Malenfant, correct?
A. I'm not sure. I would presume so.
59. Q. The organization called MERGE?
A. I knew that Professor Christensen was involved in it, but I did not know ‑‑ I don't think I thought about MERGE because it was ECMAS. --->
60. Q. MERGE is a nonprofit society called the Movement for the Establishment of Real Gender Equality. Did you understand the differences between those two organizations and Professor Christensen's role in them?
A. I suppose so. Just MERGE didn't come into the equation, so I'm not sure I had ‑‑ I'm sure I did not think much about it. ---->
61. Q. What, actually, did you know about MERGE?
A. I knew they put out a magazine. I knew that Professor Christensen was involved in it. It had been some years since I'd seen the magazine. I didn't ‑‑ I suppose I knew that the organization still existed but was not clear on what it was doing.[Not clear only if she didn't ask.]
62. Q. In fact, had you received copies of that magazine from Professor Christensen when it first came out? [Called Balance magazine, back then being distributed to newsstands across Canada.]
A. I would expect so. I received them probably from him. [In fact, the top of p. 363 of her book cites an article from Balance, and she evidently learned from that article about the Kanin research she cites 3 lines lower on p. 363.]
63. Q. Did you have any idea at that time of whether MERGE was active or what it was doing or how it related to ECMAS?
A. No, as I suggested, I think I heard that it was around, but I had no reason to pay any attention to it. [Next]
64. Q. Now, the next sentence that proceeds the first impugned sentence in paragraph 28 is, "Moreover, you did not contact [Tim] or Bob. They had to track you down just as I'd have to do in a desperate late‑hour attempt to get you to listen to the other side." Well, in fact, it's wrong that you didn't attempt to contact Mr. Bouvier because you did as you testified leave a message on the ECMAS message line. And incidently, that's correct, isn't it? You left the message on the ECMAS message line for Mr. Bouvier not on his own telephone line?
A. I'm sorry, I don't recall which number.
65. Q. In any event, that statement by Dr. Christensen is correct. Is it not? Both Adams, Bouvier, and Christensen tried to contact you first in their concern about the article that they understood you were going the publish?
A. No, it's not. I tried to contact Mr. Bouvier. He was not there. I left a message.
[No one is "there" at a message line; it was not his own number, and he didn't know she had called. As seen from her interview with Bouvier, she understood this at the time; now she is pretending not to.]
66. Q. I'm simply saying they contacted you ‑‑ okay, you tried to contact Mr. Bouvier, but in fact, he contacted you first not having received your message, and ‑‑
MR. KOZAK: She can't answer that.
BY MR. WILLIS:
67. Q. You understood that from him, didn't you? He hadn't got your message when you phoned you?
A. No, I'm sorry, I don't think I can do that.
68. Q. In any event, those three people got a hold of you rather than you getting a hold of them? That's correct, isn't it?
A. No. I won't agree to the first one. Mr. Bouvier called me after I left him a message. I cannot speak to whether he picked up that message.
69. Q. You couldn't infer that from the nature of your discussion with him? Is that what you're saying?
A. Not to the best of my memory, and even if it's the case, it's a distortion to suggest that he called me first. I called him first.
70. Q. You know, all I'm trying to confirm here is that ‑‑ and in fact, I didn't ask who called who first. I simply pointed out that these three men contacted you first. They got a hold of you first and talked to you first before you got a hold of them, correct, all three of them?
A. No, I'm sorry, but I'm not going to agree to the first one.
71. Q. Well, you left a message for Bouvier, but in fact, it was he who got a hold of you?
MR. KOZAK: Perhaps, you could ask who initiated the call where they had their first conversation.
MR. WILLIS: Well, indeed, I asked that. The word I used was contact, but the witness wanted to interpret it otherwise. In fact, that's the word Professor Christensen used. I've asked the witness to confirm simply this: Professor Christensen said in his e‑mail, "You did not contact [Tim] or Bob. They had to track you down just as I've had to do in a desperate late‑hour attempt to get you to listen to the other side." Now, I understand you to say that you left a message for Mr. Bouvier, but I'm simply saying that Mr. Bouvier contacted you and got a hold of you first ‑‑
A. First? What do you mean first? What does first mean in that context?
72. Q. He's the one who initiated the telephone call that lead to your ‑‑ that was your first conversation?
A. By accident.
73. Q. And when he did so, you knew that he hadn't got your message?
MR. KOZAK: And she has said she doesn't know that. Well, Mr. Willis, the point that I'm making is regardless of what the transcript says, you've asked whether Ms. Laframboise knew that Mr. Bouvier hadn't picked up the message. You haven't asked her what Mr. Bouvier said about that. What she knew about it, and what he said about it may be two different things.
MR. WILLIS: Well, let's not speculate. So if you look at Item FF00487, you'll agree with me that No. 1 ‑‑
MR. KOZAK: Perhaps, you could just wait until we get that. What is the document number.
MR. WILLIS: It's Item 30 on your production. And if you look at the first page, you'll see the basis of my suggestion that you understood that Mr. Bouvier hadn't got your message and, in fact, was calling you for the reasons set out by Professor Christensen in his e‑mail.
MR. KOZAK: Well, Mr. Willis, the first thing I notice that this is a call that Donna Laframboise initiated.
MR. WILLIS: If you would be kind enough to read the entire page, you'll see that it's clearly a return of Mr. Bouvier's call. And if the witness will read the entire page, I think she'll have no difficulty in agreeing with the suggestion that I've been making to her.
BY MR. WILLIS:
74. Q. Have you read that now?
A. Yes, I have.
75. Q. And now, will you agree with me that, in fact, it was obvious to you that Mr. Bouvier hadn't got our message, and he was calling you because of his concern about your impending article?
A. The suggestion in this transcript is that there was a previous conversation, and in that previous conversation, I became aware that Mr. Bouvier had not received my message.
76. Q. And you're clearly returning Mr. Bouvier's call, correct, you understand that?
A. My recollection is that I was calling Mr. Bouvier at the time that he had appointed on a previous occasion and that I was somewhat late.
77. Q. And the appointment on the previous occasion was as a result of a call made by Mr. Bouvier to you?
A. I'm not sure that's evident from the transcript.
78. Q. Well, may I suggest to you when you say, "I don't want you to think I wasn't going to call you.", in fact, it is evident even from the transcript, if you can't remember it?
MR. KOZAK: Well, it's not evident to me, Mr. Willis.
BY MR. WILLIS:
79. Q. Well, now, that I've refreshed your memory ‑‑ if I refresh your memory by telling you that Mr. Bouvier called you, and you are now returning his call as agreed, does that help you to recall that that is so? Are you able to admit that that's so?
A. No, I'm sorry. If you had a document that suggested that, it would be helpful.
80. Q. Well, if one looks at the transcript here and one reads your phrase there, "So I don't want you to think that I wasn't going to call you because I did leave a message, and I guess it was just the wrong place." You'll agree with me that you wouldn't have said that if, in fact, it was you who initiated the call to Mr. Bouvier?
A. Let me think about that. Perhaps, I think I see what you're getting at. I think that's a logical inference.
MR. KOZAK: Testify to what you can remember.
BY MR. WILLIS:
81. Q. So you see ‑‑ so you're saying now you can't recall whether you got a hold of Mr. Bouvier first despite the fact that I've drawn your attention to the transcript in which you concede that you just left a message on what you refer to as the wrong place and in which you seek to assure the witness that you don't want him to think that you weren't going to call him? That's all right. If that doesn't help you remember and your answer is that you can't remember, just say so.
A. I think that's my answer. I'm not certain.
82. Q. Thank you. Now, let's just get the next sentence before the impugned words in the counterclaim. He then goes on to say, "If the reports from people you did contact are correct, in fact, your mind was made up about publishing your attack on us before you even talked to them." And that's what he says before he says none of this is in good faith much less honest, journalistic investigation." Now, in fact, in one respect, your mind was made up, wasn't it? Because you've agreed with me that in your conversation you were encouraging Mr. Bouvier to have Dr. Christensen expelled from the organization, ECMAS, correct? Your mind was made up about that?
A. My personal view that what would have been appropriate behaviour on the part of ECMAS is aside from the fact. As a journalist, I had a working hypothesis and was interviewing people to see whether the hypothesis was valid or not.
83. Q. The fact is your mind was made up about this. You encouraged Mr. Bouvier to take steps to have Dr. Christensen expelled from ECMAS. Did you not?
A. Mr. Bouvier asked me what he should do.
84. Q. Can you not just answer the question? Yes or no? You did, didn't you?
MR. KOZAK: She's about to answer the question.
MR. WILLIS: No, she didn't. Once again, there's a certain locution. I've simply asked a simple question.
BY MR. WILLIS:
85. Q. Your mind was made up to this extent that, in fact, you encouraged Mr. Bouvier to take steps to expel Dr. Christensen from ECMAS.
A. I'm sorry. My mind may have been made up about what the appropriate behaviour would have been. My mind made up about encouraging someone is a little confusing.
86. Q. Must we go over this again? We spent 15 minutes last time before you finally agreed with me that yes, you had suggested to Mr. Bouvier that he expel Dr. Christensen. Do you want me to read that to you again?
A. Yes, please.
87. Q. In fact, why don't you read it again at page 116 of the transcript of your previous discovery.
‑‑‑ Brief adjournment at 11:05 a.m.
‑‑‑ Upon resuming at 11:11 a.m.
BY MR. WILLIS:
88. Q. Now, Ms. Laframboise, you've had a chance to reread my questions and your answers on page 116 of your previous discoveries?
A. Yes, I have.
89. Q. And in particular, I refer you to my last two sentences, quote, "That's what you meant, right? You meant to advocate to Mr. Bouvier that Dr. Christensen be expelled from the organization? Answer: I think that's a reasonable inference." You've had a chance to reread those?
A. "A reasonable inference." Yes.
90. Q. Those words were spoken to Mr. Bouvier before you had spoken to Dr. Christensen, correct?
A. What words in particular to Mr. Bouvier?
91. Q. The words that of which it was, "a reasonable inference", of which it may be said that it was a reasonable inference from them that you meant to advocate to Mr. Bouvier that Dr. Christensen be expelled from the organization?
92. Q. So Dr. Christensen, then, just before the sentence about which you complain in the counterclaim, Dr. Christensen says, "If the reports from people you did contact are correct, in fact, your mind was made up about publishing your attack on us before you even talked to them." And that's in caps. Now, I'm simply asking you to confirm that your mind was made up about, at least, one thing, namely, that Dr. Christensen ought to be expelled from the ECMAS organization?
A. Before I talked to them, I think I could have made up my mind while I was in discussion with them. I'm not sure we can infer that my mind was made up before I had any discussions with anyone.
93. Q. Are you suggesting that ‑‑ well, now, I think we have your confirmation by way of undertaking that you spoke to Mr. Bouvier. I'm sorry, you were uncertain as to the exact date, but in any event, I don't think we have it in the statement of claim. It was Thursday March 22 at 10 o'clock a.m. is our information. But in any event, your conversation with Mr. Bouvier anti‑dated any attempt to contact Dr. Christensen, correct?
94. Q. Now, I'm suggesting to you that when you spoke to Mr. Bouvier, you had made up your mind that Dr. Christensen should be expelled from ECMAS?
A. Perhaps, I can rephrase it in a way that will make me comfortable and give you what you're looking for. Before I spoke to Dr. Christensen, did I view it as public relations nightmare that he was involved in a group that was helping divorced fathers? Yes.
95. Q. Well, that's helpful to understand your idea. But the admission that I want is something simpler. I'm assuming that if you said words that you knew could reasonably be construed as advocacy that Dr. Christensen be expelled from the ECMAS organization, that if you said those words, that you had made up your mind that, in fact, he ought to be expelled from that organization, that you were not doing it merely to be some journalistic ‑‑ but that in fact, those were your views, and you had made up your mind?
A. No, I'm sorry, I think it's very clear from the transcript of that telephone call that I expressed those views after being expressly asked by Mr. Bouvier what he should do.
96. Q. What relevance does that have to my question? My question was simply this: You advocated Dr. Christensen be expelled, and I infer from that that meant that you had made up your mind that he should be expelled, correct? That was my question.
A. I agree.
97. Q. Now, and that leads me to ask this question: Did you ask yourself whether it was fair to engage in such advocacy without even having talked to Dr. Christensen?
A. Part of the process of being a journalist is to ask provocative questions and see how people respond because that tells you a great deal about what's going on in the organization.
98. Q. Well, part of the process of the being a lawyer is to try to ask questions that can be answered yes or no. And the question I just asked, with respect, can be answered yes or no. Did you ever think about whether it was fair to engage in such advocacy without even having contacted Dr. Christensen? Did you think about it?
A. I don't remember thinking about it.
99. Q. Now, I asked you earlier whether there was any canon of ethics that you, at the material time, recognized as binding on you as a journalist, and I understand your answer is no, correct?
A. I think you asked if there were formal ethics codes which applied to me at the National Post, and the answer was no.
100. Q. I went further. I asked you whether there was any ‑‑ in fact, maybe I'll just refer you to it. My recollection is that I went further and asked you whether there was any ethical code about which you considered yourself personally bound apart from the existence of any formal code, and I think your answer was no. Do you want me to refer you to it?
A. Yes, please.
‑‑‑ Off‑the‑record discussion.
BY MR. WILLIS:
101. Q. If I can refer you to page 50. Now, at page 50 of your previous discussion, I asked you at line 12, "Question: Had you ever formulated a personal journalistic code of ethics by which you felt bound? Answer: No. Question: Even if you had not formulated it in writing, did you have in your mind a code of ethics by which you understood journalists in your position ought to be bound? Answer: Not in any formal way. Question: All right. In an informal way, had you ever had any discussion about any aspects of journalistic ethics with your peers which resulted in some informal statement of ethics by which you felt bound? Answer: I can't recall any such discussions I did not go to journalism school. So I suspect those kinds of discussions do happen very formally there." And then on the next page, page 51, "Question: Now, at the time you wrote in article, did you think that there were any special ethical considerations that apply to journalists that wouldn't apply to other people? Answer: Nothing comes to mind." And I presume nothing still comes to mind about that? In other words, there are no special ethical considerations that apply to journalists. No ethical dispensation, for example, a journalist might have that other people don't have?
A. That's a very general question.
102. Q. Yes, well, I asked you a general question last time, and you didn't have trouble giving me that answer. Do you have more trouble now when I said at page 51, line 9, "At the time you wrote this article, did you think that there were any special ethical considerations that apply to journalists that wouldn't apply to other people? Answer: Nothing comes to mind." Does something now come to mind?
A. Well, in truth, yes, I have to answer yes. I think the big one obviously is that a journalist has the potential to affect people's lives in both a positive and negative way. It's potential that should be kept in mind and used. There comes a responsibility to use that carefully.
103. Q. So ‑‑
A. And I think if we look at the transcript right beneath where we've just finished off, there's a discussion about a conversation I had with a colleague which suggests, in fact, that I was aware of some of those issues.
104. Q. All right. The particular one that I want to ‑‑ let me enunciate a general, ethical proposition and ask you if you consider yourself to be bound. By first of all, I understand from what you've just said is that, if anything, because of the affect that a journalist can have on other people's lives, you would consider that a journalist would have a higher obligation than an ordinary person would have, if anything, to be fair to another person in advocating, for example, how other people should treat a person?
