Winnipeg Free Press Newspaper Archives Jun 22 2015, Page 10

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Winnipeg Free Press (Newspaper) - June 22, 2015, Winnipeg, Manitoba C M Y K PAGE A10 OUR VIEW œ YOUR SAY WINNIPEG FREE PRESS, MONDAY, JUNE 22, 2015 Freedom of Trade Liberty of Religion Equality of Civil Rights A 10 PERSPECTIVES AND POLITICS EDITOR: Shannon Sampert 204- 697- 7269 shannon. sampert@ freepress. mb. ca winnipegfreepress. com EDITORIAL LETTERS FP COMMENTS TWITTER VOL 143 NO 220 Winnipeg Free Press est 1872 / Winnipeg Tribune est 1890 2015 Winnipeg Free Press, a division of FP Canadian Newspapers Limited Partnership. Published seven days a week at 1355 Mountain Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba R2X 3B6, PH: 204- 697- 7000 Publisher / BOB COX Editor / PAUL SAMYN Associate Editor Enterprise / SCOTT GIBBONS Associate Editor Production / STEVE PONA Associate Editor Digital News / WENDY SAWATZKY Night Editor / STACEY THIDRICKSON Director Photo and Multimedia / MICHAEL APORIUS W What’s your take? The Free Press wants to hear from you. Email: letters@ freepress. mb. ca Post: Letters to the Editor, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, R2X 3B6 Please include your name, address and daytime phone number. Follow us on Twitter @ WFPEditorials For a how- to video on writing letters, visit winnipegfreepress. com Remembering roots crucial The Manitoba government is to be commended for officially apologizing for the malpractice over decades in placing children in varied non- aboriginal homes ( Sorry for ‘ historical injustice,’ June 19). As a father, I was very sensitive to my adopted daughter’s Inuit identity. She came to our family in Montreal as a young baby from Inuvik in the Northwest Territories. I made a vow to the accompanying social worker that every measure would be taken to ensure her Inuit identity. The first action I took was to formally register her in her birthplace in Inuvik. As she grew up, we always made a point to proclaim her Inuit identity, with full family and social pride. I then arranged for my Inuit daughter to go meet her biological mother and family in Inuvik. Here in Ottawa, I arranged for her to go to the official Inuit association to be recognized and registered. She now works for Aboriginal Affairs here in Ottawa, and has ensured my grandchildren learn about and nurture their Inuit identity. With my own racial and cultural diversity — my late father was East Indian and my deceased mother a Slovak — and my sensitive Jewish wife, we are proud to be tied to the “ first people” through our adopted Inuit daughter. ROMAN MUKERJEE Ottawa Tories deserve a little hurt I agree with Deveryn Ross that electoral reform could hurt the Tories, but they have only themselves to blame ( Electoral reform could hurt Tories , June 19). Stephen Harper rode into Ottawa on promises to make politicians accountable and give us a Triple- E Senate, and we got neither; the Conservatives’ Fair Elections Act is only fair to a majority government; and they’ve had a direct hand in the scandal- plagued Senate we see playing out daily. Albertans recently showed they were fed up with the status quo. Canadians shouldn’t be afraid to do the same — to look forward to true representation. JANICE ISOPP Selkirk Problems aplenty with Ashton There’s growing evidence that cabinet minister Steve Ashton led the process for an untendered $ 5- million contract being awarded to friends and associates ( Ombudsman asked to reopen probe , June 19). Ashton’s records show he spent a mere $ 75 to rent office space for his failed bid in the NDP leadership race. That’s a sweet deal — he under- spent Theresa Oswald by $ 6,000 — but he still managed to run a deficit of close to $ 17,000 in his campaign. His feigned ignorance of the financial side of his campaign is disturbing. Ashton’s team is now claiming a clerical error, and that they are still waiting for the correct rental bill from Peguis First Nation. The dearth of leadership from our premier is again front and centre. It appears Greg Selinger has adopted the infamous ostrich approach in dealing with Ashton. GARY HOOK Winnipeg Minister’s comments most foul Congratulations to Shahina Siddiqui for speaking up regarding the foul comments put forth by Conservative Immigration Minister Chris Alexander simply because a Muslim woman sought to wear a niqab at what must have otherwise been a momentous occasion in her life ( Suspicion of Muslims real danger, activist says , June 18). The comments were not surprising from the mouth of someone in the Harper government, but Alexander served as Canada’s ambassador and the UN special representative in Afghanistan, as well. Did he view all women wearing a niqab there as terrorists, or is he just cow- towing to Stephen Harper’s ideology to keep his job? It’s time for our media to get off the “ terrorist bandwagon” given that of the 500- plus murders and 600- plus attempted murders in Canada each year, less than one per cent are committed by Muslims. DON HALLIGAN Winnipeg Media chicken out on protest Unless I missed something, it appears the Free Press chose not to cover the June 15 PETA protest of the way chickens are raised and killed for food. This is consistent with the lack of coverage of any significant animal welfare/ rights issues. Is it that the Free Press feels it’s no big deal, or is it that such sickening cruelty is so common that it’s just not newsworthy? By not bringing such information forward, the Free Press caters to the “ ignorance is bliss” crowd and is complicit in the suffering. DEBBIE WALL Winnipeg A day for dads Wishing the fellow fathers our there a huge Happy Father’s Day! Woke up and was spoiled by my kids, and not a tie in sight. @ dasme Happy Father’s Day to single moms all around the world who play the role of both a mother and a father. @ anmxl Perfect way to start my Father’s Day... at the rink w/ a Timmies ( thanks to Tracy). Future Great One on the ice. @ Mayor_ Bowman Happy Father’s Day to all dads. A special thank you to those fathers working/ fighting for inclusion for people of all abilities. @ SCELifeWorks Father’s Day is always a sad day for me. I miss my dad lots — even though you’ve been gone for 24 years, Happy Father’s Day, Dad. @ crazyindapeg Happy Father’s Day. The best thing about my dad is he doesn’t see the stupid things I say on Twitter. @ marcotwentysix Lt.