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Canadian Mps Vote To Include Seal Skin On Olympic Uniforms


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:blink::unsure: I don't think this is such a good idea:

Canadian MPs vote to include seal skin on Olympic uniforms

From Global BC:

Canadian MPs vote to include seal skin on Olympic uniforms

Mary Frances Hill , Vancouver Sun

Published: Wednesday, May 6, 2009

The federal government wants Canadian Olympians to wear a seal product — most likely skin — during the 2010 Winter Games to help protest a European Union ban on Canada’s seal hunt.

Members of Parliament from all parties voted unanimously Wednesday in favour of a Bloc Quebecois motion calling on the government to come up with a way to integrate seal pelts into the athletes’ uniforms.

“With the upcoming Winter Olympics that will be in Vancouver in 2010, the government has a chance to offer some concrete action to promote seal products,” Bloc Quebec MP Raynald Blais said. “Today we are tabling a motion aimed at studying the possibility to integrate into the Canadian athletes' uniforms. Is the government ready to act to save an industry?”

Canadian Olympic Committee president Mike Chambers said adding seal products to Olympians’ gear would not only mar athletes’ performance, but politicize the Games.

“I’m used to those in the political arena wishing to attach their issues to the Olympic arena,” he said from Lausanne, Switzerland. “But this is one … that will not and cannot be allowed to occur. It’s our intent for our athletes to remain free of the politics that arises in and around the Olympic Games. The seal issue, while important, is an issue that has become politicized.”

The Vancouver Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games would not comment, as athletes’ uniforms are the responsibility of the Canadian Olympic Committee.

Liberal MP Ujjal Dosanjh was among those who supported the motion.

“It’s an industry in the Atlantic and I believe that our caucus is unanimous in supporting it,” he said.

When pressed for details, he added, “I’m not going to say anything more than what I have just said to you.”

Federal Fisheries and Oceans Minister Gail Shea said the move would signal Canada’s support of the sealing industry.

“I would imagine that the Olympic clothing is all designed and probably made by now, but I think it’s a good symbolic suggestion to add something to the outfit of our athletes. I think it would be a good statement for the Canadian sealing industry and Canada’s support of it.”

Seal skin has made high-profile appearances in the past — even on the catwalk. Inuit designers such as Elisapee Kilabuk have showcased creations as diverse as motorcycle jackets to bustiers in international shows.

Chambers said he it’s “doubtful” that the MPs wishes would make any gains.

“There are political issues all over the world,” he said. “If the IOC started allowing a patch on everyone’s uniform we’d all look like FI speed racers. Let the politics do the political thing and keep the sport to the games.”

Copyright © The Vancouver Sun

Environmentalists will not be pleased. Afterall, it was the seals that broke up Paul McCartney's marriage, just think what they could do to Vancouver. :blink:;):rolleyes:

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Ha! Saw this last night in the BBC's morning newspaper round up. Never thought it'd have an Olympic connection. This is how it's being reported over here:

End of traditional sealskin sporran under EU ban

The traditional Scottish sporran is facing a demise after European politicians voted to ban the sale of seal products from which it is made.

The move means the manufacture and sale of sealskin sporrans, including existing stock in kilt shops throughout Scotland, will be illegal from next autumn.

Sporrans worn with full Highland dress at formal events, such as weddings, have been made with sealskin for more than 100 years and the kilt industry claims that synthetic materials cannot produce the same results.

However, MEPs in Strasbourg backed the ban by a majority of 550 to 49 and individual EU nations are now expected to endorse the decision.

The ban is aimed at ending seal culls and has been welcomed by wildlife campaigners and by most political parties.

But members of the Highland dress industry expressed sadness.

Duncan Chisholm, chairman of the Kilt Makers Association of Scotland, said: "The reality is that we might end up, unfortunately, with synthetic sporrans. More pony hair is going to have to be used and some of the sporran makers are already experimenting with rabbit skins. It is quite sad that it has come to this.

