Updates from June, 2019 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 19:14 on 2019-06-14 Permalink | Reply  

    It’s disturbing to read that the person who has harassed Sue Montgomery for twenty years was acquitted of criminal charges this week, and this by a woman judge who says Montgomery is simply not scared enough. Surely it’s the harasser’s actions and not the target’s emotional response that should be on trial?

    (Note: I later deleted an “allegedly” because the court ruling was that the man has harassed Montgomery, but not criminally.)

    Sunday, the Journal also gave an account of the case and reminds us that the defendant is still to face charges of breaking court conditions and communicating with Montgomery.

    • Chris 19:46 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

      Why note the judge is a women? Why should/would/ought that make any difference?

    • Dominic 20:05 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

      @Chris Because women are far more likely to have a stalker than men are. While men are stalked as well, its also far more likely that the stalker is male. The gender of the judge is definitely something to note.

    • Chris 20:08 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

      I agree women are more likely to be stalked. The rest is non-sequitur. A judge bases decisions on facts and argument. Her sex is irrelevant.

    • Kate 21:01 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

      A woman judge – any judge – should have understood that a woman like Sue Montgomery is not going to weep and tear her hair in public to register sufficient fear to satisfy the current terms of the law.

      This is a woman who’s gone successfully from being a well regarded journalist into politics, despite knowing that she’d be facing public harassment at every step. Many women would’ve left the area or chosen to lie low, but Montgomery did not. She isn’t pretending it hasn’t shaken her up: she’s spoken about her fear, frustration and anger, and anyone can find valid accounts of the trauma caused to victims by relentless stalking – this is not hysteria or fiction.

      The judge should have taken the fear as read – and yes, the more so because she is a woman, and there isn’t a woman on this earth who hasn’t felt a touch of that fear. Montgomery is going to fight the terms of that law, and I hope she succeeds.

      Incidentally, I’ve never met Ms. Montgomery, so I’m not praising a friend or acquaintance here.

    • Blork 21:06 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

      I was gobsmacked when I read this. WTF? It might be different if this were a civil case where Montgomery had to show some loss in order to receive damages, but a criminal case? Does this mean if I murder someone who doesn’t flinch while I’m murdering them that it isn’t a murder? FFS! WTAF?

    • Blork 21:07 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

      @Chris: “A judge bases decisions on facts and argument.” Clearly not this one.

    • Chris 21:22 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

      Blork, could be, I don’t know the details of the case. But if the judge erred, I again say her sex is irrelevant, both men and women judges err.

    • Max 22:05 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

      That judge is clearly an idiot. The video depicts Sue’s frame of mind in that one place at that one time. Why is the judge placing so much emphasis on that versus all the history of harassment? Hopefully someone’ll punch this Robert douche in the face 2 or 10 times and put the whole issue to rest.

    • Mark Côté 22:30 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

      Last time I checked judges were all humans, and all humans have biases of one kind of another. To think they are all magically completely objective is ludicrous.

    • Michael Black 10:16 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

      This is an odd story since it starts with the church, which seems fairly informal about clergy, but then the guy latched onto Montgomery, maybe as a member but also as a reporter, and she’s become the target, not the church.

      It doesn’t matter whether she feels safe or not. She shouldn’t feel so hounded.

      I can think of someone who does the same thing, Kate won’t mention his name here, and as I recall he has had various run-ins with media outlets, though municipalities seem fine with him.


    • Kate 10:59 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

      Michael, I haven’t mentioned the name of Montgomery’s stalker either. I don’t want to put out Google bait.

      (By the way, how are you? Still in hospital?)

    • Ephraim 16:49 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

      In Quebec, you don’t need a criminal case to get an injunction. And injunctions are good for up to 3 years at a time. I hope that she at least has an injunction. And you can actually state in the injunction that the person doesn’t even have a right to mention your name because of verbal harassment. So you could ban them from being within a zone and even keep them from talking about you on social media. (I know this because we had a discussion with the police about someone in this regards.)

    • Kate 20:08 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

      Ephraim, it’s clear from this Gazette item earlier this year that this man was constrained by court order, which he violated. I don’t know the details.

    • Ephraim 20:52 on 2019-06-16 Permalink

      Kate obviously the fines aren’t getting to him. You can see the info about protection orders…. https://www.justice.gouv.qc.ca/en/programs-and-services/services/applying-for-a-protection-order-in-a-civil-matter the fact is, if she has one, he can’t even TALK about her to third parties… the cops should just repeatedly get him on that.

      Of course, we are talking the Montreal police. Not exactly known for doing their job.

  • Kate 15:45 on 2019-06-14 Permalink | Reply  

    The city is preparing to increase councillors’ salary to offset Ottawa’s plan make their benefits taxable.

    • Kate 15:43 on 2019-06-14 Permalink | Reply  

      The entire Montreal metro system received an accolade of engineering history this week, with a plaque unveiled outside Jarry station, the location of the initial excavations in 1962. Which also explains why I passed by a gathering with speechifying there this week.

