All posts in category Uncategorized
Posted by thereginamom on September 12, 2012
Stephen Harper is a disgusting excuse for a human being, plain and simple. He has used and abused our Parliamentary democracy to give him more individual power in this country than we have ever seen. And now he’s flaunting it on the international stage!
Coalitions of ‘losers’ don’t get to govern, PM says
Richard J. Brennan Ottawa Bureau
LONDON—A stern Prime Minister Stephen Harper dismissed thoughts of a coalition governing Canada as it now does in Britain, saying that “losers” don’t form governments.
This is a sick man, a man who needs help, help to be a decent human being, rather than one who name-calls, rather than being a bully. On the playground, he would be disciplined.
It is my job — and all of ours, who care about democracy — to discipline this man in the strictest way possible at the polls, as soon as possible! Push your Liberal and NDP MPs and riding associations, people. We must have an election soon! We must rid ourselves of this mean-spirited man, if we are to live within a compassionate and caring democracy.
Posted by thereginamom on June 3, 2010
Some of you already know that I’m a poet as well as an activist. My first book is now available. You should be able to find my collection of poetry, This hot place, at bookstores across Canada any day now. I received my copies from Thistledown Press a week and a half ago.
I begin a western Canadian tour in April with confirmed stops in Regina, Earl Grey, Prince Albert, Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Gabriola, Calgary and Vancouver. It’d be great if my activist, writing and family friends were able to make the events we’ve lined up. The more the merrier, y’know? Tour dates are here, at my book blog.
If your town is not listed just let me know and we’ll see what we can work out. I ‘m open to sharing my work in a variety of places, from curling rinks to bookstores, art galleries to bars, living rooms to conference rooms — you name it! I’ll try my best to work it into my schedule.
I’ll head east for a few gigs in Ontario and the Maritimes and then south, down the Pacific coast, after the USA release of the book sometime in September.
Hope to see you somewhere along the path!
Posted by thereginamom on March 29, 2010
This racist screed was sent to Edmonton East constituents by their Conservative MP, Peter Goldring, in his householder in December 2009. Yes, folks, your tax dollars paid for racist literature!
There are those today who want to change the historical record regarding 19th century Metis leader Louis Riel. Peter Goldring, Member of Parliament for Edmonton East says that such historical revisionism is wrong and sets the record straight on Riel and his crimes.
Wait, there’s more!
Revisionist “time travel” ignores the reality of human suffering. History is there to be learned, not to be revised or reinter-preted today by persons who do not like the outcomes of over a century ago. “Time travelling” back to the Riel era and erasing this judgement from our history books as if it were wrong, would in itself be wrong. How can we possibly know what was in the minds of people 100 years ago, to re-judge them today, years af-ter the fact. How can we obtain a true ap-preciation for those issues, without the sweat of fear and the odour of death that those events caused across the West in that era?
His prejudice certainly shows through in that paragraph, eh? How about considering the suffering of the Metis, Peter? Or is that to Peter Goldring, the Metis Nation is not part of humanity?
He also says that a pardon for Riel would mean Canada was insulting the soldiers who fought against Riel on behalf of Canada.
So many people today appear to know little of and care less for the sacrifice of those very first Canadian war veterans who fought against Riel and saved our country from disin-tegration, so long ago.
“Saved our country?” Puh-leeze! More like helped turn it into the racist country it is!
Apparently, admitting mistakes of the past is not something Peter’s into:
To “unhang” Riel today is illogical for those who remember the true history of Riel’s revo-lutionary role and who also respect the au-thority of historical jury decisions. To posthu-mously “pardon” Riel would amount to a ret-roactive miscarriage of justice.
But hey, folks, Peter wants to know what you think. So how about you download and print this file, cut off that bottom portion and send it, free of charge, to the MP. Tell him how you really feel!
So, the immediate questions that arise for me are:
- Was the Prime Minister’s Office part of sending out this racist screed?
- Why hasn’t the Member of Parliament been charged with the publication and distribution of hate propaganda?
I asked the last question of Iggy, Jack and Gilles and await their replies. I encourage you to do likewise. And please let me know what questions I’ve missed asking.
Posted by thereginamom on February 21, 2010
I don’t consider myself to be a patriotic person. In fact, patriotism is something I’ve never encouraged in anyone. I think it’s dangerous, quite frankly.
Democracy and participation in the democratic process, well, that’s something else entirely! What’s happening in Canada right now, with the surge of clicking on Facebook and the creation of this website, is something that should make our Prime Minister a little nervous.
Yes, Canadians are ticked that the Harper Conservatives have given themselves an extended Christmas break by proroguing Parliament. But I’m not convinced that’s the only reason Canadians are making the click. The majority of Canadians are not happy with the Harper government. And, in my experience, Canadians don’t like being dismissed as silly or not caring because really, compared to many, we are a heartful bunch. We have a social safety net and yes, it could be stronger. We have socialized medicine and yes, it could be better. We have a decent education system and yes, it needs work, too. We could do more and better in a lot of areas, certainly, but not with Herr Harper at the helm and Canadians know that.
