Agree or Disagree: The Landlord and Tenant Act is effective


I must confess that I’m a renter.I’ve never owned a house. I live in a comfy cozy little pad in Kensington. It’s close to work and 5 Tim Horton’s and lots of restaurants. For me, renting is quite convenient and affordable. 

However, I’m aware of many people who have rented and do rent that have had issues with their landlord. Things not being fixed, sudden jumps in rent, and generally  poor upkeep are common concerns and questions some renters have had.

There also is renters that have been issues. Late on rent, late night parties, and being disrespectful to neighbours and the place are also common concerns landlords have had.

So to bring the disputes to a settlement, there is a Landlord and Tenant Act. The idea of the Act is to help the relationship between Landlord and Tenants.

So for those who have had to deal with issue, or have had friends who have had to deal with it, is the Landlord and Tenant Act effective? 

Agree or Disagree: When it comes to dating, people are becoming too picky.


Agree or Disagree: When it comes to dating, people are becoming too picky.

When I was in Vancouver this week, this was a news story that had some conversation.

According to a survey from AreYouInterested.com, women from Vancouver are considered some of the pickiest women when it comes to online dating. They are the least likely to respond to online flirting and messaging according to the study. Montreal and Ottawa were second and third. Women from Calgary, Edmonton,and Toronto emerged as the least picky.

They also did a study on men. The least responsive was Winnipeg and the most responsive was Toronto. The study os reporting over 40,000 interactions and was strictly relating to heterosexual men and women.

This leads me to a couple of different observations.

The first one being, is it is of course, more common to look online for relationships. However, I have also noticed that it is actually harder to date within communities or social networks. I specifically notice this with church communities. There is a small town feel with them. People are watching and seem over curious of how the relationship is going. There seems to be a lack of privacy. I wonder of that in part is why more are looking online.

However, that doesn’t address the specific issue of pickiness in dating. I wonder if in part, we are getting too comfortable with the “online” approach and we have strayed away from the “personal” approach.  There is more of tendency to get a text number, add on Facebook and message there. As opposed to calling and talking to someone. I wonder if that has something to do with the pickiness we are seeing. Perhaps some still want the personal touch we have strayed from.

What do you think? Are we being too picky? And why?

Agree or Disagree: Sex Selective Abortion is a Women’s Right.


Agree or Disagree: Sex Selective Abortion is a Women’s Right.

The link above is from Sarah Dutim from The Guardian.

In this article, quite simply she has argued that the idea of Sex Selective Abortion is quite simply a Women’s Right.

Here is a portion of the article she wrote.

And as far as I’m concerned, it doesn’t matter why any woman wants to end her pregnancy. As the conscious and legally competent entity in the conception set-up, it’s the woman’s say that counts, and even the most terrible reason for having an abortion holds more sway than the best imaginable reason for compelling a woman to carry to term.

There are some people that are very concerned about this idea. They feel like it is a very slippery slope.

So for this, I thought I would ask some questions to both perspectives.

For those that are on the “Pro-Life” side.

Why do you feel this is a slippery slope? Where do you see the slope leading too?

For those who are on the “Pro-Choice” side.

When you see the idea of slippery slope, does this concern you?

 

5 issues to talk about during the Calgary Civic Election


Yesterday was  the official announcement of all the candidates the Calgary Mayor and Council race.  

 

For many people. particularly when it comes to the Mayor race, you have decided who should be Mayor.  In general, you have been happy about the direction and leadership Mayor Nenshi has shown. While that is an understandable position, it does not mean there are not issues to question when it comes to the City of Calgary. I have come up with 5 issues, I myself would like to see discussed in this election.

 

Housing- We continue to have a very low vacancy rate in Calgary.  This and the increase of rent in Calgary is making it tougher and tougher to obtain affordable housing in Calgary. How does the city deal with this going forward?

 

The Urban Sprawl/City Growth- Because there is a perception that there are jobs in Calgary, we will continue to have people move here. There is some that continue to want to move out and sprawl and not up.  Is this really effective? Is there alternative ways to deal with city growth.