"Traditionally, seal has been used for the sporran for the last 100 years. This is going to change that tradition and it really is the end of an era. Synthetic sporrans will look artificial."

He added that white sealskin from pups was once used for sporrans but was banned to protect young seals, adding: "I could agree with the ban on using baby seals because of the way they were killed. I felt that was something that in the interest of animal welfare was a good idea.

"However, with the grey seal there is a cull of them from time to time and these skins are fairly plentiful. So I feel that it is sad that this is happening."

Day-wear sporrans, which are made from leather, will not be affected by the legislation.

A spokesman for the Scottish Executive said the ban would not stop people buying sporrans made from other materials.

sporran_kilt_1397724c.jpg

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics...der-EU-ban.html

Edited by Rob
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What a stupid decision - they're just going to create controversy that will reflect badly on Vancouver 2010. Such a silly pointless decision!!! Why would the Canadians at their own Olympics want to draw attention to one of the only things that make them unpopular around the world?

Perhaps during the ceremony they can club a lot of baby seals and all the blood flows onto the snow in the form of a maple leaf! ..... and perhaps London 2012 should have a musical and dance number about the Irish potato famine!

clubbed.jpg

petaolympiclogo.jpg

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This isn't Berlin 1936. The Government shouldn't force or use athletes to make such a stupid political statement. The industry is tiny by comparison to so many others.

I think it is time to abandon the seal hunt.

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The seal hunt and the opposition to it is one of the most hypocritical, uninformed and speciesist issues that appears in the western media regularly. Especially from Europeans. Where millions upon millions of dollars are spent and made off the farming of mink and other fur only animals. Seals are culled by mostly aboriginal hunters with some commercial hunting where the entire seal is used, unlike any of the fur that appears on Paris, Milan or London's catwalks where the animal is born, breed and killed solely for its fur. Less than 5% of the seal population is being taken and if the population is not culled, it will create a major depression on fish stocks that will ultimately result in higher prices for fish from the Atlantic. If this was not a higher order, cute mammal the general public and the politicians would not care. Just like they don't with the killing of millions of mink every year, a lower order rodent. Disgusting speciesism at its finest.

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The argument as to whether it's actually right or wrong to cull seals is irrelevant - the point is that in Europe, as well as many other countries, it is generally viewed as wrong. So why are the Canadians deliberately drawing attention to the issue at their winter Games? It's obviously going to promote protests against the practice at a time when Canada should be striving to portray a positive image of itself.

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As reported on CBC today:

Olympic team opposes motion for sealskin uniforms

Olympic team opposes motion for sealskin uniforms

Last Updated: Thursday, May 7, 2009 | 10:38 AM PT The Canadian Press

The House of Commons may have voted to use the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver to protest an international ban on seal products, but Canada's Olympic team is refusing to take up the fight, saying politics have no place at the Games.

MPs from all parties unanimously agreed to a Bloc Québécois motion Wednesday that the international sporting event in Vancouver next February should be used to promote products from the annual seal hunt on the East Coast, including the possibility that Canada's Olympic uniform include at least one seal product, likely skin.

Fisheries Minister Gail Shea applauded the idea, but wondered whether it might be too late.

"I think it's a good symbolic suggestion — to add something to the outfit of our athletes. I think it would be a good statement for the Canadian sealing industry, and Canada's support of it," said Shea.

Olympic officials say 'No' to politics

But the head of the Canadian Olympic Committee immediately shot down the idea that sealskin, or any political statement, might be incorporated into the Olympic uniform.

"No, we would not be doing that," said Chris Rudge, adding that over the coming year he expects to field a variety of requests similar to the one made Wednesday, and his answer won't change.

"These are social and economic issues that our government will deal with," said Rudge. "I think it would be inappropriate to use the athletes as a voice for issues that accrue to other elements to our society."

