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Saeed Jama, 23, is facing deportation to Somalia, although he was not born there and has never lived there. (Jason Franson For The Globe and Mail)
Saeed Jama, 23, is facing deportation to Somalia, although he was not born there and has never lived there. (Jason Franson For The Globe and Mail)

What readers think

Nov. 21: To deport, or not: Saeed Jama’s case, and other letters to the editor Add to ...

To deport, or not

Although I am no more anxious than other law-abiding citizens to have criminals residing in Canada, I have to question why a child who was raised and educated here should be deported to his parents’ country of origin (For Alberta’s ‘Child of the Snow,’ Time Is Running Out – Nov. 20).

Does this imply there are two rules of law, one for immigrants and their offspring, and one for the rest of us? And does this law for immigrants include not only those from Somalia, but also immigrants from Italy, the U.K. or Germany?

It appears Saeed Jama has been duly punished for his criminal behaviour, but now, for questionable behaviour, he is being banished. An older brother has already been deported to Ethiopia. I would like to understand our government’s position concerning this issue, because for now I am left wondering if this is a case of prejudice or racism.

Gail Huxley, Hamilton


I have no sympathy whatsoever for an individual who has lived in Canada for a lengthy period, who had the opportunity to become a Canadian citizen and who is a convicted drug dealer. Such an individual is not worthy of remaining here.

“But he grew up in disadvantaged circumstances!” you may say. “He never had a chance to become a responsible citizen!” Yada, yada, yada, blah, blah, blah. By the time an individual is 23, he or she has had ample time to prove their character and choose their life path. Saeed Jama should now live up to the consequences of the path that he chose.

James Wooten, Kanata, Ont.


Mideast paradox

A rocket from Gaza fell near the Wolfson Medical Centre in southern Tel Aviv on Monday. A burning car was visible from the clinic windows. Inside, a child from the West Bank was undergoing heart surgery and five others from Gaza were recovering from their procedures, all at no cost to the families. Tuesday, parents from the Palestinian Authority and Gaza brought their children to the hospital cardiology clinic for diagnosis and management.

Such is the paradox of the Middle East. If only money was spent on health care, not missiles, the region could be a better place.

Bernard Goldman, chairman, Save a Child’s Heart Foundation, Canada


Hidden horrors

Was it an ironic coincidence that The Globe published the article about the UN’s failure to condemn ongoing atrocities in Sri Lanka (‘Grave Failure’ Demands UN Answer – Nov. 19) in the same issue as the article about a historian’s quest to uncover the truth about the famine/genocide in the Ukraine (A Quest To Unearth Horrors Soviets Tried To Keep Buried – Nov. 19)?

The difference is that the atrocities under the Soviets happened away from the world view. In Sri Lanka, it is happening in plain view but the world chooses to look the other way. The Ukraine’s dead are beyond our help but there is still time to intervene on behalf of Sri Lanka’s victims.

Steve Pitt, Rutherglen, Ont.


Painkiller abuse

Health Canada had a panel of experts evaluate the evidence related to describing drugs as “tamper-proof” or “tamper-resistant” (Action Needed On Oxycodone – Nov. 20). They found that, to date, there is not enough evidence to back up these claims, yet André Picard’s column still refers to the drug OxyNeo as “a ‘tamper-proof’ version of the painkiller.”

I do agree with Mr. Picard, however, that a national approach is needed to combat prescription drug abuse. I wrote Canada’s health ministers this week, saying the federal government will do what is within our jurisdiction to tackle this, and that we hope they and medical professionals will take action in their jurisdiction. We have the responsibility to tackle this head on, together.

Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of Health


RTOs aren’t the issue

Re On Reverse Takeovers, OSC Is Behind The Times (Report on Business, Nov. 19): TMX Group in fact does have a clear “public interest” mandate written into our formal recognition orders; we are closely supervised by regulatory authorities. Our success depends on the reputation for integrity of our exchanges.

With regard to Sino-Forest, it isn’t the reverse-takeover (RTO) vehicle that was used some 20 years ago to access public markets that caused the issue with this company. Rather, it is the fact that alleged fraud committed by members of Sino-Forest senior management went undetected by external auditors for years. Eliminating RTOs won’t solve this problem. It requires a broader and collaborative effort that includes regulators and exchange operators, as well as legal and financial advisers and, most notably, auditors and company officers and directors.

Let’s have the public debate. But let’s look at the facts and seek solutions that work, not a quick fix that doesn’t address the issue.

Kevan Cowan, president, TSX Markets; TMX Group, head of equities


ABCs of gender

In a Canadian culture that touts respect, diversity and richness of identities, it is the complexity of masculinities, rather than the simplicity of the great-divide debate between boys and girls, that requires our attention (Celebrate Boys’ Boyness – And Work With It – Nov. 17).

We need to acknowledge the complexity of raced and classed masculinities and femininities in schools, and the broader society that is gradually, but not entirely, accepting of more fluid and diverse ways for being boys and girls in schools, but which still struggles with homophobia. Not all boys are the same; success in schools, in particular, does not come equally or equitably to all boys.

To “celebrate boys’ boyness” as Margaret Wente does, is at our peril – especially if we do so without first knowing who these boys are and what they really need to be successful.

Michael Kehler, faculty of education, University of Western Ontario


Picture this

Apparently the great unwashed (read: Stephen Harper supporters) are only that way because we are influenced by the great and flattering photos of our PM distributed by Mr. Harper’s Brave New World media manipulators (It’s All About Visuals, And Harper Takes Advantage – Nov. 20).

In the interest of finding the “truth,” I commissioned a study of photos of some recent PMs to determine the ratio of flattering photos to not-so-flattering. The basis of the study was Googled images of Mr. Harper, versus our two most recent Liberal PMs: Paul Martin and Jean Chrétien.

In a completely unbiased and random test evaluated by a completely unbiased judge (my wife), the conclusion is: All three are equally guilty of this nefarious practice of trying to influence voters with pretty pictures of themselves.

Patrick Tighe, Petawawa, Ont.

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