National Newswatch

Election forum shows how religion and politics can indeed mix

Sep 10 2021 — John Milloy — It has become almost accepted wisdom in Canada that religion and politics should never mix. That doesn’t mean that politicians don’t like to talk about religion. On the contrary, many seem to enjoy talking about it as long as they can cast it in the most-damning light possible. The current federal campaign is no exception. […]

Celebrate our achievements as motivation to build a better Canada

Jun 30 2021 — John Milloy — Should we celebrate Canada Day? As we head toward July 1, the idea of cancelling our national birthday has gained momentum. Canada’s history, many argue, is too often the story of those on the margins being oppressed or subjugated. The continuing discovery of the remains of children at former residential schools and the senseless killing […]

Canada’s Catholic bishops need to read the room and issue a formal apology over residential schools

Jun 10 2021 — John Milloy — Canada’s Catholic bishops are in hot water. The horrific discovery of the remains of 215 children at a former Catholic-run residential school has resulted in renewed calls for the church to formally apologize. Patience is wearing thin, and commentary has grown increasingly hostile. One columnist even questioned the church’s charitable tax status. Most Canadians, particularly […]

How the Ethics Bowl could help restore civil debate in Canada

Mar 12 2021 — John Milloy — Remember high school debating? Teams of bright students trying to make the strongest argument while tearing apart their opponent’s case. I have fond memories of being on a debating team. Not only was it great fun, but one of the girls I once debated against ended up becoming my wife (strangely, we each remember our […]

Why wouldn’t politicians be among the first to be vaccinated?

Dec 17 2020 — John Milloy — Politicians should be among the first Canadians to get vaccinated for COVID-19. Could you imagine if someone seriously made that suggestion? It seems unfathomable. As Susan Delacourt pointed out in a recent Toronto Star column, elected officials are on their guard to avoid “any suggestion that they’re using their positions to secure immunity before their […]

New assisted death legislation pushes the boundaries too far

Dec 3 2020 — John Milloy — “Is nothing sacred?” Remember that expression? It was a favourite of 1970s sitcom fathers, railing against whatever new social norms were part of that week’s plot. You don’t hear it much anymore. The word “sacred” — the sense that there are things that must be revered and lines that shouldn’t be crossed — has fallen […]

Mixing faith and politics could be a good thing for Canada

Oct 21 2020 — John Milloy — In terms of Canadian politics, something extraordinary happened recently. Three MPs, from three different political parties, came together to have a positive discussion about what unites them and how they can work together. In our hyperpartisan world, this alone might be notable. But what really made this inspired was the vehicle they identified to achieve […]

Erin O’Toole retreats in the face of Bill 21

Sep 22 2020 — John Milloy — They often say that one of the difficulties of discussing racism and prejudice in Canada is our reputation for being “nice.” Our supposed “niceness” acts as a veneer that covers up serious underlying issues. Not everything in our nation is covered by a nice veneer. Take Bill 21, Quebec’s so-called secularism law. The law openly […]

When it comes to debating public policy, a little humility might go a long way

Jul 11 2020 — John Milloy — The November 2010 Munk Debate was billed as an intellectual “thrilla in Manila.”  Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, a devout Christian, took on renowned atheist Christopher Hitchens on the question of religion. The evening was fairly predictable until a member of the audience asked the debaters to identify which of their opponent’s arguments they found […]

In Canada, it matters who has jurisdiction and who does not

Jul 6 2020 — John Milloy — As Canada emerges from COVID-19, our public policy to-do list is very long: long-term care; precarious workers; systemic racism in policing and other institutions; jobs; and poverty — to name just a few. Justin Trudeau better step up — right? Get with the program, people. Canada is a federation in which responsibilities are divided between […]

A basic income program is far from the ‘slam dunk’ many believe

May 23 2020 — John Milloy — Is a basic income on the horizon? Advocates would say “absolutely”. It seems a day doesn’t go by without another opinion piece pointing out that the pandemic has created the ideal conditions for its adoption here in Canada. People want radical change, especially for people who are struggling. COVID-19 may render millions permanently unemployed and […]