Suddenly, teen pregnancy is cool!



    For the first time in years, more kids are having kids - and not just in
    movies. Also featured in the upcoming issue of Maclean's: U.S.'s secret
    Airbus files revealed - a Maclean's special investigation, and, the
    oncoming storm - how badly will the American recession hurt Canadians?

    For information on these and other stories visit www.macleans.ca.

    TORONTO, Jan. 17 /CNW/ - Suddenly, teen pregnancy is cool. Only a few
weeks ago the film Juno had been released to instant and unanimous applause.
all of a sudden the heroine of a hit movie - a comedy no less - could be a
smart, motivated, white, middle-class girl, just 16, who matter-of-factly
chooses to have a baby and an open adoption rather than an abortion. No big
deal.
    "Unplanned pregnancy is now a pop-culture staple," writes Maclean's
associate editor Cathy Gulli. Movies like Knocked Up and Waitress, and
celebrity moms including Nicole Richie and Jessica Alba, are part of a trend
that's sweeping teen culture along with it: American Idol star Fantasia
Barrino became a mom at 17, and the last season of Degrassi: The Next
Generation ended with Emma realizing she might be pregnant. Even Grey's
Anatomy had a teen pregnancy storyline last year, and just last week so did
Gossip Girl.
    Then came the statistical data confirming that something - something real
- was happening: in 2006, for the first time in 15 years, the teen birth rate
in America actually increased, said a report by the National Center for Health
Statistics (NCHS). Meanwhile, in England, the number of pregnancies among
females under age 18 also rose in 2005 - to the highest point since 1998,
according to the U.K.'s Department for Children, Schools and Families. And,
once the figures come in, experts say Canadian statistics are sure to mirror
the rising trend from the U.S. and U.K.

    The Secret US Airbus file

    In 1988, the Americans accused the Mulroney government of rigging the
Airbus deal. In meetings with senior Canadian officials, they shared a
dossier, understood to be the product of inquiries by the FBI and other
American agencies, alleging Brian Mulroney directly intervened in Air Canada's
decision to purchase the planes.
    Now, for the first time, Maclean's uncovers the document behind the
American allegations. The report, kept under wraps for nearly twenty years,
also suggests Mulroney's political friends pocketed millions of dollars in
commissions on the deal -- some of which, it alleges, found their way into the
coffers of the Progressive Conservative party. "But," reports Maclean's
national correspondent Jonathon Gatehouse, "its most explosive allegation is
that the decision to purchase Airbus planes was a political one, made at the
highest reaches of the Mulroney government."
    The U.S. version of events is disputed by former Air Canada executives
and members of the board, and categorically denied by Mr. Mulroney. Still,
there is much in the dossier that commands attention, with the Airbus deal
again in the headlines. Read more of this Maclean's special investigation in
the issue hitting newsstands today.

    In the path of an economic storm

    The U.S. is headed for a recession and neither Canada, nor the world,
will be able to escape the pain. "Chances are Canada won't escape the pain of
a U.S. recession," Maclean's Senior Writer Jason Kirby reports.

    About Maclean's:

    Maclean's is Canada's only national weekly current affairs magazine.
Maclean's enlightens, engages and entertains 2.8 million readers with strong
investigative reporting and exclusive stories from leading journalists in the
fields of international affairs, social issues, national politics, business
and culture. Visit www.macleans.ca.





For further information:

For further information: Jacqueline Segal, (416) 764-4125,
jacqueline.segal@rci.rogers.com

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