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OP-ED

Op-Ed

I did not expect to have this conversation in the middle of a pandemic. Somehow, I thought that COVID-19’s suspension of our ordinary lives would provide a reprieve. But then, Ahmaud Arbery was killed. The public outcry in response to the video of his killing became the catalyst for a long-overdue conversation with Sébastien, my 12-year-old son.

Picture this. Over the course of several weeks, social media feeds are saturated with images and news of the murders and victimization of Black people. You bristle at the word of them being gunned down in their homes (Breonna Taylor). You watch videos of them being shot in the streets while running, literally, for their lives (Ahmaud Arbery). Closer to home, you read the trial of two off duty police officers who maimed a Black teenager (Dafonte Miller), with a lead pipe will begin, only to be tried in relative silence (the verdict now suspended due to Covid-19 closures).

In light of the scandal that erupted out of the Peel District School Board earlier this year, it is worth re-examining the interaction between the public education system in Ontario and black children. But it also begs the question, what is the point of publicly funded education? Is it to provide a base level of education or is it more so to correct for certain disparities already present in our society, disparities that children themselves are not responsible for?

For the past few months, we have seen the world fall prey to the Coronavirus, otherwise known as COVID-19. Today, there are over 3 million cases globally and over 200,000 deaths. In Canada, there are over 63,000 cases and over 4000 deaths. Since January, we watched China, Italy and the UK battle it with already differing outcomes, and we witnessed it spreading rampantly in the US, especially in “hotspot” coastal states like New York and California. Then in early March, we heard about cases in Canada, as our federal, provincial and regional governments used a seemingly never-ending news cycle to…

Identity is who we are, the way we think about ourselves, the way we are viewed by the world and the characteristics that define us. Elements of our identity are not discovered simultaneously. And for some, searching for identity is challenged by cultural erasure, false narratives and colonization.

The world’s new normal is physical and social distancing, which means staying at home as much as possible. Coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, has overcome the world spreading viciously and faster than any virus or disease our modern world has experienced. Physical distancing is necessary right now, but it’s increased anxiety, social isolation, depression.

43-year-old Kike Lola Odusanya was an entrepreneur, business coach, motivational speaker and author. Her book “My Boss Is Me” was a true reflection of how she lived her life - giving heartfelt advice to any woman ready to listen, about how to find success through entrepreneurship.

All across the world, millions of parents find themselves thrust into the role of ‘teacher’. Yet, let me state unequivocally that you are not your child’s substitute teacher. Your home is not a school and your focus shouldn’t be on ensuring your child doesn’t “fall behind”. This is not the time to compound uncertainty with learning anxiety.

To be able to eradicate racism from academia, we must first know its history. Canada’s very first university, the Universite de Laval in Quebec, was formed after an order from Queen Victoria, who was otherwise known as the Mother of the British Empire. This same empire amassed its wealth through the labour of enslaved African people, Indigenous genocide and the stealing of inhabited lands. In infrastructure alone, the current state of Canadian academia demands a closer look.

Twitter has been buzzing the past few days with the game of musical chairs being played at Flow 93.5FM in Toronto. First, we learned long-time Flow 93.5FM host, Mastermind, was let go, along with Alicia "Ace" West. Then, more news―Blake Carter and Peter Kash would be moving to Mastermind’s former afternoon slot to make room for the popular New York morning show The Breakfast Club, hosted by DJ Envy, Angela Yee, and Charlamagne Tha God.

 

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