Time to come to terms with Canada’s original sin

Separating one racial group of people from the rest of the nation and expecting a good result was madness then and is madness now

Time to come to terms with Canada’s original sinCanadians are watching protests on American streets that stem in part from their history of slavery. That original sin dogs America and tears at its soul. But Canada, too, has an original sin. And that’s our history with Indigenous people. It’s not that Canada treated Indigenous people poorly. (It did treat them poorly but that’s…

It’s not too late to adopt Sweden’s approach to COVID-19

It didn’t spend billions to pay people to stay home – as we have done – while compromising our children’s futures for generations

It’s not too late to adopt Sweden’s approach to COVID-19Most countries that adopted the lockdown model are still in the thick of the COVID-19 pandemic. Typically, there’s an easing of rules when infection rates decrease. But when rules are relaxed and infection rates naturally rise, authorities clamp down again. Masks go off – then on again. Meanwhile, the horrendous cost of paying furloughed workers…

Canada is not a racist country, nor are its institutions

People want to live here because Canada is a welcoming country where all races and creeds live together without persecution

Canada is not a racist country, nor are its institutionsPrime Minister Justin Trudeau recently publicly contradicted RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki for saying there’s no systemic racism within the RCMP. Actually, Lucki said she didn’t know what “systemic racism” is. In her words, “I have to admit, I really struggle with the term ‘systemic racism.’ I have heard about five or 10 definitions on TV.…

Let people make their own risk assessments

We should all take valuable lessons from the way Sweden has handled the COVID-19 crisis

Let people make their own risk assessmentsThe World Health Organization (WHO) recognizes that we have to learn to live with COVID-19. Notwithstanding hope of a vaccine, there is no guarantee. The virus awaits as we step out our door. And it could get worse. In Canada, the virus has been suppressed by a lockdown and strict social distancing, leaving residents at…

Canada’s panic response to Covid-19 came with a heavy price

Our children and their children will be paying for the bad decisions made by our senior medical science and political leaders for decades to come

Canada’s panic response to Covid-19 came with a heavy priceAs this wave of the COVID-19 pandemic winds down, we should ask honest questions about our response to it. Although an accurate assessment of the lockdowns – closing schools and businesses – is months away, we need a plan to respond to a likely second fall wave. The Economist published an essay detailing how closing…

We can’t obliterate history, no matter how hard we try

If historical figures with 2020 attitudes could be found, renaming familiar streets and place names wouldn’t be so daunting

We can’t obliterate history, no matter how hard we tryWinnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman is determined to pursue his name game – renaming, removing and rewriting history. Among his targets is Bishop Grandin Boulevard – the mayor doesn’t like the late Bishop Vital-Justin Grandin’s attitudes. If Bowman succeeds, the next logical renaming would be St. Vital – also named after Grandin, who was an important…

We can’t continue to live in suspended animation

There’s no evidence that draconian anti-COVID-19 measures were necessary. In the meantime, our economy is wilting

We can’t continue to live in suspended animationThe lockdown to prevent the spread of COVID-19 will saddle the next generation with a crushing debt and enormous social costs. The rationale of emptying schools and shuttering businesses deemed non-essential is to flatten the curve of the spread of the virus. Social distancing measures and closures in general are meant to prevent hospitals from…

Wet’suwet’en protests throw us all into chaos

While the project is a win for the province, the country, the environment and B.C.’s First Nations, these hereditary chiefs don’t see it that way

Wet’suwet’en protests throw us all into chaosSupport continues for the hereditary chiefs of the Wet’suwet’en First Nation blocking authorized construction of a natural gas pipeline in northern British Columbia. In spite of court injunctions and government pronouncements telling them to desist, they seem prepared for a long and protracted struggle, “having no intention of allowing Wet’suwet’en sovereignty to be violated.” This…

UNDRIP is the slow drip eroding Canadians’ rights

There are good reasons why other countries and previous Canadian governments have consistently refused to fully implement the UN declaration on Indigenous rights

UNDRIP is the slow drip eroding Canadians’ rightsBritish Columbia has become the first province to adopt the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). And except for the opposition of a determined group of Conservative senators, the federal government would have adopted UNDRIP as actionable law before last fall’s federal election. Re-elected Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has already announced…

Is the world on the verge of a nuclear winter?

As Trump upsets the world order, many countries may feel they have no choice but to develop nuclear weapons

Is the world on the verge of a nuclear winter?What will the world look like in 50 years – or even 10? One of the rather unsettling possibilities is that the future will have to accommodate a Germany with nuclear arms. For the short period after the Second World War that the United States was the only nuclear power, the world was stable. But…

Health care wait lists make a mockery of the system

At its core, the problem is related to lack of funding. It's time for Ottawa to provide the necessary funds or launch full-scale medicare reform

Health care wait lists make a mockery of the systemMost Canadians think our health-care system is a national treasure and much superior to the American system, where poor people often don’t get the treatments they need and costs can be catastrophic. Instead of focusing on how Canada’s health-care system compares to America’s, we should be looking at European systems that offer better health outcomes…

No gun fire in the Moose Wars. Yet

No gun fire in the Moose Wars. YetInternational conflicts are dominating the news; China is vying for power in the Pacific Ocean, and in most other parts of the world; Russia is causing trouble wherever it can, and the Middle East remains tense as it has always been. Meanwhile, another international dispute is going on in our own backyard right before our…

Slapping ’racist’ labels on cities unfair, simplistic

We need to get to the roots of problems with Indigenous communities and stop casting blame where it doesn't belong

Slapping ’racist’ labels on cities unfair, simplisticMaclean’s magazine once declared Winnipeg as “Canada’s most racist city.” Now it’s Thunder Bay’s turn. Thunder Bay is in turmoil after a report slammed its overstretched police force (if not the entire city) for alleged “systemic racism” towards its Indigenous population. Meanwhile, Thompson, Man., deals with Indigenous men filling its courts to overflow while Saskatoon…

How to give Indigenous children hope and happiness

For many, having a chance for a successful life means leaving their homes and moving elsewhere – for better education and more job prospects

How to give Indigenous children hope and happinessIn communities across Canada – and elsewhere in the world – young people are determined to escape, even if it means committing suicide. It’s a crisis that can be avoided. This summer, CBC Radio reported “yet another spate of suicides” in Attawapiskat, in northern Ontario. The First Nation was briefly famous in 2012 when then-chief…

A criminal charge based on the race of the victim is wrong

Not all the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls report recommendations stand up to scrutiny

A criminal charge based on the race of the victim is wrongThe Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIW) report declares that violence against Indigenous women is genocide. But do the recommendations stand up to scrutiny? Already, a Senate committee is at work dealing with some the report’s 200-plus recommendations, as part of the Senate’s study of an omnibus criminal justice act, Bill C-75. One…
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