Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 13/1/2012 (2048 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Policing student opinion
Re: Students suspended for anti-Semitic photo (Jan. 11). I understand that anti-Semitic and racist remarks are never the kind of things we want to see or hear from our young people, but is it the school division's job to police the student body opinion?
The incident in question did not take place on school property. It's not pretty, but the reality is that people are entitled to think how they want, whichever way that may be. If the student is conducting himself in a manner that is safe and respectful to others at school, then the school division should not need to be involved.
Alan Yusim is quoted in this article as saying "(my) guess is there aren't any Jewish students at (Murdoch MacKay Collegiate) and it's likely none of these students know a Jewish person."
On the contrary. As a Jew who was valedictorian of the MMCI class of 2011, I know many of the students who are currently attending MMCI. I was disappointed in this comment by Yusim. This man is speaking out against discrimination and people saying prejudicial things, yet he himself is making an assumption about a different part of the city.
Sure, there aren't many Jews in Transcona, but myself being one of them, I can certainly say that most kids in that school know at least one. So, Mr. Yusim, my "guess" is that next time you should maybe look into things before saying no Jewish students have any ties to the school and demonizing the entire student body for one incident.
I would like to thank the students of Oak Park High School and Murdoch MacKay Collegiate. The ignorance displayed by these students and the Facebook friends who supported their actions clearly demonstrate the need to both complete and support the Canadian Museum for Human Rights.
The presence of such hatred in our so-called enlightened times shines a bright light on the need to educate the youth of today on what can happen if such hatred goes unchecked.
Telecom ownership the issue
Re: Standing up to corporate gouging -- you will win (Jan. 7). I am all for standing up to shareholders and getting the best deal for Canadians. However, the real issue is not a lack of competition.
As of December 2011, Canada had 44 wireless carriers, which on a per-capita basis, is the most in the world. International pricing comparisons are inconclusive and potentially misleading when you consider Canada's geography and the high cost of the infrastructure, the complexity of consumer pricing plans and the variances in usage patterns.
The real issue for Canadians is Prime Minister Stephen Harper's plan to relax the foreign-ownership restrictions on our telecommunications. Some argue this will bring more competition, lower prices and better quality of service.
However, the facts do not support this theory. We know competition only breeds where large populations live and where the money can be made. Subscribers in rural Canada will not benefit from more competition but rather only from regulatory measures ensuring access and affordable service.
Weakening regulations will undermine the security of Canadians' personal and business data, our cultural sovereignty, our national security and jeopardize Canadian jobs as foreign ownership and control of operations are potentially moved out of Canada.
Fabrice Taylor, who is an award-winning financial journalist and analyst, should research the impact of Harper's plans to relax the foreign-ownership restrictions on our telecommunications and encourage his readership to stand up to the federal government -- you will win.
Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada
Road more damaging
In the First Nations Voice insert in the Jan. 4 Free Press, there is an article extolling the benefits of an all-weather road on the east side of Lake Winnipeg and saying that the East Side Transportation Initiative will "provide year-round access to 13 isolated First Nations communities." Environmental approval has been given for the next phase, up to Berens River.
An all-weather road, with the attendant clearing, embankments, drainage works and continuous traffic, will have a much greater environmental impact than, say, a string of hydro towers.
But our NDP government is so insecure that it simply cannot admit to a mistake in ruling the east side as "unavailable" to Manitoba Hydro as an option to consider for routing Bipole III. This in spite of dozens of engineers, environmentalists, economists and former senior Manitoba Hydro staff telling Greg Selinger and Stan Struthers that they are wrong.
Iran remains a threat
Chris Buors, in his Jan. 10 letter, Sinister ambitions, is quick to find many faults with American policy, dating back as far as the Spanish-American War in 1898, and to defend Iran, which he says has never threatened the United States or anyone else.
Either Buors is not aware of, or totally disregards, the threats by the president of Iran to wipe Israel off the map.
Worthy of inclusion
Re: Notable Manitobans who died in 2011 (Dec. 31). I am disappointed that Ed Kuiper was missing from your annual story listing the deaths of prominent citizens.
Kuiper, who passed away in October, was a civil engineering professor, retired from the engineering faculty at the University of Manitoba, where he specialized in hydraulic engineering. During the conception of the Red River Floodway, he was instrumental in the design of the channel entrance and the configuration of the control gates at St. Norbert through the use of a hydraulic model. The scaling up of the distorted model scale to actual size requires a mix of art and science.
It is too bad the Free Press missed mentioning this notable Manitoban. It seems to me that after the 1997 flood, the Manitoba government inducted him into the Order of the Buffalo Hunt.