A. I agreed with everything up to the very last phrase, a special responsibility to be fair in what one writes in the product that reaches the public. I have no problem agreeing with that.
105. Q. All right. And generally speaking, for example ‑‑ but you have a problem with suggesting that a journalist would have ‑‑ let's put it this way: You don't have any problem in agreeing that a journalist should attempt to be fair in advocating how a person should be treated?
A. In writing, the advocating in writing?
106. Q. It's an ethical obligation that you would agree that every person has? You should be fair to people in advocating what should happen to them?
107. Q. All right. And again, I take it you would agree that to be fair to people, generally ‑‑ unless the evidence is overwhelming perhaps ‑‑ but generally, you should, if you're about to advocate something that would affect them or someone else adversely, you should talk to them before you advocate it?
A. No. I know that sounds like it's self‑evident, but in this case, I was speaking to the president of the organization involved. I think it was entirely reasonable to raise questions before I had conducted my interview with Professor Christensen.
108. Q. Now, you see, let me just stop you there. That wasn't my question. My question ‑‑ I wasn't asking you about raising questions. I was asking you about advocacy, and I was asking if you would agree with me that notwithstanding the fact that you don't feel bound by any particular ethical code you would nonetheless agree with me that just as a human being ‑‑ apart from being a journalist ‑‑ that you would agree that before one advocates doing something to someone that could have negative consequences for them or someone that one should, at least, talk to that person except in extreme circumstances? You rephrased advocating to raising question. So I'm taking you back to this issue of advocacy.
MR. KOZAK: So, Mr. Willis, just so that I'm clear, are you talking in general terms?
MR. WILLIS: At the moment, I'm talking in general terms.
MR. WILLIS: I'm trying to establish my major premise.
THE DEPONENT: So I should never advocate anything without talking to the person involved first?
BY MR. WILLIS:
109. Q. I'm asking you this question. Would you accept that, like every person ‑‑ and I'm for the moment deferring the question as to whether as a journalist, you have a higher obligation ‑‑ but that every person before advocating, recommending, saying that something should be done that would have negative consequences to a person or to other people should, except in extraordinary circumstances, talk to that person?
A. Well, I think there are a lot of Alberta constituents here that would advocate quite strongly that Premier Klein should resign and that they would not feel any obligation to talk to him personally first. [If done based on established knowledge already publicly available, fine. But if based on vile
allegations readers are in position to know about, it would be contemptible if done to him or to anyone.] 110. Q. All right. That's a counter‑example.
Assume we have a private individual as opposed to a public figure like Premier Klein, does that ‑‑ you've carved out an exception for a public individual. And you've said that one can ‑‑ that that's a form of public, political advocacy to which the generalization doesn't apply. Other than that, is there any other exception that you have in mind?
MR. KOZAK: Mr. Willis, I think the way that you frame that that's a hypothetical question. I think that you can ask what happened in this case.
MR. WILLIS: You know, this is really important, Mr. Kozak, and I've looked at the law since we talked last. Because of the allegations of malice I'd like you to really reconsider any objections that you have about my general questions about this witness's opinions. But here we're asking about the ethics by which she considered herself bound, and these general principles are not hypothetical. This isn't a hypothetical question at all. I haven't said if this and that. I've simply said, At the time, did you consider yourself bound by this general ethical principle? The witness has very appropriately and responsively enunciated one counter‑example or one exception to a general rule. Now, I'm asking her would she ‑‑ and I think that's one that falls under the extraordinary circumstances exception that I put to her. Now, I'm simply saying have you got any other exception, or would you generally agree with that proposition.
MR. KOZAK: Well, my objection is based on the fact that you started that somewhat long question with an invitation for her to assume something. And on a second point, I don't know that it's clear in the witness's mind what constitutes what you've referred to as exceptional circumstances because what she described in my mind is not an exceptional circumstance. So...
BY MR. WILLIS:
111. Q. Well, let me ask this question again. I'm trying to explore this witness's concept of ethics. Now, you'll agree with me that it's a little difficult in this sense that I can't point to a journalistic code of ethics by which she considers herself bound. So we have to look at her personal ethics, and those are at stake here in this case. This is why you're suing us for all this money. So in my respectful submission, it's very important for me to explore this witness's concept of ethics and integrity which of course are a large part of these transcripts. So my question was simply this: Did you at the time consider that you had an ethical obligation in advocating a course of action that might have a negative impact on a person or on other people to talk to that person first? And you've said well, not if it was someone like Premier Klein, and I was advocating that he would resign. So you've responded with that type of ethical question. But other than matters involving public advocacy of someone like Premier Klein, is there any other exception that you can think of to that rule, or would you normally agree with it?
A. No, in fact, I have to concur with my counsel that I don't see it as extraordinary. I think, in fact, one of the amazing things about being a journalist is that one actually gets the opportunity to interview the subject in the news firsthand. Most people go around forming opinions every day about people they'll never have a chance to speak to firsthand, and they get to vote according to those opinions.
112. Q. All right.
A. That's the way the world usually works.
113. Q. So but generally speaking, if you're going to propose something as opposed to in a political arena but in a private arena. You've carved out an exception for the political arena, the arena of a public figure. I'm saying other than that, do you have any objection to that as a general, ethical statement?
A. Yes, I've just told you that, in fact, I think it's not an exception, but I think it's the rule for most people how they form their opinions is by necessity secondhand.
114. Q. And so for example, if you would consider, then, and you considered at the time that it would be ethical for you to advocate something that might have negative consequences for a person without talking to that person?
A. My opinion may well have changed after I interviewed Professor Christensen, but I did have an opinion based on what he'd written in this book beforehand. And yes, I did consider it appropriate to take a stand based on that opinion.
115. Q. And had you considered it appropriate to, as you put it, to take that stand without having talked to Professor Christensen?
116. Q. Now, similarly, I think you recall that you told Mr. Bouvier that you agree with 97 percent of the things that Dr. Christensen has said in his book, correct?
A. Something to that effect. I'm not sure if it was 97 percent.
117. Q. Well, shall I remind you of that, or will you agree that that's what you said? Which do you prefer?
MR. KOZAK: She can't remember, so if you want to...
MR. WILLIS: All right. I'll refer you to page FF00505 of document 30.
THE DEPONENT: I think I said 90 percent. So I've said three different numbers 90, 95, 97.
BY MR. WILLIS:
118. Q. Let's just put the passage on the record: "If it turns out that you find out there's another person in your organization whose written a book about pornography. Now, let me tell you, I'm very much a person who would agree with what ‑‑ much of what is in Ferrel Christensen's book about pornography, okay? I think ‑‑ 90 percent of it I don't have a problem with it. I think he actually makes some, some very good arguments. But there is, you know, 3 percent of it. So 95 or 97 percent of it I would agree with. 3 percent of it whenever he talks about kids and sex, he says some really disturbing things." So you'll agree with me that that of course is what you said to Mr. Bouvier in the conversation we're talking about?
A. I agree.
119. Q. Now, at that point, if I understand, you'll agree with me that you knew that Mr. Bouvier hadn't read the book? You knew that?
A. Is there anywhere where it says that?
120. Q. Yes. I can find that. Of course, perhaps, you can recall that from the fact that you've now put to him that someone has written such a book, but I'll find it for you.
A. Okay. Page 7, "Right, and I guess, I don't know. No, I've not read Ferrel Christensen's book. I'm not aware of that." Do you see that?
121. Q. Yes. All right. So you've referred me to the part in paragraph 7 where Mr. Bouvier says he hadn't read Dr. Christensen's book. Now, you'll agree with me that in the passage I've just quoted you from page 19 that you knew that Mr. Bouvier ‑‑ or that you intended Mr. Bouvier to believe that you had read the book thoroughly enough so that you could say ‑‑ you could even say that you agreed with 95 or 97 percent of it?
A. Yes, we had this discussion last time.
122. Q. But the one thing we didn't ask was about these ethical principles. You'll agree that ‑‑ I think you agreed that, in fact, you'd read pages 109 to 113 which Ms. Laframboise had faxed to you and that you ‑‑ or e‑mailed to you ‑‑ and that the other parts or the earlier parts of the book you'd read years ago and had forgotten, and that was the status of your knowledge at that time?
A. I don't remember anyone faxing my anything with respect to the book.
123. Q. I'll save that for trial, but the fact is you'll agree with me that at the time you made this statement to Mr. Bouvier ‑‑ that's at page 19 ‑‑ all that was in your memory about the book other than your general conclusions that you had made years ago was pages 109 to 113?
A. No. I'm talking about the general argument of the book, and then I'm talking specifically about pages 109 to 113.
124. Q. But in fact, you couldn't remember any of the pages except 109 to 113?
A. No, I could very well remember the general thesis of the book, and that's why I say that I would agree with most of it and that he makes some very good points.
125. Q. I think when I asked you before about the portions of the book other than 109 to 113, you had no recollection other than that you agreed ‑‑ you recalled that you had agreed with the previous thesis, but you didn't have any specific recollection of anything other than those pages, correct? You remembered you'd read it, and you remembered you'd agreed with it, but you didn't have any specific recollection of any of it, correct?
MR. KOZAK: Well, maybe you should put that passage to her.
MR. WILLIS: Oh my.
MR. KOZAK: I think that she had answered that she had read the first hundred pages or so, and she agreed with the general sentiments expressed by the author on pornography.
MR. WILLIS: And she said she'd read them long enough ago that she couldn't remember anything specific about it, and she hadn't reread it. And we went through that in a lot of detail. Must we go through it again, or can you agree with me?
MR. KOZAK: Well, she's given you that answer already you say.
BY MR. WILLIS:
126. Q. Well, we need to, at least ‑‑given the time that has elapsed between the last discovery ‑‑ we need to make sure that we're starting from the same platform because I'm about to ask a general question of ethics. So I want male sure that we've got a clear understanding of the facts. My understanding of the facts is that when you spoke to Mr. Bouvier, you had clearly in your mind pages 109 to 113, and as for the rest of the book, you just had your general recollection from the previous reading that you agreed with most of it?
127. Q. Now ‑‑
A. And I had the book in front of me throughout the process of doing this article, the entire book not just a few pages.
128. Q. Yes. I understand you had it in front of you. And did you think what you did was fair to Dr. Christensen? Did you think the representations you made on page 19 to Mr. Bouvier were fair to Dr. Christensen?
A. Page 19?
129. Q. Yes. When you said, "Whenever he talks about kids and sex, he says some really disturbing things.", did you think that was fair to Dr. Christensen?
130. Q. And when you said later on that Dr. Christensen was suggesting that "sex with kids is maybe not such a bad thing.", did you think that was fair?
A. Unfortunately that was my interpretation of his written text.
131. Q. But now, let me ask you this: I take it that you were very confident that your interpretation of his written text was correct? Am I right? I say that because if you hadn't been very confident, you would have scarcely recommended that he be expelled from the organization on the basis of your interpretation?
A. I was confident that my interpretation was a reasonable one. Whether it was a correct one? I'm not sure anyone's interpretation is necessarily going to be correct, a reasonable interpretation of the written text.
132. Q. So you didn't think that any discussion or debate about Dr. Christensen's book was required before expelling him from ECMAS?
A. I'm sure they would have quite a debate in ECMAS. I would expect that they would, that they would get the book, that they would look at the passages, and they would make up their own mind.
133. Q. But as far as you were concerned, you didn't need to hear Dr. Christensen on the matter before making up your mind? You were already prepared to advocate that he be expelled?
134. Q. Now, at that time, what understanding did you have of the ‑‑ let me stop that. Let me rephrase that. Of course you're aware that an organization like ECMAS consists of men who, in most cases, are going through difficult legal matters involving divorces or other domestic matters, correct?
135. Q. And you understand that most of the members of ECMAS are people against whom serious allegations of one kind or another have been made?
A. Many, I would not say most.
136. Q. For example, the president, Mr. Bouvier, you knew that his wife had charged him with assault?
A. I'm not sure I knew that.
137. Q. In fact, I think you said that all of your informants wanted confidentiality because their cases were coming before the court, correct?
A. Yes, but that does not mean that they were charged, that I knew anything about charges.
138. Q. However, you knew that almost every one of these persons would have some serious and damaging allegations made against them in connection with domestic matters?
A. No, I'm sorry. I would say that many of them would. I would not say that I could know for a fact that most of them did.
139. Q. But that in fact, is all I'm asking you to agree with that you understood that most of them ‑‑
A. Many of them, not most. I will not agree to most, many.
140. Q. All right. And you're saying you didn't know about Mr. Bouvier's personal situation, for example?
A. I can't recall it ever coming up.
141. Q. But in any event, you knew that for such organizations it's extremely important to have people who are associated with him, who could act as spokesmen, who are not the subject of legal proceedings, and against whom no negative allegations can be made? You knew that's important, don't you?
A. Wait a minute. Let's break that into pieces.
142. Q. Well, I'll break it into pieces for you. You knew, for example, that if a man was charged with having assaulted his wife ‑‑ as some of the members, many of ECMAS are ‑‑ that for them to speak out about the unfair treatment of men charged with assault would be difficult?
A. I would agree with that.
143. Q. So for an organization like ECMAS, it's important to have people who ‑‑ to use the trite clichÚ ‑‑ who like see Caesar's wife are pure and cannot be accused of any such misconduct?
A. I would agree with that.
144. Q. So a person like Professor Christensen, for the sake of argument, Louise Malenfant becomes an important person because such people cannot be said to be biased because of their personal case or personal situation?
A. I can't say that I know much about Professor Christensen's personal situation. But certainly, Ms. Malenfant falls into that category.
145. Q. And generally speaking, an organization like ECMAS, consisting of people, many of whom as you have conceded, have personal problems which prevent them from speaking out ‑‑ indeed, all of your sources wanted confidentiality for just that reason. Such organizations have a real need of people whose bona fides cannot be attacked, correct?
146. Q. And in part, this is really part of the reason for your advocacy that Professor Christensen can be expelled; namely, that his bona fides would now come into question because of what was said in his 1990 book, correct?
147. Q. Now, you knew ‑‑ well, would you agree with me that before you found out about this book, you understood that Professor Christensen had done valuable work in a movement to which you were sympathetic, that is, the so‑called mens equality movement?
148. Q. And you had never heard of anything negative about Professor Christensen before Ms. Malenfant started to, as you put it, sling the mud?
A. I never heard anything negative? I don't think that would be true.
149. Q. What had you heard?
A. I heard from other journalists that Professor Christensen was ‑‑ let me see how we say this ‑‑ was not seen as terribly persuasive or credible. I had heard from others in the fathers' rights movement that Professor Christensen was perhaps not the nicest person. Although, he did very good work. I had heard that he made some people uncomfortable, other activists, that kind of thing.
150. Q. Now, there's three things you said. First, you said you heard from other journalists that Professor Christensen wasn't terribly persuasive. Can you recall from whom and in what context you heard that?
A. These would have been comments over the years. This is a movement that I followed for a number of years. So my general impression was that if I told a colleague that they should pay attention to what was going on in Edmonton, that it would be a problem. Because they would come back to me and say well, you know, Professor Christensen makes me a little nervous. He doesn't seem terribly credible to me, and it was very difficult for me because it meant that I was the only one that was writing anything positive about many of these issues. Because there was no polish to some of the activists, and journalists didn't respond well to them.
