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Calgary

Cirque Eloize at the Calgary Stampede

Posted July 5, 2015 by Jes

The ENMAX Corral Show at the Calgary Stampede gets better and better every year. Located on the Stampede grounds, the Corral seats just over 7,000 people and has a free with-park-admission show every day (at 2, 4 and 7 PM) for Stampede goers to attend….

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Canada

Watch This: Canadian Tire Bring Holiday Cheer To Children’s Hospitals

Posted December 10, 2014 by Sonya

December always warms my heart. Ever since I was little, Christmas has been something to look forward to. Family traditions of gingerbread houses, decorating trees and wondering what to leave out for Santa are always a must. But seeing all […]

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Edmonton

No Museums “I Was A Worker & Now I’m Old”

Posted September 23, 2014 by Anonymous

September 23. Edmonton’s No Museums have just released “I Was A Worker And Now I’m Old”. This seven song album was recorded over the summer and is now freely available on Bandcamp The album features songs about museums, ships, snow, distance, engines, drivers, mountains, trains, water, parks, and workers. Some say that No Museums sound
read more

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Entertainment

Coping In “The Waiting Room” With Diane Flacks

Posted January 19, 2015 by Sonya

There’s a new theatre production that has caught my attention as a parent and theatre lover. WAITING ROOM by Diane Flacks (in collaboration with director Richard Greenblatt) is making its World Premiere at the Tarragon Theatre  in Toronto (January 14 […]

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Allan's Perspective

Blowin in the wind!

Posted November 7, 2014 by Allan W Janssen

Well folks, it’s official, wind turbines do NOT cause illness, or even ill effects, in people. A year long study of over 1000 people has positively shown that wind turbines do not cause  bad things to good people. Not through noise, or magnetic fields, or increased UFO traffic, or disruption of the O-zone, negative energy, […]

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Allan's Perspective

Earth Day 2015!

Posted April 22, 2015 by Allan W Janssen

2015 is shaping up to be a monumental year for the international climate movement, and Earth Day Canada wants to show the world that Canadians are supportive of meaningful climate action. As such, Earth Day Canada is creating a 2015 Earth Flag on which we will collect signatures from people across the country who are […]

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General

Faith In Humanity—Restored

Posted February 5, 2015 by Kath

How often do you browse through social media accounts, only to toss your phone aside in disgust, your faith in humanity hitting rock bottom? I know it happens to me several times daily: news of atrocities committed in the name […]

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General

Fuck. This.

Posted January 25, 2014 by The Pedgehog

So I just read the This Magazine cover story “No Choice: Why the pro-choice movement won’t let women grieve after abortion” and…well. I have thoughts.

First of all, in the interests of full disclosure, I was interviewed by the author, Rebecca Melnyk, at the start of her research for this article or what I imagine would become this article. Never have I been happier to avoid being quoted; I can’t imagine being associated with this mess. When Melnyk reached out to me she identified herself first and foremost as strongly pro-choice. She probably still does. I’m sure she didn’t choose the title of the article. But holy hell, what is going on here?

It seems to me that the premise is that both “sides” of the abortion “debate” only offer post-abortive people counselling in a politicized environment with some kind of agenda, and that the pro-choice side is routinely dismissive of the range of feelings someone might have after having an abortion. At no point does Melnyk quote a pro-choicer who backs up this assertion; on the contrary, every pro-choice person she mentions points out that folks feel any of a variety of different emotions after abortion and that they should have access to counselling:

That same month, on a warm afternoon in Toronto Miriam McDonald, an editor at the Marxist newspaper Spartacist Canada, struts up and down a hallway at the Ontario Institute of Secondary Education at an International Women’s day rally. “Abortion is just a medical procedure like getting a wart off, except it’s all politicized,” she says. “A woman’s capacity to control her fertility opens the doors to full equality. That’s why it’s … stigmatized.” Another woman standing next to her in a baseball cap, handing out newspapers, says post-abortive women need counselling, not to overcome negative feelings related to abortion, but rather, to cope with society’s stigma and culture of shame.

