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When reaching out to the Muslim community, choose your ambassadors carefully
Tuesday November 29th, 2016
Crime Prevention Ottawa (CPO) was founded in 2004 to develop strategies for enhancing community safety, addressing problems like violence against women, neighbourhood gangs, abuse of the disabled and hate crimes. Between January and November of this year, according to Staff Sergeant Dave Zackrias of the Diversity and Race Relations Unit (DRR) of the Ottawa Police Servic...
A Marxist revolution by alt-left millennials?
Tuesday November 22nd, 2016
In her post-election column, Wall Street Journal columnist Peggy Noonan described the mood of Hillary supporters as one of “enraged mourning,” an excellent description for the emotional and often irrational reactions to Trump’s win we’ve all seen in the news and social media. My favourite was the New York woman who decided to make herself and daughter the focal po...
The deplorables’ get their moment. Break out the pointed hoods
Wednesday November 16th, 2016
An old New Yorker cartoon sprang to mind in the days following the U.S. election. In it, rain pours down in sheets. Two frowning children inside a car parked roadside are peering out at their sodden, frustrated father who is struggling to change a tire. The caption reads: “I can’t change the channel. This is real life.” The shock of Donald Trump winning has discom...
U.S. Democrats show they still haven’t learned a thing
Tuesday November 15th, 2016
Until president-elect Donald Trump named Reince Priebus, the Republican National Committee chairman, as his chief of staff, there was concern that the job might go to Stephen Bannon, chief executive of the Trump campaign. Instead Bannon got another plum job as chief strategist and senior counsel. The double appointment evoked mixed feelings. Priebus telegraphs knowledge, prudence a...
For gender Marxists, pronouns are the latest patch of hotly contested terrain in the revolution
Tuesday November 8th, 2016
A young conservative friend of mine was surprised to discover that my preferred honorific is “Ms.” He’d assumed that as a critic of feminism, where the title originated, I’d stick with tradition. But because it eliminates marital status signifiers that are no longer relevant to women, Ms. makes sense to me. So credit where credit is due. Recalling that he&rs...
Man’s worst friend
Tuesday November 8th, 2016
There are presently about 350,000 pit bulls in Canada. Until the 1980s there would have been almost none, since unlike the United States, with a population of about four million pit bulls today, Canada has no history of dog fighting. In fact, pit bulls were still exceedingly rare in Canada, and their characteristic behaviour practically unknown, when, in June of 1997, seven-year-ol...
Death at the Pumpkin
Tuesday November 1st, 2016
The winner of the Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust Prize for Nonfiction will be announced in Toronto Wednesday. I would delight in seeing the award bestowed on Toronto-born Israeli journalist Matti Friedman’s splendid new book, Pumpkin Flowers: an Israeli soldier’s story. Pumpkin Flowers is the story of “a forgotten little corner of a forgotten little war, which...
The allegations in Quebec; it’s not about what happened, but what can be proved to have happened
Tuesday October 25th, 2016
Last week, Quebec Liberal MNA Gerry Sklavounos was expelled from caucus when complaints of sexual assaults filed against him in March surfaced in the media. His accuser, Alice Paquet, can be named because she went public with her story on Facebook, at a vigil in support of sexual-assault victims and a Radio-Canada interview. Paquet met Sklavounos...
A different point-of-view concerning the ban of dangerous dog breeds
Friday October 21st, 2016
The September issue of The Montrealer featured a column by family lawyer Linda Hammerschild, provocatively entitled “Banning dog breeds – knee ‘jerk’ political decisions.” As a pro-ban activist, and a writer who has been researching and writing on the subject of pit bulls for more than a decade, I can categorically state that breed-specific legislation (BSL)...
UNESCO vs. Israel
Tuesday October 18th, 2016
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization was founded at the end of the Second World War on the understanding that economic and military treaties would not by themselves bring about peace. UNESCO’s mandate is to promote “humanity’s moral and intellectual solidarity” through universal education for children, “intercultural understan...
