We need not fear the voices of our children

When youth take a political stand, it’s inspiring. History is full of such amazing and courageous young people

We need not fear the voices of our childrenNelson Mandela said, “There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way it treats its children.” American news and social media were recently stirred up by a video of children meeting with Sen. Dianne Feinstein. The video went viral. The children represented a youth organization known as the Sunrise Movement, which…

We need to confront the history of slavery in Canada

It’s very easy for Canadians to look self-righteously at Americans and claim the higher moral ground. But it's not necessarily true

We need to confront the history of slavery in CanadaNewly-elected U.S. congressional representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez recently said, “Until America tells the truth about itself, we’re not going to heal.” There’s reason to hope that America will heal. For instance, it’s very encouraging to see several Democratic presidential hopefuls include recognition of the impact of the slave trade and subsequent racist policies against the African-American…

Taking responsibility for past wrongs and lifting a veil of secrecy

Acknowledging that wrong has been done makes it easier to forgive and forgiveness is a powerful step in the long walk to healing

Taking responsibility for past wrongs and lifting a veil of secrecyThe Dalai Lama recently stated, “I feel optimistic about the future because humanity seems to be growing more mature.” He specifically mentioned the increasing importance of inner values, the study of the mind and emotions, the desire for peace, and concern for the environment. What signs are there that the Dalai Lama is correct? A…

Getting the most out of life by being your best

But despite what some marketing may suggest, that doesn't mean winning at all costs

Getting the most out of life by being your bestFor 30 years, Gillette used “The best a man can get” as its tagline. It sounded good and it appealed to the cultural standard of competition – the idea that to be a real man, you needed to be the best, even if it meant to win at all costs. Gillette advertisements showed how men…

The lessons we can all learn from the brave women of the Congo

True power doesn’t rest with the violent, it lies with those of integrity and courage

The lessons we can all learn from the brave women of the CongoCanadian Gen. Romeo Dallaire stated, “At its heart, the Rwandan story is the failure of humanity to heed a call for help from an endangered people.” It would be nice to believe that the world learned its lesson in Rwanda, where nearly one million people were slaughtered in roughly 90 days as the world stood…

The world needs what you have to offer

The goal of education is to stimulate constant growth in knowledge and wisdom in each individual

The world needs what you have to offerIn the world of education, we’re preparing our students for an uncertain future. Some of the jobs of today won’t exist in 20 years. And new jobs are being created all the time, the likes of which we can hardly imagine. Our educational system was primarily designed during the industrial revolution. We needed clerks and…

Music can touch our hearts and give us hope

Playing in harmony is perhaps the most perfect example of human co-operation

Music can touch our hearts and give us hopeLebanese-American writer Kahlil Gibran said, “Music is the language of the spirit. It opens the secret of life, bringing peace, abolishing strife.” If any group has experienced strife over the last several hundred years, it’s the people of Africa. First they had a significant portion of their population dragged into slavery. Then they had their…

It’s foolish to attempt to place a dollar value on human potential

A society is judged by its treatment of its weakest and most vulnerable members

It’s foolish to attempt to place a dollar value on human potentialAs part of my Social Justice 12 class, I have students present their research on a topic of interest to them. These reports always inspire lively and insightful discussions. A subject that seems to consistently draw a great deal of interest is the Nazi genocide of the handicapped. The Nazis determined that many people were…

Power of the Catholic church can tear down walls – even along borders

History shows again and again that the church can mobilize an unstoppable force driven by a desire for love and peace

Power of the Catholic church can tear down walls – even along bordersAs tensions mount in the United States over whether a wall should be built along the Mexican border, little has been written about a force that could well become the determining factor on the issue. Despite its own struggles and coverups, the Catholic church has shown itself to be an insurmountable force when it fully…

The lessons Fred Rogers taught us still resonate

A new documentary, followed by a feature film, bring the spotlight back to Mister Rogers. His legacy is worth rediscovering

The lessons Fred Rogers taught us still resonateFred Rogers said, “Discovering the truth about ourselves is a lifetime’s work, but it’s worth the effort.” Of course, Fred Rogers is best known as the star of the television program Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. He was not only the main character, however, he was responsible for most of the content of a show that ran…
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