The 2004 Games in Athens were marked by protests over the killing of stray dogs, and the Beijing Games in 2008 became embroiled in international debate over Tibet and alleged human rights abuses, Rudge noted.

"People are concerned about these [issues], and they're important things to be concerned about. I'm certainly not diminishing them. But we couldn't begin to speak out about them, even if it was appropriate. There are many things in society that are worthy of social engagement."

Rudge also said it is in fact too late to include sealskin in the uniforms; the 500 outfits for athletes and staff have already been approved by the International Olympic Committee and are in production.

Officials at the Vancouver Organizing Committee declined to comment on the sealskin uniform proposal, saying that uniforms are the responsibility of the Canadian Olympic Committee.

Non-binding motion

Motions in Parliament, like the Olympic uniform motion, are non-binding on either the government or the Canadian Olympic Committee, but their symbolic value is often important to MPs looking to demonstrate a strong position on an issue.

Bloc Québécois Leader Gilles Duceppe said the Canadian government was outmanoeuvred on the public-relations front in Europe and that it should have been more aggressive defending the seal hunt.

"The Olympics aren't a trivial thing. We could use this event to shed light on this, but we need to use other events, too," he said.

Duceppe shot back at one questioner who asked whether Olympic athletes might bristle at the idea of being forced to wear animal pelts to make a political statement.

"I don't know what my shoes are made of but if they're not made out of plastic, they're not made out of straw, they come from an animal."

Duceppe singled out one country that he felt had no business lecturing Canada on animal rights: Spain, where provoking bulls and then fatally stabbing the animals in front of cheering crowds is considered a national sport.

"I find it completely abnormal to see protests [against the seal hunt] in Spain — the country that holds the bullfights," Duceppe said.

"We need a campaign. Our adversaries conducted one heck of a campaign, and Canada did not conduct a major one on the promotional level," said Duceppe.

© The Canadian Press, 2009

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I am happy that the COC is not on board. Politics and the Olympics should not mix (although they always do, sadly...).

But on the subject of the seal hunt, I have to say that I believe that the ban is just plain wrong. Seriously, factory farming is so, so much worst that seal hunting has ever been or will ever be...

And on another note, I refuse to take any animal rights activist seriously unless they: 1. are vegetarians, 2. have never worn fur and 3. would refuse a life saving treatment if it has been tested on animals (so basically all of modern medicine).

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A proper response would be to ban European fur imports because fur is a much more important industry to France, Netherlands, Denmark and Finland than it is to Canada.

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What makes this move so stupid is that: 1) it would be like China covering their athletes with children's toys at the Beijing Games; 2) PETA is already planning on targeting the 2010 Olympics to embarrass Canada on this matter; 3) it comes from the Bloc Quebecois...what are their REAL motives?

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Dumbest thing I've heard our government doing. [and the current government has done some dumb things, but that's another thread!]

What it mostly shows is how little they know about how the Canadian team is outfitted, how it is organized, etc. Minister Lunn doesn't seem to have given MPs any info about the team, including the FACT that the federal governmetn has less than zero influence on team prep.

Credit to athletes who haven't commented on such a boneheaded idea.

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The argument as to whether it's actually right or wrong to cull seals is irrelevant - the point is that in Europe, as well as many other countries, it is generally viewed as wrong. So why are the Canadians deliberately drawing attention to the issue at their winter Games? It's obviously going to promote protests against the practice at a time when Canada should be striving to portray a positive image of itself.

so tell me Stu how did Germany Humanely Cull 6 million JEWS during the Second World War ? or 20 million Russians ? 500,000 gypies . tons of gays ? Considering Heather Mills McCartney was a Porn Model / High Priced Hooker who then went on to lecture Canadians about morality maybe we should take that sage advise to the Bank LOL. Who give a rats ass about Europe and what they think An empire in Decline . I hope Europe Boycotts the Games over Seals . Then Canada would swept the Medals LOL.

jim jones

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Maybe the Members of Parliament could invite the Queen to show up in a seal skin robe.

or the Buckingham Palace Guards with the Canadian Black Bear HAts . ROTLFMAO at hypocrites from Europe.