151. Q. Can you help me out with any of the five Ws of journalism here? Who said what and when and why about Professor Christensen? There's one more W, but I forgot it ‑‑ where? But that doesn't matter. It's Edmonton. So there's only four Ws left. Can you help me with them?
A. The problem is that you're asking me about things that I would never have made any records of.
152. Q. So nothing sticks out? You don't remember your friend, X, saying wow, Christensen is not credible. Or words to that effect. You don't remember any specific example? That's your general impression?
A. There's a young man who works for the Post who was posted in Edmonton. I'm trying to remember his name. He was the Edmonton correspondent for a while. When I encouraged him to write about ECMAS, I think this was around the time that Louise went out to Edmonton. He told me that he had met Professor Christensen, and what he'd seen had not made him interested in writing an article, certainly, not a sympathetic article. His name was [name deleted for reasons explained elsewhere].
153. Q. So he still with the Post?
A. No. I think the last I heard, he was with CBC. [I'm sure I never met or heard of him; I never dealt with Post people in Edmonton--FC]
154. Q. Is there anybody else you can recall?
A. Other journalists? No specific names, but it was a common problem for me. I would try to encourage one of the general assignment reporters in the news pool at the Post to cover those issues, and they would just be very leery. It was not territory they were interested in getting into.
155. Q. Now, so that's the only name that ‑‑ or the only particular incident that you can recall at this time?
A. At this time, yes.
156. Q. If there's any other incidents that you recall, specific incidents, that help form the basis of that impression, if you'd undertake to advise me through your solicitor?
U/T A. Yes.
157. Q. Secondly, you said that before all this blew up that people in the fathers' rights movement had told you that while Professor Christensen had done good work, he was not the nicest person. I think you put it that way. What was it about him that you understood made him not the nicest person in the opinion of these people?
A. The discussions often did not get very detailed because I'm not particularly interested in gossiping about people. But I remembered very distinctly a very brief conversation with someone who said that he's very smart, but he's not a very nice person.
158. Q. Did they said why he wasn't a very nice person?
A. No, these are informal conversations with people saying shorthand things. Why would I pursue it? It's something that happened years ago.
159. Q. So you don't recall anybody saying what it was about him that made him not a very nice person? Any particular aspect or trait of his behaviour?
A. I think the perception is that he was a bit overbearing, very strong personality.
160. Q. All right. I'm sorry what was the third thing you said? He made people uncomfortable because he was a strong personality.
A. There was a woman [name and description deleted for her privacy]. She was on a speaking tour in Canada. It was the year the Post launched in '98. And she flew out to Alberta, and I believe Dr. Christensen drove her between Edmonton and Calgary, and she felt very uncomfortable in his presence. And I remember it quite distinctly because this was a woman who, unlike the women shelter activists these days, actually, thought it was very important to bring battering men into the shelter and to try to work out marriage difficulties. I felt that she was a very brave person, but she suggested to me that she felt physically intimidated by Professor Christensen.
161. Q. Physically intimidated?
A. A very odd remark but one that I remembered. [This is another tale which witnesses from the occasion can testify is absurd.]
162. Q. Have you ever met Professor Christensen?
163. Q. So recalling the context of my question, I was suggesting to you that people whose ‑‑ for groups like ECMAS, people whose motives, shall we say, cannot be impugned are important for such groups, correct?
164. Q. Of course, so you understood that, in part, that was part of Professor Christensen usefulness to, quote, "the movement" that we're talking about and specifically to this organization?
A. I admit now that you bring it up, that makes sense. I don't think I ever consciously thought about it from that perspective.
165. Q. Now, if we look at paragraph 28, of your counterclaim, where Professor Christensen said, "Even your agreement to delay action be on the planned publishing date of March 24th was not about getting more evidence for making up or changing your mind. It was closer to blackmail." And he goes on to say, "Blackmail to what end? Forcing me to leave the movement I have served for 15 years." Now, do I understand correctly that your view was that whatever the rights or wrongs of Professor Christensen's views about children and sex, the fact that they were controversial was enough to make it, as you put it, a public relations nightmare that would justify his expulsion? In other words, whatever one might finally determine on a scholarly review of his book, the controversiality of it was enough to destroy his usefulness so that he should be expelled?
A. I would agree with that.
166. Q. And incidently, Professor Christensen then goes on to say, "If reports from people you have talked to are correct, you may have already slandered me, suggesting that I condone pedophilia." In fact, you did suggest to Mr. Bouvier that Dr. Christensen condoned pedophilia, didn't you?
MR. KOZAK: Where is that?
MR. WILLIS: Page 19, bottom line.
MR. KOZAK: I don't see that passage.
BY MR. WILLIS:
167. Q. When you say in imaginary dialogue with Professor Christensen, "You're suggesting that sex with kids is maybe not such a bad thing." When you said that, you understood you meant to suggest that Professor Christensen condoned pedophilia, didn't you?
A. No. What he's doing is minimizing [.] my read of the passages on pages 109 to 113, or whatever they are, is alarming because he is, in my view, playing an intellectual game that minimizes the moral concerns about children having sex.
168. Q. You know, that's an interesting way to put it. But my question's a little simpler. You didn't say that to Mr. Bouvier. You said to Mr. Bouvier at page 19, "Whenever he talks about kids and sex, he says some really disturbing things."
A. Disturbing things does not mean condoning pedophilia.
169. Q. But you then go on to say we ought to say to him, quote, "You know what? We're really sorry to lose you, but we cannot afford to have our credibility tarnished. You're suggesting that sex with kids is maybe not such a bad thing." Now, I'm suggesting to you that you knew when you said that that you were intending to convey to Mr. Bouvier that one of the reasons for getting rid of Professor Christensen was because he was condoning pedophilia.
A. Well, I'm sorry. I think maybe not such a bad thing is a pretty equivocal statement. It's obviously pointing in a certain direction, but it is not the same as ‑‑ if I meant to say he is condoning pedophilia, I would have said that.
170. Q. Do you understand what the word condoning means?
A. Yes, I do.
171. Q. If one condones conduct, does one ‑‑ one tolerates it?
A. I think there's a difference between tolerate and condone in the dictionary.
172. Q. And do you understand that if someone ‑‑ to condone something is, in part, to say that, perhaps, it's not such a bad thing, correct?
MR. KOZAK: Well, Mr. Willis, these words speak for themselves. This witness has said that she did not intend to convey nor did she convey in her mind that Professor Christensen was condoning pedophilia.
MR. WILLIS: You know, sir, you've got to be careful here because I'm cross‑examining her now in the context of this case. In my respectful submission, her intentions and her thoughts are extremely important.
MR. KOZAK: And I'm telling you that she's given you the answer already.
MR. WILLIS: I take exception to what you're doing here because I'm trying to explore what she understands, for example, by the word condones. And this is where you're interrupting me. And it's her understanding of what she intended to convey that counts.
MR. KOZAK: Where's the word condone?
MR. WILLIS: The question is whether the word condones that was used by Professor Christensen of which you complain. The question is whether that's a fair description of what this witness intended to convey to Mr. Bouvier and others when she used this similar phrase. And I'm really entitled to explore this without interruption or quibbling, in my respectful submission. This is not a place to be protecting the witness.
MR. KOZAK: I'm not, and I'm not quibbling.
MR. WILLIS: So you know we have this phrase. You're suggesting that sex with kids is maybe not such a bad thing. And I'm saying to the witness that when she said this to Mr. Bouvier, she intended to convey that Professor Christensen condoned pedophilia. And she's denying that, and now I'm asking her what she understands by the meaning of the word condone. Is that unfair?
MR. KOZAK: I think that you asked her the question. She gave you the answer, and then you asked it of her again.
MR. WILLIS: I'm not badgering her. I asked her in a different way because she didn't give me the answer, in fact. She didn't give me a direct answer. She gave me a take on the etymology of the word condone. So let's keep exploring this. You'll agree with me, I'm entitled to explore. It's a very important point.
MR. KOZAK: If you ask her the same question again, I'll object again.
BY MR. WILLIS:
173. Q. Well, I'm going to ask you this: When you said to Mr. Bouvier you're suggesting that sex with kids is maybe not such a bad thing, you were intending to convey more than that Mr. Professor Christensen was playing intellectual games, weren't you?
174. Q. Were you not intending to convey that Professor Christensen thought that sex between adults and kids was maybe not such a bad thing?
A. Maybe not such a bad thing? That's what I intended to convey, and that's what I said.
175. Q. So therefore, that Professor Christensen thought that pedophilia, that is to say, sex between adults and children was maybe not such a bad thing?
A. Maybe not such a bad thing.
176. Q. And therefore, that Professor Christensen, at the very least, that Professor Christensen thought that sex between adults and children is something of which we should not disapprove?
177. Q. Can there be something which is maybe not such a bad thing of which we should nonetheless disapprove? Wouldn't you go this far with me? If something is maybe not such a bad thing, if someone says of something that it is maybe not such a bad thing, obviously, I would ask you to agree that the thing being described is something of which the speaker does not disapprove, correct?
A. No, not at all. I think you can propose all kinds of discussions. Maybe, I think it's not such a bad thing that police officers don't have to go to university. Doesn't mean that I approve of it. I'm having a discussion. I'm putting out a point of view.
178. Q. For you, that means you're just putting out a point of view, but you're suggesting that professor Christian ‑‑ you say it's a disturbing thing that he suggests that it's maybe not such a bad thing.
A. That's right, and he's entitled to those views. He's entitled to write those things. But whether a group that is helping men facing some very serious allegations, as you pointed out, should have someone who has publicly expressed these views as a prominent member is another matter.
179. Q. And that's because if someone suggested that sex with kids is maybe not such a bad thing, then that person is suggesting that sex with kids is maybe something that we should approve, correct?
A. No. They're merely saying that they don't have a very strong moral stand on this, and that is disturbing on the larger political context of what type of group he's involved in.
180. Q. But at least you're going this far. If someone says that sex with kids is maybe not such a bad thing, that person is open to the possibility that sex between adults and children may not be a bad thing?
A. Open to the possibility? Absolutely.
181. Q. And in fact, so that person, according to you, is saying that that's something that, at the very least, that that's something about which one should have an open mind?
182. Q. And are you suggesting that there's anywhere in Professor Christensen's book or anywhere else that he has suggested that he's done anything except disapprove sex between adults and children?
A. I think we went through this at some
length last time. There are very particular passages in those select pages where I think there is no disapproval
on his part, and that is what is disturbing. [In her "Pink Kink" web
page there was no disapproval of real rape. (Some things one just takes for granted.) So even if this 'no-disapproval' claim were true of my book, it would be an equally "disturbing" fact re "particular passages" of hers. And a lack of explicit disapproval is not what she alleged to my associates--or in print.] [Back]
183. Q. All right. I know we went through this last time. But we need to go through ‑‑ it's this particular passage that I'm looking at now in the context of your counterclaim. So we've got this far that you agree with me that when you said to Mr. Bouvier that he ought to say to Dr. Christensen ‑‑ that Dr. Christensen was a person who was suggesting that sex with kids is maybe not such a bad thing, that Dr. Christensen was a person who didn't have a strong moral stand against sex between adults and children. That was your ‑‑ you'll go that far with me at least? That's what you intended to convey? You don't need to look at your lawyer.
MR. KOZAK: I would like to hear the question again.
BY MR. WILLIS:
184. Q. You'll go this far with me? When you said these words to Mr. Bouvier, the words on page 19 that we've talked about, you intended to convey to him that Dr. Christensen was a person who did not have a strong moral stand against sex between adults and children? Please, don't look at you lawyer.
A. I would like to know if it's appropriate for me to answer or not.
185. Q. You don't need to look at him. He will jump in.
A. I'm sorry, he's given me prior instructions, and I think I will follow those.
186. Q. To look at him?
MR. KOZAK: No, my instructions are to give me an opportunity to object at the end of the question.
MR. WILLIS: And the witness certainly has done that, but to do that, you needn't look at him for ‑‑ I understand what you're doing there. But your counsel is not objecting. I've rephrased the question.
THE DEPONENT: I would agree with your question.
MR. WILLIS: Thank you.
BY MR. WILLIS:
187. Q. Now, in our lengthy discussion last time, and I can go through it with you again. As I understand it, the basis for your conclusion was found on pages 109 to 113?
188. Q. And I think you greed that you hadn't considered those pages in the context of the book as a whole. You just considered them as an isolated portion?
189. Q. You will agree with me that the suggestion that someone does not have a strong moral stand in matters concerning sex between adults and children is a very serious allegation?
190. Q. And you knew that?
191. Q. And in fact, you despised anyone who did not have a strong moral stand against sex with children?
A. No, I think that's not true.
192. Q. Did you not hold such people in contempt?
A. No. As I've previously suggested just a few moments ago, I think people have a right to write about these things, to talk about them, to debate them. I think that's very healthy and very necessary for society. I think it only becomes problematic when people who do that are associated with father's rights groups.
193. Q. So for example, you understood that someone might, as part of the passage not necessarily read in context in an academic book of ten years ago, someone might raise theoretical questions about sex and children. And this matter might be open for debate, and you wouldn't necessarily despise them for that?
A. That's correct.
194. Q. But you knew that for most people, anything involving sex and children is not a subject for debate. That is to say, any suggestion that sex between adults and children is in any way acceptable is something that the average person would react to with contempt, hatred, correct?
A. Contempt and hatred is putting it a little strongly. Would the average person be concerned and disgusted? Yes.
195. Q. The average person would be disgusted with anyone who was thought not to have a strong moral standard in this area?
A. I think that's fair to say.
196. Q. On the other hand, one of the things that we didn't talk about last time was what I would suggest to you is actually the thrust of pages 109 to 113. You'll agree with me that there's a difference between sexual conduct between adults and children and sexual contact between children, correct?
A. There's a difference.
197. Q. Yes. And indeed, sexual contact between children is something that we all know happens and we all accept as normal to some extent?
198. Q. And the question of how much sexual contact that there should be between children, while it's a debatable and emotional question, it's not a question ‑‑ and you knew it at the time ‑‑ it's not a question that arouses such emotions as the question between adults and children, is it?
A. I don't feel I can answer that. I think there are strong reactions to both things in this society whether for good or ill. I think parents are very disturbed by the idea of sexual activity with children, period.
199. Q. But whereas one could have controversial opinions about the extent of the appropriate sexual contact between children without disgusting most people, I think you've said ‑‑
A. No, no, if you'll allow me, I think the average person would be quite disgusted and concerned if they felt someone was advocating that 9 year‑old neighbors should be having sex with each other.
200. Q. Well, I suppose that might be, but as a general proposition, if for example, your views on sex between minors are somewhat controversial? Would you not agree, as expressed in your book The Princess at the Window?
A. I'm afraid you're going to have to point out the passage.
201. Q. I'm referring you, for example, to page 170. This is just one passage at random. I'll just show it to you, page 270. I just outlined it in yellow. Now, I've actually read a number of your articles not just this book. And do I understand correctly that you, under some circumstances, would actually condone sex between teenagers even if they're unmarried and under 18, 17 year‑olds and 16 year‑olds, for example?
202. Q. And we're talking about sexual intercourse not mere sex play, correct?
203. Q. And for teenagers that are somewhat younger, that would depend on the individual children as to whether one would condone such activity, correct?
A. Teenagers that were somewhat younger? What years are we talking now?
204. Q. As I understand your views, they're not formulated with that much exactness. But you go so far as to say that people that are 17 and 16 to criticize consensual sex between people of that age under normal circumstances is foolish and hypocritical?
