Davide Mastracci is a freelance journalist based in Toronto. His work has appeared in various publications, including Al Jazeera, Vice, BuzzFeed, the National Post, The Globe and Mail, The Walrus, Maisonneuve, and Canadaland. You can read more of his work at www.davidemastracci.com.
Trump has undoubtedly emboldened Islamophobes across North America, but Canada has our own history with Islamophobia that we need to talk about. From 2012 to 2014, we saw hate crimes against Muslims in Canada double - and this is all while most of us knew Donald Trump as the host of The Apprentice.
Muslims are a marginalized group within Canada. We don't have access to political power in the way white people do, and we are in fact subject to stereotypes and demonization from political power and the media alike -- the collective blame laid upon Muslims legitimizes the idea that all Muslims should be punished for the acts of a tiny minority. Once this idea is legitimized, spates of hate crimes are committed and some Muslims end up feeling unsafe in their own communities.
On February 12, Harper vowed to appeal a federal court ruling that would allow Muslim women to wear a niqab during citizenship ceremonies. Speaking to the press about the matter, Harper said, "That is not the way we do things." He added that, "This is a society that is transparent, open and where people are equal, and I think we find that offensive." This is a classic example of opportunistic feminism, which so many white men like to make use of from time to time.
On January 30, a reporter asked Harper how newly-introduced anti-terror legislation will differentiate between somebody who is "radicalized" and "a teen who's just messing around in the basement." Harper answered by saying promoting terrorism is a serious offence no matter "what the age of the person is, or whether they're in a basement, or whether they're in a mosque or somewhere else." Harper's response to this question associates hundreds of mosques across the country with the promotion of terrorism and violence and is misguided for multiple reasons.
There should be no mistake, it's more embarrassing for an adult to not know Kanye at this point in time than it is for a teen to not know McCartney. White dominance of cultural norms is the only reason click-bait articles decrying the masses of 50-somethings who don't know who Kanye West is aren't being published.
Ali A. Rizvi recently wrote an open letter to "moderate Muslims." I'm not sure if Rizvi's letter was directed toward me, as I don't measure my faith in chicken wing flavours, but I'm going to respond anyway. Rizvi's good will doesn't last long as he immediately begins to lecture Muslims about our "increasingly waning credibility" in the West.
George Orwell stated, "Journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed. Anything else is public relations." Unfortunately, most North American journalists have acted as PR reps for Israel's ongoing invasion in a variety of ways, some subtle, others explicit.
A man killed six people in a drive by shooting on Friday night in California. On Thursday night the apparent shooter made a video explaining why he was going to embark on the murderous rampage. In this video the man stated that he was a 22-year-old virgin who couldn't attract women. We should avoid reducing the murderer to a crazed individual whose actions can be explained solely by his mental state. Instead, we should analyze how the misogynistic societies we live in enabled the murderer's killing spree.
The industry undeniably preys on those who are desperate for a way in, and capitalizes on their insecurity with unpaid internships. But the demand doesn't justify the exploitation. The fact that it's a standard practice doesn't mean people have to accept it. Future journalists can, and should, fight back against this standard. This is why I am genuinely pleased by the government's crackdown. It will not solve all of the problems facing prospective journalists like myself, but it is a great way to eliminate one.
On the evening of March 5, anchor Liz Wahl resigned from Russia Today-America at the end of her 5 p.m. broadcast. While it's not fair to speculate that Wahl made her dramatic exit in order to score a new, and potentially higher paying, job, it is certain that her patriotic exit will likely be rewarded by American media.
Every year, millions of Canadians take part in this campaign by attaching the poppy to their clothes. I do not wear the poppy, or donate to the RCL, because I believe that this campaign glorifies war instead of calling for peace. I believe that it is of the utmost importance to remember past wars and the soldiers who took part in them, but I remember these things quite a bit differently than how the RCL would like you to remember them.
Either way, with all of his other scandals in mind, if this video proves to be true, Ford must leave office. But the fact that he should leave office as a man in need of help, and not a morally bankrupt criminal (at least for potentially using crack), remains. Unfortunately, the lingering effects of the Drug War likely will remain as well.
Just over a month ago, Tim Hudak, the leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservatives (PC), released a 27-page plan outlining his vision for post-secondary education in Ontario. Buried within this pol...
The 2013 Times High Education World Reputation Rankings (WRR) were recently released. The WRR measures the best universities in the world based upon the opinions of over 16 000 academics. In the most...
Those without mental health issues equate their feelings of sadness to those of someone with depression, when in reality this is like comparing a small paper cut to a broken arm. This characterization is entirely misguided however, as mental health issues are not a "First World Problem" but instead a problem which has the potential to affect all humans regardless of class, race, gender, or ethnicity.
Should students at Catholic schools who are not Catholic be allowed to exempt themselves from Catholic related courses and activities? The answer is clearly yes. I am a product of the Catholic system of education, and I do not believe it deserves to continue in Ontario any longer. In a supposedly multicultural society, it is insulting for the government to fund and prefer the teachings of one specific group. The ever-changing makeup of Canadian society means that we are no longer a "Judeo-Christian" nation if we ever were, and so, we cannot give preference to a faith simply because we have a tradition of doing so
Men may take women out on different sorts of dates than they previously did, but the expectation that men be the ones to do this largely remains. When it comes to dating, many men are expected to pay for dates, both by some women, and more commonly, by themselves. Men paying for women on dates because they enjoy their company, and view it as a kind gesture, is not an issue. The issue is that some men still pay for women simply because they are women, and the men would feel emasculated if they did not.
On December 2, poet Suli Breaks posted a spoken word video titled "Why I Hate School But Love Education." Breaks' video certainly does have some positive elements but his argument is flawed in many ways. He reduces a post secondary education to something which takes place solely in the classroom. Regardless of what Breaks believes, school can foster education beyond the traditional methods.
The legalization or decriminalization of marijuana has become a nonpartisan solution so blatantly obvious that only misguided moral opposition remains. And while there is still some way to go before marijuana is legalized in Canada, this eventual feat should be a gateway for the legalization of other currently prohibited substances.
If the legalization of marijuana can be accepted by the Canadian populace, the legalization of all drugs should be as well. Taboos, fear, and moral opposition should not prevent the government from taking the rational scientific steps necessary to solving the drug crisis.