And now it appears that Canadians are recognizing that our democratic institutions also need improvements. These are the conversations we can have while our MP’s are posing for photo ops in their constituencies and at the Olympics. And these are the conversations we can bring to the next election, whenever that may be.
I hesitate to say it, lest I sound patriotic, but, well, WAYTAGO, CANADA, WAYTAGO!
Posted by thereginamom on January 8, 2010
Several weeks ago I received an email inviting me to be part of an international action on climate justice.
Climate Justice Fast! aims to send a powerful message to members of the public who are as yet unaware of the urgency of climate action, as well as to inspire those who are already aware of climate change to become more politically active. In addition, our act will serve as a powerful reminder to our leaders of the importance, and moral consequences, of their decisions on climate change. We believe that hunger striking could not be more appropriate for the issue of climate change. We desperately need to bring attention to the enormity of its injustice, and to alert the general public to the urgency of climate action.
On Friday, the Climate Justice Fast! got started with a news conference in Barcelona, Spain and with 80 people in 13 countries signed up to fast. A core group began a water-only fast on November 6 and will continue on through the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen from December 7 to 18. The fasters are prepared to go beyond that date. Talk about commitment! I signed on early, almost immediately upon hearing about it, actually. But I knew I could not commit to the full fast because of familial and professional commitments. I did decide to fast for at least one day per week over the six weeks. Today is the first of what I’m calling my solidarity fast. I want to show support for the long-term fasters, demonstrate my commitment to the issue and be part of a long tradition, a tradition which in the past century includes determined British suffragettes, the amazing Mahatma Gandhi and, more recently, a Canadian grandmother, Donna Dillman.
As a feminist activist, my concern on the climate change issue focuses on the lives of women and children — people already treated as second class citizens the world over. Climate change is making their lives even worse. From Save The Children UK:
Quick facts: climate change and children
- In the next decade, up to 175 million children are likely to be affected every year by the kinds of natural disasters brought about by climate change. 1
- The percentage of the world’s population exposed to malaria, one of the biggest killers of children under the age of five, is expected to increase from 45 per cent to 60 per cent in the next 100 years due to climate change. 2
- By 2010, there will be 50 million ‘environmentally displaced people’, most of whom will be women and children. 3
The year 2010 begins 50 sleeps from today in my part of the world. It is imperative that our world leaders take immediate action! Even though the mild chills and hunger pangs I am enduring today seem so very small I know that I am support those who are doing something very big — risking their lives — in order to get those leaders not only to listen but also to act. CJF!’s call for justice:
We, the participants of Climate Justice Fast!, are undertaking our international
hunger strike in order to call upon world leaders – and all people, everywhere –
to act with courage and good faith for our common, global good, by implementing
the most rapid possible transition to stabilise atmospheric greenhouse gases
below 350ppm CO2-e, and by committing to deliver justice for the global poor
and future generations – who are the least responsible for causing
climate change, yet who suffer the most from its effects.
Climate Justice for the poor and for future generations can be delivered by
funding climate adaptation and mitigation activities in developing nations with
at least US$160 billion per year; by reducing and rejecting over-consumption,
wherever it exists, and by phasing out fossil fuels completely – starting with
the elimination of developed countries’ fossil fuel subsidies, shifting them wholly to
renewable energy and international climate finance.
We urge all people, everywhere, to make a commitment to
join the movement for climate justice,
and to not to give up until we succeed in these demands being met.
Feeling doubtful? Well, let me leave you with Margaret Mead’s words: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”
Posted by thereginamom on November 11, 2009
I am using today, Blog Action Day, to let readers know that in recent weeks I have become involved in an international action in regard to climate change and climate justice. As part of the international group wanting to move our leaders to take climate change and climate justice seriously at the upcoming meetings in Copenhagen, I have decided to act in solidarity with those who will take on a 42-day Climate Justice Fast! in the spirit of Ghandi and others. Though I am unable to commit to the full six-week fast for a variety of reasons, I am committing to 1 to 2 days per week.
Here is our statement:
We, the participants of Climate Justice Fast!, are undertaking our international hunger strike in order to call upon world leaders – and all people, everywhere – to act with courage and good faith for our common, global good, by implementing the most rapid possible transition to stabilise atmospheric greenhouse gases below 350ppm CO2-e, and by committing to deliver justice for the global poor and future generations – who are the least responsible for causing climate change, yet who suffer the most from its effects.
Climate Justice for the poor and for future generations can be delivered by funding climate adaptation and mitigation activities in developing nations with at least US$160 billion per year; by reducing and rejecting over-consumption, wherever it exists, and by phasing out fossil fuels completely – starting with the elimination of developed countries’ fossil fuel subsidies, shifting them wholly to renewable energy and international climate finance.
We urge all people, everywhere, to making a commitment to join the movement for climate justice, and to not to give up until we succeed in these demands being met.
I invite you to join with us, be it for the full fast, a week or two, a day or two, or a meal or two or in spirit.
You can read more about fasting on our website.
Know that I do this out of a deep love for our planet and all its beings.
