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Melissa Fong: What are we going to do about Vancouver’s Chinatown?

What are we going to do about Vancouver’s Chinatown? Remembering Chinatown’s soul I spent many days and weekends in Vancouver’s Chinatown helping my dad at his office. He worked in […]

Melissa Fong: Why @Suey_park won’t “enact the labour”: Women of Colour don’t owe you an education- #CancelColbert Part 4

…she seemed to discount Zepp as a “White Male” and told him that she, “won’t enact that labour” of explaining to him why a White male probably couldn’t understand why a Woman of Colour’s point of view. I am here today to enact that labour. We are born into this history of racism and sexism. White men have the privilege of never second-guessing their rights or citizenship. Women of colour, everyday, are learning to work in a White patriarchal world. While White men can take this existence for granted, Women of colour struggle, everyday, to figure out the rules;…

Melissa Fong: DTES Local Area Plan- Speaker #5, on Amendments

We need to respect the experiential knowledge of DTES residents that understand how the plan violates their security. Not fundamentally opposed to Vision- but you have to realize reality. If you insist on the ideology of “social mix” you also have to set up the circumstances for dignity of all people- not just a veil. I wanted to make clear: 60/40 Would only be acceptable if all of the 60% was at welfare rates Microsuites in principle are okay- perhaps we need to deal with smaller living spaces; however the sizes proposed are unliveable. Some of the most dense housing (Read more…)

Melissa Fong: Downtown Eastside Local Area Plan- Summary

Like last time, I did some LiveTweeting of the evening- My strategy is to summarize the main point of all the voices; add in my OWN commentary (I can be […]

bastard.logic: Obligatory ZOMG CONCERNED!!1 #CancelColbert Post

Jamilah King breaks down #CancelColbert:

What’s important to understand here is that Park’s aim wasn’t necessarily to get The Colbert Show kicked off the air. Instead, it was to, as point out that satire isn’t always the best activism. “Well-intentioned racial humor doesn’t actually do anything to end racism or the Redskins mascot,” Park told the Jay Caspian Kang at the New Yorker. “That sort of racial humor just makes people who hide under the title of progressivism more comfortable.”

While I think Suey Park is entirely in the right (even if I share some of the middle (Read more…)

Melissa Fong: Proving male privilege: @suey_park @BlackGirlDanger @thewayoftheid @cheuya striking back #CancelColbert Part 3

Some of the most prominent women of colour, anti-racist, feminists are coming together to talk about male privilege. Except they aren’t talking about it. They are proving it.   @suey_park @BlackGirlDanger @thewayoftheid and @cheuya […]

Melissa Fong: #25KLunch WINNERS Announced! Who said there’s no free lunch?

Other than the fact that I should win the best prize for dragging out a meme that would have otherwise had the life-span of a fruit fly… I’ve got some […]

Melissa Fong: What is satire responsible for? #CancelColbert trending & Colbert not apologizing for racism & transphobic tweets

Is it satire if it hurts millions of people it intends to defend? Stephen Colbert of the Colbert Repor is receiving a lot of heat for recent racist and trans-phobic […]

Melissa Fong: Doug Ford tells Olivia Chow to learn ENGRISH… oh, and he defends himself with, “I have a lot of Black friends”- FAKE FORD ACCOUNT

Doug ford tells Olivia Chow to learn ENGRISH…. wtf?

He said:

@dmayorkelly Maybe @oliviachow should use the @torontolibrary to learn ENGRISH. She’s not mayor material, anyone from the Ford family is! And Doug Ford even BOLDED “ENGRISH” to make his racism even more appalling. Oh.. .hold on… it gets better- Doug Ford “HAS BLACK FRIENDS”… don’t worry, he can’t POSSIBLY racist.

Melissa Fong: Top 25 of #25KLunch Meme Finalists Announced!

  Okay, folks! The moment has come to see your Top 25 Finalists for the #25KLunch meme competition! I can’t even tell you how many messages I’ve received telling me […]

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: The Politics Of Othering

I don’t like Pauline Marois.  I never have.  Frankly, she reminds me of a teacher I had in grade 6 who ruled the classroom through fear and intimidation … and she keeps on using political tactics that reek of the same stupidity. Today’s entry into the race for the bottom that is the Quebec Election comes from Marois in the form of “voter fraud” claims. The PQ called a news conference Sunday morning to express concern about media reports of English-speakers and other non-francophones from outside the province trying to vote in the April 7 election. 

PQ candidate Bertrand St-Arnaud (Read more…)

Melissa Fong: Financial reform: Taking responsibility as public servants and otherwise…

Facts: I don’t hate Vision Vancouver. I’m indifferent to the overall career of Gregor Robertson. I actually like Andrea Reimer, from what I know of her. (Confession: I really like […]

Melissa Fong: Admitting to not knowing until it was too late: The DTES Local Area Plan implications

…I admit that I didn’t know how REAL it was until the 3 days came to an end and even after it passed….

