In praise of slow(er)

In praise of slow(er)

In my Ottawa Citizen column this week I blow a gasket at the extreme speeding and general lack of driving skills found on too many streets in Ottawa. 

In my legal writing for National Magazine I have a review of Ben Perrin’s most excellent book, Indictment: The Criminal Justice System on Trial. It reads like a gripping biography, not a legal textbook, and is eminently accessible to anyone — no law degree necessary. If you want to understand why we’re spending billions of dollars making Canada less safe by treating offenders like animals in cages, and how we could do things better instead, this is your book. Can’t recommend it enough.

After one player defied the ban on rainbow tape the National Hockey League decided they should maybe rescind that ban. They could have saved themselves a whole shitload of moral high ground by not banning it in the first place. 

It is remarkable that every single high-profile case in this country is always so consistently poorly handled. The infamous transfer of Paul Bernardo hit just about all the wrong notes and was badly handled from the start. If a prisoner qualifies for a particular program, they should get it and it should not matter how many people feel upset by it. With all respect to the families of his victims, who would obviously have had a less awful experience if they’d received the simple courtesy of a heads-up, their pain does not dictate policy. Instead of trying to hide the fact that he was going to a program in a slightly lower-security institution (still very much an unpleasant jail, fear not), authorities should have been upfront about it. And then not try to shut him up either. The whole episode was despicable and embarrassing. That’s not what justice should look and sound like. 

I didn’t know this, but thanks to a release from the wonderful Equal Voice organization (worth supporting, that one), I am now aware that 41% of confirmed candidates in the Northwest Territories election are women or non-binary. Two years ago the territory became the first in Canada to achieve 50% women representatives. Fricken’ eh.

En français

Ça aura pris 148 ans mais on a finalement une Cour suprême avec cinq juges sur neuf qui sont des femmes, avec la nomination jeudi de Mary Moreau, qui est aussi sauf erreur la première personne francophone de l’Ouest à siéger à la Cour. Plus de quatre décennies après la nomination de la première femme juge, Bertha Wilson — à qui on doit, entre autres, des décisions remarquables dans les arrêts Morgentaler (qui légalisa l’avortement au Canada) et Lavallée (qui établit la défense du syndrôme de la femme battue), mettons qu’il était temps. 

Local news 

The headline on this story kind of makes you think people are motivated to get their COVID shots for the paperwork. I’m looking at getting my 7th shot soon (I travel a lot and I don’t want to catch this thing), I say do it for you and those you love. 

I love this initiative, to have a health box dispense essential products including warm socks and menstrual products. Extra points for calling them menstrual products, not feminine products. Thank you. I am however very sorry to inform this Republican politician that no, in fact, tampons do not give anyone orgasms. They’d be a lot more popular if they did.