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Archive for the ‘human rights’ Category

Key Quotes from my latest media interview on eugenics

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Denyse O’Leary took a big risk interviewing me for her blog. For one thing, many of her ID and faith based audiences won’t like what I have to say about who supported eugenics in the late 19th and early 20th centuries: “Eugenics was widely accepted by the business, academic, medical and political establishment. Preachers – in evangelical and mainline churches – even preached it from the pulpit.” Nor will their opponents: “You can believe something, insist it’s scientific and proven, and be totally wrong. Atheists and religious people are equally vulnerable to this error.”

Many more won’t like what I tell Denyse her about the political culture in Alberta: Well, I think it’s the mindset that Albertans have – that we’re pretty much on the side of right. And we have this terrible poverty mentality hanging on from the pre-oil industry days. The big cars, big houses, and rampant materialism are just symptoms of the fact that we “never want to be the poor men and women of Confederation again.”

Still more of the province’s political and business hacks will gag on what I say about the the province’s failed attempt to use the notwithstanding clause in the Canada Act to prevent the victims of the Alberta Eugenics board from getting compensation in the 1990’s:”God help anyone who threatens to take any of it away in a lawsuit. We certainly don`t want to look at the dark side of populism—the pack mentality that overrides the opinions and rights of your political opponents and of the weak.”

Part Three will be posted soon.

“New Light on Alberta’s Dark Past” in Calgary Herald, Leader Post, Canada.com Network

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Eugenics and the Firewall was profiled by Eric Volmers in “New Light on Alberta’s Dark Past” in the Calgary Herald yesterday.  This article also appeared in the Regina Leader Post online and Canada.com network.

Christian Herald Prison Ministry Insert

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The March 2011 Christian Herald, distributed in Ontario’s GTA region, includes an insert which deals with solutions to Canadian prison issues, including restorative justice. My column “Transforming Canadian Prisons:Canadian Christian Heritage” highlights the work of three great Canadians who happened to be people of strong Christian faith –George Brown, John Diefenbaker, and Agnes McPhail –and puts the lie to the media and political myth that ‘the American style Christian Right’ or a tough on ‘crime agenda’ has anything to do with Evangelical (Protestant, Catholic or Anglican Canadian)  doctrine in Canada. The visions of Father of Confederation, George Brown,  Prime Minister Diefenbaker, and Canada’s first female Member of Parliament, Agnes McPhail were anything but ‘tough on crime’ or ‘eye for an eye. ‘ Their goals were restoration and merciful justice.

Lethbridge Signing Media Release

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MONDAY, 7 MARCH 2011

Lethbridge Signing News Release

MEDIA RELEASE:

Harris-Zsovan to Sign Copies of Eugenics and the Firewall at Chapters Lethbridge 12 March 2011

Release: 07 March 2011

LETHBRIDGE — Lethbridge author Jane Harris-Zsovan, will sign copies of Eugenics and the Firewall: Canada’s Nasty Little Secret at Chapters,701 Ist Avenue South, Lethbridge, Alberta, Saturday, March 12, 11:00am-5:30pm. The book is published J. Gordon Shillingford and Distributed by University of Toronto Press. J. Gordon Shillingford Publishing is primarily a literary publisher that publishes theatre, poetry, Canadian social history, politics, religion, true crime, and biography. Website: jgshillingford.com.

Jane Harris-Zsovan is a Canadian author and journalist based in Lethbridge, Alberta. She writes for national and regional periodicals about business, faith, politics, history and contemporary issues. Her books include Eugenics and the Firewall: Canada’s Nasty Little Secret  Stars Appearing: The Galts’ Vision of Canada. and

It’s a dirty little secret the heirs to Alberta’s populist legacy don’t want Canadians to talk about. In 1928, the non-partisan United Farmers of Alberta passed the first Sexual Sterilization Act. The UFA’s successor, the Social Credit Party, led by radio evangelist William Aberhart, and later by his protégé Ernest Manning, removed the need to obtain consent to sterilize “mental defectives” or Huntington’s Chorea patients with dementia.

Between 1928 and 1972 nearly three thousand citizens were sterilized, lied to, experimented on, and subjected to daily abuse at hands of provincial staff in Alberta.

Most Albertans have forgotten the victims whose names made headlines in the 1990s, and politicians and pundits have shown little empathy for the victims. Eugenics and the Firewall: Canada`s Nasty Little Secret sets the record straight.

“It`s a valuable addition to modern Canadian historical studies. I hope it comes to the attention of professors, so that it can be included in reading lists. One of the most important aspects, as you can tell from the review, is your inclusion of the modern debate on eugenic practices.” Ian Stewart, Writer, Book Reviewer for the Winnipeg Free Press.

 

Written by janeharris(harris-zsovan)

March 7, 2011 at 10:43 pm

“Difficult Subjects“ discusses Eugenics and the Firewall

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Here is the link to “Difficult Subjects”, written by Samantha Power, of VUE Weekly in Edmonton, Alberta Canada.
Eugenics and the Firewall is featured in this article: The difficult subject is Alberta’s Eugenics Scandal. We’re good Canadians here. 

We don`t think it`s ‘good manners’ to talk about the skeletons in our closets. But we need to, sometimes, in order not to repeat our mistakes. That’s why I wrote Eugenics and the Firewall: Canada’s Nasty Little Secret. Samantha Power does a good job with this article, and a good job of explaining why I wrote Eugenics and the Firewall.

Link to ArtsBridge article (no need to click icons)

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Here`s the direct link to my interview in ArtBridge. (I was interviewed by about Eugenics and Firewall by Ashley Markus) https://janeharriszsovan.files.wordpress.com/2011/03/jhz-artsbridge-interview.pdf.

“Shining Light on Alberta’s Past” out in ArtsBridge

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Spring/Summer 2011 ArtsBridge is out. Ashley Markus interviewed me about Eugenics and the Firewall: Canada’s Nasty Little Secret. Read it here: JHZ artsbridge interview. (Click on the link. Then click on the icon. Article will appear.)