And:

Some women may need counselling services before or after they have an abortion, says Joyce Arthur, executive director of the Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada (ARCC). She does not believe, however, that PAS is real. “It’s like the anti-choice movement works in its own bubble,” she says, “making up it’s own science and ignoring mainstream evidence and consensus.” The result, she adds, is confusion—public misinformation that scares women considering abortion. In Arthur’s mind, the act of abortion continues to be blamed for the source of trauma when, in reality, the unwanted pregnancy is often what’s truly traumatic. It’s not to say women don’t experience negative effects, she adds, just that it’s more complex than the anti-abortion activists portray.

And:

Over in Vancouver, Everywoman’s Health Centre is an abortion clinic that provides free, non-judgmental counselling services and resources like the book, Peace After Abortion. Erin Mullan, who’s been a counsellor for over 20 years, works there. “When it comes to abortion, nothing is in the range of normal,” she says. “A woman’s culture, her religion or history, could all inform how she’ll feel.” For the small number of women she refers out to other counsellors who offer long-term support, abortion is not the main cause of negative feelings, but rather, “it opens a door of pain.” That door can reveal bad relationships, abuse, or mental depression. Mullan points out that coercion—if a woman’s been forced to have an abortion—accounts for one third of the problems she treats. “It can sit unfinished, inside of her for years,” she says, “if she wasn’t given the space to make choices.” At this clinic, the acknowledgment that abortion can be intimately connected to negative feelings serves no greater purpose than a woman’s well-being.

And then Melnyk goes on to describe how many other abortion clinics across the country offer both pre- and post-abortion counselling, usually for free, along with referrals for follow-up counselling with specialists. At no point in the article is there any indication that pro-choicers “won’t let women grieve after abortion”.

My feeling is that the thrust of the article, the point that Melnyk is trying to make is that the options for counselling after an abortion are either shaming, Christian, anti-abortion drivel or militant pro-choice propaganda, that there is no option for folks just looking for non-judgemental counselling. Which is a load of bullshit not even borne out by her research. Yes there is a lack of accessible post-abortion therapy because there is a lack of accessible any therapy – ask any low income person with a mental health issue how easy it is to get in to see a counsellor. But the idea of a lack of non-judgemental post-abortion counselling is especially heinous when the article itself talks about the many clinics that offer it. “Pro-choice” IS “non-judgemental” – no abortion clinic counsellor worth their salt is going to judge you for feeling guilt or regret after your abortion. That’s what counselling is about. That’s why it makes a difference that the counsellors in abortion clinics are trained specifically in non-judgemental pre- and post-abortive counselling and the people in “crisis pregnancy centres” are just random volunteers trained only in making people feel like shit – like they have something to “repent” for – because they had an abortion.

There is a disturbing amount of false equivalence being thrown around in this article.

It just really pisses me off because pro-choice organizations in this country – including abortion clinics, sexual health centres, and organizations like ARCC, NAF, Canadians for Choice, and CFSH, among others – deliberately provide listings of non-judgemental counselling options on request, and often go to great lengths to ensure that people find the care they need regardless of pregnancy outcome. All of these organizations are explicit about not favouring any pregnancy outcome over others, and the number one concern is getting folks the care they want and need in the safest and most accessible way possible.

There is no neutral on abortion, really there isn’t. Not the way it’s framed right now. Either you believe it shouldn’t be allowed, or you believe it should. There is no magical third party who are the only people who can provide non-judgemental counselling. If you believe people have the right to choose how to handle an unwanted pregnancy – if you are pro-choice – then that belief extends to how people feel after their abortion. Anyone providing actual non-judgemental counselling is pro-choice by definition.

I think Melnyk knows this, but I don’t know how to explain this mess of an article. I think she is (rightfully) concerned for folks – like her – who have had abortions and haven’t received the support that they need. And that is legitimate. But the solution there has to be more support and funding for pro-choice, sex-positive, woman-positive counselling services; fighting against abortion stigma; advocating for reproductive and sexual health services in underserved areas – not bizarre magazine articles attacking the pro-choice movement for imagined slights, for not “letting” women grieve. Women can do what they damn well please – isn’t that the whole point?

***

ETA: A great take-down of the article at DAMMIT JANET! by fern hill.

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Allan's Perspective

And a banana for your monkey!

