Checking-In: Listener Response


If you were watching TV last night, he was starring in the start of the second season of CBC's Arctic Air. From Hollywood to HBO, Adam Beach is an actor in demand but he is also the boy who grew up in and around Dog Creek First Nation. We hear his thoughts on the Idle No More Movement. Plus sick- literature, feverish athletes and ailing wildlife; our listeners get-well thoughts on some of the stories of the week.

Part Three of The Current

Checking-In: Listener Response

Anna Maria was joined in studio by The Current's executive producer Jennifer Moroz to check in with what you had to say about the stories of the week.

Teen Sick-Lit: Young readers these days have a new genre of fiction to choose from, and it's a long way from Anne of Green Gables. It's been dubbed "sick-lit" ... stories of teens dealing with suicide, mental illness and cancer. Some critics feel this type of fiction is not helping young people deal with difficult emotions and troubling issues. Yesterday we heard the debate.

And then Marcia Munroe of Halifax weighed in. She writes:

In this age of Tweeting, poor grammar and electronic devices, we should be encouraging young people to read anything and everything they enjoy.

And here is a tweet from Shireen J who had this to say:

Instead of frowning on sick lit, adults would do better to be supportive so teens feel open to talking about a Sick Lit book. Every genre has good and bad books.

And from someone who has the Twitter handle Shary Contrary, we heard this:

The first Sick Lit novel was Go Ask Alice by Beatrice Sparks. It traumatized me as a teen, and was how I learned about drugs.

And here's an idea from Delina Robles of Waterloo, Ontario who emailed this:

Books need to start using the same rating system as movies, to better let the reader judge if they want to open their imagination to the levels taken by the author. It would give parents a starting point.

Racism in Soccer: Last summer, during the height of the Euro 2012 soccer fever, The Current tackled some of the less enticing parts of the game... namely the sexism, homophobia and racism that exists on the pitch and in the stands.
A professional football player for Milan has renewed the debate over racism, by walking off the field during a game last week. AC Milan's Ghana midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng led the walk-off.

To tell us more about why this latest protest has the potential to spark a change in international soccer, we were joined by Laurent Dubois. He is a history professor at Duke University, the editor of Soccer Politics blog and author of Soccer Empire: The World Cup and the Future of France. Laurent Dubois was in Durham, North Carolina.

Elephant Poaching: We started this segment with a clip from Paul Mbugua with the Kenya Wildlife Service speaking last week about some of the methods poachers use. In 2011, it's estimated 25-thousand elephants were killed for their ivory. Here is our segment on Elephant Poaching in Africa.

Mark MacLeod of London, Ontario sent in this email:

Why are we increasingly intolerant of differences of opinion on one hand and yet tolerant of abominations such as this on the other? I despair for our future - because of the way we treat everything around us that is not us.

And on Facebook, Charmaine Van Tine posted this:

Instead of shooting guns at poachers, rangers should be shooting dye shots at the tusks of elephants. A lime green, permanent, but elephant friendly stain would make the ivory unmarketable. I'd rather see elephants with bizarre coloured tusks than no elephants at all.

And we are afraid we have a sad update to add to this coverage. Last weekend, poachers in Kenya killed 11 elephants in what is being called the most deadly mass shooting of the animals in the country's history.

Idle No More: Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence has come under a different spotlight this week with the release of an independent audit of the finances of her reserve. The audit shows little or no documentation for millions of dollars spent by the band. But the timing of the release of the audit has some speculating whether it's an attempt to blunt the efforts of Idle No More.

On Tuesday, we heard a number of views, including from Patrick Brazeau, Conservative Senator and former chief of the National Congress of Aboriginal Peoples.

And then Karen Niyo posted this:

Patrick Brazeau doesn't get it. He doesn't understand Idle No More and the grassroots. The people don't want to be Canadian.

And here's a tweet from Benjamin Avdicevic:

Blaming the Attawapiskat band council for bad accounting is a red herring. It did the best it could under the circumstances. The band lacked the resources and training for proper accounting.

Michael Chambers disagrees. He posted this:

At the grassroots level in Attawapiskat, there is poor parenting, drug abuse, and neglect. How should the Prime Minister fix it? People need to learn to take care of themselves, without waiting for the government to do it.

Canadians from all walks of life have joined the Idle No More movement, and many have made trips to meet with Chief Theresa Spence where she is on a hunger strike. And that includes Adam Beach - actor and star of CBC Television's Arctic Air - which is back on-air this week for season 2. Adam Beach joined us now from Vancouver.

Now, yesterday Chief Teresa Spence announced that she would not be attending the upcoming meeting with Prime Minster Harper and Aboriginal leaders on Friday... that is unless Governor-General David Johnston is present to represent the crown.

Killer Genetics: In the aftermath of the Sandy Hook school shootings, professionals are left to find an explanation for something utterly inexplicable. Researchers at the University of Connecticut plan to study the killer's DNA to look for clues there. And Tuesday we discussed the ethics of this with two geneticists.

Amar Vutha is a scientist in Toronto and sent us these thoughts:

I am bothered by the possibility that DNA will be held up as the scapegoat for what is fundamentally a societal problem. Easy access to guns and a culture of violence are the culprits here. Blaming individuals solely on the basis of their distinctive genes has horrific historical precedents.

And on Facebook, we heard this from Terry Blackmore:

There is no doubt that many of these heinous crimes are committed by people with serious psychological problems. However helpful it would be to detect these problems I am not sure that DNA testing can detect predispositions to violence.

If you have something to say, we want to hear it. You can tweet us @thecurrentcbc. Or post on Facebook. You can call us anytime toll-free at 1 877 287 7366. And of course email us from our website. And while you're there, you can download the podcast, find info and links, and check out our tenth anniversary site. And you can always send us a letter via Canada Post. Box 500, Station A, Toronto, M5W 1E6.

Tomorrow Friday host Laura Lynch will be speaking to a woman named Elena Passarello whose life's work and passion is the human voice. She's an actor and voice coach - but she's also the 2011 winner of the Stella Shout Out competition.

This segment was produced by The Current's Shannon Higgins and Carole Ito.

Last Word - Elephant Hunt

We heard some of your comments this morning on ivory poaching. While poaching is a crime, in many places in Africa it's perfectly legal to hunt elephants if you have the proper permits. A quick Google search shows elephant hunt tours available for Botswana, Namibia, Tanzania, Mozambique and Zimbabwe.

Bill Troubridge is the president of Excalibur Crossbow and demonstrates his weapons with video hunts on boar, deer and bear. But his 2006 elephant hunting video is the most viewed on Youtube. The website says almost two tonnes of the elephant's meat was shared with a nearby Zimbabwean village. On today's Last Word, the small sounds of a giant kill.

Other segments from today's show:

Military considering charging for emergency relief services

Canada's hospitals strained caring for elderly patients with no where to go

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