Jim jones

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Dumbest thing I've heard our government doing. [and the current government has done some dumb things, but that's another thread!]

What it mostly shows is how little they know about how the Canadian team is outfitted, how it is organized, etc. Minister Lunn doesn't seem to have given MPs any info about the team, including the FACT that the federal governmetn has less than zero influence on team prep.

Credit to athletes who haven't commented on such a boneheaded idea.

and it goes to show how little you know about the motion passed . EVERY MP VOTED IN FAVOR . It was introduced by the Bloc . The party that would break up Canada actually United the House of Commons in a rare unanimous vote. Not even the NDP Socialists turned this down . THe COC would not bend to this because via the olympic charter they are controlled by Switzerland .

Ironic that the IOc and the EU would preach Morality in this situation and yet they take away a key piece of inuit income with the seal hunt and tell Canadians that we cannot have Women on a Ski Jump hill at Vancouver 2010.

Jim jones

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What makes this move so stupid is that: 1) it would be like China covering their athletes with children's toys at the Beijing Games; 2) PETA is already planning on targeting the 2010 Olympics to embarrass Canada on this matter; 3) it comes from the Bloc Quebecois...what are their REAL motives?

well Peta can protest in Atlantic Canada but considering every fisherman has a GUN that they bag seals all year long I would not advise them come if they want to insure their safety . I know Fishermen here and this is beyond Sealing . This will collapse the Atlantic Fishery as Seals clearly eat fish and Cod Worm is basically SEAL poop .

Jim Jones

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What a stupid decision - they're just going to create controversy that will reflect badly on Vancouver 2010. Such a silly pointless decision!!! Why would the Canadians at their own Olympics want to draw attention to one of the only things that make them unpopular around the world?

Perhaps during the ceremony they can club a lot of baby seals and all the blood flows onto the snow in the form of a maple leaf! ..... and perhaps London 2012 should have a musical and dance number about the Irish potato famine!

clubbed.jpg

petaolympiclogo.jpg

Who cares about Vancouver 2010. Hey I think London 2012 could have a Fox Ripped to streads by Hounds incorporated into the LOL.

JIm jones

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This isn't Berlin 1936. The Government shouldn't force or use athletes to make such a stupid political statement. The industry is tiny by comparison to so many others.

I think it is time to abandon the seal hunt.

Of course it isn't Berlin 1936 !!!!! The Host Government hasn't started plans for the Elimination of 6 Million Jews from the Continent . We are not that forward thinking unlike Europeans of the `1930's

Jim Jones

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so tell me Stu how did Germany Humanely Cull 6 million JEWS during the Second World War ? or 20 million Russians ? 500,000 gypies . tons of gays ?

WTF has this got to do with seals cuntface?

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I wonder if they oppose government funding being taken away after 2010 so they can have a voice independent of the Canadian Government ? How about Taking every dime the COC gains from the Staging of the Games vs the COC having to pay every dime the Taxpayers of Canada paid to make Vancouver 2010 possible ? Hey Seal skin will surely make the swimmer swim faster LOL ;)

Jim Jones

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A proper response would be to ban European fur imports because fur is a much more important industry to France, Netherlands, Denmark and Finland than it is to Canada.

Or better yet we embargo the EU with the key Raw materials that run their economies. Potash for fertilizer should make the Farmers in Europe happy. Uranium for French Nuclear Reactors , Iron ore for Steel making and Timber for Furniture and Houses. All these goods Canada provides to Europe could go to India , China the US and Japan who don't place bans on products from Canada.

First we cancel 500 million dollars of Canadian government Purchases with German Leppard Tanks. American Tanks are just as good if not better and Battle Tested.

Jim jones

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