Posted October 7, 2014 by Allan W Janssen

Now here’s a case straight out of “Planet of the Apes,” or perhaps a poster child for the group “people for the ethical treatment of animals!” (PETA) The case of Tommy the pet chimpanzee goes back to court this week, and a group of judges could decide whether he should be recognized as a “person” […]

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Canada

Big Brother Canada Sindy with an S takes her exit

Posted April 3, 2015 by Jes

Sindy with an S was voted off of Big Brother Canada the second week into the game, but we may not have seen the last of her yet. Sindy and Risha both sit waiting to see if they will be able to go back into the house…and on Sunday another person will …

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General

Canada Needa a Real National Autism Strategy: Exhibit #1 Saskatchewan

Posted June 9, 2015 by H L Doherty

Saskatchewan is Exhibit #1 In the Case for a REAL National Autism Strategy

Canada has long needed a REAL National Autism Strategy, one which includes coverage of autism in medicare to ensure that children with autism disorders received treatment for their autism disorders regardelss of which province their  parents live in. One of the most glaring examples of the need for national autism medical coverage is in the province I once called Canada’s Autism Wasteland  province.   Since that commentary on September 2, 2007  little progress appears to have been made judging by the Global story by Amber Rockliffe: Saskatchewan families moving due to lack of autism funding.  Rockliffe reports of  Saskachewan families leaving the province to find treatment for their children’s autism disorders; treatment which is not available because of long wait lists and is not usually delivered  in sufficient hours to make a substantial difference in treating their children’s autism. 

One of those families that has already made the move is the family of Sheri Radoux:

Sheri Radoux, has moved south of the U.S. border to Minnesota. “I think the services in Saskatchewan are probably the worst, or one of the worst in Canada, “said Radoux. “We moved down to Minnesota and we got full-time therapy for all our children, paid and funded by the state.”


The Rockliffe report goes on to indicate that Saskatchewan spends half, approximately $7.5 million annually, compared to approximately $15 million, that   Manitoba, with a similar population, spends annually on autism services.
Families leaving provinces, including the province many would consider the birthplace of medicare in Canada, to seek a better life for their autistic children in jurisdictions provincial and American  where a greater value is placed on the lives and futures of autistic children.
Yes, Canada needs a REAL National Autism Strategy.


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Entertainment

Fun Things To Do Over The Holidays As A Family

Posted December 31, 2014 by Sonya

The kids are off of school for a couple of weeks. I came to the realization yesterday that, oh yeah, they’re home with me! My daily routine of sitting at the computer with a bottomless cappuccino is not their idea […]

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Calgary

What to do every night of the Calgary Stampede 2015

Posted July 1, 2015 by Jes

The Calgary Stampede is a few days away and it is time to get your schedule in order. Besides going to the grounds and watching the Grandstand show, hitting the Rodeo, betting on the chuckwagon races and buying the weird midway food (this year there is a $100 hot dog…um, what?)Here are some things that can keep it full for the 10 days of fun ahead:

Friday July 3, 2015
Stampede Parade
The Stampede kicks off with the Stampede Parade through downtown Calgary.  This year’s parade marshal is Olympian Kallie Humphries.

Saturday July 4, 2015
Chinook Center Pancake Breakfast
One of the great joys of Stampede is all the pancakes. If you don’t go to a pancake breakfast during Stampede you just aren’t stampeding right. The Chinook Stampede breakfast feeds 60,000 people. That’s a lot of pancakes. 

Sunday July 5, 2015
Coca-Cola Stage 
Hit the grounds on the first Sunday and get your place around the Coke stage for one of this year’s acts Vance Joy.

Monday July 6, 2015
Wildhorse Saloon Tent
The tent in the middle of downtown is the corporate cowboys delight. There are different concerts and on this night you have Canadian rocker turned country star Dallas Smith. 

Tuesday July 7, 2015
ENMAX Corral Show
This year the ENMAX Corral show at the Stampede grounds is Cirque Éloize, one of today’s leaders in contemporary circus arts from Montreal, Québec.They are performing a Stampede version of their show iD.

Wednesday July 8, 2015
Stampede Roundup
The big concerts at Fort Calgary never disappoint the crowd. This year they are throwing back with Collective Soul, Big Wreck and Journey. You always sing along to Don’t Stop Believing when it comes on – this year you can do it with the band live. 