 

Downtown Revitalization Project-Every time I come back to Calgary from a trip, I always notice that our downtown dies not have the same life other cities do. I believe we are missing out on something here. Downtown’s have an opportunity to develop community. Is there a need to look at that

 

Commuting- Kudos to the strides that Calgary Transit has made. However, many feel that there are still a number of steps we can improve the overall commuter experience  in Calgary. Many are looking for alternative and efficient ways to commute around the city. How will the City respond?

 

Homeless/ Working Poor. Mayor Nenshi, along with others  in the city, have been having good conversations about the homeless. However, the conversations need to continue about them and the working poor. We  do have a working poor population that exists in this city. How does the City look at these issues?

 

Those are my 5. But I would like to hear from you. What are the issues you would like to see this civil election be about?

Agree or Disagree: Social Media is having a negative impact on the Environment/Energy Debate


On Friday, I was at the 44th Social Media Breakfast in Calgary. Or as it called on Twitter, #smbyyc.

 

The intention of this is to bring people that are involved and interested Social Media. While there are many that are there that represent a company, there is also many people like me that comes as an individual. I’m not able to always attend these, but when I do, I’m always impressed with the dialogue and the intelligence by the moderator, the panelists and the guests who attend. This one was no different. The discussion Friday was titled Social Media and the Energy Space. The conversation was around how the Energy Sector’s message has been impacted tow factors. The first one being the social media tools that is “getting the message out”. So conversations on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc. The other factor being many different changes, factors and innovation surrounding both economy and energy right now.

 

The discussion started with a 10 minute screening that a group called Energy Convo showed. And while It was well done and well filmed,  I was wondering in the back of my mind if the film was only speaking to representatives from the energy sector and not other perspectives. Hold that thought as we go on here.

 

The moderator and the panel, which you can follow were @energyconvo,@PetroFeed,@VanHorne,and @GetVertigo were quite honest that the energy sector has not done a good job in getting their message out. There was an admission they were using a lot of “old technologies” in a new world. They haven’t created the conversation needed to share the narrative they have wanted to share. There was some great insights on how they need to change the conversation. 

 

From the conversation, there were two things that stuck out for me. The first  one was the “Branding” of the Province of Alberta as an “Oil and Gas Province”. The question asked was if it was time to change that branding. This is where I could get into a long conversation about branding, but I will resist it. Except to say this. Positively or negatively, Alberta has been “branded”.Positively or negatively, oil companies have been branded. For many all over the world,  Alberta  and Oil  is where the work and the money is. That “brand” is not going to change unless there is a catastrophic economic shift. However, I don’t think it’s the real question. The question that is really being asked and the narrative that is being told is how can we use the resources we have in a responsible and ethical manner. It was the opinion of the panel and the moderator Lori Stewart that we need to share the “positive” stories and not focus so much the “negative” stories. So, share with the stakeholders about thew changes being done in places like the oilseeds. Don’t focus on things like the ducks that fell ill from an oil spill. And while I can appreciate the intent, I have to challenge this perception.

 

To use an example of my point, I’m sitting in a quiet coffee shop on Granville Street writing this. Let’s just say for instance you were with me and you were not happy with your coffee order. You walk up to the manager and expressed some disappointment or anger that the order was messed up. The manager responds by saying that there is 10 other orders in here and they were perfect. How dare you focus on the fact your order wasn’t. Who are you to say anything? How would you feel about that? You would feel upset. Your concern wasn’t validated or respected.  That’s what I think might be happening in the energy conversation.Focusing on the good things, but there seems to lack of acknowledgement of past errors. Or simply mentioning them as small percentages.  There have been some incidents that have had massive impacts on the community. Not a small percentage of people, a large percentage of people in communities. It cannot be ignored, it has to be acknowledged. And if it’s not acknowledged, I think many will lose respect.

 

In my opinion , the social tool is not about controlling or creating  the conversation. It’s about realizing the real conversation, and developing solutions. The stakeholder, like the customer is anyone you are in contact with. Investors, employees, residents, animals. Many have a “stake” in this conversation. And the heart of this conversation is what I was my second take away..

 

That comment was that it is no longer  about being the “best in the world”, but being the best for the world. I like that. How can we use what we have been given in a manner that honours our land, our people and ourselves?  

 

If I was to answer this question, I would say disagree. I would say Social Media is challenging the Environment debate.

Because we want what is best for this world.

