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Montreal Simon: The Ghomeshi Verdict and the Road Ahead

The trial is over, Jian Ghomeshi has been acquitted of four counts of sexual assault and one count of choking.And for those of us who support women's rights, the end couldn't have been more depressing.With the once swaggering bully going free,… . . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: The Ghomeshi Verdict and the Road Ahead

The Canadian Progressive: Abortion Rights Advocates File Legal Challenge Against P.E.I

Abortion right advocates in Prince Edward Island have advised the provincial government of their intention to file a legal challenge to the province’s “discriminatory and unlawful abortion policy.” The post Abortion Rights Advocates File Legal Challe… . . . → Read More: The Canadian Progressive: Abortion Rights Advocates File Legal Challenge Against P.E.I

Montreal Simon: The Montreal Massacre and the Never-ending Violence Against Women

At a time when the United States is going through yet another spasm of gun violence.And I see how some wing nut in that country reacted to this editorial in the New York Times. I'm glad that I live in Canada, and grateful that today is National … . . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: The Montreal Massacre and the Never-ending Violence Against Women

Montreal Simon: Why Peter MacKay Should Not Lead Any Canadian Party

When I saw Peter MacKay heading off into the sunset, and paying for his own flight for a change.After jumping over the side of the sinking Con ship…

I was hopeful that we'd seen the last of him.But sadly it's pretty clear now, even if he won't admit it, that he is planning to run to replace Stephen Harper…Read more »

Bill Longstaff: What are Canadian values, of what value are they, and who decides?

Prime Minister Harper, the “old stock” Canadian, recently made the odd remark, “I will never tell my young daughter that a woman should cover her face because she is a woman. That’s not our Canada.” Why such a notion should ever present itself to Mr. Harper is a mystery, but the part that caught my eye was, “That’s not our Canada.”

“Our” Canada? Stephen Harper’s Canada is not my Canada. Can a

Bill Longstaff: Niqab nonsense—much ado about nothing

I am no fan of the niqab. Hell, I’m no fan of religion. But if a Moslem woman wants to wear a niqab at a citizenship ceremony for religious reasons, I can’t think of a single reason why I, or the state on my behalf, should prevent her. As long, that is, as she is prepared to unveil privately to establish her identity.

And that, Zunera Ishaq the young mother who took the government’s ban to

A. Picazo: The Assault On Planned Parenthood: A Long Campaign Against Reproductive Rights

In 2011, the Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted to strip Planned Parenthood of federal funding, a move deemed necessary to ensure no taxpayer dollars were used on abortion despite existing federal legislation which prohibits funds granted under Title X from paying for such services. This vote, a “culmination of a multi-year effort that involved parallel … Continue reading →

A. Picazo: Address This Code

This op-ed appeared in The Ottawa Citizen on May 25, 2015. In 2013, Kimberly Hall, Director of Women’s Ministry at All Saints Presbyterian Church, wrote an open letter to teen girls who, in her view, were tempting her sons into “impure thoughts” through social media. “If you are friends with a Hall boy on Facebook or Instagram or Twitter, then you … Continue reading →

The Canadian Progressive: Conservatives nuke motion seeking end to violence against women in Canada

Today, the Harper Conservatives voted down M-444, an NDP-sponsored motion seeking to end violence against women in Canada.

The post Conservatives nuke motion seeking end to violence against women in Canada appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Montreal Simon: The Dirty Sexist Game and the Woman Who Fought Back

It's a dirty game, a bestial assault on women, and one of the most disgusting things I have ever seen on TV.One that began just over a year ago with this video in Cincinnati, as a female reporter covered a train derailment.

The video got more than five million views, more than 31,000 thumbs up, and all over North America other depraved men started imitating that hooded pervert.So you can imagine how happy I was to see Toronto TV reporter Shauna Hunt stand up to those bullies the other day. Read more »

Dented Blue Mercedes: Indiana put the lie to “religious freedom.” But Canadian Evangelicals hope you didn’t notice.

Everyone’s familiar with the old adage, “be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it.”

Which is why the Evangelical leaders who held a press conference on Parliament Hill calling for greater religious freedom laws and schmoozing with Conservative politicians last month might do well to remember Indiana.

“Unfortunately, Christians in this country find themselves under attack. This is a violation, and we are calling on the Canadian government to stop this type of violation across this country…” — Charles McVety

Because almost to the day that the collection of Canadian religious leaders held a (Read more…)

Dented Blue Mercedes: Indiana put the lie to “religious freedom.” But Canadian Evangelicals hope you didn’t notice.

Everyone’s familiar with the old adage, “be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it.”

Which is why the Evangelical leaders who held a press conference on Parliament Hill calling for greater religious freedom laws and schmoozing with Conservative politicians last month might do well to remember Indiana.

“Unfortunately, Christians in this country find themselves under attack. This is a violation, and we are calling on the Canadian government to stop this type of violation across this country…” — Charles McVety

Because almost to the day that the collection of Canadian religious leaders held a (Read more…)

Bill Longstaff: Worlds apart—women in Iran and Saudi Arabia

On receiving her Master of Architecture degree from the University of British Columbia, Leila Araghian won the UBC Architecture Alumni Henry Elder Prize. Ms. Araghian has since continued in her prize-winning ways. Her Pol-e-Tabiat, or Nature Bridge, in Tehran has won three awards in Iran as well as a Popular Choice prize in highways and bridges category from the New York-based architectural

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Great War on Women

There are so many things I hate about what Stephen Harper is doing to Canada. I hate the way he is trying to scare Canadians into voting for him.I hate the way he is trying to turn us into a police state with his totalitarian Bill-C51.Or the way he is murdering our values with his brutish Life Means Life campaign.