Review puts to bed activist-inspired case on circumcision
Tuesday October 18th, 2016
A new review of circumcision published in the Canadian Journal of Urology is receiving keen attention. The lead author is Dr. Brian Morris, a professor emeritus on the University of Sydney’s school of medical science. The study finds not only a lower risk for urinary tract infections (UTI) among circumcised males, a benefit long acknowledged that can preclude UTI-caused kidne...
Hillary Clinton cleans up better
Tuesday October 11th, 2016
Some thoughts on Sunday’s second Trump-Hillary debate as they came to me. I don’t like the town-hall format – a local, intimate concept — for what is neither local nor intimate. It makes even the best-prepared candidates look artificial, self-conscious and awkward. The candidates, as is generally the case, made small pretence of respecting the format, u...
In academia, Shakespeare has become a lightning rod — a focus for the culture wars
Monday October 3rd, 2016
I envy the fact that my friends in Toronto can take a day trip to Stratford, Ont., the town that hosts a world-renowned theatre festival every summer, whenever they feel like it. I’m a lazy Montreal trip planner with a resistant companion, so I rarely get the chance to make it out there. But this year, spending a week in Toronto for a cluster of gigs, and with an efficient fr...
Israel’s victory over drought
Tuesday September 20th, 2016
I am grateful to have been born in Canada, and for a multitude of reasons, not least because we control most of the world’s fresh water. Water shortages can and do lead to wars. Wars create refugees. Drought creates migrants. We’ve already seen a preview in the Middle East of what could happen on a larger scale. A decade-long drought (reportedly the worst in 900 y...
Teach the truth about Islamophobia
Wednesday September 14th, 2016
Exactly 14 years ago today, the National Post published an op-ed by Neil Seeman, “Are we all Islamophobes? Not really.” In it Seeman debunked the idea, promoted by Riad Saloojee, then executive director of CAIR.CAN (the Canadian chapter of the Council for American-Islamic Relations, now known as the National Council of Canadian Muslims, or NCCM, without apparent change of mis...
France’s burkini fumble
Tuesday September 6th, 2016
In the pantheon of dumb a dumber regulatory decisions, the laurel goes to the attempt this summer by French Riviera towns to criminalize burkinis, the full-cover beachwear favoured by some Muslim women. Happily the Council of State, France’s highest administrative court, has overturned a lower court’s support for the ban, ruling it “seriously and clearly illegally...
How progressives perverted the study of history
Tuesday August 30th, 2016
Pulitzer-prize winning historian Barbara Tuchman had neither a PhD nor an academic title. ”It’s what saved me,” she said. ”If I had taken a doctoral degree, it would have stifled any writing capacity.” Tuchman’s illustrious career reminds us that history, although a discipline, does not require professional accreditation to explore. Beyond writin...
Pit bull myths thrive on conflict of interest and media gullibility
Thursday August 25th, 2016
Montreal is enacting legislation to curb the breeding, importation and purchase of pit bulls following the June fatality of 55-year old Christiane Vadnais, who was mauled to death in her own yard by her neighbour’s pit bull. The decision has provoked fierce debate in the blogosphere, on the airwaves and in the pages of Quebec newspapers. In spite of its own editorial position in fa...
Caution and accuracy are not an offence to freedom of speech
Monday August 22nd, 2016
Normally you wouldn’t find even a sliver of daylight between my views on freedom of speech and those of John Carpay, president of the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms (JCCF). But on this rare occasion there is. By “this,” I mean Carpay’s robust defence of an American non-profit group promoting gender equality, which targeted the bane of honour kill...
All dogs can bite, but only a few are aggressive, impulsive and seek chances to maim
Tuesday August 16th, 2016
Last Saturday, police were forced to shoot two aggressive “pit bull type” dogs after a “scary, traumatic” attack on a man, 66, and a woman, 25, in Ottawa’s east end Orléans area. In the mauling, the woman suffered severe lacerations to both arms, as well as injuries to her head, face, back and buttocks. The man suffered injuries when he sought to help...