I want you to know that you are not alone. Through your grief and pain and loss you have joined the club that no one wants to be a part of. But the most astonishing thing is that this club is made up of some of the most powerful, compassionate, and inspiring women.
Thank you for your letter. I have been writing you for a while now and was getting worried you were never going to write back. I'm getting involved in the Conservative leadership race because I can't stand watching incompetent politicians destroy my country. You and Justin Trudeau are two of them. Rachel Notley would be the third.
The terrible truth is that there is often no justice for women who speak out about sexual assault and sexual harassment, and as such it can take every ounce of will for women to honour their own experiences and not be silenced. The Boyden letter takes that juggernaut of misogyny and with the weight of authority crushes it down on those students who lodged complaints against Steven Galloway.
Dear Black Lives Matter Toronto, I approached your booth and said, "I would like to buy a shirt and make a donation," but your volunteer told me shirts are $20 and are only for sale to the black community. What baffles me is you really took the time to tell me I'm not the right race, colour or minority to purchase your T-shirts or support your organization. I replied, "That's not right" and left quickly, dumbfounded and shocked, trying to collect my jaw from the streets of Toronto.
Society seems to have an issue when a woman asks for help. Women are supposed to be superheroes. We're supposed to do it all and we're supposed to smile and make it look easy. We're supposed to be perfect mothers, wives, friends, employees and citizens, and we're not supposed to admit that we can't do it without a little help.
I don't know what Dylan Farrow's experience has been... I can only imagine how deeply painful it would be to hear other women call him a figure of empowerment after he's spent most of her life shaming and discrediting her, while some of the biggest stars in the world fawn all over him and journalists refuse to ask him tough questions because there's some sort of unspoken moratorium on the topic.
Simply put, sports has a way of connecting people. When you throw on your team colours, you're no longer a Sikh, Jew, Christian, White, or Black. You're simply a fan. And the only thing that matters in that moment is realizing the dream of seeing your team lift up the trophy one day and host a parade on your home streets.
We ask you to resist the false alarm that your Zionist friends sound when they cry "anti-Semitism!" as the proverbial boy might cry "wolf!" For those who do so are robbing a horrendous historic episode of its gravity, confusing legitimate dissent with genocide. Criticism is not Kristallnacht; challenges to the occupation are not the gas chambers. The distinction is crucial.
I read about the way you came forward against a man who you allege has sexually assaulted you. I don't know if everyone who hears about you appreciates the importance of you waiving your anonymity and giving your name and face to the case. For a person as clearly dignified and graceful as you, a captain in the Royal Canadian Air Force no less, it must have been a nightmare. You had everything to lose, and nothing to gain. I don't know if people appreciate the complexity of what you're presenting to them, but statistically, 80 per cent of sexual assaults occur with a person women know.
After attending public town halls, participating in over 70 meetings and round tables, and receiving feedback from thousands of Canadians who have written to me, it is clear that many feel the TPP presents significant opportunities, while others have concerns.