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Unleash the rhetoric, Mr. President. America needs it

(Commentary by History professor Gil Troy): As Barack Obama drafts his second inaugural speech, he should remember the speeches that made him president. He should ponder the vision of multicultural nationalism in his 2004 Democratic Convention keynote. He should revive the controlled but righteous indignation in his 2008 address on race relations that defused the Reverend Jeremiah Wright controversy. And he should tap into the lyrical patriotism that made his first victory speech soar.

Published: 21Jan2013

The long, cold slog

(Michael Becker, a doctoral student at McGill University, was a scientific diver on an expedition to Lake Untersee, Antarctica - this the third of 6 blog posts): There are no helicopters on this end of the continent. For someone as unenthusiastic about walking as I am, this news comes as a definitive blow to my goal of doing as little exercise as possible. But even an ultramarathoner would be chilled by the prospect of an 80-mile journey over treacherous glacial crevasses with several tons of gear.

Published: 21Jan2013

Music to your ears

(Abstract of article by McGill grad Adam Gopnik) …Perhaps the densest concentration of sound scholars in the world can be found in Montreal, at McGill University, where the writer went to school. Albert Bregman, a former professor of the writer’s, spent almost fifty years at McGill studying the psychology of sound, and his masterwork, “Auditory Sense Analysis: The Perceptual Organization of Sound,” remains a basic text in the field.

Published: 21Jan2013

How fit is your neighbourhood?

(Athletics' Jill Barker) As a young psychologist, James Sallis was interested in exploring the motivation behind getting people to exercise. But it wasn’t long before he discovered that existing theories designed to improve exercise adherence were, for the most part, ineffective. Sallis, who is speaking in Montreal this week, is this year’s winner of the Bloomberg Manulife Prize for the Promotion of Active Health.

Published: 21Jan2013

Drug combination linked to kidney failure

A new study showing a triple combination of blood pressure drugs and common painkillers can increase the risk of serious kidney problems means doctors will have to be extra vigilant when prescribing this particular concoction of drugs. A team of researchers from the Jewish General Hospital and McGill University found a triple therapy combination of a diuretic with a second antihypertensive drug plus a painkiller was associated with a 30 per cent higher risk of kidney failure - and the risk was 80 per cent higher during the first 30 days of treatment.

Published: 18Jan2013

Researchers say discovery could fight immune disorders

Researchers at McGill University and the Austrian Academy of Sciences claim to have discovered the molecular blueprint behind the IFIT protein. This key protein enables our immune system to detect viruses and prevent infection by acting as foot soldiers guarding the body against infection. They recognize foreign viral ribonucleic acid (RNA) produced by the virus and act as defender molecules by potentially latching onto the genome of the virus and preventing it from making copies of itself, blocking infection.

Published: 18Jan2013

Message to Ottawa: Equality: Gay marriage is settled?

(Op-ed - Robert Leckey teaches family law at McGill): President of Egale Canada This spring will mark 10 years since the Ontario Court of Appeal allowed the first legal same-sex marriages in Canada. For most Canadians, same-sex marriage is a settled issue. The latest census data confirmed the growing diversity of Canadian families. That's why it's puzzling that the federal government has recently spent public money fighting the recognition of gay relationships in Canada.

Published: 18Jan2013

What idle no more tells us about the need for change

(Op-ed by Vandna Sinha, an assistant professor at the Centre for Research on Children and Families at McGill and Jennifer Nutton, a PhD student in the School of Social Work): Recent actions by Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence, the Assembly of First Nations, the Idle No More movement, First Nations communities and the federal government have drawn attention to two related but distinct issues...

Published: 18Jan2013