A. Foolish and hypocritical. Let's just say that I wouldn't criticize sex between a 16 and a 17 year‑old.
205. Q. Right. And as we get to younger ages, you haven't really formulated an exact age limit in your own mind. But as we get to younger ages, that would depend on the individual case?
A. Well, no, I think I would have to say pretty strong if I was a parent, and my child was under 16 and having sex, I would be concerned.
206. Q. All right. Of course you'll agree with me that there's many a 14 year‑old that's far more mature than many a 16 year‑old?
207. Q. And there are many cultures in which people are married at the age of 12, 13, 14? You know that?
208. Q. Well, you know that. That's not debatable, is it? That's part of your general education as it is of everyone's.
A. I think those cultures are diminishing quickly.
209. Q. That wasn't my question.
A. Was it true 50 years ago that people got married commonly at 12 in some cultures? Yes.
210. Q. I am not qualified nor do I intend to debate these matters with you. I merely want to find out what you know, okay? And you do know that there are many cultures in which people are married at such much younger ages and engage in sexual activity?
MR. KOZAK: Are you asking her that question?
MR. WILLIS: Yes.
BY MR. WILLIS:
211. Q. That's the question I asked. And she said perhaps. And I'm saying don't fence with me. You know that's so, don't you?
A. No, I'm sorry. I do not know it for a fact. I'm saying it's probably true and perhaps you're correct.
212. Q. Probably true. You think that's probably so. That's enough for me. Perhaps, I thought was a little bit weak in terms what you probably know. In terms of the depiction of sex between people under 16, you don't have a problem with that? In other words, you've never had any trouble with ‑‑ you've never suggested that depictions or writing about sex between children under 16 should be banned?
A. Children under 16?
213. Q. You wouldn't ban Romeo and Juliet, for example?
A. They were both under 16?
214. Q. They were both 14. I mean, this, then, it's a question of how it's done, I suppose?
A. Do I think Romeo and Juliet and Lolita should be pulled off library shelves? No.
215. Q. This is a question of each individual case, correct?
216. Q. We all agree that children need to have some form of sexual enlightenment?
A. Sexual education?
217. Q. Yes.
218. Q. And we know that there's a heated debate about when that should occur, correct?
219. Q. We know that there are some people as in Freud's famous paper Sexual Enlightenment of Children who think that children should be told the facts of life before they go to school. Others feel that these matters should be taboo for a longer period of time, correct?
220. Q. And these are matters for debate, and people hold strongly divergent views, but they tolerate each other's views in our society, and you understand that, correct?
221. Q. And so for example, the question of how much sexual play between children is normal and acceptable and at what ages that is very much a question up for debate, correct?
222. Q. So for example, the question of whether 9 year‑olds should fondle each other's genitals whether that is something that can be appropriate sexual experimentation, again, that is something partly for each parent but something that is the subject of legitimate debate?
A. It is the subject of legitimate debate particularly in academic circles. But I don't think the average parent has much confusion in their mind that 9 year‑olds fondling each other is not a good thing.
223. Q. Do you think the average parent doesn't know that preteens engage in sexual play?
MR. KOZAK: I'm sorry. Are you asking her if she knows that?
MR. WILLIS: I'm asking her what she thinks and what she thought. Because what it turns out ‑‑ you see what this is about, Mr. Kozak. In fact, Dr. Christensen's book, 109 to 113, I'm not trying to sandbag you. In my submission, even out of context, no one can fairly read it as condoning sex between adults and children or even saying that sex between adults and children is, quote, "maybe not such a bad thing." What it can possibly be read as saying is that ‑‑
MR. KOZAK: Hold it.
MR. WILLIS: I'm just telling you where I'm coming from.
MR. KOZAK: You've just misquoted that. It says, "You're suggesting that sex with kids is maybe not such a bad thing."
MR. WILLIS: And you see this is what happened to the sex with kids, this word that this witness used, conveyed and was intended to convey sex between adults in children. But in fact, that's a totally unfair reading of Dr. Christensen's book, and that's where I'm coming from.
MR. KOZAK: And I'm suggesting that you just totally misread the passage that you referred to.
MR. WILLIS: That's for the Court, isn't it? My questions are devoted to this witness's views and understanding of what she was doing to Dr. Christensen. And I'm suggesting that this witness, if she read this passage carefully, would never have expressed herself in such an unbuttoned fashion to Mr. Bouvier. Of course she didn't read the passage carefully, I'm suggesting. What she's done is to suggest that this passage meant something discreditable and despicable. When in fact, pages 109 to 113 are restricted to Dr. Christensen's views on sex play between children and on the sexual enlightenment of children. And that's what I'm exploring. So my question was simply, if we go back to my last question, the witness has said that she thinks that most parents have very firm views on sexual contact between 9 year‑olds. And I'm saying that you know that most parents know full well that sexual contact between 9 year‑olds takes place, don't you? Or are you going to deny that?
MR. KOZAK: Do you know that?
THE DEPONENT: No, I don't know that.
BY MR. WILLIS:
224. Q. Have you ever read any of the literature on the sexual behaviour of children under 12?
A. I think that is not relevant to what I know about what parents think.
225. Q. Well, let's put it this way: In my mind, you've made an admission that tells us what you know. So now I'm just trying to explore the basis of your knowledge. You've said that you don't think that parents are aware that 9 year‑olds engage in sexual experimentation. And I'm saying, okay, fine, you don't think that. I think you've already admitted that you're not a parent yourself, correct?
A. That's true.
226. Q. Now, since you're not a parent yourself, when you say that you're not aware that ‑‑ you don't think that most parents are aware of this, what's the basis of your statement?
MR. KOZAK: Mr. Willis, do you think that she said that most parents are not aware of this? I think she said she doesn't know whether most parents are aware of that.
BY MR. WILLIS:
227. Q. I believe she said that she thinks most parents are not aware that 9 year‑olds have sexual contact, didn't you? Or are you saying you don't know one way or the other?
A. No. I don't know one way or the other.
228. Q. I'm sorry. I misunderstood. I apologize. I had a clearly other impression. Please, accept my apologies because I thought that the witness had said something obviously other than what she did say. So you don't know one way or the other what most parents think or know?
A. With respect to that specific question, no.
229. Q. And you would agree with me, though, that this question of the sexual enlightenment of children and what is appropriate sexual contact between children this is an extremely important public question that needs responsible debate, correct?
A. Yes. Except that I'm a little uncomfortable whenever you use the term sexual enlightenment in children. I'm not quite sure what you mean.
230. Q. I'm quoting Freud's paper, but let's call it sexual education of children.
231. Q. I'm not trying to use a tendentious word. So you would agree with me that this whole issue is a difficult and controversial one, correct?
232. Q. And so that as a journalist, and to the extent as you've said that you have a responsibility greater than that of normal, it's important to treat that in a responsible way?
233. Q. And it's very important not to misrepresent someone's views in that area because of the strong feelings that it arouses?
234. Q. I think I just saw an article ‑‑ it might have been by you ‑‑ about what used to be thought of as ordinary horse play ends up in the courts with charges of sexual assault.
A. I have not written any articles like that recently.
235. Q. All right. Didn't you write some articles taking exception to that sort of thing?
A. Sure. But you said you just saw an article, and I only had one article published in the last year, and it was not about that.
236. Q. I'm sorry. But you, in fact, in some of your writings have expressed concern about, you know, how ordinary sexual horse play between preteens or young children ends up inappropriately in the courts under sexual assault charges, correct?
A. I think the article, to the best of my knowledge, would have talked about young teens. I don't think young children are ending up in court, and I don't think even preteens. But I think the general idea is horse play between teenagers as ending up in court. That's correct.
237. Q. And you are probably aware that there have been boys expelled from school as young as 5 or 6 because of these whole questions about sexual contact between young children?
238. Q. So what I'm suggesting, then, is that we understand that this is an issue where ‑‑ would you agree with me ‑‑ there is no consensus on exactly what ought to be done about either the sexual education of children or the sexual contact between children?
239. Q. Some people think that it's fine for 5 year‑olds to play doctor, and other people think that it's horrible and that the whole subject should be taboo. There's a great diversity of opinion in society, correct?
240. Q. And on the other hand, there's no diversity of opinion about sex between adults and children?
A. Well, there is some diversity.
241. Q. But most people, most of your readers, would think that anyone who condoned ‑‑ and you knew this at the time ‑‑ would think that anyone who condoned sex between adults and children was a person lacking in ordinary good judgement, correct?
242. Q. And in fact, most of your readers would go farther, and they would think if we accept that there's some distinction between the word condoned and what I'm about to say, most people would think that anyone who thought that sex between adults and children was maybe not such a bad thing, is also a person seriously lacking in ordinary good judgement of moral matters, correct?
‑‑‑ Brief adjournment at 12:44 p.m.
‑‑‑ Upon resuming at 2:00 p.m.
BY MR. WILLIS:
243. Q. Ms. Laframboise, you acknowledge that you're still under oath?
244. Q. I'm now going to be directing your attention to paragraph 29 of your counterclaim, and just by way of context, if I can first of all refer you to Item 14.1 in our production which is the e‑mail that you sent Dr. Christensen on March 23rd at 1:25 p.m. in response, I gather, to his e‑mail to you which is attached to that. That's a true copy of the e‑mail that you sent?
A. It appears to be, yes.
245. Q. And paragraphs 4 and 5 include questions about the meaning of certain passages in Dr. Christensen's book and about what, in fact, his opinions are, correct?
A. Okay, sorry, what's the question?
246. Q. Those two questions 4 and 5 are questions that refer to Dr. Christensen's book, correct?
247. Q. And in the article subsequently published on April 17th, if we can look in the right‑hand column, second paragraph down, that column says, quote, "Just before the Post contacted Professor Christensen, he sent an e‑mail which began, quote, 'You have no idea of the harm you are about to do.' When the Post replied with a list of 13 questions asking, among other things, whether he has ever urged anyone to hire Mr. Adams and what he means by certain passages in his book, he declined to answer." Now, when you said questions as to, quote, "what he means by certain passages in his book", you were referring to the two question to which I've directed your attention to. Is that not right?
A. Yes, that's correct.
248. Q. And then on Monday the 25th, Professor Christensen sent to your editor in chief, Mr. White, the letter referred to in paragraph 29 of your counterclaim and reproduced at 23.1 of the plaintiff's affidavit of records, correct?
A. I'm sorry, the question again was, He sent this to Mr. White?
249. Q. Yes.
A. It appears so, yes.
250. Q. And then he faxed, it would appear from our document 23.1, at 9:43 a.m. on March 26th the following morning he also e‑mailed a copy of his letter to Mr. White to you personally, correct?
A. Yes, that appears to be the case, 9:43 a.m.
251. Q. Yes. Now ‑‑
A. Which would be mountain time.
252. Q. All right. Now, there's some matters in that for the context of that letter before we deal specifically with paragraphs 29 and 30, the author asked that his attachment referred to in paragraph 30 be published if what he referred to as any attack on himself should be published, correct, subject to adjustments that would have to be made on the same day as the column is printed. It's in paragraph 29. You've referred to the letter of March 25th, and then in paragraph 30, you've referred to the attachment that begins Moral Fervor without Accurate Knowledge Does Evil. And then for context, a part that's been omitted there is that what Professor Christensen is saying that he wouldn't give up his right to sue you for whatever you published, but he wanted his attachment to be published if your article was published.
A. He may well have said that, but I can't see it.
253. Q. Second paragraph, quote, "Without prejudice, then, to any legal action which I may need to carry out to protect my good name, I make the following request: That if any attack on me should be published, I be allowed adequate space to respond. Knowing in advance the type of irrational reasoning which led her, allegedly, to suggest to my associates that I may condone pedophilia I have prepared provisional response (attached) ‑‑ one which could quickly be put into final form in order to be printed on the same day as her column."
254. Q. All right. Now, would you agree with me that the attachment responds to your questions 4 and 5 in your e‑mail, Item 14.1, in our affidavit, your e‑mail of March 23, 2001 ‑‑ I'm sorry, your first five. You had questions 4, 5, and 5, but in your actual e‑mail you had a double number. But I'm looking at question 4 and the one marked 5 that follows it, by the way. May I ask, of course, you read this letter no later than the morning of March 26, 2001, didn't you?
A. I'm sorry. I can't tell you when I might have read it. Just because it arrived then, does not suggest when I read it.
255. Q. Well, you certainly read it before you wrote your article of April 17th?
A. I would presume so. At that point, I was getting a lot of material.
256. Q. Are you saying you can't recall? Do you think you might not have read this letter?
A. I remember the letter. Do I remember reading every last word? No.
257. Q. Did you discuss it with Mr. White before you wrote your article?
258. Q. Did he say anything to you?
259. Q. Did anyone discuss the letter to Mr. White with you other than the lawyer?
A. Not that I can recall.
260. Q. All right. Please, take your time and review it. Then let me know when you're ready to answer questions about it.
A. I read the attachment.
261. Q. And I'm suggesting to you that that attachment answers your questions 4 and 5 in your e‑mail 14.1, correct?
A. No, I'm sorry. I can't agree.
262. Q. Really?
A. I see no reference to page 113 anywhere which means there's no specific reference to the page number.
263. Q. That's right. There's no specific reference to the page number.
A. And there's no specific reference to the very specific and pointed questions that I pose. I say on page 13 you say this. Did you really mean that? There's nowhere where there's an answer to that question.
264. Q. Let's explore that. First of all, your question No. 5. Let's take that first. Your question No. 5 was, "Do you, in fact, believe ‑‑ as you also suggest on page 113 ‑‑ that pedophiles coercing children into sex 'is potentially no more [serious than society's] practice of coercing them not to act sexually.'?" Now, if I can refer you to the third page, of the No. 23.4 in our production.
265. Q. Where the writer says, "The second part of the claim above is that negative things put into children's minds about sex itself by those around them, from fear to self‑loathing, can itself cause serious psychological hurt and harm. Hence, in particular, these negative feelings can be a dominant factor in the harm when such children are also sexually abused and can even do more harm than sex abuse itself. There is absolutely no scientific doubt about the truth of this. Huge amounts of accumulated evidence prove it though Ms. Laframboise will evidently not reveal the evidence I have given." So when the author says that, "These negative feelings ‑‑ that is to say induced by negative things put into children's minds about sex itself by those around them ‑‑ can do even more harm than sex abuse itself.", do you not have your answer to question 5?
A. No, not at all. I'm saying that in his book on page 113, he is suggesting that sexual abuse by adults of children, quote, "is potentially no more serious than society's practice of coercing them not to act sexually." I'm sorry, but that has nothing to do with the paragraph in this attachment you just read to me. They're several different matters.
266. Q. When the author says that the negative feelings that children have can do even more harm than sex abuse itself, you don't see that as responsive to your question 5?
A. No, not at all. My concern in posing the question is that he seems to be minimizing the damage by saying that it's ‑‑ that coercing children not to behave sexually could be just as bad as sexual abuse. I think that's an astounding statement.
267. Q. All right. We have your opinion. Now, I think we also established that you don't have any evidence for that assumption one way or the other. That's just your view, correct? We talked about that at length last time.
