I have been listening to and reading the news about the guilty verdict (attempted murder) of Constable Forcillo here in Toronto, in the shooting death of Sammy Yatim. I'm probably the last person to have seen the video, and it struck me how many shots were fired as Sammy lay there on the streetcar … [Continue reading] Police Accountability and What it Tells us About Unconscious Bias
Last year was the first year I remember there being a wide unrest about the "colour" of the Oscars. Hashtags abounded. This year, there has been a stir as well - including an amazing video by Jada Pinkett Smith where she talks about it maybe being time to stop asking to be included, because it makes … [Continue reading] Why the Oscars are White
It's not new concepts that prejudice (pre-judging) is learned (sometimes taught) and that unconscious bias is insidious. Here is a stellar example of both (and the impact on my 3 year old) that made me particularly furious. Recently I was watching an episode of My Little Pony with my daughter. It's … [Continue reading] Prejudice is Taught Early
Yesterday I was in a downtown Toronto office. As soon as the elevator doors opened onto the 7th floor I could already see the Christmas decorations. The person I was meeting with is Jewish. So I asked him as we looked at the Christmas tree, where the Menorah was. He looked a bit uncomfortable for … [Continue reading] Happy Holidays?
In the aftermath of Paris (and Beirut) - any tragic event - many of us ask ourselves what we can do. These situations are so big and so overwhelming that we often also think big - and get overwhelmed. But change can happen in small and meaningful ways. Here are a few things we can all do every day … [Continue reading] What can we do?
An update on the story about the lesbian couple in Utah who were to have their foster child taken away because they are gay: The ruling has been rescinded. Hooray! I'm happy that public pressure and criticism caused a change of ruling. The judge crossed out "belief" that children in same-sex (same … [Continue reading] Happy Endings when we Challenge Bias
If you google "violence around the world on Friday November 13" you will see pages and pages of links on the attacks in Paris. I stopped at 9. But Paris wasn't the only place people were killed on Friday - Beirut, for example, also had a deadly attack. Why didn't we hear as much about … [Continue reading] The violence we see isn’t the only violence there is
There are many things I could write about under this title, but today, I'm going to highlight a decision by a judge in Utah to remove a foster child from a home just because the couple caring for her are lesbians. This is a perfect example of bias - one person's perspective, based on how they see … [Continue reading] Bias and Power