It is completely understandable why Jews and Israelis are extremely nervous and frightened about their safety in the world right now.
With the Holocaust, 6-million Jews were victims of the most horrendous and calculated crime against humanity in the history of the world. Jews and non-Jews alike who visit Nazi extermination camps come away shaken and outraged, marked for life by the experience.
As November 11 approaches, we are also reminded of the 100,000 Canadian and Newfoundland soldiers killed or wounded fighting Nazi Germany in World War Two. Still, along with many countries, Canada shares in the guilt for allowing some of Adolf Hitler’s Nazis to escape after the war, full responsibility for the Holocaust.
As a result of the Holocaust, the Jewish people have the absolute moral and political right to safety and security within Israel and around the world, and they have the right to defend themselves.
Earlier this month, with the horrific slaughter by Hamas fighters of Israelis within the boundaries of Israel, memories of the Holocaust are rekindled for Jews all over the world.
The Higgs government of New Brunswick has put off for now its lurching ride toward an election. Part of the guessing game for citizens has been what Higgs saw as his government’s unifying Throne Speech on Oct. 17.
Yet hidden in the soft tones of the Throne Speech is an unfortunate approach to the problem which New Brunswick and all other provinces have, that of addiction, mental illness, and homelessness.
Concerning addiction, the Throne Speech says the government “will empower judges and hearing officers to order treatment for Severe Substance Abuse Disorder through the new Compassionate Intervention Act. This legislation is to help, in extreme cases, those individuals who are struggling with addiction and unable to meet their own basic needs.”
This is what William Shakespeare, in his famous play Romeo and Juliet called a “Rose by Any Other Name.” What Shakespeare was saying in simple terms, is that we cannot change the essence of things, just by dressing them up with pretty words.
So, in calling this new legislation the “Compassionate Intervention Act” the government is just using comforting words for saying that addicts will be forced against their will to receive corrective treatment.
When I was a kid we played a lot of pond hockey, and all the young players identified with a particular NHL hockey hero. We wore our favorite player’s jersey number on our backs. In my case it was the Toronto Maple Leafs’ Dave Keon, number 14, the winner with his team of four Stanley Cups. Call me nostalgic, but on the pond, we sharpened our skills and learned to skate like the wind.
Today, kids’ adoration of sports heroes and the glory of sport may not be quite as pure. The NHL season is now underway, and as we speak, youth are being lured into betting on sports, by of all people, their hockey idols.
This would be bad enough for our national sport, but this betting is doing much more harm because of the phenomenon of “push betting.” If a youth (or an adult) places a bet on a particular game, the bettor is texted by a representative of a sports betting company and urged to bet still more, given the score of the game thus far.