Advocates on both sides of the question say the findings from a Forum Research survey are no surprise, but argue public opinion should not be the guiding force in deciding whether to change the current law, now under scrutiny in a closely watched B.C. court case.
Supporters of legalizing the practice maintain it is a matter of basic human rights that transcends popular attitudes; opponents say Canadians’ beliefs would change if care at the end of life were improved and death made more comfortable.
NDP calls for ethics investigation into Clement over G8 fund New Democrats are calling on the parliamentary ethics committee to investigate Treasury Board Tony Clement’s involvement in a G8 fund that poured about $50 million into his Muskoka riding in Ontario, some of which was used for dubious infrastructure projects.
The official Opposition said it also has forwarded information obtained through access-to-information laws from the town of Huntsville, Ont., to the police in order to assist with any possible investigation.
Common language on fauna betrays an “anthropocentric bias” and impedes an understanding of our interaction with the non-human species sharing the planet, argue the editors of the first academic journal dedicated to animal ethics in their debut issue.
Instead of “pet,” the Journal of Animal Ethics suggests “companion animal.” Rather than “wildlife,” they are to be called “free-living.” “Differentiated beings” or “non-human animals” is preferred to simply “animals.”
Words such as “vermin,” “beasts” and “critters” are stricken completely, along with similes such as “sly as a fox,” “drunk as a skunk,” “eat like a pig,” “slippery as an eel,” “breeding like rabbits” and “stubborn as a mule.”
“We will not be able to think clearly unless we discipline ourselves to use more impartial nouns and adjectives in our exploration of animals and our moral relations with them,” the editors write. (Photo: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
More doctors prescribing placebos to unwitting patients The practice is discouraged by major medical groups, considered unethical by many doctors and with uncertain benefit, but one in five Canadian physicians prescribes or hands out some kind of placebo to their often-unknowing patients, a new study suggests.
The seemingly widespread use of sugar pills and other inactive treatments identified by the survey highlights a mounting debate over the issue, with some experts arguing that placebos should be accepted as a legitimate — and side-effect-free — alternative to drugs.
Others say giving patients harmless but chemically inert treatments — especially when disguised as something else — cannot be justified until there is better-quality research proving they actually help.
“Doctors went to medical school to give out pills, to do procedures, to do surgeries,” said Dr. Kaptchuk. “Telling them to actually show their colours — to admit that a lot of what they do is actually what a shaman does — is very disconcerting.” (Photo illustration by Steve Murray)
Two black eyes for Tories, courtesy of democracy The good news is that Parliament still works and we have not yet become a one-party state autocracy, as critics of the Conservatives contend. The bad news, for the government at least, is that the Speaker of the House of Commons has just given Stephen Harper two black eyes.