Thursday July 9, 2015
Calgary Stampede Grandstand Show
You can’t miss the Grandstand fireworks every night during Stampede, but you should see the whole show at least once. The Young Canadians, the Alberta Ballet and many other performers bring the glitz and dazzle to the stage every night after the Chuckwagon races. 

Friday July 10, 2015
Virgin Mobile Concert Series at the Saddledome
Blake Shelton takes the stage at the Saddledome the night after his wife Miranda Lambert woos the audience. 

Saturday July 11, 2015
Nashville North
Hit up the famous Stampede beer tent on the night Jason Blaine takes the stage. 

Sunday July 12, 2015
Cowboys Tent
End off the ten day event with a stop at the Cowboys tent for a concert. Kip Moore and Nelly will shut down the Cowboy’s stage for this year.

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Canada

What Did We Google The Most In 2014?

Posted December 29, 2014 by Sonya

Google is very much part of our daily lives. Both a noun and a verb, it’s a way to launch our research into everyday inquiries from how to make those perfect cookies to helping our kids with their homework. It’s […]

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Books

Book Review: The Girl On The Train By Paula Hawkins

Posted March 13, 2015 by Anonymous

I watch people with the same kind of fascinated horror that I view a car wreck. I don’t intend to stare, but I just can’t seem to tear my eyes away from the catastrophe that is in front of me. […]

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Fashion

Urban Street Style: The Hipster Kid Bomber

Posted November 19, 2014 by Sonya

Street style, I’m sure you’ve heard of it before. There are thousands of fashion blogs dedicated to just that, they capture real style that is found in everyday life and off the runways. We love it! We love the idea, and […]

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Allan's Perspective

Honey Boo Boo and Uncle Poodle!

Posted November 4, 2014 by Allan W Janssen

Dear Readers: In a world-wide exclusive, the Naked News Department  and the  Perspective Research team has learned from TMZ that Honey Boo Boo is about to have a safe, stable home free of all convicted child molesters … …., or so vows Uncle Poodle, who says he’ll file for custody if things get bad at […]

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Allan's Perspective

The French are at it again!

Posted April 14, 2015 by Allan W Janssen

Dear Readers: Your long suffering reporter fervently believes in that old axiom, “The French are the best second raters in the world” and this article does nothing to dispel that belief! A Montreal man is criticizing Quebec language laws after a clerk at a local Toys “R” Us told him he was wasn’t allowed to purchase […]

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General

Reader’s Diary #1239- Linwood Barclay: Fear the Worst

Posted January 7, 2016 by John Mutford

Linwood Barclay first came to my attention through the Canadian Book Challenge. A lot of participants read, and I assume enjoy, his books. I was finally curious enough to try one on my own.Hated it. Right away I knew it wasn’t going to be high lit…

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Australia

When Criminals Turn To Theatre For Our Country’s Good

Posted September 25, 2014 by Sonya

In the 1780s ,the first fleet of British ships brought exiled criminals to Australia to set up a penal colony. Prisoners were separated from the general population in England and shipped off to form their own territory far away from […]

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Allan's Perspective

What Would Jesus say?

Posted October 9, 2014 by Allan W Janssen

Strange news out of “Snoops.com” this morning! American Idol winner and country star Carrie Underwood released a single titled “Something in the Water,” and soon after, rumors began to circulate that atheists were trying to ban the track due to its Christian themes.Fortunately,  that’s all this rumour is………………., a rumour! I say fortunately because it’s […]

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Canada

New album by Canadian singer Peter Katz does not disappoint

Posted April 5, 2015 by Jes

Canadian singer Peter Katz is not disappointing anyone with his third studio album We Are the Reckoning – which includes this super cute song Brother featuring another Canadian artist Royal Wood.The song is just so lovely, as is Peter Katz. The first t…

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Family

March Break Guide To Vancouver

Posted March 3, 2015 by Anonymous

The Vancouver District School Board is closed from March 9 to the 23rd for March Break. While school is out, there are plenty of exciting and fun activities both children and families throughout the city. Skate The Dry Spot Indoor Located […]

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Christmas

Donny & Marie Bring Christmas Fun To Toronto

Posted December 11, 2014 by Sonya

I know what your thinking. Donny and Marie Osmond? Yes, remember them? I certainly do! They are in Toronto with their annual Christmas Show bringing everything they’ve got. They’re here until December 21st playing at the Princess of Wales Theatre […]

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Calgary

Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra sings a Playoff version of O Fortuna (VIDEO)

Posted April 27, 2015 by Jes

The Calgary Philharmonic got into the hockey playoff spirit on Saturday night at the Jack Singer concert hall at the Art Commons after the Calgary Flames beat the Vancouver Canucks in game 6 of the first series. Singing a playoff version of O Fortuna…..

