Supreme Court sides with Concordia
An appeal by a former Concordia student over a judicial review of his expulsion from the school will not be heard by the Supreme Court. Ashaf Azar was expelled in 2004 after admitting to plagiarism to a Rights and Responsibilities tribunal. Azar challenged the expulsion in court saying his university-supplied advocate had given him bad advice. However the Quebec Superior Court sided with the university, a decision that was upheld by the Court of Appeal. Azar still has a $13.5 million civil suit pending against the university.
You can’t call them that anymore?
McGill chancellor Richard Pound apologized on Wednesday for remarks he made in August which angered Aboriginal groups. Pound, who also sits on the Vancouver Olympic committee, called Canada a “pays de sauvages,” prior to the arrival of Europeans. Some Aboriginals took issue with the comment, interpreting it as “land of savages.” But Pound maintains any offence was “unintentional,” maintaining the French term, which can also mean wild, is completely different then the English word “savage.” Telling the Canadian Press, “it’s fallen out of favour now and I probably should have been more alert to the change in vocabulary. It’s not derogatory.”
Liberals gain a seat
The federal Liberals have gained another seat in suburban Montreal after a recount on Friday. While the original count had given Bloc Québécois incumbent Marcel Lussier a 102-vote lead in the riding of Brossard-La Prairie, a recount conducted by a Quebec Superior Court judge showed Liberal candidate Alexandra Mendes won the riding by 69 votes. This gives the Liberals 77 seats in Parliament, the Bloc now has 49.
Worshipping the Habs for real
Starting this January the Université de Montréal will be offering a graduate theology course titled “The Religion of the Montreal Canadiens.” According to Olivier Bauer, the professor who will be teaching the class, it’s time “to finally address the question that nobody dares ask: whether the Montreal Canadiens are a religion.” All of the students in the course are training to become ministers or priests.
Pranks not so funny
A Montreal woman who made over 10,000 prank 911 calls will be sentenced in December after a Quebec Court judge rejected a joint sentencing recommendation of a nine-month suspended sentence. Justice Serge Boisvert said that Marie-Eve Dean, who pled guilty to making the calls between January 2006 and April 2007, is likely to do it again and needs therapy. Dean, who is pregnant, flipped off and swore at reporters as she left court.
Financial crisis nevermore
Four more ravens will take up residence at the Tower of London, as a result of the global financial crisis. According to legend if the number of ravens at the tower drops below six, tragedy will strike the royal family and Britain will collapse. While the tower has traditionally kept one extra bird as a spare, Raven Master Derrick Coyle felt that with the credit crisis worsening it was better safe than sorry. “I believe in the curse. It was said that if the number ever fell below six, the Tower would fall and great harm would befall the nation. We certainly feel more secure now,” said Coyle.
Tourism is a beach
Beaches are disappearing throughout the Caribbean because thieves have stolen tons of sand. The stolen sand is used for construction, with much of it going to build hotels for tourists. But the rampant sand theft has caused environmental problems as the shrinking beaches provide less protection from wind, waves and flooding.
Drinking causes happiness
A new Australian study has found that people who have up to three drinks a day are happier than people who don’t drink at all. The study, conducted by insurance company Australian Unity found that 18 to 25 year-olds were happier no matter how many drinks they had. However the study showed middle-aged people had their feelings of wellbeing drop off after more than three drinks a day, however they still remained far higher than among those who never drank.
So who’s the national pimp?
Prince Phillip, the husband of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth, called tourism “national prostitution,” while on an official visit to Slovenia last week. Adding, “we don’t need any more tourists. They ruin cities.” The Prince is well known for his verbal gaffs, once warning a British student in China he would get “slitty eyes” and asking Australian Aborigines, “Do you still throw spears at each other?” A Buckingham palace spokesperson refused to comment, saying “we would never discuss anything Prince Philip might have said.”
A little more than shooting himself in the foot
A police officer in Pakistan shot himself in the chest after falling asleep on the job. Constable Rashid Mahmood was on duty at the front desk of the police headquarters in Lahore. As he slept his thumb set off the trigger of his rifle, firing six shots with three bullets hitting in the chest.