In the Blog


December 18th, 2015     by Caitlin Blennerhassett     Comments

Illustration: Erin McPhee

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) released its final report this week on the history and legacy of Canada’s residential school system. The final numbers presented include the more than 150,000 First Nations, Métis and Inuit kids who came through the residential school system throughout the past century and the deaths of more than 3200 children (though documents are still being discovered and sources say that number could more than double). Questions remain about how existing and future governments will continue to take steps to repair the harm – Indigenous communities deserve more than an apology.

A group of young Latina skaters in the Bronx have created their own skate crew, called the Brujas (Witches in English). In a video interview about the Brujas, the youth cite Latina, street and gender-based cultural influences in the group’s creation. “Street culture is still in a lot of ways exclusive to men,” Arianna Gil says. We all weep at their feet and wish we were this amazing.

Soccer player Abby Wambach played her last game with the United States Women’s National Team (USNWT) this week against China in the last stop on the team’s Victory Tour after winning the FIFA’s Women’s World Cup in July. This week’s game marks her 255th appearance for the USWNT; she has scored 184 goals – the most of any man or woman in the world. Not only does she have a stellar professional career (check out this video of her scoring the most badass goal against Brazil in the 122nd minute, tying up the game), she has also always been an out player, most famously kissing her wife on live television following the World Cup victory this summer. She’s going out as the #GOAT, greatest player of all time, #ThanksAbby.

Shameless contributor Anne Theriault has written a Holiday Gift Guide. Items include a plethora of choices for your feminist holiday gift-giving needs, including a Scully pendant necklace, Marie Curie onesie, cat battle armour, Trust Women pin, and so many other items you should check out.

Vivek Shraya, author and music, performance and film artist, is offering a six-month arts-based one-on-one mentorship opportunity for one youth of colour under the age of 25. The mentorship program is open to youth from anywhere in Canada; deadline to apply is January 15, 2016. Find out more info at Vivek’s website.

Trigger warning – content around sexual assault

Bill Cosby has announced he is countersuing seven of his accusers (who now number more than 50), claiming defamation. The suit, filed in federal court, claims that he neither drugged nor assaulted the seven women based out of Massachusetts.

Trigger warning – content around sexual assault

Ex-Oklahoma city cop Daniel Holtzclaw was found guilty this week of sexually assaulting several women while on duty.He is accused of victimizing 13 African-American women while patrolling in a low-income neighbourhood; charges were levied in eight of those cases. When asked about why one accuser did not report the rape she said, “What kind of police do you call on the police?” The popular media has been mostly silent [] on the court’s decision, side-stepping a conversation on sexual assault as a distinct and pervasive form of police brutality.

Taxi protests continue in Toronto with licenced cabbies protesting the influx of UberX drivers. Chief Mark Saunders, spurred by a meeting between cab driver Sam Moini and Mayor John Tory, has agreed to meet with members of the taxi industry. For a great read on the impact of the protests check out Desmond Cole’s piece.

The CBC Canada Reads 2016 longlist has been announced. The 15 books included are centred around the theme “starting over” and the final five books along with the panelists who will defend them will be revealed on January 20th.

Tags: arts, gender, indigenous, media savvy, news flash, politics, race, recommended reading, sexual violence, youth

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