24 Years On: Never Forgetting the Montreal Massacre

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I live with 14 women I have never met. Each holiday season, I grade final exams, choose my Christmas tree, shovel my driveway and wrap my gifts, all the while remembering what happened on December 6, 1989. On that day in Montreal, 14 young women were in school studying to be engineers. They were doing […]

Canada Is No Safe Harbor for Reproductive Rights

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Every election year, disgruntled Americans threaten to move to Canada if the vote doesn’t come out the way they want it to, and 2012 was no different. Prior to election day, progressives prepared to move north; once the results were in, conservatives took to social media to announce similar plans, and were immediately mocked for […]

New Canadian Hundred Dollar Bill Depicts a Woman–U.S., Take Note!

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One thing Canadians may notice upon receiving their fancy new PLASTIC hundred dollar bills this month (if they’re fortunate enough to carry around that kind of pocket change), is that the piece of government-issued paper currency bears the face of a woman. To many viewers, the image of a woman with a microscope may initially […]

Join the Fight to End Rape in War

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If you’ve been following my live-blogging at Feministe or my live-tweeting at @jaclynf, you already know what a sickening and preventable crime against humanity sexual violence in conflict zones is. If not, may I recommend reading the hashtag #endrapeinwar on Twitter? Or a few numbers: Up to 500,000 women were raped during the Rwandan genocide. […]

Canada Headed for a Stormy Ride

Canada

North of the 49th parallel, four more years of Stephen Harper’s Conservative rule has begun. On May 2nd, Canadians went to the polls and gave Harper the majority of seats in the House of Commons–the majority he has eagerly and unsuccessfully sought in two previous elections–and thus gave the Conservatives unshakable federal decision-making power. The […]

Canadian Women Want to Break Up with Stephen Harper

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Five weeks ago, the Canadian government was forced into an election, one the ruling party–Stephen Harper’s Conservatives–claimed the Canadian public didn’t want. But the campaign has turned into one that is likely to change the political landscape of Canada forever, sparked in part by an unprecedented debate over reproductive rights. In Canada, it’s possible for […]

Canada Offers “Duress” Defense for Battered Women

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Nicole Ryan had endured more than 15 horrific years of domestic abuse when, in 2008, she plotted to have her husband killed. Unbeknownst to her, the hired “hit man” was an undercover police officer who quickly had Ryan charged with “counseling to commit murder”. But last week, Ryan was acquitted in a Nova Scotia provincial […]

Wearing a Tube Top Does Not Equal Consent

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In a disgraceful judgment by the provincial court of Manitoba, Canada, Justice Robert Dewar allowed a convicted rapist to walk away with nothing but a curfew and a mandatory letter of apology to his victim. The reason? She was wearing a tube top, high heels and make-up the night of the rape–and she was drinking […]

One Feminist Asks, ‘Is Polygamy Inherently Bad for Women?’

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The British Columbia Supreme Court is currently undertaking a fascinating and controversial review of Canada’s polygamy law, which has outlawed the practice since the 1890’s. The law is under review for possible violation of religious rights guaranteed under the Canadian constitution. Polygamy–whereby an individual (man or woman) has more than one spouse–has long been a […]

Remembering the Montreal Massacre

Montreal Massacre

Many writers talk about the story that claws its way out from your core. I have such a story. It haunts me as it haunts women all over the world. On December 6, 1989, 21 years ago today, 25-year-old Marc Lépine entered the University of Montreal engineering school, École Polytechnique, with a Sturm and Ruger […]