This Week in Canadian Religion 2018-05-13

Italy Dome Architecture Florence Tourism Tuscany

By Scott Douglas Jacobsen

“OTTAWA — Canada’s former religious freedom ambassador says the Trudeau government is displaying “totalitarian” tendencies with its controversial changes to the student summer jobs program.

Andrew Bennett, who until 2015 was Canada’s only envoy devoted exclusively to religious freedom abroad, used the label repeatedly in an interview ahead of his launch today of a new religious freedom think-tank that he will be leading to stimulate public discussion on the role of faith in public life.

Bennett is kicking off that discussion with an attack on the Liberal government’s change to the Canada Summer Jobs program that requires organizations seeking funding to tick a box that attests to their respect for sexual and reproductive rights, including abortion, and other human rights.

The government says it is not targeting beliefs or values but churches and other faith-based organizations say they are being forced to choose between staying true to their values and seeking grants to help them run programs — from summer camps to soup kitchens — that have nothing to do with abortion.”

Source: https://www.cp24.com/news/summer-jobs-program-shows-totalitarian-tendency-ex-religious-freedom-envoy-1.3921641.

“The Quebec government has released its guidelines on how it will assess requests for religious accommodation under Bill 62, the law concerning face coverings and use of public services.

The controversial law was passed in the National Assembly last October.

The section of the law governing face coverings bans people wearing a covering such as a niqab or burka from using a city bus, attending a public school at any level of education or attending a medical appointment for themselves or someone else.

However, in December, a Quebec Superior Court put that part of the law on hold until the government adopted guidelines dictating how the restrictions on face coverings would work in practice.”

Source: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/quebec-bill-62-guidelines-accommodations-1.4655620.

OTTAWA — Canada’s former religious freedom ambassador says the Trudeau government is displaying “totalitarian” tendencies with its controversial changes to the student summer jobs program.

Andrew Bennett, who until 2015 was Canada’s only envoy devoted exclusively to religious freedom abroad, used the label repeatedly in an interview ahead of his launch today of a new religious freedom think−tank that he will be leading to stimulate public discussion on the role of faith in public life.

Bennett is kicking off that discussion with an attack on the Liberal government’s change to the Canada Summer Jobs program that requires organizations seeking funding to tick a box that attests to their respect for sexual and reproductive rights, including abortion, and other human rights.

The government says it is not targeting beliefs or values but churches and other faith−based organizations say they are being forced to choose between staying true to their values and seeking grants to help them run programs — from summer camps to soup kitchens — that have nothing to do with abortion.”

Source: https://www.manitobapost.com/national-news/trudeau-government-displaying-totalitarian-tendencies-says-former-ambassador-114688.

“It was never particularly complicated.

All Mohammad El Hindawi wanted for his family was a reprieve from the bedbugs afflicting his children. In the summer of 2015, while dealing with the vermin in their new home of Edmonton, he’d learned through a social worker that Canadians apparently loved camping, and so, as a new Canadian, he thought that perhaps this was something he should try.

Camping was a new concept to this refugee born and raised in Hama, Syria, site of the Hama massacre of 1982, when the military rounded up 10,000 or 20,000 or 40,000 people for execution (nobody really knows). His father and uncles were spared, but El Hindawi, who was six then, never shed the trauma and bitterness.

His whole life has been a struggle, from his early 20s when he lost his firstborn son to measles, right up until 13 November 2014, the day he boarded a plane and flew to Canada – a country he’d never learned about in public school. His life remained a struggle, because he had six kids crying every night, a wife telling him they’d be better off on the streets, and a family panicking over a blood-sucking insect they’d never encountered before. So, yes, camping, whatever camping was, sounded like a great idea.”

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/may/13/what-is-canada-like-for-a-refugee.

“A poll found 51 per cent think it is wrong to require organisations to support abortion before they receive state funding

The majority of Canadians oppose the requirement for a summer job grant which means organisations must support the government’s pro-abortion stance to receive public funding.

A survey by the Knights of Columbus shows 51 per cent of Canadians think requiring support for abortion to participate in the Canada Summer Job Grants programme is unfair, while just 27 per cent think the opposite.

