Checking-In: Listener Response

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When we invite feedback our listeners don't hold back. We have a proliferation of opinions on stories of the week from E-cigarettes ... to Selfies in cyberspace ... to Women in power.



Checking-In: Listener Response

Rick MacInnes-Rae is an award winning journalist, long time host and foreign correspondent ... and he is our Friday host of The Current this week. Rick joined Anna Maria in our studio for our Checking-In segment.

Selfies: People do it all the time - maybe alone in the bathroom or with a mirror. We're talking about the selfie - turning your camera back on yourself to take a self photo. Yesterday we had a heated discussion about the meaning and value of the practice - particularly among young women.

Twitter was abuzz. Here are a few quick comments.

First from Aurelia Cotta, who tweeted:

Next time, please skip the old men who don't understand the power of women who finally get to control their images.

Alexis McQuigge of Waterloo tweeted:

Picture-taking is a form of objectification. You can't complain about objectification if you make yourself an object.

And Michelle Brunet asked the twitter-sphere: Aren't we all narcissists?

And one more tweet ... this from Elizabeth Tanner:

Youths need to find their place in society and be accepted by peers. The stakes are 'way higher' today and self-promotion is the only option.

Kerri Anderson of Wolfville, Nova Scotia e-mailed us:

Sarah Nicole had a point about girls seeking self-empowerment through selfies, but the sad part is that "empowerment" is not manifested by further obsession with one's physical appearance.

And finally, to Chris O'Neill of Canning, Nova Scotia who writes:

Sarah Nicole was a perfect example of the vapid emptiness of this cultural movement. I have a 15 year-old daughter. I don't have a problem with occasional pictures, but the teen obsession with continual sexualized "come hither" images are extremely upsetting and fit right into the pornographication of our daughters.

Are We Ready? Big change afoot in Ontario, as the new Liberal leader, Kathleen Wynne prepares to take the reins . A woman premier, a lesbian premier ... there have been lots of firsts such as these in politics of late. In the face of such change, we asked whether we're ever going to be ready to stop asking - Are we ready?

Listener Brian Nemett says: Yes, I'm ready! Can we move on now?

And Keith Dohey tweeted this: If Alberta is fighting over which woman should be premier, I think we're ready for anything. 2013. Let's all just be people.

On Facebook, Ruby Arngna'naaq commented:

If we weren't ready, or mostly ready - we wouldn't have time to even think of that question!

And from our inbox, Adam Malseed of Burlington, Ontario shared this:

The question should have been Are We Ready for Ms Wynne to be Premier? You repeatedly claimed throughout that we should not focus on this and the panel reiterated this ... but you are still emphasizing this fact.

Chris Vanpopta of Ottawa sent this:

When somebody different is in a position of leadership, it's the age-old fear of the hidden agenda that drives the question most of the time. I don't think the question will ever go away. It's a healthy sign that we live in a democracy.

With Kathleen Wynne's victory, Canada now has six female premiers, responsible for governing more than 87 per cent of the population in five provinces and one territory.

So it seems that a significant number of Canadians are certainly ready for women to lead. And that includes Nancy Peckford. She is the Executive Director of Equal Voice -- a non-profit organization devoted to getting more women into elected office. Nancy Peckford was in our Ottawa studio.

E-cigarettes: E-cigarettes are marketed as a way to quit smoking, without having to give up the cigarette. E-cigarettes - smoke-less, liquid filled cartridges that come in flavours such as vanilla and mint are available in Canada. E-cigarettes with nicotine are not supposed to be available in Canada, but we're told they are.

The health and social impact of e-cigarettes are controversial.

Listen to our segment on E-Cigarettes

On Facebook, Elizabeth Sellwood posted this: I am a reformed smoker - and whenever I see my husband enjoying an e-cigarette, I want to have the real thing. I hate this struggle, because he can smoke anywhere.

Stephanie tweeted this: My 12 year old and his friends bought some e-cigarettes at the local convenience store! Kids think they are cool. Hurry up Health Canada!

And Meggie MacMichael of Sackville, New Brunswick shared this view:

I tried the vapour cigarette and thought they tasted great. I am mature enough to differentiate between a nicotine e-cigarette and real cigarettes. But I worry that if young people do the same, it could lead to a regular smoking habit.

And finally to Greg Manley of Ottawa - a non-smoker - who writes:

Three of our adult children switched to e-cigs a few years ago. The e-cigs, most of which are flavoured, do smell better but they absolutely do have a scent and the vapours affect people with environmental sensitivities. I would not support any move to allow these products into public enclosed spaces.

The conversation earlier this week on The Current, and the feedback from listeners was strong enough to make some retailers rethink their policies for selling e-cigarettes. London Drugs contacted The Current to let us know it will now display signage next to electronic cigarettes notifying customers that upon purchase they will be checked for ID to ensure they are over the age of 18. The company is also reminding cashiers to check ID when selling electronic cigarettes.

Tracking the Story: We're following up now on a story that has persisted for over a decade. The 9/11 attack on the United States. A trial date has not yet been set for the alleged mastermind of that attack, but Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other alleged attackers are in the pre-trial hearings this week.

PBS reporter for Frontline, Arun Rath is covering those hearings at the U.S. naval base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. And that's where we reached him.

To add to anything you hear on The Current, tweet us @thecurrentcbc or find us on Facebook. Call us toll free at 1 877 287 7366. And from our website, you can e-mail us your thoughts. And you can always write to us at PO Box 500, Station A, Toronto, M5W 1E6.

Friday Promo: The TD bank has made a name for itself across the border - it's now the 13th largest financial institution in the States. But it's making headlines for another reason right now. Rahm Emanuel, Barak Obama's former chief of staff and the current mayor of Chicago has called the bank out for lending money to gun manufacturer Smith and Wesson. Chicago of course is plagued with gun violence and Mayor Emanuel says TD should stop financing companies that "profit from gun violence." (his words). We'll debate the merit of that idea tomorrow when we look at where capitalism ends and corporate responsibility begins.

This segment was produced by The Current's Jessica deMello and Carole Ito.

Last Word - Martin Luther King on Civil Disobedience

Today, we've been talking about civil disobedience and the undisputed king of civil disobedience in this hemisphere remains Martin Luther King.

People who know King only as an powerful orator may be a little surprised to hear him speaking softly about the techniques and philosophy of civil disobedience. He articulated how to break the law and still keep the moral high ground, it's clear he did a lot of thinking about this since he was sent to jail 29 times during his struggle for civil rights. He had lots of time to think so the Last Word today goes to Martin Luther King.


Other segments from today's show:

Civil Disobedience to stop the Keystone pipeline

Protecting culture in times of war

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