Progress

“It’s the same each time with progress.

First they ignore you.

Then they say you’re mad.

Then dangerous.

Then there’s a pause.

Then you can’t find anyone who disagrees with you.”

~ Tony Benn

About these ads

Olivia Chow

For those of you who routinely read my blog my love for the city of Toronto comes as no surprise. This is my chosen home, the place where I work and live. There is no greater place to live than Toronto. It is a diverse, friendly and open society where immigrants can begin their new lives filled with hope and possibility.

On October 27 Torontonians will vote for a new mayor. My support is behind the most progressive voice of all the candidates: Olivia Chow. She has the experience, the intelligence and a deep, passionate love for Toronto.

As a first-generation Canadian I have lived through some rocky times; I’ve encountered racism, homophobia and elitism — and I believe that Olivia Chow, who moved to Toronto from China when she was 13-years-old has a thorough understanding of the issues Torontonians — life-long and newly arrived — find essential. This is a peaceful city, and we need a mayor who reflects our values.

I’m posting a couple of short videos of Olivia and her vision for you to watch. If you can, spread the news. I want nothing more than to elect Olivia Chow mayor of Toronto.

North Korea is cray cray

Worth watching when you have time.

Mindful action is key to responsible living

I tried to find a suitable photo for this post, but couldn't. So here I am. Again.

I tried to find a suitable photo for this post, but couldn’t. So here I am. Again.

For every grievance we’ve ever had against those who have wronged us there is always another story. I try to remember this when I think about past conflicts where I feel I’ve been slighted.

As flawed people we do the best with the tools that we have. We’re not perfect, we were raised by imperfect people who are not whole, just as we are not whole.

I’ve maintained for years my annoyance with expectant parents. My argument is that I don’t know one fully functional adult so how can anyone arrogantly believe that they’ll be able to raise one?

Our children, before they enter kindergarten, will learn exclusively from us. They will see how we resolve conflict, what we believe about the world, what religion we follow, our dislikes, our philosophies, and all of this will leave an imprint that they will live with for the rest of their lives.

Being a parent is a serious decision and just because we can do it, doesn’t mean that we should. It requires thought, mindfulness, stability and security. Some of us will arrogantly hold to the notion that we inhabit all of these characteristics, but I doubt any of that to be true.

Couple these imperfections with what’s happening across this planet, and it’s wise to pause when considering building a family.

The battle rages on between Israel and Gaza, ISIS terrorizes Syria and Iraq, Ukraine is being bullied by Russia, North Korea and Iran are arguably developing nuclear weapons, Africa is suffocating in disease and poverty, climate change is changing our landscapes, need I go on? The world is growing increasingly erratic and unstable — in the next 50 years environmental refugees will be a serious global problem, one that was preventable, had it not been for our willful ignorance, greed and selfishness.

These are qualities that we fall back on. To have a family we must not only look to ourselves but to the world around us. We have to see the problems outside of the confines of our own home as our own personal issues, because that’s what they have and will become. How can we positively contribute to a world that we often look at with apathy?

So much of this can be blamed on how we were raised. None of these problems truly existed when we were growing up, but they certainly do now. To be an effective parent we must first free ourselves of a need to be exclusive, to compete and contrast with others. This attitude only serves to hold a space of arrogance.

There are too many global conflicts to consider, but also, our own personal conflicts as well. We get caught up at looking at others with disdain, especially those who we disagree with. We forget, or choose to ignore that they have feelings and insecurities that have been developed by other people in a world that is callously judgmental and unforgiving.

Being alive means being aware that other people exist. They too have fears, hopes, love, all the things that we find important, so do they. If we could be a little more tolerant, even to our enemies, and see them as humans who deserve compassion and kindness, we’d demonstrate to children the foundation of being responsible global citizens.

Thought. Mind. Action. It’s not difficult to achieve. Collectively, it will change the world.

Hot jogger confronts Rob Ford

This hot shirtless jogger confronted Toronto Mayor-in-name-only Rob Ford yesterday. It’s awesome.

Kim Campbell on Real Time With Bill Maher

Former Canadian Prime Minister Kim Campbell sat on Bill Maher’s panel a few years ago. It’s plainly obvious that Campbell is a little more informed than the men she’s debating, especially when it comes to American exceptionalism.

I thought I’d share this because her style directly contrasts that of her American panelists. She doesn’t have to yell or mock anyone to make her points, she simply knows her history. The rest speak complete gibberish.

Today marks the 25th Anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre

Whatever happened to Tank Man? That brave soul who risked his life in protest of the massacre of his people by his own government.

25 years ago China brutally murdered peaceful, student protestors in Tiananmen Square. Today the global media reflects on that brutal day, but not China. They won’t reference it at all.

Those in the Western world boast that they enjoy freedom, to some extent that is true. It’s a lot more freedom than what China had in 1989. It’s the kind of freedom that these young men and women fought for.

No one knows what happened to Tank Man. Some say he was executed days or months after his courageous display. Others believe that he is still alive and lives in a remote village. The truth is his identity remains a mystery.

Today we remember him.