268. Q. But what I don't understand here is that isn't it clear that the author does stand by that statement, that both these things are bad. I mean, obviously, sexual abuse is bad but that the attitudes,
"the negative things put into children's minds about sex itself by those around them from fear to self‑loathing ‑‑ that is to say, society's attitudes ‑‑ can do even more harm than sex abuse itself." In other words, of course abuse by pedophiles is one type of ‑‑ this is a general statement that goes even farther than the statement you've question, correct? It says as a general proposition, the things that children are told that are placed into their mind that cause fear and self‑loathing can be more harmful than the actual sex abuse. In fact, the whole previous page talks about that. Would you agree that's a proposition wider, stronger, and more general than the one you've asked? So clearly, the answer to your question 5 is yes, the author believes it.
A. I'm glad it's clear to you, but it was not clear to me at the time, and it's not clear now. I understand what you're saying, I really do, but there is no way when I'm reading that just five minutes ago and certainly when I read that more than a year ago that I would have felt that that paragraph was a direct response to a particular question.
269. Q. But one thing you did understand was that this was Dr. Christensen's response to what he understood you were going to say?
A. Well, no, in fact he sent me a different e‑mail saying that he wasn't about to respond to me. This isn't addressed to me. This is addressed my boss. [The article said I'd refused to answer "The Post", not that I refused to answer her.]
270. Q. Yes, and the idea was and you understood that this was to be his reply to what he understood to be your concerns. This is what he wanted published when what he anticipated as your attack came out, correct? Even though you didn't think this was much of a response, you understood that this was his proposed response, didn't you? You understood that he wanted this published the same day as your article to respond to what he thought you were going to say. Did you not?
A. Yes, to what he assumed I would say.
271. Q. So you understood, and you knew that what he assumed you would say was, in part, based on the questions that you had posed to him just the previous Friday?
A. In part, yes.
272. Q. Yes. So and nonetheless, you wrote on April 17th that he declined to answer your questions. But that was misleading, wasn't it?
A. No, I'm sorry. I posed this list of questions. He very clearly sent me an e‑mail back saying he was not going to answer them.
273. Q. You didn't like his form of answer. You didn't ‑‑ let's put it this way, you didn't mention that he wanted to reply to you at all, did you? You didn't mention this March 25th proposal?
A. No, and I didn't mention all the other press releases he sent out far and wide to everyone he's ever known defaming me either. There's a limited amount of space in a newspaper article. [As she said above, it was not a press release.]
274. Q. Your answer's no. You're saying he declined to reply. You didn't mention his proposed same‑day reply, did you?
A. No, I did not. [Next]
MR. KOZAK: Mr. Willis, I've allowed you to ask the question. I think that she said that she didn't view it as a reply. You've called it a reply.
MR. WILLIS: Oh, I think it's clear what the witness is saying. I don't think I'm trying to or succeeding in putting words in her mouth. I think it's clear that she's trying to say that this March 25th letter is not a direct reply or is not a reply.
MR. KOZAK: All right.
MR. WILLIS: Let's just see whether the court agrees. That's the question. I believe that you'll agree with me the record is clear. I'm under no illusion, and I don't think the record will support any illusion that the witness is agreeing with me. She's clearly not agreeing with me.
BY MR. WILLIS:
275. Q. But on the other hand, let's, then, talk about your question No. 4, again, where you specifically refer to page 113. But here you say, "Do you, in fact, believe as you suggest on page 113 of your book, Pornography the Other Side, that the real problem with children being coerced into sex by adults is not the coercion, the childhood sex, or the unequal power relationship, but the fact that children would feel distressed because we live in a society that is uptight about sex." Now, that's not a quote from page 113, is it?
A. I think we would have to look at page 113. It is not in quotations.
276. Q. Nor does page 113 say that, does it?
A. It does say on 113, the top paragraph it says that, quote, "Given that children are particularly vulnerable to coercion, protecting them from being pressured or forced into something which in present social conditions can be highly distressing or even psychologically damaging is a serious concern." Now, I interpret that to mean that it's important not to coerce children not because coercion itself is bad but because you would be coercing them into sex, and there's a social taboo about against sex, and therefore, it would be distressing to the children to participate in something.
[The reporter might try to resist this consequence by saying she meant that I'd said child molesting and teaching restraint are both very harmful, not that they're both nearly harmless. But besides claiming that
I treat both as being outside morality, she has already rejected this other way of equating the two:]
author does not think coercion is bad?
A. Yes, because he then goes on to suggest that, "Though it is potentially no more so ‑‑", ie, no more damaging, "‑‑ than the practice of coercing them not to act sexually." [To repeat, my book and proposed newspaper article both went to great lengths to
show the serious harm that has been done by coercive attempts to suppress children's sexuality.] [Back]
278. Q. So you don't understand from that that the author disapproves of coercion of any kind. You think the author believes that coercion is all right? The author seems ‑‑ rather than opposing both forms of coercion, and on top of that adding that a case can be made for the legal prohibition of this type of pornography.
A. "Given that children are vulnerable to coercion, protecting them from being pressured for something that's ‑‑" He's saying let's not protect them from coercion for itself own sake. Let's protect them from coercion because if they're doing something that society disapproves of, that would be highly distressing or even psychologically damaging.
279. Q. That's your reading of this passage, and you stand by that?
280. Q. And you don't want to look at it some more and think about it again?
A. No, thank you.
281. Q. Thank you. But there's no reference to what the real problem is, is there? I mean that's not ‑‑ your question, question 4, is not even close to being a paraphrase of anything on page 113, is it? You're asking the author what he thinks, quote, "the real problem" is. He doesn't use the word the real problem nor does he use any synonym for the real problem. So you're saying ‑‑ won't you agree? And you haven't paraphrased page 113.
A. Pardon me, but I really do believe that I have paraphrased it and reasonably accurately. And if my paraphrase was so terribly off the mark, this was his opportunity to help me understand.
282. Q. And now, if we look at ‑‑ so in other words, this is his opportunity to tell you what he thinks the, quote, "real problem is" if you've failed to understand, correct? And now, I suggest to you that in his letter of March 25th and the attachment goes to Mr. White, he goes on at great length about what he thinks the, quote, "real problem is" and responds directly to your question No. 4. Will you not agree?
A. I've asked a very specific question about a very particular passage on a very specific page, and no, I do not believe he's answered it adequately.
283. Q. So all you wanted him to say was no? Didn't you want to know what he thought the real problem was if he didn't agree with you? So it's merely a rhetorical question? You only wanted a yes or no answer? Or did you want him to explain what he thought the real problem was?
A. I certainly wanted him to explain. I wish he would have done it in a context where I understood that he was specifically talking about a particular one of all of this long list of questions. That would have been helpful.
284. Q. And you didn't understand when you read the lengthy reply that he wanted published the same day as your anticipated article that that was his attempt to set out what he considered to be, quote, "the real problem"? You didn't see that as responsive to your question 4?
A. No, I did not.
285. Q. So you thought it was all right to tell your readers that he had declined to reply?
A. Yes, I did.
286. Q. And you didn't think you were misleading them when you did that or being unfair to Professor Christensen?
287. Q. And you didn't even mention anything that he had written by way of reply except when he said you have no idea of what kind of harm you're going to do?
A. That's right.
288. Q. You didn't even say that he had replied, but you thought it was off topic or anything of that kind, did you?
A. No, I did not.
289. Q. In fact, when one reads your article, it looks like you gave Professor Christensen a chance to tell his side of the story, and he just wouldn't say anything, doesn't it? All it says about Professor Christensen is that he declined to answer your questions. It doesn't talk about all his efforts to ‑‑
A. "When the Post replied with a list of 13 questions...he declined to answer those 13 questions."
290. Q. It doesn't say that. It just says he declined to answer. You've just added, quote, "those 13 questions."
A. It's in the same sentence at the beginning of that sentence.
291. Q. I'm suggesting to you that what you meant to convey to people was that you asked 13 questions and got no answer when you knew darn well that you had this lengthy answer on March 25th. In fact, you're even suing about it?
A. Sorry, what is the question?
292. Q. I say, you intended to give your readers the impression that Professor Christensen stood silent in response to your j'accuse of 13 questions. Indeed, Professor Christensen responded, giving his whole summary of his whole theory on the 25th, just two days later. You gave no hint that he'd replied at all, did you?
A. No, I did not.
293. Q. Surely you'll agree with me that that was not fair to Professor Christensen, and you knew it?
A. No, I will not agree that that was not fair.
294. Q. Apart from the ethics of not allowing a person to reply when he's going to be attacked, is it right to say that Professor Christensen declined to answer, as you did, giving the impression that he gave no answer whatsoever?
A. I think I've answered that.
MR. KOZAK: The preface of that question was apart from the ethics of ‑‑
MR. WILLIS: Strike that. That question ends up being triple barrel.
BY MR. WILLIS:
295. Q. You'll agree with me that when you said Professor Christensen declined to answer, you didn't give any hint anywhere in your article that you had been bombarded, as you put it, with e‑mails from Professor Christensen giving his attempt at self‑justification?
A. No, I think I've answered that already. The answer is no.
296. Q. And don't you think that was wrong of you?
A. No, I don't.
297. Q. Not to tell your readers that, in fact, Professor Christensen had been trying to reply to you, and you just didn't think much of his replies?
A. As I've said already, no, I don't think it was wrong.
298. Q. Well, you'll agree with me that you intended to give your readers the impression that there was no reply whatsoever from Professor Christensen, correct?
A. What we say is, "When the Post replied to his e‑mail with a list of 13 questions, he declined to answer."
299. Q. But even that isn't true, is it? When did he decline to answer?
A. He sent me an e‑mail, I think it was, one or two lines long which said you've clearly made up your mind, something, something, something, so I'm not even going to bother to answer.
300. Q. Actually, that's not what it says, is it? Let's find it.
A. Please, then I don't have to rely on my faulty memory.
301. Q. Perhaps you could refer me to the reply that you're talking about?
A. Tab 18.
302. Q. So you're saying he declined to answer, and you've now located where he declined to answer?
A. It's T00288.
303. Q. Yes.
A. Near the bottom, I say, "I would be grateful if you would answer the following questions:" And he says, "Since you've already made all necessary good‑faith attempts to hear my side, there is no need to ask me any questions now, remember? Beyond that, since our communications from this point on may have to be through lawyers, I decline to be questioned by you and will direct any questions of mine about your conduct through counsel."
304. Q. Now, interesting you should point that out. And that is on Saturday, March 24th, correct? He declined to be questioned by you, but he doesn't decline to answer, does he, answer your previous questions. He says he will communicate through counsel, correct?
A. "I decline to be questioned by you" certainly in my read of it at the time was I consider your questions irrelevant. I'm not about to respond to them.
305. Q. But then two days later, you get the response that he proposes to give to the article he thinks you're going to publish with the allegations he thinks you're going to make based on your questions. I'm just trying to get you to admit that whether or not you thought his response was totally on point to your specific questions, you understood that on Monday he was giving you his answer to what he thought was going to be your attack. You understood that much, didn't you?
MR. KOZAK: She's answered that already, Mr. Willis.
MR. WILLIS: What's her answer?
MR. KOZAK: Her answer's no, she didn't interpret the e‑mail sent to Mr. White on the 26th as a response to her questions.
MR. WILLIS: You didn't think it had any bearing on those questions?
MR. KOZAK: That's a different question.
MR. WILLIS: Let's ask that, then.
BY MR. WILLIS:
306. Q. You didn't think that that proposed response sent on Monday was in any way responsive to your two questions about the purport of Professor Christensen's work?
307. Q. All you would accept would be a direct response to your specific and direct questions, correct?
A. That's not all I would accept, but the man has told me that he's not about to answer my questions. I have asked him. He has responded.
308. Q. He said we may have to communicate through lawyers, but than he went and wrote this letter for which you are suing him. In other words, subsequent communications weren't only through lawyers. He then just two days later, rather than restricting himself to communications through counsel, wrote a letter to you editor saying here's how I think she's going to attack me. Here's how I'm going to respond. But you're saying because I got this letter from him in which he says I've got to communicate through my lawyer, I assumed he wasn't going to answer me at all.
A. That's right.
309. Q. When he says in paragraph 3, 20.2, quote, "So irrational overreaction to real problems, not just to fictional problems, can produce horrible consequences. In each of the above witch‑hunts, the motivation has been the same, quote, 'Child sex abuse is so unspeakably and uniquely harmful, we can't take any chances.'" And he goes on in the fifth paragraph to say, quote, "But what if child sex abuse were not believed to be hugely more harmful than the other kinds of child abuse which have inspired no comparable insanities ‑‑ would the modern witch‑hunts with all the broken innocent lives they have left have occurred? What if, in fact, the origin of the harms associated with child sex abuse in general is not sexual contact, per se, but it's accompaniments: on the one hand, the physical or emotional abuse, notably coercion, that may attend the sex abuse and on the other hand negative things put into children's minds about sex before or after any abuse may have occurred." Now, you read that, didn't you?
A. Yes, I believe so.
310. Q. You just told me a few minutes ago that when you read page 113 of Ferrel Christensen's article, you thought that he didn't see coercion as a harm in itself. You just told me that.
A. Yes, I did.
311. Q. And now three days later, you could have read him to say in the paragraph that I've just shown you that, "The accompaniments of sexual contact could be the origin of harms. On the one hand, the physical or emotional abuse, notably coercion ‑‑" So when you read that, if you read that, you would understand that, at least, even if you're reading of page 113 was a fair one, that's not what he intended. You'd understand that, wouldn't you?
A. Now, that you've pointed it out to me, I think that's a reasonable conclusion.
312. Q. And it directly responds to ‑‑
A. No, it does not directly respond. It is one paragraph in a rather lengthy, long letter.
313. Q. But when you ask someone what he thinks the real problem is, don't you expect a lengthy reply? Did you really expect a yes or no answer to your question 4, to a vague paraphrase in question 4? Didn't you expect a lengthy and considered reply?
A. Yes, I did, but I do not believe that this is that.
314. Q. When you say this is ‑‑
A. You're choosing one paragraph out of a multi‑paragraphed document and saying now doesn't that answer one of those questions in your list? Well, now, that you sort of point it out, yeah, kind of, but at the time, did I see that? No.
315. Q. In fact, I'm taking two paragraphs out of a lengthy and considered reply to suggest to you that you should have read it, and in fairness, you shouldn't have told your readers that Professor Christensen declined to answer you. That's what I'm saying. But you just thought it was all in the lawyer's hands. Is that it? Is that why you didn't read this carefully? [Back]
MR. KOZAK: Don't answer that.
BY MR. WILLIS:
316. Q. Let me put it this way: A minute ago, you told me that you thought Professor Christensen was not opposed to coercion as such but only to the results of coercion and that you got that from reading page 113, correct?
A. That's right.
317. Q. But now that you've considered the letter that he sent three days later, you understand that Professor Christensen believed, in fact, that coercion was in itself one of the main sources of harm, correct?
A. One of the main sources of harm?
318. Q. Well, in fact, that's what he said. He mentioned too, he said, "On the one hand, the physical or emotional abuse, notably coercion, that may attend the sex abuse["] assumes that coercion is a notable source of harm." That's one of the main ones. There may be other, but you see that clearly, and that's not hard to see when you actually read the paragraph, is it?
A. Do I see that he is addressing that issue and that one part of that one sentence? Yes, I do.
319. Q. And so when I suggest to you that ‑‑ it's not unfair for me to suggest to you it's true, isn't it, that you just didn't read this carefully? You didn't read the letter to Mr. White carefully?
