Monday, January 17, 2011


A hospice is a place for the dying to die in peace and dignity.

Hospices can be found world-wide. There are not nearly enough of them, but they exist everywhere.

A UBC proposal to open a 15-bed hospice run by the Order of St. John and the UBC faculty of medicine has been put on hold for the moment. A handful of Chinese residents of a near-by residential tower have protested that their cultural values are not being recognized. The residents have complained that living near the dead or dying is bad luck.

I understand.

Most of the men who died in the American Civil War died, not of gunshot or bayonet, but of disease that raced through their own camps. Similarly, towns adjacent to these military camps in both North and the South were devastated by disease.

Living near the dying could be bad luck indeed.


People who have come to a hospice to die are not disease carriers. Most are dying of irreversible cancers.

The University (which of late has become the Poster Child for Political Correctness - note the cancellation of the art exhibit at the Museum of Anthropology - puleeeese!) has quite rightly taken a momentary breath to calm the waters.

Thank goodness for Tung Chan, the former CEO of S.U.C.C.E.S.S., who has spoken up and pointed out that most Chinese are very supportive of hospices.

Perhaps, with the help of a conciliatory voice like Tung Chan, the good people of The Promontory highrise will relax, stop yelling "Racism!" and accept that one day they too might appreciate a quiet and loving place to go at the end of days.


Jeff Taylor said...

I'm still in shock several days later after first watching this news story. May none of these people require a hospice near the end of their lives. As for UBC 's cancellation of the art exhibit, they have in one decision further set the healing of the whole Piction affair back several more years - not to mention in a round about way disrespecting the victims. STUPID & SELF-SERVING to say the least.

Leah said...

110% agreement with you Jeff!

Anonymous said...

News flash. People in the hospice are very much alive. When thet die their remains will be placed elsewhere