Volume 18, Issue 11– February 27, 2019
The Sputnik, We Orbit Around You. News, pg. 5
Features, pg. 6
SWAP DON’T SHOP A DECLINE IN WITH ECOHAWKS VOLUNTEERS
Laurier students shop and give back at recycling event
recruiting volunteers isn’t as easy as it used to be
Arts pg. 9
MAKING MUSIC AFTER UNI
Laurier alumna speaks on pursuing career in music
Sports, pg. 10
Opinion, pg. 11
LB VOLLEYBALL LOOKING AT THE FINISHES SEASON CURRICULUM
Extramural team shows perseverance through season
Indigenous course should be as mandatory as BF courses
Laurier concludes black history month News pg. 3
SID KAPAHI/DESIGN MANAGER
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY , 2019
THE SPUTNIK STAFF EDITORINCHIEF Dellesia Noah firstname.lastname@example.org
GRAPHICS EDITOR Anuj Kapahi email@example.com
DESIGN MANAGER Sidhant Kapahi firstname.lastname@example.org
PHOTO EDITOR Madelin Moses email@example.com
NEWS EDITOR Now Hiring firstname.lastname@example.org
LEAD PHOTOGRAPHER Mitchell Emmanuel-Kalu email@example.com
ASSISTANT NEWS EDITOR Now Hiring firstname.lastname@example.org
WEB DIRECTOR Alex Vialette email@example.com
FEATURES EDITOR Olivia McLachlan firstname.lastname@example.org
VIDEO EDITOR Jason Morgan email@example.com
ARTS & CULTURE EDITOR Hyrra Chughtai firstname.lastname@example.org
SENIOR COPY EDITOR Gabrielle Lantaigne email@example.com
OPINION EDITOR Avery Mclssac firstname.lastname@example.org
SOCIAL MEDIA COORDINATOR Stephan Reilly Message him on our facebook page!
What did you do over your reading week?
SPORTS EDITOR Jessa Braun email@example.com
WLUSP ADMINISTRATION EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Lakyn Barton firstname.lastname@example.org
BRANTFORD MANAGER OF OPERATIONS Maiya Mistry email@example.com
PRESIDENT & PUBLISHER Terrence Mroz firstname.lastname@example.org FINANCE MANAGER Randy Moore email@example.com
HR MANAGER Paige Bush firstname.lastname@example.org CORPORATE SECRETARY Maiya Mistry
ADVERTISING MANAGER Care Lucas email@example.com
BOARD OF DIRECTORS CHAIR Terrence Mroz
DIRECTOR Rosalind Horne
VICECHAIR Shyenne Mcdonald
TREASURER Garrison Oosterhof
DIRECTOR Hayley Watson
DIRECTOR Aaron Hagey
“I went to a concert” - Jennifer Moore, 3rd year, Digital Media and Journalism
“I went to Montreal” - Marena Silli, 3rd year, Digital Media and Journalism
“I read and studied for midterms” - Creed Bronilla, 5th year, Crim
“I worked all week” - Lina Casale, 2nd year, Community Health
SECRETARY Maiya Mistry
ADVERTISING INQUIRIES All advertising inquiries can be directed to Care Lucas at firstname.lastname@example.org or 519-884-0710 ext. 3560.
THE SPUTNIK IS PUBLISHED BY WILFRID LAURIER UNIVERSITY STUDENT PUBLICATIONS 205 Regina ST. N., Waterloo WLUSP Brantford 206-171 Colborne St. Brantford, ON N3T 2C9 (519) 756-8228 ext. 5948 COLOPHON The Sputnik is a bi-weekly campus newspaper intended to engage and inform the community. Started in 1999, the Sputnik is an editorially independent newspaper published by Wilfrid Laurier University Student Publications, Waterloo, a corporation without share capital. WLUSP is governed by its board of directors. Opinions expressed within the Sputnik are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the editorial board, The Sputnik, WLUSP, WLU or Centra Web Printing. All content appearing in the Sputnik bears the copyrightexpressly to their creator(s) and may not be used without written consent. The Sputnik’s primary font is Fira. We also use Utopia, Crimson and Aileron. The Sputnik is a member of the National NewsMedia Council, which is an independent ethical organization established to deal with editorial concerns. For additional information or to file a complaint, contact email@example.com or call 416-340-1981. The Sputnik circulates bi-weekly. Normal circulation is 1,000. The Sputnik has an obligation to foster freedom of the press and freedom of speech. This obligation is best fulfilled when debate and dissent are encouraged, both in the internal workings of the paper, and through the Sputnik’s contact with the community. The Sputnik will always attempt to do what is right, with fear of neither reprecussion, nor retalliation. The purpose of community press is to act as an agent of social awareness, and so shall conduct the affairs of our newspaper.
