A well known Syrian doctor blocked from re-entering the United States to continue his Ivy League education after U.S. President Donald Trump’s travel ban has found a new home in Canada.
Khaled Almilaji arrived in Toronto last Friday and was reunited with his wife, Jehan Mouhsen. He plans to pursue studies at the University of Toronto.
(Does he look a bit like Jason Priestly?)
The move marked the end of months of uncertainty. The couple became separated in January while Almilaji was overseas in Turkey working on a humanitarian project. (Almilaji is a renowned doctor who has been credited with helping save the lives of 1.4 million Syrian children in a mass polio vaccination campaign in 2013.)
News of the couple’s predicament spread quickly through news stories. After more than a month of waiting for a new visa, Almilaji got in touch with faculty at the University of Toronto.
"As soon I talked to him, I thought he would bring so much into our program,” said Julia Zarb, program director of the Master of Health Informatics program at the school.
Almilaji was accepted into the program and restarted his studies Wednesday at the University of Toronto, with full support from Brown. His long-term goal is to help improve the livelihood and health of Syrians.
“As a recognized humanitarian with extraordinary global public health experience, he will enrich the scholarship of our academic community,” said Howard Hu, Dean of the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, in a statement.
OUR QUESTION OF THE DAY: Why do some animals poop, and then turn around and eat their own droppings?
It may appear icky to humans, but the practice of eating poop, known as coprophagia (kop-ruh-fey-jee-uh), is common in the animal kingdom, and helps these animals access nutrients they couldn't digest the first time around, said Bryan Amaral, the senior curator of animal care science at the Smithsonian's National Zoo in Washington, D.C.
"It's a relatively normal phenomenon that's seen in lots of different species of animals," Amaral told Live Science. [ Tomorrow ....., Why Is Poop Brown?]
If you don't believe street drugs are getting stronger and more deadly (like fentanyl) then get a load of this folks: When I was a teenager they had a street drug that was considered a "downer" (any sort of depressant) and it turned out to be a horse tranquilizer.
Today they have a new type of 'downer' on the street (carfentanil) that goes by many different names, but is basically and "elephant tranquilizer."
So, unless you have a bunch of agitated elephants in your back yard kids, you would be well advised to stay away from this stuff!
I wrote about special interest groups attempting to influence the public at large a few days ago and we now have another example of this stupid, and even dangerous trend.
A transgender activist from St. John's is continuing the fight for a gender-neutral birth certificate, after a provincial department deferred the request. "To have non-binary as a third legal gender. I think that that's really important. At least another option for people like me," says Gemma Hickey.
Hickey doesn't identify as either male or female, which are currently the only two options on the change of sex designation form. Hickey filed the application for a new birth certificate in April with the vital statistics division of Service NL, but it hasn't been approved. Service NL says it is still reviewing the application.
Now what makes this really terrifying is that there are groups who advocate giving everybody a non-binary birth certificate when they are born ....., so that they can decide just what the hell they want to be when they grow up!!!!!
And finally a few notes from the land of the midnight sun: A bar in the Yukon is famous for its "sour-toe whiskey," that is until someone stole the toe last week. However, once the thief sobered up he returned to missing appendage and everybody is happy again.
Meanwhile: Ever wanted to learn Inuktitut? Atelihai, pronounced ahh-tee-lee-hi, is the Inuktitut word for "hello" or "welcome."
It's one of the more than 130 words and phrases the Let's Speak Inuktitut project, or UKâlalautta Inuttitut, has recorded and published on the popular audio-sharing site SoundCloud.
"We know that the Inuktitut language here in Labrador is starting to almost disappear," Sara Townley told CBC's Labrador Morning. "So I think having things like this online is a really good resource for somebody to learn Inuktitut."
Townley isn't involved with the project but she teaches the language and likes that the program breaks things down into syllables.
Inuktitut is full of lengthy words. Some phrases that would be five or six words in English are usually one or two longer words when translated into in Inuktitut.
Townley said cultural genocide is what caused Inuktitut to be spoken less but she says she believes it'll come back gradually, and resources like Let's Speak Inuktitut will help with that.