National Newswatch

Today, women are boycotting Twitter. Here’s why

Oct 13 2017 — Denise Balkissoon — If Facebook were a food, it would be the very last bits in the bottom of a Doritos bag – intensely flavourful, but also kind of gross and not as justifiable a pleasure as a whole, crunchy chip. It’s fun, but essentially unhealthy – or at least that’s the impression I have after reading a […]

Marijuana policy: Are we protecting our children?

Sep 13 2017 — Denise Balkissoon — Twenty-year-old me can’t believe 40-year-old me has come to this, sending out a warning call about the dangers of marijuana. There is more than a fragrant whiff of ‘do as I say, not as I did’ about this column. But 40-year-old me has seen things 20-year-old me hadn’t, like people around me coping with addiction […]

This Pride, be a good person, not just an ‘ally’

Jun 23 2017 — Denise Balkissoon — It’s Pride time, and I’ve been thinking about the idea of an “ally,” or someone who wants to support a marginalized group to which they don’t belong. The concept is both appealing and fraught, and I’ve been wondering where it comes from, what it’s good for, and where to go from here. The first bit […]

Seeking an antidote to The Handmaid’s Tale

May 26 2017 — Denise Balkissoon — Handmaids are so hot right now. I mean the new Handmaid’s Tale television series, which stars Elisabeth Moss as Offred, a fertile woman held captive by an authoritarian government attempting to reverse an epidemic of infertility through reproductive slavery. As creepy and unsettling as U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence is, it’s the most watched series in […]

Can mainstream journalism survive identity politics?

May 17 2017 — Denise Balkissoon — The past month has seen the departures of two Canadian journalists long considered provocative, both over the contentious subject of identity politics. The burnt and pitted landscape that remains has me wondering about the future of what’s considered the mainstream media in Canada. The first was columnist Desmond Cole, who stopped writing for the Toronto […]

‘Climate-change agnosticism’ is a cop-out

May 4 2017 — Denise Balkissoon — Is it possible to be a “climate-change agnostic?” And what would that even mean? It’s easy to identify a climate-change atheist, like the President of the United States. He has said that the idea of global warming and its effects are a hoax, perhaps concocted by the Chinese government. Believers are also easily spotted, like […]