Agree or Disagree: The Family should be involved in the “Courtship” Process


Agree or Disagree: The Family should be involved in the “Courtship” Process

I have news.

20 year old Jessa Duggar has a boyfriend.

Now, the Duggars have an interesting approach to dating. As a matter of fact, they have 3 basic rules that Jessa’s relationship will follow. Which you can read in the link above.

1.  No Kissing or Hugging. They are allowed to say hello and give a quick 30 second “side hug”.

2. Texting is Ok-But Loop in Mom. Jessa’s parents actually monitor the text conversations between Ben and Jessa.

3. Start Talking Marriage Now!  Ben and Jessa  and the family must determine if they are match for marriage.

For some of you, this may seem extreme.  This seems way to involved for a family.

However, for many the family’s involvement and influence is important. You value the approval of your family when it comes to relationships. 

So, do you think and how much does your family when it comes to your dating relationships?

 

Agree or Disagree: It is possible to respect other people’s beliefs-Guest Post-Megan Biggs.


So today is the first of many of the upcoming guest posts for some Agree or Disagree topics. The reason I decided to do this is because I felt it was to give a fresh voice or voices to the discussion. Some will be actual experts in the field of topic. Some have a unique perspective

As we go forward with these, I would like to establish some ground rules.

1. The views of the person does not necessarily reflect my view. 

2. Please no attacks on the person. Focus on the topic at hand.

3. Perhaps take some time to thank the person doing this. It is really appreciated.

The first of this comes from Megan Biggs. Her story is unique. She is involved in something here in Calgary called the House of Commons. She describes herself as ” a freelance Christian librarian who lives in a commune”. Her blog is Unicornsrevenge.WordPress.com. She presents this discussion about respecting other beliefs. Read below.

 

Sometimes religious debate hurts my feelings.

 

Sometimes I wish I could be associated with a group of people who had never caused war, or hurt, or pain, but that was never possible. It wasn’t possible because we’re people. Nobody, atheist or Christian or Muslim or Buddhist, has the chance to be free from the stain of human error. 

 

This is why religious debate can sometimes be counter-productive. Because no matter if you respect other peoples’ beliefs or not, your religion’s dubious past choices will always come back to haunt you. It doesn’t matter if you were alive or even a “twinkle in your father’s eye” (gross) at the time of the Salem Witch trials. Somebody’s going to bring that up. Somebody’s going to bring up the Crusades. Somebody’s going to bring up Westboro Baptist. It can be hard to have a respectful and meaningful conversation if someone keeps rubbing your nose in past doo-doos. Come on, guys. Everybody poops.

They all say that you have to learn to separate attacking religion and attacking a person who believes in that religion, but what if you can’t completely separate them? What if that’s just not possible anymore? People are their beliefs, in a sense. There is a lot of talk about “respecting others’ beliefs” but what does that mean? What does it mean to only respect and not believe?

For example, I say I respect Led Zeppelin’s music, but I don’t like his music (with the exception of bron-y-aur stomp.) So what do I mean when I say I respect it, but I don’t like it? To be honest, I don’t know if I know what I mean.

Is respect admiring someone for their beliefs? But then, why would I admire someone else’s beliefs if I think that mine are truer than theirs? By respect, do we just mean tolerance? And if we do, why don’t we say “tolerance” instead of “respect”? Respect sounds better, that’s why. But why does it sound better? Tolerance is like saying, “You smell, but I can hold my nose.” Respect is something different, and it’s something everyone wants to have for everyone else’s beliefs. Because then that makes us good, and we so desperately want to be good. If we were good, we would be more lovable.

 

Maybe it means that you don’t think less of someone for believing a certain thing (or for listening to Led Zeppelin.) For example, when someone says they listen to Led Zeppelin and really love his music, I don’t feel disgust or repulsion. Does that mean I respect their musical choices?

Really having respect is not defining a person by what they believe. It’s about having the grace in your heart to not pass judgment. It’s about loving the person, no matter who they are or what they believe.  It’s about being uncurious about a person’s religion, because they’re a person first.

You may be aware of a little thing known as the Egyptian revolution that took place in the past few years. Amidst the unspeakable violence, chaos, and hate crimes that were taking place daily, a picture was taken of Christian protestors standing together to protect Muslims as they prayed. A group of Christians held hands and faced out surrounding hundreds of protestors to protect those who were left vulnerable as they prayed.