After that the reality sunk in, I got more and more angry as I realized the implications of the plan.

The fact is that poor people LIVE this. This is their reality. I come from a critical academic perspective and knew it was bad- but I’ve never experienced the feeling of ZERO safety net in my life- and most proponents or apolitical people about the plan probably won’t have experienced that either. So while we can ignore (Read more…)

Melissa Fong: #25kLunch Meme Competition Update #1

The #25KLunch meme has received more press than I would have ever imagined! Amazing what a group of really dedicated “mockticians” can do to bring the issues out there. #25KLunch […]

Melissa Fong: #25kLunch Meme Competition to shame Mayor Gregor Robertson’s partnership with Developers & Condo King Bob Rennie

So I’ve started a #25kLunch tag – the good people on twitter who have engaged throughout this whole process have kept spirits high and helped suggest a meme competition.

1) Create your own meme http://memegenerator.net/ 2) Upload your meme to twitter images (make sure you save image & upload to Twitter direct b/c it’s a lot easier to view). 3) And remember to TAG it with #25kLunch and tag me: @internationalmf

Melissa Fong: DTES LAP Amendments that Cllr Carr shuts down: Watch the speech & Read the full document by Reimer

I already posted snippets of the full documents (4 separate PDFs here). This post is specifically the first pdf Amendment doc from Reimer and the speaking points Cllr Carr was […]

Melissa Fong: Sneak Peak!: AMENDMENTS to DTES LAP- DRAFT sent to my by Andrea Reimer

Councillor Andrea Reimer was kind enough to send me the DRAFT of Downtown Eastside Local Area Plan Amendments. *OFFICIAL copy posted on website by staff tomorrow. This is a sneak […]

Melissa Fong: DTES LAP Part 3- Residents’ Losses & small victories

…Councillor Adriane Carr was the only one who wanted to refer the plan back to staff to ensure an acceptable definition of Social Housing (due date for end of May). The rest of City Council seemed fairly confident that that could be defined as we went along and the plan should just be passed, although Reimer made a few tearful speeches about understanding the harsh reality of living in the DTES and the implications of the LAP. There was a distinct feeling in the room that Andrea Reimer, Tony Tang and Elizabeth Ball seemed sympathetic to redefinition, but they didn’t (Read more…)

Melissa Fong: Vancouver DTES Local Area Plan City Council Debates- PART 2: CHINATOWN BUSINESS INTERESTS

Chinatown Businesses interests came into the room hesitant. I don’t think any of the mainstream news media (Vancouver Courier or the Straight) did justice to the hesitance … I am personally sympathetic towards Chinatown business interests because I know the exact memories and nostalgia upon which they recall and the commercial area they want to revive. You might not remember it if you weren’t in Chinatown during the 80s and 90s. … I’m not going to sit here and pretend that middle class residentialization in the DTES won’t increase business for Chinese businesses. It will. What I am going to say is (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Don’t Tolerate Ignorance About the Minimum Wage

Now, stop tolerating ignorance! And smile, TGIF.

Hello.

It’s Friday.

For many people it’s TGIF. But for many people who aren’t even teenagers, the work week isn’t ending today.

We often THINK minimum wage is for the new entries to the job market. Maybe it was one day. Maybe just for one day.

But today? If it isn’t a living wage, it’s exploitative.

And if it is just minimum wage, we are likely not too accurate on who is suffering with these low wages.

Let’s take a peek:

It is not the stereotypical pothead living in their parents’ basement.

(Read more…)

Melissa Fong: Vancouver DTES Local Area Plan City Council Debates- Part One: Developers

…One topic that dominated the DTES LAP discussions last night was the 60/40 (Social/ market rate housing split) and the definition of affordable housing … All the usual suspects always caution against social housing. Developers are constantly talking about how it is not possible to build social housing without other levels of government. They halt right there like a bratty child putting their foot down until they get they are promised candy. But developer “candy” is the bonus, or dessert atop a fortune they already make. I consistently don’t understand why everyone else in the world is expected to do their (Read more…)

Melissa Fong: Overheard in Vancouver’s Chinatown

White girl in the bathroom stall to friend washing her hands beside me: “Oh… is that place good? I heard it was just full of a bunch of Chinese […]

Politics, Re-Spun: Lupita Nyong’o On Validation, For International Women’s Day

A sublime meditation on validation. Bravo!

…in which a young woman shares her adolescent anxieties and blossoms into a role model for us all.

Happy International Women’s Day!

Enjoy the whole clip here:

 

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Politics and its Discontents: Harlem Pastor James David Manning Makes Pat Robertson Seem Entirely Sane

If you can get past the particularly offensive homophobia and racism here, I think you will see what I mean:

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Melissa Fong: “Check your privilege” meme and why it is ineffective

Okay, this has been bothering me ENORMOUSLY. I talk about racism a LOT. I also blog a lot. For the entire duration of my social justice life I have never […]