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23 Comments

news

Newsstand: March 28, 2013

It's the Easter holidays as of tomorrow, so consider today March's official send-off. In the news: 2011's snowplow cop killer is found not criminally responsible, cops come under fire for lying in court, the City ombudsman goes after City staff on property rates, and shark fins won't be banned in Canada.

newsstand greenwood2

Opinions are almost certainly going to be flowing at the water cooler (or espresso machine or whatever) today about the not criminally responsible verdict in the trial of Richard Kachkar for the murder of police officer Ryan Russell. Some will say Kachkar didn’t realize what he was doing, others will maintain he knew what he was doing the whole time, while still others will cynically predict how long until the man is released from the hospital where he will eventually be treated. And amid all the back and forth, there’s a quite forward-thinking column from the Sun‘s Joe Warmington pleading for a better system for police to handle people with mental illnesses.

Speaking of police, the Toronto Police Services Board is ordering Chief Bill Blair to keep track in an annual public document of incidents where cops have lied on the witness stand. The motion comes just a few days after Blair sent out a strongly worded message to officers about misconduct, which means it was probably on the police board’s agenda for a while before that message went out.

The latest investigation from ombudsman (and Torontoist superhero of last year) Fiona Crean is, well, not all that sexy. But probably still important. Crean’s office examined problems where City staff made non-profit agencies pay more than they were supposed to for rent in City-owned buildings. The likelihood of this starting the kind of political shitstorm some of her previous forays have brought on is minimal.

Toronto and the rest of the GTA might not be getting a casino, or they probably kinda maybe might, according to Rod Phillips, CEO of the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation. However, Phillips admits none of the municipalities in the region have officially expressed an interest in a casino, which means OLG might have to start tapping some fourth-stringers pretty soon. Because once Vaughan says no, there aren’t a lot of places left to go.

After a ban on shark fin imports in Toronto was overturned, a nationwide ban at the parliamentary level looked like the only recourse for ban supporters. Well, some you win, and dim sum you lose (we totally stole that joke from Anthony Anderson in the otherwise forgettable film Romeo Must Die, and we’re not sorry). What any politician would have had to lose by voting in favour of the ban is beyond us, but that’s how it went.

Comments

  • xyz

    “What any politician would have had to lose by voting in favour of the ban is beyond us,”

    Lots of votes from Asian communities that don’t give a crap about the consequences of maintaining their preferred soup recipe.

  • tyrannosaurus_rek

    An annual public document? We live in the age of Twitter, why can’t these incidents be divulged as they’re discovered?

    • vampchick21

      Because then it becomes a bit hard to track and discover a pattern and then take the appropriate course of action within the organization to put a stop to it. Given the nature of Twitter and the majority of it’s users, do you really think that’s the best way to do that? Sure, a quick 140 character shaming, but it will be buried in most people’s feeds within 30 seconds and in their minds by whatever their favourite celeb tweeted (hell I’d forget about it after one Wil Wheaton tweet), and not everyone actually has or uses Twitter.

      • tyrannosaurus_rek

        I didn’t actually say “release it over Twitter”.

        • vampchick21

          But that was the implication, divulging as discovered in an age of Twitter.

          • tyrannosaurus_rek

            No, the implication was as-it-happens updates. We don’t live in the 19th century any more, there’s no reason TPS can’t keep the public informed of this more than once a year.

          • vampchick21

            By default, as it happens updates will be on Twitter if they do that. But my point still stands. It will be forgotten amongst tweets from celebs.

          • tyrannosaurus_rek

            Good grief.

          • vampchick21

            Is there another quick reach to the connected masses form of social media that I’m unaware of? Or are you thinking of instant updates to the TPS website, which I doubt reaches the same number of people. I certainly have never surfed on over to the police webpage once.

        • HotDang

          #TyrannosaurusBS

          • tyrannosaurus_rek

            @HotDangLevy

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=28110435 Kate Roberts

    Shame on the Asian community in Canada for continuing to support this horrible, disgusting practice – shark finning is the most barbaric fishing practice and needs to stop. I don’t care if they lose their outdated “status symbol” at weddings, these animals are dying by the millions every year, and our oceanic ecosystems will suffer because of it.

    • HotDang

      If it’s a cultural problem in the Asian community, maybe people should consider cultural solutions rather than legal solutions, since the legal solutions don’t appear to be working.

      E.g. the government could pay Drake to do a PSA where he raps about how legit sharks are, or something.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=28110435 Kate Roberts

        LOL! Drake :P

        I agree with you, the change has to start in the Asian community – Gordon Ramsay did a special on this issue and his end goal was achieved by approaching some of the most successful Chinese business owners in London’s China Town and having them sit down – watch the horror with their own eyes and then they agreed to ban it in their business and act as ambassadors to their community by supporting a ban.

        Maybe a lot of the Asian community here in Toronto is either unaware of the cruelty they support, or they’re just stubbornly ignorant and entitled – either way, they need to be educated and this abhorrent practice needs to stop.

        • HotDang

          “Look what he did to the bloody fucking shark, you ignorant fucker! Fuck you! Get out of your kitchen!” It could work!

          • tyrannosaurus_rek

            THIS SHARK IS RAWWWWW

          • eeyore

            You DONKEY!

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=28110435 Kate Roberts

            omg, totally unrelated but I just thought of Ramsay yelling at Rob Ford Hell’s kitchen styles and it made me smile – “The lamb is so raw it still has FUR ON IT!”, why Rob Ford would be cooking lamb for Gordon Ramsay, I don’t know, but it makes me happy none the less.

          • vampchick21

            The Bumbling Politician Edition of Hell’s Kitchen! I’d actually watch that.

        • xyz

          not sure how we can conclude the Asian community is unaware at this point – the city banned it (under protest from Chinese groups) and in response a group of Chinese businesspeople went to the trouble of bringing a court challenge to overturn the bylaw. Which leaves entitled and don’t care.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=28110435 Kate Roberts

            for sure, I was trying to give some of their community the benefit of the doubt on this one – as I did read a while back that newer generations of Chinese people don’t feel the need to have this disgusting “status symbol” at their weddings anymore – here’s hoping the older, more stubborn generations die off before the sharks do.

  • dsmithhfx
  • OgtheDim

    I for one would like to see some proof that those votes were based on
    pressure from Asian communities before I start casting aspersion on a
    few hundred thousand people. Might be more a trade issue, for example,
    given the QMI article (yes my eyes burned deeply but I was able to read
    through the pain) talks about the PMO putting the nix in.