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Allan's Perspective

Saturday Morning Confusion #566

Posted December 27, 2014 by Allan W Janssen

Dear Readers: Your oft confused reporter is going to draw a comparison that might not make much sense at first glance, but upon further inspection might just start to ring a few bells! I am going to draw a comparison between cops and Islamic terrorists! Now don’t get too excited about this because I am […]

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General

So Many Things Left

Posted January 16, 2015 by The Pedgehog

Still here, still angry. Still too cynical to tell y’all my in depth feelings about recent developments. I am currently reading Olivia Chow’s memoirs and the message I am taking away is the same that permeated Jack Layton’s last letter – hope is better…

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Entertainment

3 Reasons To Visit The Gardiner Museum Now!

Posted November 13, 2014 by Sonya

The holidays are fast approaching! How many more sleeps? Bah, I don’t really want to count but as the days here in the city start to get chillier and chillier I’m looking for quick escapes even if it’s just for […]

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Canada

The Winter Getaway… And Energizer EcoAdvanced Giveaway!

Posted February 26, 2015 by Sonya

When it comes to traveling with kids, we’d like to think we’ve got it all figured out. We’ve got packing down to a science, well, except for me… I always over pack shoes. Like our recent trip to San Francisco […]

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Allan's Perspective

It’s against the law, bunky!

Posted March 30, 2015 by Allan W Janssen

Dear Readers: Coming soon to a city near you ………,stupid laws and regulations! Yup, they’re doing it in England and the States, BUT,  we got them all beat!! In England, Councils creating ‘bizarre new criminal offences’       <img alt=”PA Wire” src=”http://news.images.itv.com/image/file/629342/article_update_img.jpg”A campaign group has criticised a new law which allows councils to ban activities such as […]

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General

Reader’s Diary #1241- Carmelinda Scian: A Dragonfly Dashed by My Face

Posted January 11, 2016 by John Mutford

The Toronto Star and the Toronto Public Library just launched their 2016 Short Story Contest and it’s got a pretty sweet prize: $5000 plus tuition for the 30-week creative-writing correspondence program at the Humber School for Writers, also valued at…

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Family

Cool Baby & Tot Travel Gear For Your Carry On Bag

Posted March 9, 2015 by Sonya

If you’re getting ready to head out on a family vacation here are a few cool things we’ve spotted that are worth bringing in your carry on bag! TEENY KNOT GENIE HAIRBRUSH ($18) Designed for little locks, this handy little brush with […]

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Allan's Perspective

Verily, I say!

Posted October 10, 2014 by Allan W Janssen

Folks, your sometimes naive reporter just had a revelation of sorts. OF COURSE the bible thumpers believe the world was created 6000 years ago ………….., and evolution is a myth. After all, they also believe that Jesus spoke in 16th century English! (Verily) ———————————————- Workers at a New Jersey treatment plant say they saw a […]

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Canada

Arisa Cox talks season three of Big Brother Canada

Posted March 23, 2015 by Jes

Big Brother Canada season three premieres tonight on Global, and no one is as excited about this as the BBCAN host Arisa Cox. “It is so huge, we are so thrilled!…because it’s on Global in prime time, I excited for the people who have never seen the show or have watched maybe one episode of Big Brother US and they don’t know what all the fuss is about – when they see tonight’s episode, they will be believers,” said Arisa when I talked to her this morning.

I think all of the regular Big Brother fans were excited last year when the announcement came out that the reality show would be moving from the specialty channel Slice over to the main Shaw channel Global. With the audience reach widening, there are all sorts of opportunities to make believers out of all Canadians instead of just the die hards.