Posted by thereginamom on October 15, 2009
Well, in case you somehow escaped my email and Facebook messaging, here’s notice that I’ll be giving a public reading at the autumn opener of the Vertigo Reading Series. Come out on Monday, September 28 to hear a Saskatchewan quartet of writers — Sheri Benning, Randy Lundy, David Sealy and me — share our words. The show gets underway sometime around 7 p.m. at Aegean Coast Coffee and Tea, 1901 Hamilton Street (corner of 12th Ave & Hamilton St), in Regina.
See you there!
And because I’m feeling generous, a still-drafty poem to honour the work of the Prairie Lily Feminist Society!
There’s a war on women
and the United Nations knows it, created the Convention
on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination
Against Women. CEDAW.
See, duh? It’s true.
There’s discrimination. Otherwise, why
are women 52% of the world’s population
and own only 1% of its land.
There’s a global war on women
but no one’s talking about it, not really.
CEDAW’s not working so well, the UN’s shifted
to Millenium Development Goals (MDGs) to fight an msg headache
the size of which no one wants to believe.
Women world-wide live in poverty, violence, disease
targetted by goals to make change. Goals.
There’s a war on women and it’s happening in Canada, too.
Mulroney and the boyz axed NAC, dissed
women’s work for equality. Chretien kept it up.
Chopped away at women’s programs, goodbye Cretin
and hello Paul Martin, Minister of Finance turned PM,
carried the axe for far too long.
There’s a war on women
and now Harper’s leading the charge.
No need for equality. Mandates
for feminism. Organizations which won significant rights –
same sex marriage –
goodbye. A left-wing fringe group? Huh?
There’s a war on women
and it’s happening here, in Saskatchewan, too.
Ah, but the NDP, they’re different!
Not! Romanow and Link, lovers of feminists
until elected, tossed us aside in favour of debt reduction, big biz,
derided us as too radical. Quietly called us feminazis. Calvert
closed Women’s Sec, purged policy wonks
too Keynesian, captured headline praises from Fraser’s Institute,
that rightwing think tank the Harperites love.
There’s a war on women
and it’s here and now
Premier Wall won’t appoint a woman
to be Responsible for our status,
won’t balance gender on Enterprise SK,
and assigns 12 men to decide our uranium future.
He’d rather men continue their war
leaving us in poverty, earning 70 cents on a dollar
while his boyz call us dumb bitches .
There’s a war on women
and it’s right here and now
It’s right in your face, if you dare open
There’s a war on women
and we’re standing up to it.
Brave lilies, a feminist society, organizing.
—B. L. Wagner
Posted by thereginamom on September 21, 2009
We have become so accustomed to living in a society saturated with misogyny that the barbaric treatment of women and girls has come to be more or less expected.
We profess to being shocked at one or another of these outlandish crimes, but the shock wears off quickly in an environment in which the rape, murder and humiliation of females is not only a staple of the news, but an important cornerstone of the nation’s entertainment.
The mainstream culture is filled with the most gruesome forms of misogyny, and pornography is now a multibillion-dollar industry — much of it controlled by mainstream U.S. corporations.
Life in the United States is mind-bogglingly violent. But we should take particular notice of the staggering amounts of violence brought down on the nation’s women and girls each and every day for no other reason than who they are. They are attacked because they are female.
A girl or woman somewhere in the U.S. is sexually assaulted every couple of minutes or so. The number of seriously battered wives and girlfriends is far beyond the ability of any agency to count.
There were so many sexual attacks against women in the armed forces that the Defense Department had to revise its entire approach to the problem.
We would become much more sane, much healthier, as a society if we could bring ourselves to acknowledge that misogyny is a serious and pervasive problem, and that the twisted way so many men feel about women, combined with the absurdly easy availability of guns, is a toxic mix of the most tragic proportions.
BOB HERBERT, “Women At Risk,” New York Times Op-Ed, August 7, 2009 <http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/08/opinion/08herbert.html?_r=2>
Posted by thereginamom on August 8, 2009
Well, we know the Harper hates women. But Iggy, too?
Let’s see. Iggy supported Harper’s budget which saw a continuation of Harper’s attack on women. And Iggy encouraged the Senate to push it through even though Senators had problems with it. And Iggy’s done nothing to appease women since taking the helm of the Liberal Party of Canada.
But now, this seems to ice the cake, so to speak.
Grit insiders say the federal Liberals are unlikely to nominate one-third female candidates in the next election and that the new Liberal leader’s main focus is finding winnable candidates rather than focusing on gender.
Oh, the backlash against feminism is strong, isn’t it? And now we have two federal party leaders jumping on that bandwagon!
What’s a girl to do? Sure, quotas are the only answer. But hello? Have you read any research about the impact on women’s and children’s lives when at least 1/3 of the movers and shakers are women? It’s huge! It’s as though women’s lives suddenly matter, as though women finally get taken seriously. Does Iggy know anything about CEDAW?
It appears that, no, he does not. He’s too busy cosying up to the big boys in the sandbox, those who don’t want to share their toys with half the population. Like I say, Liberal, Tory, same old story.
Thanks to Challenging the Commonplace for the pointer.
Posted by thereginamom on March 16, 2009