Feature Voices Stories

Opinion: Kill the fame; murderers should not be given the spotlight

No Notoriety campaign aims to stop news outlets from focusing too much attention on those behind mass homicides 

RogerH.GounWhat does society lose when the media withholds the name of killers and denies perpetrators the attention they crave?

Created by the Teves family after the murder of Alex Teves in the 2012 Aurora, Colo., movie theatre shooting, "No Notoriety" aims to limit the media's attention on the killer. The premise of the campaign is that the notoriety gained from media outlets covering these types of tragedies encourages more shootings. The Teves family and others who've joined the campaign believe that these mass killers feed off of the attention that the media gives them.

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Fighting for the Right to Die

Supreme Court's decision should legalize physician-assisted suicide for those who seek it, including the mentally ill

thumbbedI remember, years ago, when my 25-year-old pony, Smokey, was put to sleep. I remember watching his last breaths, his body suddenly looking small and delicate, his bones showing through his white winter coat, and his chest slowing. My mom had hugged me while I cried with the deep heaving pain of a child's first experience with death. "This is the nicest thing we can do for our animal friends," she told me. "He'll never feel pain again."

If Smokey could tell us that he was ready to go, whose right would it have been to deny him the choice? Of course, he lacked the human capacity for reasonable decision-making, but until recently even people with that capacity were denied their right to die.

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My journey to the Calgary Boxing Club

Weekly training teaches work ethic, discipline, and focus

Thumb-Boxing copyBeep-beep goes the round timer and the session begins. I meet my sparring partner halfway, we both exchange jabs, neither landing. The first 30 seconds is a process, testing how close you can get without getting hit. If your left jab is in reach then your right is in reach. Snap. A jab interrupts your thoughts, and your head snaps back. Okay, that's too close. It's obvious by now that his reach exceeds mine. I now have to go under the jab to the body, and work my way up.

Before I joined a boxing gym, I tried talking myself out of it. The voices in my head were telling me it's too dangerous, it will hurt or it's too tough. The anxiety I felt walking up to the glass door with the words "Calgary Boxing Club" made my knees shake. But something was pushing me forward, a force to prove myself. I entered anyway. The coaches put me through numerous grueling variations of push-ups, sit-ups, and other CrossFit exercises. It had pushed me to my limit, and all I learned in the first day was how to throw a proper jab.

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A morning off the map in Albi, Italy

A typical day in a small Italian town

THUMB ITALYIt's 9 a.m. and I'm already sweating. Waking up to the sounds of children playing soccer, a fruit salesman yelling through a microphone, and old women conversing across their balconies is the norm in Albi, Italy. After I stretch my sunburnt arms, I roll out of the rock hard bed that I am sharing with my mother, father, and younger sister. I slip on my navy blue Toms, the perfect shoe for a 17-year-old Canadian girl visiting Italy. The shoes have a hole that my big toe slips through, but they are the only shoes that allow me to walk on the rough cobblestone streets of Italy. To get breakfast, I have to leave the house, walk down the stone hill and around the corner to find the kitchen my grandmother cooked in for many years.

In her place is my aunt. She runs over and gives me a big hug and kiss on my forehead every single morning as she hands me a cornetto, which is an Italian croissant filled with chocolate. Before I can even blink, a glass of milk with a little bit of espresso is prepared for me. The milk doesn't taste like milk at all and more like a mix between water and pancake mix, but I take in anyways to avoid offending her – the biggest shame is turning down any sort of refreshment from Italian women.

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