The programme helps fund summer schemes run by small businesses, non-profit organisations and faith-based employers, and has provided an estimated 70,000 jobs for university or secondary school students.”

Source: http://catholicherald.co.uk/news/2018/05/11/majority-of-canadians-oppose-abortion-requirement-for-summer-jobs-grant/.

“When Bhupinder Singh passed the test to get his Class 6 motorcycle licence at the start of the month, he was one of the first Sikhs in Alberta to qualify under a newly created helmet exemption.

Whether he was the first or not is of little consequence to the 42-year-old. More important is that his fellow Sikhs are now allowed to express their religion while riding motorcycles in Alberta.

On April 12 a ministerial order amending the Traffic Safety Act took effect, exempting bonafide members of the Sikh religion from wearing a helmet.

Singh could barely wait.”

Source: http://edmontonjournal.com/news/local-news/this-is-our-religion-this-is-our-pride-sikh-motorcyclists-now-exempt-from-helmets-in-alberta.

“Religion is supposed to give one peace of mind. Almost every religion promotes mutual respect and harmony. Unfortunately, in some countries and some regions of the world religion has become a source of conflict. In that context, Canada has been a shining example of intercultural -interreligious peace, harmony and inclusion. It is a beacon of hope and optimism for others. It is no wonder that more than 200 communities from around the globe are proud to call Canada their home. Richmond is a microcosm of this reality. Its Number 5 Road, home to more than 20 places of worship of different denominations, also known as the Highway to Heaven has been playing an important role in this regard.

The Highway to Heaven is a very popular place for visitor from all over British Columbia and Canada. Also, our local media has been veryhelpful in its coverage of the activities along this very special stretch of #5 Road in this community. As chairperson of the Highway to Heaven Association, I am very pleased with the role that our places of worship are playing in promoting intercultural and interreligious harmony.

India Cultural Centre of Canada Gurdwara Nanak Niwas (8600, #5 Road in Richmond,BC) has been playing a key role in bringing to-gether people of different faiths in order to promote intercultural and interreligious harmony.It is very encouraging to see a lot of educators and community leaders bringing students, youth and adults alike to ourvarious places of worship including Gurdwara Nanak Niwas on a fairly regular basis. This helps the young minds broaden their horizons. Such exposure to different faiths and cultures is bound to create more awareness in them and help them become more well- rounded, broad-minded and productive members of Canadian society.”

Source: http://thelinkpaper.ca/?p=68407.

“A first-ever ranking of Canada’s “most youthful” cities puts Toronto on top as the best place for young people to live, work and play, based on metrics such as the cost of a transit pass, monthly rent and concert tickets along with measures of youth unemployment, digital access and crime stats.

The index, to be published Wednesday by Youthful Cities, a Toronto-based social enterprise, examines how attractive 13 Canadian cities are to people between the ages of 15 and 29.

The rankings are based on 121 different indicators – collected by young people across Canada − and weighted by using an opinion survey of youth on what matters most to them. It’s a work in progress with longer-term plans to create an advisory panel and to be published annually.

Given the public-policy focus on older people (who also have more voter clout), the index aims to nudge cities to adopt “youthful” qualities – such as being open, innovative and dynamic – attributes which are also more likely to attract and engage young people.”

Source: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/article-canadas-most-youth-friendly-cities/.

“When hundreds of white supremacists staged a march in Charlottesville, Va., last August, most of the attention was on the counter-protester killed when a vehicle, believed to have been driven by one of the marchers, plowed into a crowd of pedestrians, and on the controversial statements made about the event by U.S. President Donald Trump.

There was little news coverage, however, of an armed group called the Three Percenters, whose members, dressed in paramilitary gear and carrying guns, attended the rally, acting as a self-styled security detail independent of law enforcement.

The name of the group is a reference to the claim — debated among historians — that only three per cent of Americans took up arms and served in George Washington’s Colonial Army in the American Revolution against the British.

The group says its main goals are to protect the right to bear arms, defend against an “overreaching government” and “push back against tyranny” but claims on its website that it is not a militia and not anti-government per se.”

Source: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/three-percenters-canada-1.4647199.

Scott Douglas Jacobsen is the Founder of In-Sight Publishing and In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Help

WordPress theme: Kippis 1.15