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November in Review, Part I

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Issue: 74 Section: Month in Review

November 14, 2010

November in Review, Part I

Christie Blatchford blocked, CEO salaries rocketed, non-profit bookstore raided

by Dominion Staff

Students occupy Conservative Party headquarters in London, England. Over 50,000 students took to the streets against massive cuts to university funding and proposed increases to tuition fees. cc Photo: Geoff Dexter

The Harper government blocked the development of a gold-copper mine on the traditional territory of the Tsilhqot'in Nation, but simultaneously announced they were greenlighting another gold project, the Mount Milligan mine in central British Columbia, on the traditional territory of the Nakazdli First Nation. Environment Minister Jim Prentice said the potential environmental impacts and damage to Fish Lake, sacred to the Tsilhqot'in, were the reasons for the Cabinet's rejection of the mine. The approved mine also falls in a sacred area and important watershed, and its development, in the face of resistance, is by no means assured.

Camas Educational Bookstore in Victoria, BC. The bookstore was raided by police and saw equipment seized, but organizers have not been told why. Photo: Camas Educational Bookstore

Police raided Camas Bookstore in Victoria, BC, and seized two computers and documents. The Camas Educational Society is a not-for-profit registered society that functions collectively to operate the volunteer-run Camas Books and Infoshop. The Camas Collective was not told why the space was raided but a man has since been arrested. Police believe he sent an email from the bookstore's computer taking responsibility for vandalizing the mayor's house and car. The email expressed outrage at Mayor Fortin's removal of shelter beds in the city.

The Canadian government gave qualified endorsement to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People, leaving the United States as the lone hold-out refusing to endorse the international human rights document that was more than 20 years in the making. The part of the statement that reads, "Canada can interpret the principles expressed in the Declaration in a manner that is consistent with our Constitution and legal framework" has critics worried that the government aims to impose limitations on the application of the Declaration.

A St. Thomas University student went public after being assaulted for entering a women's washroom on campus. The trans-student was punched in the face and called a "faggot." The student is calling for all buildings on the New Brunswick campus to be equipped with a gender neutral washroom.

A new report finds that 19-year-old Ashley Smith was restrained and forcibly injected with unnecessary tranquilizers and anti-psychotic drugs while in prison in New Brunswick. A few months later, in October 2007, the young woman strangled herself while in solitary confinement in an Ontario prison. The Smith family's lawyer is calling for an inquest into the last four years of Ashley's life, which she spent in federal custody.

Home-based daycare workers went on strike for a day, seeking secured paid vacations, a pension plan and better salaries. Government-subsidized home daycare workers in Quebec received the right to unionize in June 2009.

A new report has found that the rate of abuse in lesbian households is zero per cent. The paper found that not one of the 78 17-year-old daughters and sons of lesbian parents reported having been been physically or sexually abused by a parent or other caregiver. This contrasts with 26 per cent of American adolescents.

About 90 police officers in Toronto are facing a yet-to-be-determined penalty for not wearing their ID badges during the G20 summit in June. Chief of Police Bill Blair told CBC, "I believe some officers removed it so they would not be identifiable." About 1,100 people were arrested during the G20 summit weekend, but only 308 were charged and charges against about 100 have since been dropped. The cops' penalty may include the loss of one day's pay.

Canadian Angela James and American Cammi Granato became the first two women inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in its 67-year history.

Human rights experts denounced the gathering of the Inter-Parliamentary Coalition for Combatting Anti-Semitism (IPCCA) meeting in Canada, which claimed a new anti-semitism is surfacing in the form of criticism of the Israeli state. Critics argued that the IPCCA, and the Canadian Parliamentary Coalition to Combat Anti-Semitism, are attacking free speech by equating all criticism of Israel with anti-semitism. In addressing the IPCCA, Prime Minister Stephen Harper said Canada will defend Israel "whatever the costs."

