Opinion

Opinions from our editorial board and contributors.

RIGHT MINDED: Haiti’s real problem

On February 9, Max Silverman wrote an article that viewed the aid effort in Haiti through the prism of Naomi Klein’s “shock doctrine” theory. The shock doctrine posits a theory of “disaster capitalism,” where practitioners take advantage of emergency or upheaval to force free market reforms onto a rebuilding country.

EDITORIAL: A double standard for Olympic women’s hockey

One of the best things about the Olympic Games is its commitment to gender equality. Eschewing the common male-dominated athletic hierarchy, almost every event in both the Summer and Winter Games awards medals to both genders as equals. And after some of the great female athletic performances we’ve witnessed during the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics – by Joannie Rochette, Petra Majdic, and Clara Hughes, to name just a few – it has been refreshing to see people who normally ignore women’s sports sit up and take notice.

MY POINT … AND I DO HAVE ONE: supressing debate: Ontario’s language politics

The Ontario legislature – like most political bodies representing a diverse range of opinions – is a place where it’s hard to achieve consensus. One in five children in Toronto go to school hungry in the morning and asthma and cancer-causing coal power generate much of the province’s electricity, but no consensus can be found among the provincial political parties to address such dire issues.

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: What a Winer

Re: “Why Gaza Remembrance Week misses the point” by Adam Winer (09.02.10) Mr. Winer seems to have entirely missed the point in believing that SPHR should be neutral in its display and presentation of speakers for the Gaza Remembrance event. When an entire population becomes the target of Israeli amunition and unjustified sanctions, then logically people have to stand up in defence of human rights and to lobby governments and intellectuals to stop the suffering of the Palestinian people.

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Be careful, name calling can hurt

I think the Financial Ethics Review Committee cares a lot about human rights, social justice, and environmental protection. I also think that the Israeli army and the Israeli government sometimes do things that are morally questionable, if not repugnant. However, I think that Wednesday’s motion is not primarily a function of anybody’s commitment to human rights, social justice, and environmental protection, but of condemning the State of Israel.

EDITORIAL: Buying Haven Books was a costly, irresponsible mistake

Haven Books was doomed from the start. In March 2007, the Students’ Society paid approximately $40,000 for a consignment bookstore in a poor location, with an unmemorable name and a bad business model. They did so despite a Memorandum of Agreement with McGill that prevented SSMU from advertising the bookstore on campus, and a report from their auditing firm that showed Haven had lost about $95,000 in the previous year.

COMMENTARY: The “P Word”

Has history not taught us anything? Aren’t we the ones who hold our predecessors accountable for the human rights atrocities that occurred due to their complicity in events such as European anti-Semitism, the centuries of slave trading, and most recently, the Rwandan and Darfur massacres? How contrite do we feel that past generations stood idly by and permitted Apartheid in South Africa? Better yet, why do we still slip into a vacuum of radical nationalism that blinds objective thinking? It’s as though we have yet to learn that this road will only lead to self-destruction – but somehow we keep submitting to this primitive train of thought.

BLACK & WHITE: Halfway on humanities

Over the past four years, I have alternated between feelings of repulsion and uncertain excitement when thinking about graduate school. After attending the department of English Symposium – an event where English professors present the papers they have been working on – I experienced these feelings side by side and learned that conflicting feelings, if they had a colour, would be the baffling tint of ashy water.