A. I can't speak to how carefully or not carefully I read that letter a year and a half ago.
320. Q. At least, you didn't read it carefully enough so that you disabused yourself of your interpretation of Dr. Christensen's views on coercion?
A. That would be fair.
321. Q. Now, if we carry on with this paragraph in Dr. Christensen's proposed draft reply, just after the paragraph I've read, he says in the 6th paragraph, "It is largely for espousing the latter claim, that is to say, the claim that it is not sexual conduct as such but rather the physical and emotional abuse that may accompany it."
A. If you excuse me, I think he's talking about sexual abuse not sexual content.
322. Q. I'm going to quote it, so that you can't misinterpret it. "What if in fact," he said in the previous sentence, "the origin of the harms associated with child sex abuse in general is not sexual contact, per se, but it's accompaniments. Then he goes to list the two kinds of accompaniments. On the one hand, physical or emotional abuse, notably coercion. On the other hand, negative things put into children's minds about sex before or after any abuse may have occurred." Which I'm suggesting directly responds to your question 5, and you've declined to say that. Now, he goes on to say, "It is largely for espousing the latter claim, that is to say, the claim that it is not the sexual contact, per se, but its two accompaniments: abuse and the matrix of negative things put into children's minds. It is largely for espousing the latter claim that I have been attacked by Ms. Laframboise." He sees himself as being attacked by you. And of course, at this point, those are your two questions. You understood that he's interpreting your two questions as that attack, correct?
A. No. I asked him, as you point out, 14 questions.
323. Q. But only two of them relate to his work. That's my point, only 4 and 5. So it must be those two questions to which he's attributing the coming attack. There's nothing else that you say, is there, other than of course what you told people over the phone that they reported to him? But if you look in your questions, go back. You'll see there's nothing else in them about his work. Won't you agree? You just finished telling me you asked him 13 questions, but indeed only these two deal with his work?
A. Right, and nowhere does he mention his work in this long ‑‑
324. Q. He says, "It's for these views ‑‑" that you are attacking him. And those are precisely the views about which you ask your rhetorical questions in Items 4 and the first 5.
A. Well, it would have been very helpful for him to say as I say in my book X, and this is what I mean. It's very nice that it's so clear to you that that is a direct response to two questions out of my big, long list, but it was not clear to me.
325. Q. Let's get one thing clear. And you know, this is a question I asked you to which you are not responding. You just referred two questions out of your great big, long list. These are the only two questions that deal with Professor Christensen's opinions, right?
A. No, there are many other ones that talk about his opinions. Do you think it's appropriate for a person whose pleaded guilty to hiring a child prostitute to be vice president of ECMAS?
326. Q. Well, with respect, you are fencing with me. I'm talking about the opinions that are in his book.
A. But he does not talk about his book in this letter to my boss. [The proposed article I sent him was all about my book.]
327. Q. Will you agree with me that there are only two questions that refer to ‑‑ let's talk about this: Dr. Christensen's supposedly controversial opinions about sex which is of course the subject of this whole lawsuit, your take on that and your way of conveying that to people across the country. There are only two of your so‑called big, long list of questions that relate to Dr. Christensen's opinions about sex, and in particular, sex and children, right? The rest all relate to ECMAS and [Tim] Adams and so forth and tactical questions.
A. That's true.
328. Q. And the letter that Dr. Christensen sent to Mr. White. He doesn't bother defending himself about [Tim] Adams or what is his position with ECMAS. He restricts himself to the questions of his views about sexual assault and children. That's what he restricts himself to, correct?
A. That's true.
329. Q. And so I'm saying as those two questions that you pose to him, rhetorical questions as evidently he interpreted them to be, they're the only ones. That's the only communication you had with him that would enable him directly to know what attack he thought you were going make on him, correct, other than what he heard from people that you interviewed?
A. It's the only communication from him that enabled me to know what he thought?
330. Q. That's the only communication from you, those two questions. You told him. You asked him those two rhetorical questions about do you really believe this, and do you really believe that? You didn't have any other communication with him about his views on childhood sexuality?
A. That's right.
331. Q. And then there were the indirect things that you said to people in interviews about how he didn't think childhood sex was maybe such a bad thing. You understood those got back to him as well?
332. Q. So that's the basis of his letter of the 20th, and it could be nothing other, could it? You knew that there was no other reason for him to be writing other than your two questions and what you had told people about his book?
A. Pardon me, but by this point, I did not particularly feel that Professor Christensen was dealing terribly rationally with the situation.
333. Q. He seemed to think that ‑‑ for example, in his letter he seemed to think that you, someone who didn't even know him and had made no effort to contact him ‑‑ had decided before you'd even made an effort to contact him to try to expel him from an organization to which he'd devoted 15 years of his life. That was the rational conclusion, wasn't it? Nothing irrational about that, was there? Can you answer that? I'm saying it wasn't irrational because that's exactly what you were trying to do, wasn't it?
A. I think I was trying to raise some concerns in a group that I was very sympathetic to.
334. Q. You keep talking about raising concerns and raising questions, but you agreed with me that you were advocating his expulsion from the group.
A. Then why are you asking me to tell you it one more time, if I've agreed with you already?
335. Q. Because you just didn't answer my question. You suggested to me that at this point, March 25, 26th, you didn't think Professor Christensen was acting rationally. That in itself was not in response to my previous question, but I'll waive that for the time being. I'll come back to it. And I said well, he said in his letter that here you are. You've used threats of exposing him in your column "to a volunteer group I've long worked with in an attempt to get them to expel me even though my views on sexuality have never been taught to anyone connected with the group." Now, I'm saying he's concerned that you're trying to expel him from a group and that you tried to do this before you even talked to him. And I'm saying was that an irrational concern?
336. Q. Similarly, he's writing Mr. White, and he's saying look, I believe there's going to be an attack on me. Reasonable considering ‑‑ not irrational considering as you say you were wanting to expel him. And here's my response to this attack which I would like you to let me print on the same day, so people can have both sides of the story. Was it irrational for him to want to tell his side of the story?
A. No, it would have been very nice if he had a courteous conversation with me.
337. Q. Do you think that your questions were at all courteous? Don't you think they were rude and question begging and rhetorical? Do you call those questions courteous?
A. Yes, I do.
338. Q. Well ‑‑
A. I think they were very polite. I think they were pointed which is what a journalist's job is to do, is to ask pointed question.
339. Q. Let me see now, forgetting about the adequacy of your paraphrase of No. 4. No. 5, "Do you think it is inappropriate for a person such as yourself who holds controversial views about child sex to be associating with a group seeking to help non‑custodial parents many of whom face false allegations of child sex abuse?"
A. I think that is a very legitimate question, phrased in a polite way, and I do not understand why if he felt that there was no concern why he would not try to persuade me of the fact that there's no concern.
340. Q. When you read that letter, just delivered three days later, isn't it clear why he thinks it is important for him to be associated with this group and why he thinks his views, controversial as they are, are legitimate and not anything that anyone needs to be ashamed of?
A. No, no, he does not, unfortunately, address at all the issue of what it looks like.
341. Q. You know what a rhetorical question is, don't you?
342. Q. Wouldn't you agree with me that your second No. 5 is a rhetorical question? Do you call that a polite, open‑ended question?
A. "Do you think it is appropriate for a person such as yourself who holds controversial views about child sex to be associated with a group seeking to help non‑custodial parents many of whom face false allegations of child sex abuse?"
343. Q. Now, Dr. Christensen had been associated with this group for, as you knew, eight years, right? You knew that?
A. No, I did not.
344. Q. You knew it had been a lot of years?
345. Q. You knew, even though he wasn't on the executive or anything, you knew that he was a prominent person associated with this group?
346. Q. And did you know that he paid good money to get Louise Malenfant there, correct?
347. Q. And you knew that he'd written this book, so he held these controversial views for 11 years, at least?
348. Q. And you knew that he was a philosopher and from your previous information that he was a man of strong views?
349. Q. And articulate about his views?
350. Q. So did you seriously think he never would have thought about whether it was appropriate for him with his views on childhood sex to be involved in this group?
A. Yes, unfortunately, I really did seriously wonder about that.
351. Q. You really thought he might never have considered it, or was this just a rude rhetorical question?
A. No, I'm sorry, I do not believe it was a rude question. I believe it was a perfectly legitimate question.
352. Q. And incidently, it's not an open‑ended question. You don't ask him ‑‑ what sort of an answer did you expect? Would yes have been a good enough answer for you?
MR. KOZAK: You don't have to answer that.
BY MR. WILLIS:
353. Q. Well, when you read the letter of the 20th, my question is when you say that Dr. Christensen declined reply, let's take this letter three days later. When you read this letter, didn't you understand that at the very least you had a reply to your question 5, that Dr. Christensen considered it entirely appropriate for himself to be involved and wrong of you to try to expel him? He used the words expel. You understood that he thought it was wrong for you to try to expel him?
354. Q. Therefore, if he thought it was wrong for you to try to expel him, you understood that he thought it was appropriate for him to continue?
A. That would be a reasonable inference, yes.
355. Q. And nonetheless, you told your readership three weeks later that you didn't have a reply to any of your 13 questions. But you knew, and you had a reply, didn't you?
A. No, I'm sorry. I think that's a really big stretch.
356. Q. Oh, it's a big stretch? You get a letter three days later which taxes you with serious ethical wrongdoing for trying to expel this man for the work he had been doing for all these years, and it's a big stretch to infer from that that he thinks it's all right for him to continue with the group? You call that a big stretch?
A. Yes, I do.
357. Q. Now, again, with regard to your questions, question 10, "Have you ever urged anyone associated with ECMAS Edmonton to fire their son/grandson/nephew/spouses/lawyer and hire [Tim] Adams instead? If so, on how many occasions and for what reason." Now, why didn't you, if you really wanted answers to those questions, why didn't you put the facts you had to him? Why didn't you say, for example, so and so claims that you did this. Did you?
A. Well, first of all, I was protecting confidential sources. Secondly, I had a lot of ground to cover, and that's the most efficient way to cover that particular point that I could see. There were allegations made that he has advised people to do this. I'm giving him an opportunity to say gosh, no, I would never have done that. And if he had said that one sentence, I would have been morally obligated to include that in the piece, but he didn't say it. And so I could not print it.
358. Q. On the one hand, you tax him because he gives you a general answer to ‑‑ put it this way: On the one hand you tax him because you insist on an absolutely specific answer to a specific quote from page 113, according to you. But on the other hand, you don't make any specific charge. You ask him for a blanket denial?
A. Is this something that you've done? And if so, what would be the reason for doing so? I think that's a very, very fair line of questioning.
359. Q. You do? You think it's fair to make a general allegation like this and not to put to him the names of the people who supposedly are making this allegation?
A. Yes, I do.
360. Q. How ‑‑ for example ‑‑ well, I guess we have your answer. When you say you were protecting your sources, I think you've said that the reason why you wanted to protect your sources was because they had cases in court or something of that kind?
361. Q. Well, what relevance would that have to telling Professor Christensen what they were saying about him? That had nothing to do with their cases in court.
A. You're right. It's one of the tensions as a journalist that I struggle with. [Back]
362. Q. Not only that. In the past, you've taken a different view, haven't you? You've taken the view that people should stand up and be counted if they're going to make serious allegations about other people.
A. Could you show me the paragraph, please?
363. Q. You can't remember whether you have or not? I can't ask you just a general question about whether you've taken that view? I have to put the expressed passage to you before you'll think it's fair?
364. Q. But you don't have to put the expressed allegation to Dr. Christensen, but I've got to put it to, or it won't be fair? Is that it? Well, I will then because I think it would only be fair to put to it you.
A. Thank you.
365. Q. Page 283 of your book, "But who says taking a political stand should be a 'pleasant experience'? Insulated from all risk, consequence or inconvenience, changing people's attitudes for the direction of public policy shouldn't be easy. Demonstrating against capital punishment or nuclear weapons or for abortion access often isn't pleasant either ‑‑ especially when one is confronted by equally passionate protestors on the other side of the debate. But surely, this is the price one pays for having moral convictions. Findley and McKay, though, seem to be saying that while they believe pornography is harmful to women, they should be able to protest it without disturbing the calm of their own lives. Don't get me wrong. These women deserve to be protected from criminal behaviour like everyone else. It would be unacceptable for anyone to assault them, for example, or to commit vandalism against their property. But why should they be shielded from the opinions of fellow citizens who disagree with them, or who think their own action raise difficult questions? Why should they think they're entitled to a 'pleasant life' when they permititively and of their own free will chose to set in motion a series of events that have caused other people a great deal of grief?" Now, your informants were accusing Professor Christensen of doing something highly unethical, correct?
A. Highly unethical?
366. Q. They're claiming that he pestered them to send their custom from their lawyers to [Tim] Adam and so forth?
A. Well, I think it's disturbing. I don't know if I would say it's highly unethical.
367. Q. Something that the average person would find highly discreditable?
368. Q. And in terms of Dr. Christensen knowing the names of these people ‑‑ one can understand perhaps not publishing the names in an article ‑‑ but in terms of Dr. Christensen knowing the names for the reasons you've said ‑‑ by your reasoning, really, if they're going to create grief for Dr. Christensen, they ought to have the courage to stand up and say who they are, if they're the alleged victims, correct?
A. You have a point, and it may very well be that if I had had a conversation with Dr. Christensen, he may have very well convinced me that he had a right to know the name of his accusers. And the tension that I struggle with as a journalist is that on the one hand it's very difficult to write some stories without promising to protect people's identities. On the other hand, I do fundamentally believe that people have the right to know the names of their accusers. And that's a difficult balancing act. But you see this, is a preliminary discussion with Dr. Christensen. I'm not about to give away names at this point. I'm covering preliminary ground in these questions.
369. Q. Wait a minute. You're saying that Dr. Christensen might have been able to convince you to tell him the names of these people?
A. He might have convinced me to go back to them and to talk to them about the possibility of revealing their names to him. Their concern was that their names not be in the newspaper.
370. Q. And so you didn't even want to tell Dr. Christensen in your initial question any of the actual details because he'd be able to identify the people, correct, who were making the allegations?
A. No. That wasn't the issue. The issue was there's a lot of ground to cover. Here is a whole, long list of questions that I think accurately reflect that ground. Let's have an open discussion.
371. Q. Why didn't you call Christensen? Why did you send him an e‑mail? Why didn't you phone him like you did everybody else?
A. Well, I intended to phone him, and then I got an e‑mail from him, and it seemed to me that that was his choice of how he wanted to conduct things, and so I did the courtesy of responding to him in the format that he chose. [So I was assumed to be using my original email to send her a hidden message about
how I preferred to be interviewed! But at that time, I had no way of knowing she meant to write about me as well as about Adams. And she could see there was no indication in that email of mine that I knew she meant to write about me. Finally, she knew that email is no adequate way to interview anyone.][Back]
372. Q. Well, he didn't ask you for an e‑mail, did he? He just said that he would hold off to hear the other side of the story. You say it's a format he chose. He e‑mailed you, but he didn't ask that you e‑mailed him back. Why didn't you call him like you did everyone else?
