Final event of the series takes place at the Canadian War Museum on March 27

Ottawa, March 18, 2014 -- The Macdonald-Laurier Institute is pleased to announce that the fourth and final instalment of the Great Canadian Debates for 2013-14 will take place March 27 at 7 pm at the Canadian War Museum in Ottawa. The resolution is: "Free speech in Canadian Universities is an endangered species". The debaters will be National Post columnist Barbara Kay, arguing for the resolution, and York University professor Daniel Drache, arguing against.

Universities are supposed to be places where ideas, regardless of how radical or controversial, are freely debated without fear of censorship or intimidation. And tenure is a way to protect revolutionary ideas. Is that perception of our universities an illusion? Has political correctness endangered free speech on Canadian campuses? That is the contentious issue for discussion next Thursday.

The Great Canadian Debates is a series of four provocative debates exploring some of the most compelling issues to Canadians. Each debate is presented at the Canadian War Museum, Barney Danson Theatre, and features well-known personalities, and guest moderator the Hon. Peter Milliken, former Speaker of the House of Commons. Audience members are invited to get involved by posing questions during a Q&A session and voting for the winning argument. The debates are later broadcast on CPAC.

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Barbara Kay has been a weekly columnist with the National Post since 2003. She writes on a variety of cultural and political topics. She is best known for her frequent challenges to the received wisdom of the feminist movement. Another favoured topic is the betrayal of the ideal of free enquiry and objective teaching in the academy. Writing for the Post and its online blog, FullComment, occupies most of her writing time, but Barbara also writes for other publications, such as Front Page Magazine, Pajamas Media, The Dorchester review, Convivium, and the Prince Arthur Herald (PAH), a campus-based online conservative commentary blog. Barbara is the author of two books: (with Aruna Papp) Unworthy Creature: A Punjabi Daughter's Memoir of Honour, Love and Shame (2011); and ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS: A Cultural Memoir and Other Essays (2013).

Daniel Drache is Professor Emeritus and Senior Research Fellow at the Robarts Centre for Canadian Studies at York University. He has written and published extensively on globalization, new social media, North American integration and the iconography of dissent. His 20 books have been published by many of the leading university presses. He has been a visiting professor at JNU and Jamia Millia Islamia New Delhi, EUI Florence, CNRS Paris, and Massey College, University of Toronto among others. In 2007 he published Defiant Publics, and his book The Market or the Public Domain, has just been translated into Chinese and will be published in early 2014. His latest publication with Les Jacobs, entitled New Policy Space in Hard Times: Trade and Human Rights, will be out this year.

The Macdonald-Laurier Institute is the only non-partisan, independent national public policy think tank in Ottawa focusing on the full range of issues that fall under the jurisdiction of the federal government. For more information, please contact David Watson, managing editor and communications director, at 613-482-8327 x. 103 or email at On Twitter @MLInstitute

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