But most of all I hate the way he is stirring up hatred against the small group of Canadians who wear a niqab. While claiming to be a champion of women's rights.When in fact, as Antonia Zerbisias points (Read more…)

. . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Great War on Women

Montreal Simon: The Great Pope Francis: Not as Good As Advertised

I did have such high hopes for him. He did seem to be the best Pope I have ever seen.He did say some great things about capitalism and climate change. But it turns out Pope Francis is not as good as I thought. Just more of the same.Or just another old reactionary.Read more »

The Canadian Progressive: Canadians still demand female representation on banknotes

The call for more female representation in Canada remains loud and clear as an online petition demanding that the Bank of Canada include women on Canadian banknotes opens 2015 with more than 52,800 signatures.

The post Canadians still demand female representation on banknotes appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Never-ending War on Women

Well as we know he's trying to pose as a kinder, gentler leader. And as I pointed out in my last post, that phony act has given him a big boost in the polls.But you can't put lipstick on a Con monster like Stephen Harper. Because he simply can't help himself. And here he goes again. Read more »

Montreal Simon: The Montreal Massacre and the Con War on Women

And now it has been twenty five years, since that that snowy day in Montreal, when a man with a gun stole the lives of so many young women.And this year that sad anniversary has never seemed so poignant and painful, with all the stories in the news about the never-ending violence against women.As if we had learned nothing, as if they had died for nothing.As if we had forgotten that it was that same bestial, senseless, cowardly hatred that drove their killer to unleash his murderous violence upon them…Read more »

A. Picazo: In The Fight Against Sex Crimes, We’re All In This Together

This op-ed appeared in The Ottawa Citizen on November 12, 2014 Late last week, amid the growing scandal surrounding Jian Ghomeshi, buried under the reprehensible politicking and partisan bickering over the handling of sexual misconduct allegations on Parliament Hill, was a remarkable moment of bravery and candour from well-known political commentator and former Parliament Hill staffer Ian Capstick. A … Continue reading →

Montreal Simon: Violence Against Women: Why We All Need to Look in the Mirror

I'm ashamed to admit that when the stories about the ghastly harassment of women in this country began to emerge, first at the CBC and then on Parliament Hill, I was shocked and horrified.But because I'm a gay guy, and I've never harassed anyone let alone a woman, and sex for me means love not violence, the idiot thought entered my mind that it wasn't my problem.So don't don't blame me eh?But as the trickle of horror stories became a flood. And gave birth to this magnificent movement. I rapidly realized how wrong I was. It is my problem. (Read more…)

. . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: Violence Against Women: Why We All Need to Look in the Mirror

Montreal Simon: The Scandal on the Hill and the Old Boy’s Club

As if Stephen Harper hadn't degraded the image of our Parliament enough. Reduced it to a fascist circus where the Big Lie rules, and shame goes to die.Mocked it, muzzled it, or just crapped on it like a monstrous alien monkey from outer space. Now we find out it's also a place where power corrupts even basic human decency. A boozy place stuck in the past, where young women are routinely harassed. And considering all of the above, I have to say I found what Tom Mulcair had to say today extremely disappointing. Read more »

The Canadian Progressive: In Canada, gender inequality has persisted or worsened: study

A new study says gender inequality in Canada has persisted or worsened in critical areas such as violence against women, women’s economic security, and the human rights of Aboriginal women and girls.

The post In Canada, gender inequality has persisted or worsened: study appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Dented Blue Mercedes: BDSM, Gender, Entitlement, and Jian Ghomeshi

Whether anybody wanted the conversation right now or not, it’s become time to have a conversation about BDSM, gender and entitlement.

Over a week ago, Jian Ghomeshi, the then-popular then- CBC commentator, appeared to be coming out of the closet about engaging in what he referred to as “rough sex (forms of BDSM),” and claiming to be fired because of workplace discrimination. The post read as sincere and from the heart (and badly timed because of his father’s passing), so we wanted to believe him. For anyone who cares about sex and gender minorities, there was a temptation (Read more…)

bastard.logic: RIP Father Raymond Gravel, Progressive Catholic Priest

Sad news via CBC News:

“Father Raymond Gravel, a well-known Catholic priest, an advocate for Quebec sovereignty and a social activist, has died.

[...]

“He served one term as the Bloc Québécois MP for Repentigny, before he was ordered by church authorities to choose between his priesthood or politics and returned to the pulpit.

“He was a progressive force in the Catholic Church and an outspoken supporter of gay and women’s rights.

“At one point Gravel called the Vatican’s opposition to same-sex marriages “discriminatory, hurtful and offensive.”

“Gravel challenged the Catholic Church to adopt a more compassionate (Read more…)

Dented Blue Mercedes: On conscience-based medical exemptions

The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario is currently reviewing its Human Rights Code policy on conscience-based exemptions for medical professionals, and their effect on access to medical services.

This review was sparked by a number of news reports of doctors in Ontario and Alberta refusing to prescribe birth control because of their religious beliefs. In some of those cases, patients were refused in clinics where there was only one doctor on duty.

Concurrently, south of the border, the United States Supreme Court ruled in favour of a corporation’s right to deny medical insurance to its employees when doing (Read more…)