“I got my wisdom teeth out” - Alyssa Manuel, 3rd year, Crim
WENDSDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 2019
03 NEWS EDITOR NOW HIRING firstname.lastname@example.org
ASSISTANT NEWS EDITOR NOW HIRING email@example.com
BLACK HISTORY MONTH
Laurier concludes black history month In celebration of black history, SOUL and the Association of Black Students will be hosting their events AARON HAGEY NEWS WRITER FOR THE CORD
To conclude Black History Month at Wilfrid Laurier University, a collection of groups and associations on the Brantford and Waterloo campuses have been raising awareness, recognizing the lived experiences and ongoing struggles of People of Colour (PoC) and celebrating black culture as a whole through a series of on-campus events. Organized by the Association of Black Students (ABS), Centre for Student Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (formerly the DEO) and Laurer Student Opportunities for Unity and Leadership (SOUL), the ABS and SOUL will be hosting individual gala events on Feb. 28 and Mar. 1 respectively. There were events that occurred throughout the month as well, including the “Beating the Odds” conference on Feb. 8, coordinated by the ABS. The event has grown significantly since 2005, so this year marked its thirteenth anniversary. This conference was designed specifically to educate and empower black high school students in the Kitchener-Waterloo region to pursue post-secondary education.
It’s world history -- and therefore we should all participate in not only celebrating black history, but also incorporating it into our daily lives. -Lauren Burrows, Education and Inclusion Coordinator
Ashley Bello, president of the Association of Black Students at Laurier, said that the current drop-out rate for black students in university is 75 per cent — a statistic that the ABS has chosen to focus on during these conferences. This year the event had approximately 205 students — the most thus far — and included speakers and a series of events aimed at education and giving students the tools and resources they need to thrive. “We do workshops, where we talk to students about code-switching, their resumes, we give them networking abilities — and just let them know that they can develop necessary skills at university and it is useful for them to [hopefully] decrease the dropout rate,” Bello said. On Feb. 27 at 6:30 p.m., they will be collaborating with the Centre for Student Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and the Rainbow Centre to present a film screening of Moonlight, the 2016 AcademyAward-winning film about black identity and masculinity. The night will also include a general discussion surrounding the film to facilitate conversation surround its significance. On Mar. 1, the ABS will be putting on its annual culture show, held in The Turret on the Waterloo campus and beginning shortly after doors open 6:00 p.m. The night will be celebrating the various cultures of black students
within Laurier and their communities through a series of performances, featuring dancers, singers, spoken word performances and fashion shows, in which people will model different cultural outfits. “It’s just a fun night to celebrate cultures in general here on our campus because I feel like a lot of the time, we do feel like a minority on campus — so we want to have a day to celebrate that,” Bello said. For Bello and others, being recognized on a campus where, as a minority group, they often feel invisible, is one of the main reasons why Black History Month is so important. Being recognized and supported is also one of the reasons why she chose to join ABS in the first place. “It helped me a lot with building my identity on this campus; so seeing what it did for me, I wanted to be a part of the group of people that creates that experience for someone else,” Bello said. “I really wanted to feel like I was personally doing something or leaving a mark on this campus ... I know how ABS made me feel and it became something that made me feel like I had a community on campus.” Black History Month gives marginalized individuals, especially students, a chance to celebrate and share knowledge about the large contributions the black community has offered the world, which empowers them to better acknowledge their own value and power in society. “A lot of times, we focus on the oppression that we face — which, again, is a very serious thing that a lot of us do want to talk about. But I think it’s important that we do focus on how far we’ve gotten and remember to celebrate our achievements in general,” Bello said. Black History Month offers organizations like ABS two major benefits: it gives them the chance to feel recognized on campus, especially with the activities and events they host, as well as letting them celebrate who they are, their differences and similarities. Furthermore, it offers students like Bello the chance to learn about under-discussed or represented aspects of education, such as influential black figures and their contributions to history. Lauren Burrows, education and inclusion coordinator at Brantford for the Centre for Student Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, echoes these sentiments, stating that “black history is our history — black history is Canadian history.” “It’s world history — and therefore we should all participate in not only celebrating and learning about black history, but also incorporating that into our daily lives and that we all have shared histories and futures,” Burrows said. However, the month is not without its misconceptions or controversy. One of the most common phrases when topics like Black History Month are discussed, is the often-echoed question: “What about ‘White History Month’?” “The problem with that,” Bello said, “is that it’s one of those things that isn’t necessary.” “I like to relate it back to BET [Black Entertainment Television]. That network exists because we weren’t being welcomed on other networks or we didn’t feel com-
Last year’s cultural gala hosted by SOUL for black history month.
