Flipping The Bird A 'God-Given Right' Rules Canadian Judge
Giving someone the middle finger is a God-given right according to a Canadian judge.
In a 26-page decision reported by The Guardian, judge Dennis Galiatsatos dismissed a case against a man who allegedly harassed his neighbor in a Montreal suburb.
"To be abundantly clear, it is not a crime to give someone the finger," he said in the Feb. 24 ruling. "Flipping the proverbial bird is a God-given, charter-enshrined right that belongs to every red-blooded Canadian."
In May 2021, Neall Epstein was arrested by police for uttering death threats and "criminal harassment" against his neighbor, Michael Naccache, in Beaconsfield, Quebec.
But judge Galiatsatos instead laid into Naccache, whose complaints were "nothing more than mundane, petty neighborhood trivialities."
"It is deplorable that the complainants have weaponized the criminal justice system in an attempt to exert revenge on an innocent man for some perceived slights that are, at best, trivial peeves," reads the ruling.
Naccache had previously accused Epstein of assaulting his parents in March 2021, a claim the judge dismissed outright.
The focus of the case happened later that year, however. In May, Epstein testified his neighbour held up a handheld drill and said: “You fucking crazy neighbour; you dipshit,” adding: “You’re fucking dead.”
In response, Epstein told him to “fuck off” and proceeded to give Naccache the finger as he walked away, court documents showed. Video evidence, taken from CCTV footage, “clearly shows that Epstein is looking in the complainant’s direction and giving him the finger, sometimes with both hands”. -The Guardian
According to Galiatsatos, "being told to ‘fuck off’ should not prompt a call to 911."
"The complainants are free to clutch their pearls in the face of such an insult. However, the police department and the 911 dispatching service have more important priorities to address."
And while the middle finger "may not be civil, it may not be polite, it may not be gentlemanly … Nevertheless, it does not trigger criminal liability."
In the judge's conclusion, he wished he could throw the case's files out of a window to express his outrage about Epstein's charges.
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Read the decision here: