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Weyburn group raises concerns over controversial conference speaker

WEYBURN, Sask. - A group calling itself Intolerance-Free Weyburn is raising concerns about the inclusion of an anti-gay activist as a guest speaker at a conference being held by the Saskatchewan Pro-Life Association. Peter LaBarbera's organization, Americans For Truth About Homosexuality, has been called a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Chris Brookes of Intolerance-Free Weyburn says they've launched an online petition to try and stop LaBarbera from attending the event.

Young male smokers may raise obesity risk in their future sons

By Kate Kelland LONDON (Reuters) - Men who start smoking before the age of 11 risk having sons who are overweight, British researchers have found, adding to evidence that lifestyle factors even in childhood can affect the health of future offspring. The scientists said the findings, part of ongoing work in a larger "Children of the 90s" study, could indicate that exposure to tobacco smoke before the start of puberty in men may lead to metabolic changes in the next generation.

Wales considers curb on e-cigarettes

The use of e-cigarettes could be restricted in parts of Britain, after the devolved government in Wales announced proposals on Wednesday to stop smoking the devices in public places. Wales was the first country in the United Kingdom to vote in favour of a ban on smoking in public places, which came into effect on April 2, 2007. But Health Minister Mark Drakeford said he was concerned that e-cigarettes would normalise smoking once again, as well as making the smoking ban difficult to enforce.

British PR guru says worked with celebrity perverts

Max Clifford, Britain's top public relations guru, denied he was a pervert but told his sex assault trial Monday that he worked with many stars who were. Clifford, who denies 11 counts of indecent assault against seven girls and women, denied being a sexual pervert. The 70-year-old PR expert added that "many of the stars I worked with were perverts; they wouldn't have been bothered if I was a pervert." "As long as I was able to create the right image and protect them, that's all that mattered to them," he told Southwark Crown Court in London.

U.S. Navy SEAL training flows into mainstream fitness

By Dorene Internicola NEW YORK (Reuters) - Training for U.S. Navy SEALs, the special operations force, follows a warrior tradition that harkens back to Samurais, but fitness experts say the tough regime is gaining popularity with entrepreneurs, corporate executives, lawyers and elite athletes. The workout, geared toward mental as well as physical transformation, is so demanding that the casual gym-goer looking to shed 10 pounds before swimsuit season need not apply.

Irish pubs keep spark despite a decade smoke-free

Ten years ago this week, landlord Christy Ruane feared the introduction of the smoking ban in Ireland would stub out his business, and with it the popularity of the traditional Irish pub. On March 29 2004, Ireland became the first country in the world to adopt a total workplace smoking ban. Controversially, that included the traditional pubs where a cigarette was once as part of the scenery as pints of Guinness, traditional Irish music and peat fires.

Smoking ban reduces pre-term births, childhood asthma

Bans on smoking in public and the workplace led to a 10 percent drop in premature births and in emergency asthma treatment for children, researchers said Friday. The evidence, based on the records of more than two million children, comes from 11 published investigations into the impact of local or national smoking bans in the United States, Canada and four European countries. Within a year of a ban being imposed, rates of pre-term births and hospital treatment for childhood asthma each fell by more than a tenth, researchers found.

Leading Kenyan MP says homosexuality 'as serious as terrorism'

By James Macharia NAIROBI (Reuters) - Homosexuality in Kenya is as bad a problem as terrorism, the ruling party's parliamentary leader said on Wednesday, but argued against stepping up legal sanctions on the grounds that existing laws were tough enough. Aden Duale, the majority leader from President Uhuru Kenyatta's ruling Jubilee coalition, was responding to a group of MPs demanding tougher laws.

Immigrant detainees resume hunger strike at Washington state facility

By Bryan Cohen SEATTLE (Reuters) - Dozens of detainees at an immigration holding center in Washington state have begun refusing meals, renewing a hunger strike launched by hundreds of inmates earlier this month, attorneys and activists supporting the group said on Tuesday. The protesters have been demanding improved conditions for the 1,300 inmates held at the privately run Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma and an end to routine U.S. deportations of immigrants who have entered the United States illegally.

Smokers group challenges NYC e-cigarette ban

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A smokers' rights group filed a legal challenge on Tuesday to New York City's ban on electronic cigarettes in restaurants, parks and many other public places. The city has increasingly restricted places where regular cigarettes can be smoked over the last decade under the Smoke-Free Air Act. Last year, the city council expanded those laws to include e-cigarettes, a measure that took effect in December.
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