Many questions will linger post-pandemic

Many questions will linger post-pandemicPandemics have a way of changing the world. The Plague of Justinian hit the Mediterranean area in the 500s, not only killing millions but crucially weakening the Byzantine Empire and helping ruin its plans to reconquer western Europe from the barbarians. The Black Death of the 1300s wiped out over 100 million people in Europe…

Identity politics is an evil virus spreading across society

This obsession with identity can do nothing good for a society that values equality of treatment of all its people

Identity politics is an evil virus spreading across societyOn my desk is a commemorative plate honouring the 1966 Grey Cup champions, the Saskatchewan Roughriders. It includes the pictures of Canadian Football League legend Ronnie Lancaster and his teammates. A quick scan of these portraits reveals something odd: just three of the players are black. If one looks at the rosters of other CFL…

NDP fortunes on the wane in federal politics

If Singh is the problem, who is there on the meagre parliamentary bench to replace him?

NDP fortunes on the wane in federal politicsFor the past 90 years, Canadian politics has been influenced by a genuinely left-wing political party. The Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF) emerged in 1933. It demanded nationalization of essential industries, universal public pensions, health care, family allowances, unemployment insurance and workmen’s compensation. Its Regina Manifesto boldly asserted, “No CCF Government will rest content until it…

Shortchanging the essentials while making the court jesters rich

When did you last hear anyone complain “Where is a Women’s Studies professor when you need her?”

Shortchanging the essentials while making the court jesters richThe academic world was all a-twitter a few weeks back with the enormously humorous idea of a “Scholars’ Strike.” The idea was that over two days, university professors would put down their intellectual tools. By doing nothing – or indulging in ever-so-intelligent talking about doing nothing – they would advance the cause of social justice.…

We must stand up to China’s bully tactics

Unless checked, Communist China’s economic muscle will continue to be used to acquire increasing influence around the world

We must stand up to China’s bully tacticsHistorians make lousy prophets. We find it hard enough to predict the past, much less what’s going to happen in the future. Nonetheless, I’m going to attempt to predict some imminent geopolitical strategy. As the People’s Republic of China makes threats against Canada for detaining an executive of a Chinese corporation, as it warns the…

Nationalism should be at the core of Canada’s identity

As the COVID-19 crisis has shown, open borders mean diseases travel more rapidly and supply chains are endangered

Nationalism should be at the core of Canada’s identityPope Francis recently praised attachment to one’s own culture and place. He criticized global capitalism with its “consumerist vision of human beings” for its “levelling effect on cultures, diminishing the immense variety which is the heritage of all humanity.” But in Canada, nationalism – the idea that one should have particular regard for one’s own…

Has war been declared on the elderly?

COVID-19 fallout has revealed a genuine hostility on the part of the young toward the old, especially baby boomers

Has war been declared on the elderly?The Great Plague of 2020 has revealed some interesting things about Western society’s attitudes toward old people. In Italy, the shortage of medical equipment to treat patients suffering from COVID-19 led hospitals to sometimes rule that people over the age of 60 couldn’t be fully treated. That was essentially a death sentence for some pensioners.…

Where is the willingness to suffer for your beliefs?

Thoreau, Gandhi and King understood that going to jail was a reasonable price to pay for protest. Why don’t we accept that today?

Where is the willingness to suffer for your beliefs?In 1849, American philosopher Henry David Thoreau was angry at his government’s actions in the Mexican-American War and at the continued legality of slavery in the United States. He published an essay entitled Civil Disobedience, in which he stated that that the evils of war and slavery should be confronted by citizens through withholding their…

Winnipeg’s statue cleansing a distortion of history

The mayor is misreading the events of the Northwest Rebellion and romanticizing a nasty moment in our country’s history

Winnipeg’s statue cleansing a distortion of history“The red coats we know, but who are those little black devils?” This was the question posed by a Métis prisoner after the Battle of Fish Creek. Thus was born the nickname of the military unit that would later be known as the Royal Winnipeg Rifles, one that had been sent west to help crush…

Democracy can’t afford to stifle dissent and discussion

Protesters have silenced free speech through a combination of media pressure, inflated security costs claims, boycotts, riots and violence

Democracy can’t afford to stifle dissent and discussionThe Cancel Culture has claimed another victim. Renowned poet George Elliott Clarke has backed out of giving the University of Regina’s Woodrow Lloyd Lecture over accusations from Indigenous activists that he associates with another poet with a criminal background. His talk was to have been titled ‘Truth and Reconciliation;’ versus the ‘Murdered and Missing’: Examining…
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