      • Kate 11:59 on 2019-06-14 Permalink | Reply  

        The Montreal Review of Books has an interesting history of lefty publishers Black Rose Books, marking 50 years this year.

        • Michael Black 10:47 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

          There was an early sixties magazine, “Our Generation against Nuclear War” or something. I thought that was Dimitri’s entry into publishing. It was a more general left mag in the seventies, titled just “Our Generation”. But I thought it was attached to Black Rose then , running excerpts from the books.

          In August 1977 they opened the bookstore on St Lawrence Blvd. Fifty years after the execution of Sacco & Vanzetti. They had a wine & cheese party, contrasting with the politics, but I was ten or more years younger.


      • Kate 10:05 on 2019-06-14 Permalink | Reply  

        This isn’t a Montreal-specific story, but it’s about the Quebec order of veterinarians, so here goes: not all pets thrive on a vegetarian diet. The article soft-pedals on cats with “It’s hard to say exactly what would happen to a cat over the years if fed nothing but plant-based foods”? No it isn’t! A cat fed only plant-based food will first go blind and then die. Cats are obligate carnivores who must get certain amino acids from fish or meat: unlike ours, their metabolisms simply can’t manufacture them from plant proteins, nor are their digestions tuned to extracting sufficient nutrients from plant biomass, like a cow.

        Any cat fed a vegan diet who goes outside will not be rushing back home for its broccoli dinner, but not all cats can save themselves by going outside.

        The text article doesn’t say, as the radio piece does, that if you want a vegan pet, adopt a rabbit or a guinea pig, not a cat or dog, but it’s good advice.

        • jeather 10:52 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          I’ve had this fight and failed totally. Not just vegetarian cats, who can at least get some egg and dairy in their food, but vegan.

        • jeather 10:58 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          To be clear I was on the cat needs meat side, not the vegan cat side. (They won’t go blind, I am sure even the idiots who make veggie cat food enrich with taurine.)

        • Kate 11:00 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          That’s if they’re feeding commercial vegetarian food, which I’m appalled to find exists. Some might be determined or crazy enough to make their own.

        • jeather 11:02 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          Point taken, I was talking to someone who knew to supplement with essential amino acids.

        • jeather 11:03 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          That also included the “it’s wrong to drive anywhere but if you want to vacation in New Zealand and fly there that’s fine because you have no choice” argument which finally clued me in that this was a waste of time.

        • Kate 23:09 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          jeather, I wonder where they thought those essential amino acids came from.

        • jeather 10:18 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

          I assume it can be synthesized in a lab, though I have no idea where taurine in vegetarian cat food comes from. (Google suggests that there are simple synthetic pathways, and also that spiders have lots of taurine, something I assume vegetarian cats still have access to.)

          BUT STILL just get a not carnivore pet if this is important to you.

        • Michael Black 10:30 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

          One of the first vegetarian cookbooks I got forty years ago was “Laurel’s Kitchen”. In the back there was a small bit about get pets. A warning threats couldn’t be, but dogs could and a recipe for some food. Never seen much since. Harriet who was the only began I knew then and into animal rights, basically said the same thing. She had a dog but I can’t remember if needed it meat.


        • Kate 11:07 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

          jeather, I might’ve thought a pure vegan sensibility would reject the idea of pet animals entirely.

          Michael, I’ve never had a dog, but things I’ve read suggest they’re more omnivorous than cats. A cat won’t thrive on a diet of dog food, for example. Anyway, I’ve walked around a few times with friends who had dogs, and those dogs will eat anything – dead animals, old food dropped in parks. I doubt a dog living on enforced vegetarian food at home is so careful outside, probably scoffs dead birds and moldy pepperoni pizza once it’s off leash.

        • jeather 13:42 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

          Given that we’ve already domesticated them, it’s okay to adopt and sterilise pets, but not make more, is, I think, the general gist.

      • Kate 09:10 on 2019-06-14 Permalink | Reply  

        The city is banning old-style smoke detectors that use a nine-volt battery, and is making ten‑year lithium battery detectors mandatory for any building dating from before 1985.

        • steph 10:05 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          “propriétaires et locataires devront les remplacer”. Who’s footing the bill for this? The landlord or the tenant?

        • Marc 10:31 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          I replaced one recently and only saw the 9-volt variety for sale at the hardware store – maybe I didn’t see the new kind because they were way more expensive or in unfamiliar packaging?

        • dwgs 10:34 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          You can find the new ones on Amazon for under $30.

        • jeather 10:46 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          Not clear to me, I just replaced mine with a detector that is on the electrical system but ALSO has 9v battery backup, and I wonder if it is legal.

        • jeather 10:51 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          Owner must provide and replace every 10 years, occupant must maintain (=test and replace batteries). Sounds like the landlord pays.

        • Blork 11:22 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          Most domestic smoke detectors have a usable life of only about 10 years. As in, you’re supposed to change the batteries every year and change the device every decade. I recently had one start beeping, and it kept beeping even after replacing the batteries, and sure enough it was 10 years old and the beep pattern was “replace device.”