A. And I've just answered your question. He initiated contact by e‑mail, and so I chose to continue via e‑mail.
373. Q. Well, in fact, the problem was that you had already advocated his expulsion from the organization, and he knew that. [Not when I sent that first e-mail] Did you expect him to think you were open‑minded when you'd already told people that he should be kicked out of the organization, and he knew that?
A. Whether he was open‑minded or not doesn't seem to be relevant here.
374. Q. You see, let me ask you this: You don't think it's relevant. You knew, didn't you, that Professor Christensen had been told by people ‑‑
A. I did not know what Professor Christensen had been told by anyone. I am not following his around.
375. Q. You knew that you had told all these people that in your opinion Professor Christensen should be expelled from ECMAS?
A. All these people? I think I had one discussion with Mr. Bouvier because he asked my opinion.
376. Q. So we'll get back to that at a later time, but you told ‑‑ you could well know that Mr. Bouvier would have told ‑‑
A. Do I know what Mr. Bouvier would have told Professor Christensen? No, I don't. I'm sorry, I have no idea of how close they were, how frequently they talked, how accurately Mr. Bouvier would be represented the conversation or at what length.
377. Q. What I'm suggesting to you is that when you e‑mailed Dr. Christensen Item 14.1, you could reasonably have anticipated that Mr. Bouvier would have told him about your recommendation that he be expelled, correct? And if you wondered about that, three days later you certainly knew it when he wrote Mr. White. You knew that people had talked to him and told him what you'd said?
A. Sure. I'm not sure that it's a given that if you tell someone that's president of an organization that there's a public relations problem that they're going to spill the beans to them directly.
378. Q. And this kind of surprises me here. You write Dr. Christensen on March 23rd. One day previously, you told Dr. Bouvier that you thought he should be expelled from the organization, correct?
379. Q. You don't tell Dr. Christensen that. You ask him the so‑called question. You ask him what I've said is a rhetorical question that you think is a perfectly, pointed, wonderful question, that's 5 No. 2, as to whether he thinks it's appropriate or inappropriate. But you don't tell him that you've already made that decision, do you?
A. This is his opportunity to respond and convince me that I'm wrong.
380. Q. Well, you don't tell him what your position is. You don't do him that courtesy of telling him that you've already weighed him in the balance and fond him wanting, do you? Don't you think that was sneaky of you?
A. I think it's standard journalistic practice. You do not phone up someone and begin an interview by telling them exactly what you think of them. You ask them questions, and give them an opportunity to form your opinion.
381. Q. In he had known, as he learned, that you had already told people you thought he should be expelled from the organization, it would have been reasonable for him to think you were biased, wouldn't it?
A. It would have been reasonable for him to think that I had a strong opinion and that he had an uphill battle.
382. Q. Exactly. And so maybe he should consult his lawyer. In other words, if had known the truth, that you had already taken a position advocating his expulsion from this organization, if you told him the truth, you would never have expected him to answer your written questions, would you?
A. Yes, I would have. Here's the situation as I see it. Please, help me understand why you do not see the situation that way.
383. Q. But you didn't say here's the situation as I see it. You didn't tell him how you saw the situation, did you?
A. That's true, but you've just asked me if I would have, would that have been a reasonable thing.
384. Q. Yes, and then of course, instead of directly responding to my question, you gave a little scenario. Here's the situation as I see it. What do you say? But you didn't do that, did you?
A. No, I did not.
385. Q. Why not?
A. I just told you. It's not standard journalistic practice to phone someone up and preface interview questions by telling them what your opinion already is at that point in time.
386. Q. Well, wouldn't you call that ‑‑ in non‑journalistic parlance, we might call that sandbagging. Why wouldn't you do that? Why wouldn't you do Professor Christensen the courtesy of telling him that you'd already made up your mind about one of the things you were asking about?
A. I've answered that question already.
387. Q. No, you've just said it's not standard journalistic practice.
A. And that is my answer, sir.
388. Q. Where do you get this standard journalistic practice from? You don't have a code of ethics that you adhere to. So where's the code of standard journalistic practice? Is there one?
A. That is way the job is done.
389. Q. So when you talk about this standard journalistic practice, perhaps that's what I should have asked you about instead of ethics. Is there a code of standard journalistic practice that you're aware of?
A. No. There's a way to get the job done.
390. Q. And has anyone articulated this way to get the job done in any form that you accept and that you could refer me to?
391. Q. Is this just a sort of what you picked up in your years as a journalist?
392. Q. And has anyone ever written this down anywhere that you're aware of?
A. Not that I'm aware of.
393. Q. You must have read quite a few books about ‑‑ is there any book about the practice of journalism that is a guide or inspiration to you that would you accept as authoritative?
394. Q. What's the reason, then ‑‑ you see, to me, it seems ‑‑ well, perhaps, for the police, we don't mind them misleading people to try to get statements. Why would it be standard journalistic practice with someone like Dr. Christensen not to tell him where you're coming from?
MR. KOZAK: I don't know if you're suggesting with that question that Ms. Laframboise was misleading Dr. Christensen to preface ‑‑
MR. WILLIS: Mr. Kozak, I accept that rebuke. Even if it's not a rebuke, I accept that qualification.
BY MR. WILLIS:
395. Q. You wouldn't say that just because something's standard journalistic practice that it's okay to do, that it's ethically all right?
A. That's true.
396. Q. I mean, we know that most ‑‑ the majority of famous journalists have at some time committed plagiarism. We know that, don't we? I'm sorry.
A. No, we don't know that.
397. Q. We don't?
A. No. Most of the famous journalists have at some time committed plagiarism?
398. Q. But if they had, would that be all right? If that was standard journalistic practice, would that be okay, plagiarism?
A. Of course not.
399. Q. So let's suppose that you ‑‑ I suppose that ‑‑ do all journalists sometimes mislead people to try to get them to make admissions or to try to get a newsworthy story?
A. I'm sorry, I can't speak for all journalists.
400. Q. Do you know what standard journalistic practice is?
401. Q. Can you articulate standard journalistic practice? For example, let's just take the keeping of files. I thought a standard journalistic practice would be that you have all your files numbered and dated and stuff, but you don't. Do you depart from standard journalistic practice then?
A. I would suggest to you, sir, that my files are far more complete and orderly than the average journalist. I'm a little anal when it comes to files.
402. Q. So I guess ‑‑ wouldn't you agree with me that the fact that something is standard journalistic practice is no justification for doing it? You have to find the justification elsewhere?
A. That would be true.
403. Q. Then I ask you. Here you have a situation in which you got yourself emotionally involved in a story to this extent ‑‑
A. Wait a minute. Where did I say that?
404. Q. I'm suggesting it to you, that you've actually made a recommendation to people as to what they should do?
A. And that's emotional involvement?
405. Q. Well, you agree with me that you have emotional involvement in men's issues, correct?
A. No, I have a sympathy. I think that's rather different.
406. Q. All right. You've indicated that you have sympathy towards these men's issues?
A. That's right.
407. Q. And you have sufficient sympathy that you see yourself in a sense as a bit of a lonely crusader when other people have no sympathy with men's issues or men's groups, other journalists don't, correct?
408. Q. And to some extent, I'm suggesting to you that you have said that you have a positive emotional involvement with men's issues and the groups that espouse them?
A. No, I'm sorry. I'm comfortable with sympathy. I'm not comfortable with emotional involvement.
409. Q. So one can have sympathy without emotional involvement?
410. Q. But when people asked you ‑‑ when Bouvier asked you, as you put it, for what should we do, and at this point, you knew that it's not standard journalistic practice to in the middle of a story make recommendations to people about what they should do, is it?
A. That's right.
411. Q. But nonetheless, you've violated that standard the journalistic practice because why?
A. Because of my sympathy with the cause and ‑‑ [Here she admits breaching only "standard practice", not ethical rules.] [Back]
412. Q. And you don't like the expression emotional involvement, but sympathy you'll accept?
A. That's right.
413. Q. So your sympathy with the cause overrode your normal journalistic practice which would be not to be involved, not to become part of the story?
A. That's right. My normal journalistic practice would be to give people rope, let them hang themselves, let them say dumb things, and print every single one of them. That would be normal journalistic practice.
414. Q. Right, but in this case, what happens is that you give ‑‑ and that was then how you wanted to operate with regard to Dr. Christensen, give him rope, and see if he could say dumb things in response to your questions?
A. No, I object to that. I really do.
415. Q. Well, you see, if you had such sympathy with the movement, such sympathy that you're willing to give sympathetic advice to Mr. Bouvier, what about Dr. Christensen? Wouldn't sympathy have dictated that instead of sandbagging him by disguising your views, you tell him that you thought he ought to leave?
A. It's very difficulty to have sympathy with someone who out of the blue writes you an e‑mail that begins, "You have no idea of the amount of damage you're going to do." And ends with, "‑‑ impugning your integrity." Unfortunately, the sympathy factor kind of goes out the window pretty quickly under that circumstance. [Writing to oppose her attempt to do us harm was not writing "out of the blue".]
416. Q. You'd already decided that he should be expelled. How could ‑‑ the sympathy must have gone before he e‑mailed you, mustn't it?
A. No. I haven't interviewed him yet. I do, whether you believe it or not, have an open‑mind and an even‑handed approach to things. It was quite possible for him to convince me otherwise.
417. Q. Exactly. It's important for you to believe that you have an open‑minded and even‑handed approach ‑‑
A. Thank you.
418. Q. ‑‑ but I'm trying to show you that you're wrong in this case. And so you've told me that you had sympathy towards the movement, and that's why you overrode what you would consider to be normal journalistic practice which would be give them rope and then hang them. And you gave them advice that you thought was good, right?
A. That's right.
419. Q. And on the other hand, if Christensen hadn't e‑mailed you in the way that he did, are you saying that you would have extended the same type of sympathy to him?
A. Absolutely. Please, clarify; help me understand.
420. Q. And you would have told him look, in the interest of the movement, I think you should quit. Let's not make a story out of this. Why don't you just quit? Is that what you would have ‑‑
A. It's very likely that's what part of our conversation would have been.
421. Q. So let's look at this e‑mail that may have changed his views.
MR. KOZAK: Just off the record for a moment.
‑‑‑ Brief adjournment at 3:20 p.m.
‑‑‑ Upon resuming at 3:37 p.m.
BY MR. WILLIS:
422. Q. You acknowledge that you're still under oath?
A. Yes, I do.
423. Q. Now, when we broke, we were talking about the e‑mail that Dr. Christensen sent you, and that is 14.2, and it starts, "You have no idea of the harm you are about to do." Now, I think you said that if it hadn't been for this e‑mail, you might well have disclosed to Dr. Christensen that you had already formed the opinion that he ought to resign from ECMAS because of his controversial views, correct?
A. I'm sorry if that's what I suggested. I think what I meant was that if it had not been for this e‑mail, I would have had more sympathy for Dr. Christensen, and this was difficult to maintain in the face of this e‑mail.
424. Q. You did say that ‑‑ I thought you said that if it hadn't been for this e‑mail, that you would have disclosed him your feelings rather than merely asking him those 13 questions?
A. If it had not been for the e‑mail, I anticipate that we would have had a courteous conversation along the lines that I had with Mr. [Tim] Adams, and it is quite possible that I made that disclosure in that context.
425. Q. So when he said you have no idea of the harm you are about to do, I take it that in itself you didn't consider to be an insult or a discourtesy?
A. Yes, I did. I certainly didn't consider it to be a compliment. I am someone who has written about the father's rights movement for a long time and very sympathetically. And to suggest that I have no idea what I'm doing in this particular case was not a courteous thing to say. [Back]
426. Q. All right. And was that enough? I mean, once you read that sentence to warrant your sympathy?
A. No, I think it was a cumulation of the entire e‑mail as well as ‑‑ we have the actual copy. This is the portion that is attached, and I think looking at the original copy would be helpful here. So it will be the 21st, I believe.
427. Q. All right. That's Item 8 in our production.
A. You will notice that this is not a private e‑mail sent to me. This is an e‑mail in which I feel that Professor Christensen is saying some rather discourteous things about me, and it's sent to a senator in the senate of Canada as well.
428. Q. Okay.
A. Which I interpreted as an attempt to pressure me into behaving in a certain manner rather than as the beginning of a courteous dialogue.
429. Q. And then the next paragraph, "[Tim] Adams had no real interest in being vice president of ECMAS. He made the decision suddenly at the AGM in an attempt to thwart a bid for power by Louise. (There was really no danger, but he didn't know the full story at the time.) Having alienated nearly all of the regular ECMAS activists, she took a few non‑regulars and a couple of never‑were members and a couple of alienated members with her, hoping to grab some power. In a large part, what she is doing now is revenge Over her rejection by the main body of activists here." Now, you understood, actually, that was also the position that Bouvier and Laberge and all these people took, correct?
A. I think Mr. Bouvier expressed similar views. I don't think I can say that Mr. Laberge expressed those views.
430. Q. But this paragraph in itself, I presume, you took no exception to? You understood those were his views?
A. Those were his views, yes.
431. Q. And then he goes on to say, "You don't know Louise. From a distance, one only sees her good work, not her dark side; I learned that the hard way when I dug into my old‑age savings to bring her here last fall." So again, I understand to you Louise was merely a news source and not a friend. So this was nothing that would cause you problems?
A. Well, actually, no. First of all, in the first line, I'm being told that I have no idea of the harm I'm being done. Then I'm being told that I don't know Louise. Well, in fact, I do know Louise, and I've had an extensive relationship with her, and I've found her to be a very reliable news source, indeed. So from a certain perspective, my judgement is being insulted. I don't know the harm I'm doing, and I don't know Louise. And rather than rely on my experience, I should rely on Dr. Christensen's allegation that she has a dark side.
432. Q. Well, but of course the next sentence doesn't ask you to rely on that allegation. It only asks you to rely on it to this extent. It says, it asks you if you will hold off until you hear the other side of the [Back] story. In fact, you had told people that you were going to publish an article on March 24th, hadn't you? You were going to try and buy them time over the weekend. You referred to buying time for ECMAS. Do you recall that?
A. Unfortunately, there were a number of dates we were going to try to publish on.
433. Q. But the point being that you recall now you had told people from ECMAS that you'd intended to publish, really, before Friday, the 23rd. But you were going to give them the weekend to try and get their affairs in order including expelling Christensen.
A. Well, we wouldn't have published before Friday. It seems to me that the plan was always to publish this on a weekend. And at a certain point, we made a decision, because the story was still developing, to give them the weekend.
434. Q. Okay. But originally, and when you ‑‑ from an internal point of view, you made that decision because as you said the story was still developing. But what you told Mr. Bouvier and stuff was that you had succeeded in buying them time so that they could get their house in order?
435. Q. So that the story would not be Group Makes Horrible Mistake, but the story would be Group Corrects Horrible Mistake.
A. Well, frankly, if they corrected the mistake, I doubt there would have been the story.
436. Q. That's why you told them you were going to buy them time, correct? You told Mr. Bouvier I've succeeded in buying you time. You now have the weekend, so you can have your meeting and correct the situation.
A. But you asked me if the story would change from this to this, and I'm saying the story may well have disappeared at that point.
437. Q. Now, what I'm saying to you is that around about this time, March 22nd, 23rd, you had been telling people you'd spoken to ‑‑ among whom was not Dr. Christensen because you hadn't phoned him or made any attempt to contact him at that point ‑‑ that you were going to publish this article forthwith?