Under pressure from the US and NATO allies, Prime Minister Harper announced that the Canadian military would remain in Afghanistan until 2014 to train the local military and police, breaking a government promise to withdraw troops in 2011 and to hold votes in the House of Commons on any decision to extend the mission. The Liberal party had been calling on the Conservatives to commit trainers, 1,000 of which will stay on in Afghanistan, with details being finalized in a NATO meeting in Lisbon.

Taliban leadership called on the US Congress to send a fact-finding mission to Afghanistan to uncover what they call on-the-ground realities, including the fact that the US military has been overstating its military successes to prolong the war.

Journalists from over 60 countries signed a public letter of support for Wikileaks, praising the organization for its “outstanding contribution to transparency and accountability on the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, subjects where transparency and accountability has been severely restricted by government secrecy and media control.”

Canadian CEO salaries rocketed 444 per cent from 1995 to 2007. In 2007, the country's top 10 CEOs made 330.3 million, up from 60.7 million in 1995.

Around 52,000 students protested in the streets of London, England, against government plans to cut university budgets by 40 per cent and to allow universities to nearly triple tuition fees. Some 200 students occupied the headquarters of the Conservative Party, the majority in the current coalition government. Labour unions announced they will organize protests with student groups against a wide range of government austerity measures this winter.

Protesters blocked Globe and Mail reporter Christie Blatchford from speaking at the University of Waterloo, locking themselves down on stage before Blatchford's talk. Blatchford—accused of racism towards Indigenous people over her reporting on the land rights conflict between Six Nations and the government near Caledonia, ON—is touring the country to promote her new book Helpless: Caledonia's nightmare of fear and anarchy, and how the law failed all of us.

Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Board denied refugee status to US army deserter Joshua Key, a move that will allow Canada Border Services Agency to pursue his deportation.

Renowned doctor and anti-nuclear activist Helen Caldicott warned that the 16,000 residents of Port Hope, Ontario, should be relocated during the "clean-up" of radioactive waste—a result of 50 years of radium and uranium refining at the Cameco refinery.

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Camas Books

What this (andn all other articles) fails to mention is that the man arrested was released without charges or conditions and nothing further has happened to him since. It is likely he has nothing to do with the things he is being charged with and camas doesn't either but is being targetted for their politics. By arresting a man (without charges) the police look like they have things under control when in fact they don't have any real evidence or any real leads.

RE: Christie Blatchford from speaking at the Waterloo

The university has issued an apology:


Apology after author is silenced
University officials issued a statement yesterday in the wake of a Friday night incident in which Globe and Mail columnist Christie Blatchford was prevented from speaking at a scheduled event in the Humanities Theatre.

A group of protesters took exception to what they called the "racist" attitude of her book Helpless, which deals with the four-year standoff over native land claims in the village of Caledonia in Ontario's Haldimand County. Blatchford had been invited to campus by the university bookstore to speak about her book. After some time, it was announced that her talk would be rescheduled.

The events of the evening were live-blogged by the Wilfrid Laurier University student newspaper The Cord, and got some media attention yesterday.

Says the statement that was issued by the university yesterday: "The University of Waterloo was disappointed that a guest invited to share a particular perspective on a topic of importance to Canadians was silenced by protesters. Globe and Mail columnist Christie Blatchford was scheduled to appear at the university on Friday night to discuss her new book Helpless: Caledonia's Nightmare of Fear and Anarchy, and How the Law Failed All of Us. Due to safety issues, the university decided to reschedule the event.

"The university considers Friday’s events as an attack on its presence as a place where issues are explored, discussed and at times debated. The freedom to speak and to learn is fundamental to the institution. Waterloo’s ethical behaviour policy states: 'The University is an autonomous community which exists to further the pursuit and dissemination of knowledge and understanding through scholarship and teaching. The University aims to ensure an environment of tolerance and respect and believes that the right of individuals to advance their views openly must be upheld throughout the University.' To ensure there is no doubt of the university’s convictions, Waterloo President Feridun Hamdullahpur apologized to Ms. Blatchford, on behalf of the university community, for Friday night’s disruption. He has asked the community to begin planning for a safe, open and respectful dialogue featuring Ms. Blatchford and her book."

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