If I were Arisa, all I would be thinking about would be the jump in audience. With so many more people potentially watching the show, would that put Arisa off her game? In her words, no. “…if one person is watching or if 3 million people are watching, I always want it to be the best.”

I tried to get Arisa to give me some spoilers (if I were her I would have given them to me and no one else – obviously), but she would not budge. What she did tell me, “We’ve got a ton of superfans in the house…everybody knows the game, everybody knows the show. They are well versed…As a production team we are going to make them throw all that stuff out the window.” So basically – get ready for a season of twists.

“What we have planned for the season is so next level – you won’t be able to look away,” said Arisa. I am counting on it.

Big Brother Canada premieres tonight on Global TV at 9 PM MST/8 PM EST…Arisa will be wearing a navy and black dress as all the superfans walk into the house.

XOXO
Jes…

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Education

SATs? Scholarships? What You Need To Know About U.S. Colleges

Posted March 24, 2015 by Sonya

We sometimes joke around about our kids one day going to Harvard, that’s the dream isn’t it? But then we really started to think if something like that is really a possibility for Canadians? How do you go about it? […]

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Entertainment

Jersey Boys Brings Iconic Tunes To Stage

Posted December 22, 2014 by Sonya

I’m up early on a Saturday morning searching iTunes for Frankie Valli tunes after seeing the musical Jersey Boys the evening before. I didn’t grow up in that era. My mom did and remembers the songs fondly. But they all […]

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Calgary

Theatre Review: Vertigo Theatre’s The Haunting

Posted March 22, 2015 by Jes

I don’t like scary movies. Never have. I can’t even watch a horror movie trailer without covering my eyes and hyperventilating. Something about an over active imagination and never being able to be alone in the dark if I see them. So, I’m not really su…

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Allan's Perspective

Censorship: Oh, for shame!

Posted December 29, 2014 by Allan W Janssen

Dear Readers: Let’s get things back into Perspective here! As you may, or may not know, BlogsCanada.ca   has been engaged in an ongoing battle with Google over the issue of censorship. My views on political correctness, the government, cops, Indians, feminists, the far left, the far right, Muslims, Christian fundamentalists, the judicial system, and […]

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General

Keeping the Pressure On

Posted March 17, 2014 by The Pedgehog

A bold group of students from Saint Thomas University in Fredericton have created an online petition that is getting some attention. The aim is to ask/force/demand the government of New Brunswick to pay for abortions performed at the Fredericton Morgentaler Clinic, and runs thusly:

For more than 25 years, the New Brunswick government has been enforcing a regulation that allows Medicare coverage for abortions only to be done at hospitals (in Moncton),by an Ob/Gyn, and approved by two doctors in writing as “medically required”. This violates the Morgentaler Supreme Court decision of 1988, which ruled that restrictions like these are unconstitutional because they violate women’s rights. The regulation also violates the Canada Health Act, which Health Canada has said mandates full funding of abortions at both clinics and hospitals. Over 60% of NB women needing abortions are forced to pay out of pocket for abortion care at the Morgentaler Clinic in Fredericton, because hospital access is inadequate. The cost for the procedure at this clinic ranges from $700-$850 for women that are up to 16 weeks in their pregnancies. This discriminates against women, especially those of lower socio-economic status. 

Women who are considering an abortion should not have to worry about covering the costs of the procedure. 

Lets inform our apathetic government that they need to make women’s reproductive rights a priority! 

*Also, for those who are wondering about their tax paying dollars, this procedure would cost approximately $2.21 per annum.   

We call upon the New Brunswick government to fully fund abortions at the Morgentaler Clinic in Fredericton, and repeal the provincial law restricting abortion payment (Regulation 84-20, Schedule 2 (a.1), of the Medical Services Payment Act).

Now I feel like I have articulated my position on petitions before, but I feel like, hey, it costs you nothing to sign this – it will take maybe 30 seconds of your time – and it does show that there is a demand for this, and that we are not going away.

Click here to sign the petition.


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Entertainment

Santa Shares His Must-Sees At This Years Parade

Posted November 11, 2014 by Sonya

The 110th annual Santa Claus Parade will take over the streets of Toronto this Sunday, November 16th! And we were invited to visit Santa’s Secret Workshop for a sneak peek recently. Over 30 amazing colourful floats and 21 brilliant marching […]

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