A. We were certainly ‑‑ our intent was to publish it as soon as possible, yes.
438. Q. So you could understand why Dr. Christensen would be urgently trying to convince you to hold off?
439. Q. And in fact, you had already decided by March 22nd to wait at least the weekend so that your story would develop?
A. No, I'm sorry. I can't tell you when we made that decision. We made it at some point, but I cannot remember when, whether it was made on the 22nd or the 23rd or the 21st. [Then she's forgotten what is plain in her Bouvier interview.]
440. Q. But when you read Dr. Christensen's e‑mail ‑‑ let's put it this way ‑‑ you knew that he thought you were going to write a story without necessarily even contacting him? [Again: when I sent my first email, I had no
idea she meant to attack me as well as Adams, so I had no reason to think she intended to contact me.]
A. Yes, and it was an absurd supposition
on his part. So you know, there we are.
441. Q. You say it was an absurd supposition on his part that you would write the story without contacting him?
442. Q. Well, why, actually, did you not contact him earlier?
A. When there are allegations being made about people, the most efficient way to approach the issue is to interview as many people as possible about those allegations, to listen to those allegations, to listen to people who don't make those allegations, to gather all of that information together, and then present it to the person who is being accused. That would have been my preference when I dealt with Mr. Adams. Mr. Adams phoned me, and so I, out of courtesy, responded almost immediately. That was not my choice at that point to interview Mr. Adams. And so with Professor Christensen, it was the same thing. I was going to interview lots of people. Then I was going to contact them and say there are being all of these different things said about you. Would you, please, respond?
443. Q. I thought the story was [Tim] Adams, correct?
444. Q. And his misconduct or alleged misconduct. With regard to Professor Christensen, in terms of his views, those views were communicated to you by Louise Malenfant, right?
A. No, they were communicated to me in his book.
445. Q. Well, but for example, did various people draw that book to your attention?
A. No. Ms. Malenfant drew the book to my attention, but what are his views? The views are contained in his book.
446. Q. So once she had drawn the book to your attention which was on or about March 12th, you had all the information you needed to talk to him about that, didn't you?
A. That's true, but I was asking people ‑‑ I was talking to people who said he was advising them to fire their lawyers. So I wanted to get his opinion about that as well. And often, it's very difficult to actually get in touch with someone you want to interview. You've leaving voice messages. You're playing telephone tag. You don't want to have to do it multiple times.
447. Q. But in this case, you didn't make any attempt to get a hold of Dr. Christensen?
A. No, I did not have the opportunity before I received his e‑mail.
448. Q. That was just a minor point I wanted to raise. If you look at your production No. 19, page U00342, this is, we believe, your interview with [Source B]. Although, this is one of your so‑called confidential sources. And if I can refer you to page 7, you say to [Source B]...
MR. KOZAK: Is that part of your question?
BY MR. WILLIS:
449. Q. I'm sorry, you said to the source ‑‑ that was inadvertent, sorry. You say to the source, "Now, one of the things you may not be aware of is that Professor Christensen wrote a book a few years ago. Answer: Right. And I've heard about it. I haven't read the book. DL: Yeah, I have the book right here. I think ‑‑ let me just see when he wrote it, 1990. So, you know, ten years ago. And there is a lot in the book and, you know, it is interesting. There is much that I would agree with. You know, 98 percent of it is, you know, it's the man's opinion. And you'll agree or you don't agree, but there's a small little bit of it where he talks about sex with children, and he suggests that he doesn't really think sex with children is such a bad thing. Holly." Responds the witness. Then you say, "Yeah, yeah, and so, you know, I wouldn't have even known about this. But I started looking into [Tim] Adams." Well, that actually wasn't true, was it, because you'd read the book?
A. Okay. I've read the book. I don't think I read that part the first time.
450. Q. But actually, Louise Malenfant had drawn the offending passages in the book to your attention before?
A. You're right. That is not quite true the way I phrased that.
451. Q. And then the source says, "uh-huh. DL: And then they said oh, but, you know, some people I've been talking to have said well, have you read what Professor Christensen says about sex with children? Because he seems to think it's okay. So, you know, now I'm saying holly cow." That actually was a complete misrepresentation of what happened to the source. Now, you've told the source that you started interviewing [Tim] Adams, and then some people you'd been talking to then said well, have you read what Professor Christensen says about sex with children because he seems to think it's okay. So now, I'm saying holly cow.
A. You're right. I got the order confused
there. [Since Ms. Malenfant alleged this to her for at least a week before the reporter interviewed anyone about Mr. Adams, and not one of them said it to her, this is not a case of just getting "confused".]
452. Q. Why did you do that?
A. I don't know. [This is actually a familiar pattern of deceit:
To make a story sound more robustly real, a speaker embellishes it with details fabricated on the fly.] 453. Q. And again, you'll agree with me here that in this case, however we may fence about what you told Mr. Bouvier when he says he doesn't seem to think it's such a bad thing, here you come right out and you say to this source because he seems to think it's okay. So here you're definitely ‑‑ I take it you wouldn't disagree with me that here you're telling this source that Professor Christensen condones sex with children?
A. You're right. It is a stronger wording of it than two paragraphs above.
454. Q. And you'd accept that condones is not an inappropriate word for what ‑‑
A. "He seems to think it's okay. He's certainly neutral on the subject." [The second quote-mark is misplaced; it
should follow 'okay'. And clearly 'not neutral' was actually said or meant. So she is granting here that this claim of hers lacks the tentativeness of 'maybe' or 'suggesting' in what it says about my views.] [Back]
455. Q. Now, in paragraph 29 of your counterclaim, I'm trying to understand. We're looking at the third paragraph which says, "Allegedly, to suggest to my associates that I condone pedophilia." I guess I'm having trouble with this. At this point, when you talk to the source, Dr. Christensen hasn't done anything to offend you. You know, it's a small part of the book. You talked earlier about the ambiguity of the reasoning and that sort of thing. And you talk about your sympathy with the movement for which Dr. Christensen was, in part, a representative. Why did you express yourself in the fashion that you did to this particular source?
A. One of the difficulties I encountered while writing this article was that many of the people I spoke to did not recognize that there was a public relations problem with [Tim] Adams or, indeed, with Professor Christensen. And so one of the things that I expect that I did was push the envelope a little to try to kind of poke people a little into understanding why there were some issues here that they weren't seeing. So I would suspect that that's probably the best explanation.
[In part, this is a desperate fabrication. The interviewees to whom she made these claims ("Source B" and ECMAS president Bouvier) had given no indication of not "seeing" the problem with my book, for she made it to them out of the blue. It follows that she realized, before describing the book to them, that simply telling the truth about it would not get people in general to oppose me over the book.] [Back]
456. Q. Let me ask you about this. I mean, because this general proposition, the public relations problem, I mean obviously, if you don't write the story, there's no public relations problem?
A. Well, just the journalist down the street who already has an ax to grind against all these groups is going to write the story, and then there's really the public relations story.
457. Q. Is there any indication that anybody else was interested in the story at all?
A. Yes, it was one of the reasons that we ran the news story, the short version that we did, is that we heard that there were other members of the media in Alberta were picking up the story. [Again: this was Malenfant's lie to her.]
458. Q. I mean, for example, there are other views that Christensen has that perhaps are equally controversial. For example Christensen's views on violence and pornography as expressed in his book. Are you familiar with those?
A. Not off the top of my head.
459. Q. You'll agree with me that this whole issue of violence and pornography is a big one?
460. Q. And Christensen argued strongly that aggression is bad, but pornography is okay, if I may over simplify. You understood that to be a fair ‑‑
A. Yes, that's fair.
461. Q. In fact, he seems to be ‑‑ if we look at page is 153, now I appreciate you haven't read 153. Have you read the book now?
462. Q. Still not? Are you purposely not reading it so as not to corrupt your former pristine impressions, or you just haven't got around to it?
A. I haven't got around to it.
463. Q. In that case, I won't further your potential corruption by referring you to page 153. "If we are to do anything significant about all the aggression in this society, the remedy must include a lot of things such as attacking its social and economical roots. It must also include simply doing a better job of teaching morality to children ‑‑ real morality, that is ‑‑ respect and concern for others, and equal dignity for all. If guilt is to be taught (and it probably must be), let it be only other genuine evils like aggression itself." Now, although Dr. Christensen's views on pornography and aggression are somewhat controversial in the sense that he's saying that just because aggression accompanied pornography that's no reason to ban pornography, his views are actually less controversial than yours, aren't they?
A. In what way?
464. Q. In that you don't take such a strong view. You've expressed yourself on many occasions on the question of pornography. And you don't take such a strong view against aggression or depictions of aggression as Dr. Christensen does in his book?
A. So my views are more extreme because I don't write against aggression?
465. Q. To the extent that I'm just saying in this one respect, that is to say, in the evil of the pornography and aggression, your views are considerably more controversial than Dr. Christensen's, wouldn't you say?
A. No, I'm sorry. I'm not sure I've ever written about aggression. So I'm not sure we can conclude what my views are one way or the other on it.
466. Q. Or violence, let's say, violence, aggression. I'm not distinguishing between the two.
A. No, I'm sorry. I just don't ‑‑ you know, unless you want to point me to some of my writings about pornography and somehow make the link a little more clear, I don't want to compare myself to his views one way or the other.
467. Q. So you wouldn't say that you hold controversial views about violence and pornography?
A. I hold controversial views about pornography for sure.
468. Q. And in particular, about violent pornography, that is, pornography involving depictions of bondage and domination and things of that kind?
A. I don't consider that violent porn.
469. Q. Right, but most people do.
A. Bondage is violent pornography?
470. Q. Most people would find your views controversial in matters involving violence, physical submission, things of that kind. Wouldn't you agree with that?
MR. KOZAK: You've lumped a couple of things together there.
BY MR. WILLIS:
471. Q. Well, let's just take your views on bondage or [non-]consensual sex appearing in pornographic fantasies. You don't necessarily think that's bad, correct?
A. That's true.
472. Q. In fact, you have a collection on your web site of such materials.
A. From romance novels, yes.
473. Q. And you'd agree with me that your views are controversial in that regard because most people have a different view?
A. Well, therein lies the paradox. If most people have a different view, why is romance novels 55 percent of paperback sales? [The violent ones are a far smaller proportion.]
474. Q. Yes, nonetheless, your views are ‑‑ let's just say you'd agree with me that those views are controversial?
475. Q. And so holding those views ‑‑ such views can create the so‑called PR problem?
476. Q. Dr. Christensen's views on these matters ‑‑ well, I presume we can say that even the rest of his book with which you agree, the 98 percent or 95 percent of which you agree, a good deal of it is controversial?
477. Q. And the part that you singled out to talk to about people, of course, that's like a digression within his book which is mostly about pornography, correct? In other words, there's a chapter on child pornography. Within that chapter, there are four pages, and within those four pages, there are a few sentences that deal parenthetically with the effects of sexual contact on children.
A. Okay. Just to be a little more precise, there's a chapter called Sex and Psychological Health. And within that chapter, which goes from 102 to 113 ‑‑
478. Q. Yes, but you didn't read that one.
A. ‑‑ there's a section from 109 to 113 entitled Sex and Young People.
479. Q. Yes. So I guess what I'm saying is ‑‑ and let me ask you this: Those views are controversial of Dr. Christensen's. There's no issue about that nor does Dr. Christensen in Item 20.1 deny that, indeed, he talks about witch‑hunts and rational beliefs and things of this kind.
A. That's true.
480. Q. Did you ‑‑ I'm trying to find a way to phrase this. You certainly had no evidence that Dr. Christensen, in any way, advocated grown people having sex with children?
A. That's true.
481. Q. Nor really did you come across anything that caused you to suspect that Dr. Christensen was in any way involved with advocating or condoning or in any way supporting sex between adults and children?
A. It's a long list, but I think that's true, yes.
482. Q. And in terms of Dr. Christensen's support of Mr. Adams, you never learned anything that caused you to feel that Dr. Christensen thought that the sex that Mr. Adams had had with the 15 year‑old prostitute that resulted in his being disbarred was in any way defensible or okay or not so bad or anything of that kind?
A. Well, the fact that he feels that it's appropriate for someone with that background to be intimately involved in ECMAS and, indeed, to assume the position of elected office suggests to me that perhaps he's not as uneasy with a conviction connected to a minor prostitute as some other people might be.[I told her how he was elected.]
483. Q. All right. But I mean, there's the fact that Mr. Adams is who he is, and with a conviction that he has ‑‑ but of course, I think you've admitted in your undertakings and everybody else knew that too about Mr. Adams. In other words, Mr. Adams's conviction was common knowledge?
A. That's right.
484. Q. The fact that Mr. Adams had been disbarred was common knowledge?
A. Yes. [Back]
485. Q. And but other than the fact that Mr. Adams had been found guilty of that sexual misconduct, you were not aware of in all this time and all the people you spoke to of Dr. Christensen having said anything which suggests that he minimized or failed to take with proper seriousness Mr. Adams's disbarment?
A. Not directly. However, Professor Christensen is an educated man. He's a philosophy professor. I think it's reasonable to have expected that he might be a little more sophisticated in his analysis than the ordinary Joe off the street who's just coming to ECMAS because they're looking for help. If anyone could make the distinction and understand the public relations implications, I would have expected it would have been an educated gentleman like Professor Christensen. And so yes, everyone knew, I would suggest, that Professor Christensen was in a better position than most to draw certain conclusions based on that knowledge.
486. Q. Well, tell me this: Did you ever learn anything that suggested that Mr. Adams himself was not appropriately remorseful and accepting of the wrong that he had done? In other words, Mr. Adams was convicted. He was sentenced. He was disbarred. Did you ever learn anything that suggested that Mr. Adams in any way advocated the kind of conduct of which he had been convicted?
A. It was suggested in one of the interviews I conducted that when the person ‑‑ and I don't remember who ‑‑ learned about Mr. Adams's disbarment, the narrative that he was told was that Mr. Adams had been set up by the police, that it was not that Mr. Adams had made a grievance judgement, error in judgement. It had been oh, well, he'd been set up by the police. That suggested to me that perhaps within the group there was some minimizing going on of the seriousness of the offence.
487. Q. But that did not come from Mr. Adams?
488. Q. And in fact, you had read the judgement of the Court of Appeal. So you knew exactly what did happen?
A. Yes, and I believe there is something in that judgement as well that suggests that the judges are not convinced that Mr. Adams fully appreciates the nature of his offence.
489. Q. Of course, you know that the Law Society's decision to disbar him was 2 to 1, don't you? Or did you know that?
A. I don't remember.
490. Q. Did you know who the dissenting person was?
A. I don't remember.
491. Q. Did you know it Alan McLeod, QC, who subsequently became the president of the Law Society who dissented and felt that Mr. Adams should not be disbarred?
A. I don't remember if I knew that.
492. Q. And when you talked to Mr. Adams, was there any indication that he was anything other than remorseful and apologetic for what he had done?
A. Mr. Adams, it seemed to me, was far more interested in keeping his name out of the paper and in not having any more problems with the Law Society than he was in the reputation of ECMAS.
493. Q. I'm sorry. What made you conclude that? I understand that Mr. Adams resigned immediately when it was pointed out to him that his executive position was going to create a so‑called PR problem?
A. Well, if he resigned, I certainly never received any copy with his resignation letter. And I subsequently was told that his resignation was not accepted. [She was told in writing that his resignation as VP was accepted but he wasn't expelled.]