Letters to the editor, August 9, 2018

These are the letters and comments from the print edition.

Not all Shambhala

It's very upsetting that your article on Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche lists the Shambhala School among the Shambhala institutions in Nova Scotia ("Portrait of the sakyong as a fallen man," cover story by Stephanie Domet, August 12). I know that sharing a name makes this difficult to discern, however the distinction is critical at this time. I would request that The Coast issue a correction.

While the Shambhala School shares the same name as Shambhala International, recent allegations of sexual misconduct are not associated with the Shambhala School. We are separate organizations legally and financially. Our school has its own board of directors. Our founders, our founding principles, and several of our teachers and leaders are practitioners of the Shambhala path of meditation. However, when the press refers to sexual misconduct allegations against Shambhala "teachers," it is referring to specific people who are authorized teachers of meditation within the international Shambhala organization, and not any of the current or past school teachers or leaders at the Shambhala School. Our school has a zero-tolerance policy for sexual assault and harassment. Thank you. —Carolyn Mandelker, executive director, Shambhala School

This is USA

Bravo, Jacob Boon. Your July 26 "Down in Maricopa" cover article about weed law enforcement set me back—just when I thought there was healthy sanctuary in Canada. Silly me. There is sanctuary, yes, but the United States currently is not a place from which to adopt government practices. I am an American, was in college in the States in the late 1960s and '70s, and so am attuned to the skulduggery of "the right" in particular. Have you approached Harper's Magazine or the like in the States with your research/article? Of course police must assist each other, but for one country to train enforcers in an adjacent country in its sadistic, fascistic techniques is over the top. Americans as well as Canadians must hear your voice. —Thomas Joseph, via email

Stonewall redux?

The Chronicle Herald seems to be quite willing to run any number of stories on the Leitches Creek pedestrian death of a young man named Joneil Hanna. However, the Herald has chosen to not run the letter to the editor below, which was hand-delivered on July 1, and followed up by me later that month. Perhaps The Coast is more willing to address these issues?

Dear Sir/Ms.,

I am not sure that we will ever know what really went on at Leitches Creek and the traffic death of Joneil Hanna on Highway 333 after the poem. But what we all do know full well is that by not administering a sobriety test, or a breathalyzer, to the known and available driver of the car that caused Mr. Hanna's death, the police officers committed a major error.

Thus the whole affair has left an obvious foul odour over the matter. Our Nova Scotia Attorney General should step up, do the right thing, and order an independent out-of-province SIRT-type of investigation with a full transparent and public appraisal of the facts of the matter and the responsibility of the police officers involved.

No ink has blessed this letter at the Chronicle Herald. I do not know the Herald's reasoning, but I do know that the Attorney General of Nova Scotia must by now be hearing the strains of Clayton Miller's parents as they struggled with their son's death fraught with apparent police stonewalling—years ago—also in Cape Breton. —Alan Ruffman, Ferguson's Cove


Last week's "Portrait of the sakyong as a fallen man" feature incorrectly stated that Shambhala School is owned by Shambhala International. While the two organizations share a name, they are not affiliated. The story online has been updated to reflect this, and The Coast apologizes sincerely and without reservation to Shambhala School for the error.

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