Oct 30, 2003

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Turn in investigation offers some relief
National Post, Oct. 24

It is normal for a parent to take comfort in being told that another parent's tragedy is the result of a premeditated and not random act, especially when it comes to kidnappings. Toronto police detectives are advising parents that the disappearance of Cecilia Zhang from her parents' home city was likely the result of a kidnapping for ransom. “You're going to be very concerned about your children if you think this is a sexual predator who's preying on a stranger,” says SFU criminologist Neil Boyd. “If you think, on the other hand, that this is someone known to the victim and that the motivation is economic then it's different.” Boyd adds it's almost unheard of for sexual predators to “go into homes and snatch children.” However, overcoming the fear of that happening is a real challenge for a community once the fear has set in.

Terror risk in Canada real
Toronto Star, Oct. 20

Doug Ross' stock in trade is the stuff that nightmares are made of. Suppose a terrorist group detonates a nuclear device to pressure the U.S. to get out of the Middle East, not in the U.S., but in Canada, where they can just as easily make their point. “All we need is one or a few rogue organizations with financial resources and possible state support and we're going to have a major calamity on our hands,” says the SFU political science professor and expert in arms control. Some federal officials have said the danger is always there that Canada, or U.S. interests here, can be attacked. Academics say there's good reason to engage in such blunt talk. “We're not at the centre of the bull's eye but we are indeed at the inner ring of the target,” says Ross.

Did natives arrive by sea?
CanWest News Service, Oct. 18

The discovery of an ancient mountain goat's bone in a Vancouver Island cave has added weight to a compelling new theory that the first human migration to the Americas happened more than 16,000 years ago, at least 40 centuries earlier than most textbooks teach. The evidence also supports the idea that the original native occupants of Canada arrived by boat rather than on foot. Led by SFU geologist Brent Ward, researchers have been digging into mucky sediments on a cave floor near Port Eliza on the island's western shore. The cave is a time capsule that has allowed Ward and colleagues to peer into an era of North America's past, one that has led to hot debate among scientists seeking to know when people first traveled from the Old World to the New World.

Whistler pupils' drug use significant
The Province, Oct. 17

Fifty-nine per cent of Grade 11 youths in Whistler who responded to a survey said they had come to school drunk or stoned once in the previous year. It also found that half of the Grade 11's reported drinking in the 30 days before the survey and almost a quarter smoked dope during the period. SFU criminology professor Raymond Corrado says Whistler, on average, is one of the highest-income communities, with highly educated families, in Canada. Typically with education and higher incomes, comes the more liberal attitude towards children's education and growth. “Symbolically, Whistler represents to the world skiing, boarding, hiking, fun and partying. It is the heart and soul of the Whistler experience and that culture is going to affect the youths.”

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