 

This is exactly what I mean when I say we need to have respect for other peoples’ beliefs. This is what that type of respect looks like. This is how it acts. Not out of self-interest, or self-preservation, or greed, or the thought of what others will think. It acts out of love, compassion, solidarity, and only thinks of the protection of its beloved ones, while giving no thought to itself. 

 

How it will look on a day-to-day basis for you and me, I don’t yet know. In the middle of an Egyptian revolution, it looks like Christians protecting praying muslims. Maybe in my life, it means holding my tongue and changing the tenor of my discourse to something more gentle, more compassionate, more Christ-like. Try this : swallow your harsher comments. Weigh your responses. Communicate love and acceptance. And remember – constantly talking isn’t necessarily communicating.

 

 

 

Agree or Disagree: Celebrities critiquing the Oilsands


Agree or Disagree: Celebrities critiquing the Oilsands

What do James Cameron, Robert Redford and Neil Young have in common?

They do not like the oilsands. They have spoken out against it. They have been attacked for it.

For some in Alberta, the “attack” on the oilsands is precious to them. Many work in the field, their family has worked in the field. They have studied and cared for years.

For others, there is a such concern of what is going on in the oilsands. The environment is under attack, there is concern of illness of people. And some wonder if we really should be looking for other resources than oil.

However, the argument has been made that people like Robert Redford, James Cameron and Neil Young are not experts. They are celebrities. Some have questioned their motives. However, if they are the only three that have argued this, good point. But others have expressed concern. Some  are experts, and some not.

What do you think? Do people like Young Cameron and Redford have a point? Is it valid to critique the oilsands? Or should they be quiet? 

 

Agree or Disagree: Humans should desire to be married and a parent. If not, there is something wrong


As a general rule, single men should aspire to marriage and fatherhood, & if they do not there is something seriously wrong with them. 

Mark Driscoll from the book Pastor Dad.

Generally women will marry and have children so are gifted by God with the natural abilities to nurture (feed and raise) as well as educate children.

Raylan Allman fron the blog fixthefamily.com

These are two comments that have been going around the internet today discussing the roles of the father and the mother in terms of parenthood. According to both Driscoll and Allman, this is what your life should look like.

1) Finish School

2) Get married

3) Have children

4) Wife stay home and look after children. Husband should go out and work.

If this is not happening, there is something wrong with you.

This is interesting considering two things. The first thing being that the age of parenting has increased over the years. According to a BBC report,  within the last ten years,two-thirds of babies have been by fathers over the age of 30. There is another report in MaidOnline that in 2010, more than half of the babies were born to mothers over the age of 30.

The other interesting thing is this. Quite frankly, there are some that do not want to be parents. For whatever reason, there are some that do not want to. Culture, living situation, travel, health, can be some of the factors into the decision to not being a parent.

All that being said, those that are parents and are married know the difference that has made in their lives.  And those that  are parents, single or not, know the impact being one is. Be it adopting, or marrying someone with children, or birthing their own. 

Should we as humans desire to be married and a parent? And if not, is there something wrong with them?

The other intere

Agree or Disagree: Everybody Lies on Facebook.


Agree or Disagree: Everybody Lies on Facebook.

Many of you use Facebook. Many of you post pictures of your friends, your family and your pets. Even some of you shared your pains and your losses in life. Some have recently shared  about your engagements, your pregnancies, and your weddings.

But do you always tell the truth on Facebook?

According to the article linked, you don’t. This article suggests you lie on Facebook. That we all lie on Facebook.

Here’s a portion of the article to read.

Of course, there’s no question as to how much people lie on Facebook, although it was quite shocking to hear from my own daughter – some lie just about their age, some about their jobs and some about their entire lives. It might be as harmless as little 9 year old kids pretending to be 13 (I imagine that ‘13’ is the age of most Facebook users) or a 50 year old woman who says she’s 43, or, it could be people lying about who they really are, what their jobs are or even worse.

I think that it was clear from the beginning that social media (and the Internet in general) gives people free passes to lie as much as they want and build online personas that have nothing to do with who they are in their real lies.

So, tell me. Do you lie on Facebook?