Fashion show portion at last year’s cultural gala hosted by SOUL for black history month.
pletely represented on other networks, so that became something that was necessary,” she said. For those who are not PoC or a part of a marginalized group, but wish to offer their support, Bello says that one of the most important things that can be done is listening, taking their experiences in — and not discrediting them. Understanding and acknowledging your privilege and not actively contributing to the problem, while remembering these guidelines, can help make you a much more effective ally. “A lot of times, people want to debate with you, what they’ve seen or how they feel, when a lot of the time you can get your answer straight up if you just listen to what people are telling you, their experiences, the way that they’re experiencing them,” Bello said. “Understand that, although it may not be something you see [or] that you are directly a part of, don’t try to make their experiences less real than they are.” On Tuesday, Feb. 26, through the collaborative efforts of Lau-
rier’s Centre for Student Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and the University of Guelph’s Office of Intercultural Affairs, the Guelph campus hosted “Freedom is a Constant Struggle: A Talk with Angela Davis.” “Angela Davis is a leader in critical feminist and racial justice thought and is an educator who has been working to decriminalize communities that are experiencing poverty and racial discrimination,” said Lauren Burrows, education and inclusion coordinator at Brantford for the Centre for Student Equity, Diversity and Inclusion. The event discussed the idea of cultivating personal resilience in a global community, emphasizing the power of building communities in the face of injustice and discrimination. However, the ABS isn’t the only organization that will be offering events this month. SOUL, in Brantford, will be having its own Black History Month gala, “This Is Us,” on Feb. 28 at 8 pm, which plans to include a series of performances, talks, a fashion show and art and
will be focussing on the theme of civil rights, empowerment, progress and solidarity. Burrows believes that when it comes to understanding Black History Month from a non-marginalized perspective, systems of oppression that affect black communities also impact other communities which have experienced violence. “For example, poverty is something that disproportionately impacts People of Colour, but it also impacts people who aren’t … and so I would say that our issues are all connected and that it's really proof for us to do solidarity work in order to achieve liberation around the kinds of harm we all experience,” Burrows said. What is most important for this month, Burrows claims, is the active practice of working to promote solidarity and unity between minority communities who feel marginalized, empower them and encourage them to achieve collective liberation.
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 2019
Sheltering Brantford Resources can still be accessed by the city’s most vulnerable JESSA BRAUN SPORTS EDITOR
The polar vortex and ice storms 2019 has been throwing at Brantford have been hard enough for everyone in the city; it makes some wonder what people do when they can’t afford a roof over their head. Affordable housing is the biggest and most expensive struggle for those who rely on social services. The average monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Brantford is $900.
