Tags: Tanya Talaga

Death-Defying Denial

I had a bad stammer as a teen. And to this day, whenever I’m around a person who has a stammer, I start to stammer a little myself.

So when I saw Joe Biden acting his age in the debate last week, I started to feel very old. My mouth wasn’t agape, but I’m almost sure my voice grew hoarse the next day, my gait slowed, and my memory skipped a beat, as did my heart.

Maybe I was just depressed for the future and angry at how Biden’s staff and family had hidden his condition so well. Watching how Trump and Biden left their podiums after the debate told the whole sorry tale.

Most of us believed that White House aides are constantly assessing the President’s fitness to serve and preparing multiple scenarios for his running in November depending on his strength or frailty. In fact, this assumption is so universal that, like breathing, no one would even think to raise their hand and ask if it was true.

But after the debate, The New York Times did ask just that. Then Dan Gardner compared the stupidity of pitting Biden against Trump in an open debate to that of the planners of the Bay of Pigs invasion back in 1961. It called for CIA-trained soldiers to land on the Cuban coastline, make their way inland and overwhelm Fidel Castro’s regime.

Read on…

Tanya Talaga

The Knowing stands Canada’s past on its head and reshapes it in a way only Tanya Talaga can.

The famed Anishinaabe journalist and Massey Lecturer reveals how all-embracing our mistreatment of our founding people was, and offers a way forward to real reconciliation.

Big new ideas are rarely comfortable, and The Knowing is the big new book of the year.  So it deserves a big hall to hear what’s vital to us all.

“More immigrants, more restaurants”

The New York Times’ food critic Sam Sifton blurted that out at a Toronto symposium back in 2018 when he chaired a panel with three Syrian refugees, all of whom were in the food business.

Sam was comparing Canada’s role in immigration to America’s where, in those mid-Trump years, “immigrant” was a loaded word, as it is now in the run-up to what could be the Trump II era. Back then, Canada took in as many refugees as America, a country with ten times the number of people. So Sam was happy to tout immigrants as a universal solvent here in Canada instead of the universal problem they seemed to be elsewhere back then – and are viewed as today.

But if a week is an infinity in politics, four years is…an infinity to the power of infinity.

Today, a record 55% of Americans view large numbers of immigrants entering the US illegally as a critical threat to the US’s vital interests. In Canada, the issue isn’t illegal immigrants; it’s immigrants, period. 


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