          So I got one with lithium batteries that you can’t even access because the deal is that in 10 years time you replace the whole unit. Presumably it beeps when it expires; otherwise how TF are you supposed to remember how old it is?

        • Kate 11:32 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          Blork, how’s the lithium one about false positives? My apartment is not teeny tiny, but the smoke detector was going off like a mad thing if I so much as made pasta or a stir-fry, involving me dragging over a chair, climbing up and poking at it with a stick almost daily. It was getting stupid, so I’d welcome something a little more discerning.

        • Blork 11:48 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          I don’t get false positives very often, so I haven’t seen any difference. I don’t think the power source would affect that anyway; it’s more about how the detector is build and whatnot. When I was shopping for it, I saw that buying a smoke detector is becoming a bit like buying yogurt — so much to choose from you just want to run out of the store without buying anything. The options include ones that are specifically designed for kitchens (but I don’t remember if those were lithium or not — I think so).

          Side note: I did learn a couple of days ago that standing under your smoke detector while holding a lit sparkler will most definitely set it off!

        • jeather 11:58 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          There are two kinds of detecting a smoke detector can do, ionization and photoelectric, and they do one or the other or both.I have a both and it really really hates when I make bacon. But honestly I am sort of fire paranoid and am fine with it being oversensitive.

        • Raymond Lutz 12:10 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          False positives are a real security problem because many people disconnect their detectors not to be annoyed, so Google (and some say Apple too) is working on MEMs mass spectrometers for their Nest line of product: it will constantly sniff out your home air and stream the data in realtime to deep learning algos to determine if there’s a fire risk. The AI will be more and more precise as more people use it. Some privacy advocates are worried as some leaked information about the prototypes say the chip can even recognize and identify people by the trace molecules they emit through sweating.

        • Ephraim 13:07 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          Finally. Those 9V battery units were every way a bad idea… from the changing batteries on a ceiling using a ladder twice a year, to the fact that they are supposed to be replaced every 10 years, but no one realizes this. I have 10 year sealed Lithium units in every bedroom or a 110v. And I have one attached to an alarm that calls the fire department.

          Frankly, the city should buy them en masse and hand them out. It’s cheap and effective and saves lives. I haven’t had a single false positive on the units that I have.

        • jeather 13:09 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          No but seriously if you have a 110v w 9v backup, is that okay? I can’t figure it out.

        • Marc 14:41 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          @jeather My understanding is that if it’s wired into the electrical system that’s better than any kind of battery regardless of what type of battery it has for backup. “Les bâtiments construits depuis 1985 doivent être munis d’avertisseurs de fumée reliés à un réseau électrique.”

        • dwgs 14:42 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          jeather, I would think that if you are hard wired with a battery backup in case of power outage you should be good in perpetuity provided you remember to change the backup battery occasionally. As far as I see it the real advantage to lithium is the 10 year battery life and you have that covered being hard wired.

        • mare 15:51 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          Crap, I just bought 8 new ones. On batteries, because my tenants tend to remove the batteries or the whole units because even though they’re in the hallway they go off with smokey cooking. At least almost all apartments have a range hood now, so it’s less bad.

          And I’m renovating one apartment right now, and will run a wire and install a 120 V one. Incidentally it went off yesterday, it doesn’t like soldering and I keep forgetting that.

        • Chris 20:04 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          Raymond, wow, Google really does want to know everything. 🙁

        • Michael Black 10:37 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

          This is abrupt. Nobody’s going to get ticketed this week if they aren’t in ine, but they really need a rollout period. Educate the public, work out some deals. The article I read debrief no sidebar about buying one.

          Thirty dollars every ten years isn’t too bad, but we have four and buying together is a lump. I’m sure a hardship for some. If the municipalities don’t work out probrams, let’s hope some non-profits organize some group buys.


        • Marc 13:20 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

          I was at a Rona yesterday and they had big displays of 9-volt models and only 2 little lithium ones hiding at the bottom of the shelf. I wonder what will happen to all of that now useless stock.

        • Ephraim 13:29 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

          Marc, as usual, sold to the idiots who don’t listen.

        • Marc 13:37 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

          If they’re not legal to install they how can they be legal to sell?

        • Marc 13:39 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

          *then how

          (I hope this site’s comments aren’t used by future humans to understand the language of our times.)

        • jeather 13:42 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

          There’s a one year grace period.

        • Marc 18:00 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

          That makes sense for devices that are already installed but if you’re buying a new smoke alarm today why would anyone purchase something they’ll have to replace next year instead of in 10?

      • Kate 09:00 on 2019-06-14 Permalink | Reply  

        Montreal fans celebrated the Raptors’ championship on Thursday night; police had to use tear gas to subdue some people, but no arrests were made.

        • Marc 16:46 on 2019-06-14 Permalink

          They didn’t have to use tear gas, they probably just have a ton of the stuff left over from 2012 and want to use it before the expiry date.

        • Kate 11:08 on 2019-06-15 Permalink

          Mmm, vintage tear gas.

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