- Gov. Janice Filmon Re: Filmon installed as Manitoba’s 25th lieutenant- governor ( June 19). Janice Filmon is a great choice, and will be a wonderful representative for Manitoba. Congratulations. — 27975338 ¥ An elegant and gracious lady. Congratulations, Lt.- Gov. Filmon. I hope you thoroughly enjoy your tenure as L. G. — emcee51 ¥ Greg Selinger missed another leadership opportunity at the ceremony by not making sure his caucus was well- represented. Small- minded moves like this do not go unnoticed in our communities. Another votelosing move and very disrespectful to a woman who will show them what class is all about. — April 30 ¥ Congratulations to Lt.- Gov. Filmon. But it’s appalling a majority of NDP MLAs did not attend the swearing in of their boss’ boss — especially Deanne Crothers; MLA, minister, and special envoy to military affairs. Why? Because there were numerous members of the PPCLI taking the review from Lt.- Gov. Filmon. Why wouldn’t she attend the ceremony, regardless of bias and partisanship? If Minister Crothers doesn’t feel this swearing- in ceremony warrants her presence, she should step aside or resign. — emcee51 ¥ Good. I can’t wait for the cries of “ but her husband privatized MTS and fired 200,000 nurses!” — as if it’s relevant to her accomplishments. — Ceedger ¥ It’s sad to believe Manitobans feel they need a representative of the Queen of England on the taxpayers’ dime. — 27972508 ¥ Re: Family, love, triumph and tragedy ( June 20). Having met Janice at CancerCare a few years ago when my wife was taking treatments, she a genuine quality person. After reading this interview, I’m convinced she will do a great job in her new appointment. — rnd- D- rnd’r ¥ With all due respect, Mrs. Filmon, your function is to promote and maintain the institution of the British monarchy, a disservice to the survival of a modern and independent Canada. — Gordon Halushka ¥ @ Gordon Halushka: In whatever capacity Mrs. Filmon has become a member of public service, can you not recognize her refreshingly honest nature? You live in Canada and reap the benefits of that existence, including those that come with being a member of the Commonwealth. This woman is as real as they come. Live elsewhere, and then dare to complain about our history. — user- 6823333 A FTER reading Gen. Tom Lawson’s comments on sexual abuse in the military, a generous observer might say something like: “ What we have here is failure to communicate.” The problem, however, wasn’t his “ awkward” remarks about how some men are “ biologically wired” to sexually harass women. The fact is the advance of western civilization has struggled and still struggles to control male behaviour with regard to women. The problem wasn’t what Gen. Lawson said. It’s what he did not say. Even when he had the opportunity to correct himself, the general merely said biology is no excuse for maledominated groups to act like wild dogs around women. No kidding. The Canadian Armed Forces has had policies against sexual harassment since 1988, the same year a ruling by a Canadian Human Rights Tribunal forced the military to “ fully integrate women into regular and reserve Forces ( with the exception of submarines, which came later); remove all employment restrictions and implement new occupational personnel- selection standards; and devise a plan to steadily, regularly and consistently achieve complete integration within 10 years.” It’s been a rocky road since, and the military has updated its policies on harassment several times without much success in rewiring male biology, to use the general’s terminology. In fact, it seems as the number of women in the Forces has risen ( to roughly 15 per cent), the incidence of harassment has gone up in lockstep. A road map to meaningful change was offered earlier this year in a report by former Supreme Court justice Marie Deschamps, who described the military as a cesspool of primitive macho culture, where women and members of the LGBTQ community are subjected to abuse, demeaning comments and sexual assault. Ms. Deschamps said conditions had not improved since the last internal examination of the problem 20 years ago. And that study was preceded by “ no less than five studies... on harassment.” In response, Gen. Lawson refused to commit to implementing her report, including a critical recommendation for independent investigations of complaints. Women said they did not trust the military process, and many victims were afraid to come forward with complaints. A special unit has since been appointed to implement the recommendations, but the commander of the investigative team has said it could take months or years to get it done. Gen. Lawson missed an opportunity to promise tough new measures against sexual harassment and to apologize on behalf of the military for taking so damn long to get serious. If he needed inspiration, he could have looked up the words of Australian army chief Lt.- Gen. David Morrison. “ I will be ruthless in ridding the Australian army of people who cannot live up to its values, and I need every one of you to support me in achieving this,” he said. “ If that does not suit you, then get out... There is no place for you among this band of brothers and sisters.” Now, there’s a man whose biological handicaps aren’t interfering with his judgment. The Canadian Armed Forces, unfortunately, has had trouble getting its wiring straight. Gen. Lawson retires this summer, replaced by Lt.- Gen. Jonathan Vance, who distinguished himself in Afghanistan as a gifted thinker and strategist, a leader who didn’t accept excuses. Let’s hope that extends to getting real about sexual abuse in the military. Military must get its wiring straight Gen. Tom Lawson: bad wiring A_ 10_ Jun- 22- 15_ FP_ 01. indd A10 6/ 21/ 15 4: 53: 18 PM

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