Malala Yousafzai Update - Freelance Journalist
Earlier last month we brought you the story of Malala Yousafzai, the fifteen year old girl who was shot in the head by the Taliban while on her school bus. The Taliban called it her punishment for "promoting secularism."
Malala is known across Pakistan for her tireless efforts to bring education to girls in her country. She's now being treated at hospital in Birmingham, England. Since the attack Malala has been nominated for the International Children's peace prize by Desmond Tutu and has won Pakistan's first National Youth peace prize. Last week Pakistani officials arrested a suspect in the shooting.
Rohit Gandhi is a freelance journalist who covers the region and has been travelling through Pakistan for over a decade. He interviewed Malala in 2009 and again in 2011. Today, Rohit Gandhi joined us from New Delhi with some never before heard tape from those interviews.
Checking-In with Jonathan Goldstein
Today, Anna Maria was joined by our special guest host for tomorrow's program, Jonathan Goldstein. Jonathan is of course the host of Wiretap on CBC Radio One. He also an author and essayist and he was in our Toronto studio to let people know what is coming up on tomorrow's pre-election special and to help read our listener mail.
Libya 1 year later: One year ago, NATO forces pulled out of Libya. With the end of the rule of Moammar Gadhafi, Libyans felt great promise about the future of the country. On Tuesday, we re-focused the spotlight on Libya to see how daily life has changed.
We heard some comments on Facebook. A listener who goes by Veritas Liberat posted this:
I doubt NATO is completely gone and ever will be. After the rich elite is finished with Libya, it will be no less debt ridden than Greece and no more developed than post war Iraq and Afghanistan.
And here's one more post from Dennis Hall who writes:
Interesting how your guest advanced the notion that everyone in Libya is at peace with each other now - partly because everyone has a gun. That pre-supposes a certain level-headedness that I'm not confident one will find in most countries - including Libya.
Just Friends: An age old debate re-surfaced on The Current this week ... whether platonic friendships can exist between the sexes.
We heard some comment earlier in the week, but here are a couple more. Anita Fixx had this to say on Facebook:
It's very much possible for men and women to be friends. In fact I find most of my friendships with guys are much more positive than all the "friendships" with girls. I'd like to be friends with women, the way guys are friends ... hang out, have a good time and leave the baggage at home.
But Tom Schroder of Vancouver was a little offended by the story. He writes:
Time and again men are painted as morally lesser, because of their tendency to prefer a large number of sexual partners. Why is there a higher moral ground in having a biological urge for monogamy?
Your guests had a very negative tone towards men who are attracted to their female friends. But it takes two to tango.
Clearly this issue struck a chord with many of you. So we decided to reach out to Steve Murray who writes the satirical "Bad Advice" column in The National Post.
Cancer Campaigns: Dealing with cancer is never easy, but promoters of events such as the Booby Ball say there's nothing wrong with introducing a cheeky element of fun into cancer fundraising. However, some people are pushing back, saying the tone and tenor of such events is offensive. Here is our segment.
C Palmer of Port Moody, BC wrote in with these thoughts:
Breast cancer victims are concerned about living, not about titillating others. Misleading young girls into "boobies" are yours to promote - leads to problems such as those that Amanda Todd dealt with.
And we aired a few more more thoughts from our voicemail.
Here's one more email from Lindsay Pritchard of Aylmer, Quebec who writes:
I am not comfortable with the sexualization of illnesses.
My child was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour this past summer. Debating the issues around sexy breast cancer campaigns seems frivolous, when there are so many other issues needing exposure and funding.
FIPA: Finally for this morning, a few notes we received about Canada's proposed new trade deal with China. It's called the Canada-China Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement or FIPA. And it's designed to make Canada more attractive to Chinese investors. But critics of the deal say Canada will lose too much.
Peter Storey lives in China and emailed us this:
When you sign an agreement with China, you are cutting cards with the devil. Nothing is as it seems. Behind a facade, there is always deceit, desolation and garbage -- literally and figuratively. We are being very naive.
Here's one more from Gabrielle Villecourt of Cawston, British Columbia who writes:
The fact that this treaty is being negotiated in secrecy is also disturbing. If it was so good for us, would they not use as many photo ops as possible? Why are we being left out of the debate one more time?
To add to anything about what you hear on the program, there are lots of ways to get in touch. Post on Facebook by searching for The Current:CBC Radio. Or tweet us @thecurrentcbc. You can always call us toll free at 1 877 287 7366. Download our podcasts off our website. Or email us.
Last Word - Robot Chicken
We've been talking today about Star Wars, a series that fired the imaginations of millions of kids. It likely didn't do much to fire their senses of humour however.
One of the remarkable things about Star Wars is how seriously it takes itself despite the fact that it's ... preposterous. Consequently, it has been the target of a lot of satire.
For instance, somebody must have had to phone the Emperor to explain that the rebels had destroyed the Death Star. For today's Last word, we ended the program with how the animated series Robot Chicken imagined that conversation.
Other segments from today's show: