JWR offers a solution

But Trudeau won’t listen.

He doesn’t like strong women who talk back.

Story:

Wilson-Raybould, now an independent MP, called for Trudeau to fly to B.C. to get personally involved in meetings, a cooling-off period in B.C. during which construction would cease and the RCMP leave the area, and the immediate tabling of long-promised Indigenous land rights and self-governance legislation.

Wilson-Raybould also made a plea to the Wet’suwet’en to take responsibility for providing clarity to Canadians about who speaks for a community that Canadians and governments understand is divided.

Wilson-Raybould was especially critical of Justin Trudeau’s failed promises.

Canada has known for decades “what needs to be done,” said Wilson-Raybould. “But here we are, yet again, in a moment of crisis because the hard work was punted.”

…She said the prime minister and his colleagues know this, “So please look in the mirror and ask yourself why?”

“Let us be honest — the prime minister has to learn to take responsibility,” said Wilson-Raybould.

She suggested Canadians have learned “the true history and the need for fundamental change” yet Trudeau has done little but talk.


Dear friends

A request.

2019, as you know, was pretty shitty. The worst.

At the tail end of it, my book Age of Unreason came out. I wasn’t in the mood to promote it, really.

Now I am. It’s 2020, and I’m back among the living. Time to breathe again.

This Friday, February 21, SFH – my band – is playing at the Bovine Sex Club. Some other great bands are playing. We asked to go first, so we can hang out with our friends and dance. It’s the launch of the book, too.

So, my request: come on by and dance and have fun. I’ll sell you a Donald Trump Is An Asshole T-shirt and throw in the book. Records, too. (They’re taking up too much room in the basement.)

I know you’ve got other crap going on. I know. But I would be grateful if you came by and hung out, even for a bit.

Friday, around 9, at 542 Queen Street West. Please come. It will be fun, and great to see you.

W


Meet you on the barricades


Happy birthday, Dad

[From last year, just before the world blew up. It’s way better now, but I still miss him.]

Many guys will understand what I mean when I say this: your father is both a bit of light, and a bit of shadow, over your path through life.

Mine, T. Douglas Kinsella, MD, OC, would have been 88 years old today. So many years after we lost him, he remains a constant in our lives. He still illuminates some of the path. Without even being here, he still quietly persuades me to examine the choices I have made.

Me? I have made bad choices. I have been reckless and cruel with too many. I have not lived by the single rule he left us.

“Love people, and be honest,” he said to us, and I often feel I have done neither.

He saved many lives as a physician, and he won accolades, and he was a member of the Order of Canada. But for us – my brothers, my nephew he raised, my closest friends – he was the man we aspired to be. Not for the distinctions he received, but for how he was, in his soul.

He was unfailingly honest; he was kind to everyone he met. He married his high school sweetheart, and was with her every single day for 50 years, and my God how they loved each other. We would sit there at the kitchen table in Calgary or Kingston or Montreal, and we would listen to him. He’d listen to us, too, and persuade us to try and figure things out. There were some great times, around that table.

The best thing is having a father like that. The harder thing is knowing that you will never be like him.

I had a dream that he died in 9/11; I don’t know why, but I did. I woke up weeping, and remembered that I wasn’t a boy anymore, and that he has been gone for more than a decade. I don’t think he would like what his son has become. I mostly don’t.

So I put on my pants and shoes, and went out into the day, looking for what’s left of the path.

Happy birthday. I miss you.


Christie Blatchford, RIP

What a huge loss to journalism and the country.

And I say that with sincerity – she kicked the living shit out of me in the paper more than once! And I usually deserved it.

She was a big Joey fan, so I sent her a get-well Joey pic just last week. So, here it is again, in the hope that it makes her smile in the newsroom upstairs.


From the archives: Omar Khadr and Christopher Speer

[Khadr is back in the news because he was speaking at a university this week. It attracted attention. So, here is what I’ve written about him – and his victim – a couple years ago.]

Six days before he received the wound that killed him, Sgt. 1st Class Christopher J. Speer walked into a minefield to rescue two wounded Afghan children, according to fellow soldiers. He applied a tourniquet to one child and bandaged the other, they said. Then he stopped a passing military truck to take the wounded children to a U.S. Army field hospital. Speer saved those children, his colleagues said.

Speer won a medal for that.

I have a view that is different from many of my Liberal and liberal friends: while I don’t dispute that Omar Khadr was a child soldier, or that he was manipulated by al-Qaida, or that he was treated badly by the U.S. military after his capture – I also don’t dispute that he killed Christopher Speer with a hand grenade, or that Speer didn’t deserve that, or that Speer was mainly preoccupied with saving lives until the day he encountered Omar Khadr.

Speer had kids; Khadr was a kid.  Speer knew he was on a dangerous mission in which he could die; Khadr said he knew that, too.  What happened to Speer was a tragedy, and a lot of what happened to Khadr was, too.

All that said, I don’t think it is right that Omar Khadr should receive in excess of $10 million from Canada.  I don’t think he should get an apology, either.

He’s alive and free and happy, and the young guy who saved lives isn’t.  I think that should have ended the matter, but apparently others felt otherwise.

When he apologized to Christopher Speer’s widow, Omar Khadr said he had learned “the beauty of life.”

So, I’ll leave the final word to her, because her words should count, too.

Tabitha Speer, sitting in the front row, gripped the armrests of her chair during his comments, shaking her head as he spoke. When he stepped down and the jury left the room, she cried.

Earlier Thursday, Speer’s widow had testified that her husband was a “most generous, loving” husband before he was murdered by Khadr.

“He thought of me before he thought of himself,” she said. “I couldn’t have asked for a better father for my children.”

At times sobbing, she described her heartbreak at having to tell their children, then a three-year-old daughter and 10-month-old son, that their father had died.

“That moment a part of my daughter died with my husband,” she said, adding that eight years later, the children still feel the pain of his absence.

“I heard over and over how he’s the victim,” she said, glaring at Khadr. “I don’t see that. The victims … they are my children. Not you.”

Khadr’s defence lawyers did not cross-examine her.