Affordable housing is a crisis across the country and there really is no panacea for the city to fully address all local affordable housing needs. -Maria Visocchi, Director of Community Engagement
“Affordable housing is a crisis across the country and there really is no panacea for the city to fully address all local affordable housing needs,” Maria Visocchi, the City of Brantford’s director of community engagement, said in
an email. “But we do look for innovative tools to add to our toolbox such as local portable housing benefits which target households from the waitlist that are currently adequately housed but just need some help with affordability.” For a single person, Ontario Works (OW) and Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) provide housing grants of only $390 and $497 respectively. There are currently over 1700 families on a wait list for housing rent rates that are catered to their income. Some households are going to wait up to nine years. Recently, Brantford added 57 units of housing for seniors, which are known as John Noble Apartments. By March 2020, Brantford is expecting to complete 30 units of new supportive housing at Marlene Ave. There is a system in place to financially assist those who are on the wait list and are currently housed but struggle to pay rent. Brantford, like most Ontario municipalities, relies heavily on provincial and federal funding, as building affordable rental housing is too expensive to rely solely on the city. Brantford has multiple organizations that provide shelter and services to the homeless population in Brantford and surrounding areas. One of those organizations is
Rosewood House on Nelson Street, which provides emergency shelter services for the homeless. There is also Brantford Native Housing that gives shelter to Indigenous peoples who are of low income.
There are currently over 1700 families on a wait list for housing rent rates that are catered to their income. Some households are going to wait up to nine years. -Jessa Braun, Sports Editor
Another program is Soup for the Soul at St. Andrew’s Church right on campus in Downtown Brantford. The program, which runs Monday and Thursday 3:00-5:00 p.m., gives homeless people nutritious meals and a support system. The Salvation Army Booth Centre provides a hostel shelter for men. The service includes meals, on-site counselling and emergency accommodations, such as grocery assistance. Nova Vita Domestic Prevention Services takes in women and their children and provides them with a safe, comfortable place to live.
Rosewood House, emergency shelter housing on Nelson Street.
Game design ends partership with Conestoga Gaming will not stop at Laurier, but its partnership with Conestoga has reached the end
SCOTT MAXWELL CONTRIBUTOR
A four year relationship between the game design & development program and Conestoga College has come to an end, as the program has announced they are dropping the college from teaching classes for them in mid-January. “We learned that Conestoga had decided to launch a competing game design program, and felt it was a conflict of interest to have them continuing to teach classes in our program,” said Scott Nicholson, the game design & development program coordinator. Conestoga had been a part of the program since it first started in the 2015-2016 school term, providing a more hands-on approach to the students on top of the theory learned in the university level
classes. However, these new changes will
We will have more control in ensuring content in the technical classes supports content in our studio and theoretical classes. -Scott Nicholson, Program Coordinator
allow for more focus on what Laurier -- and Nicholson -- want the students to take from the program. “We will have more control in ensuring content in the technical
classes supports content in our studio and theoretical classes,” said Nicholson. “The most significant change is that we will ensure that assignments in the technical classes are focused on critical design and pro-social games. Conestoga's focus was on recreational games, so their class assignments did not always match with what students were doing in other Laurier classes.” Luckily for Nicholson, his students seem to be on the same page. “I'm really happy that we are dropping Conestoga from the GDD,” said a second-year student in the program. “The classes we have planned to replace them should be far more useful than what Conestoga provided for us.” “The Conestoga courses seemed to not be working with Laurier on
designing the course material, so many of the courses weren't covering new material,” they continued. “Having them replaced should better my learning experiences and chances to grow my knowledge.” “It's a great idea,” said Paris Lad, a third year student in the program, “The courses are very hands-on, making them great GPA boosters, and having dedicated Laurier profs that will be here for us more than once a week makes it much easier to ask questions.” However, this will have a greater impact on the oncoming students, and the first and second year students than it will the third or fourth year students, as GDD students had no Conestoga courses in their fourth year. So, for Lad, who is finishing up his third year this semester, this change has almost no impact on
him. “I wish it happened earlier,” said Lad, “since the courses are no longer pass/fail and we actually get a letter grade, it actually could have boosted my GPA instead of just adding a credit.” But the second year students will see the changes unfold before them next year, and there’s not a whole lot about Conestoga that they’re going to miss. For Nicholson, it’s a change that allows him to have more control over what his students are taught in the program. For the students, it’s a change that allows them to have more dedicated professors, and more classes that teach the skills that they think they’ll need in the industry when school is in their rear-view mirrors.
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 2019
Brantford public library reaches135 years
After 135 years, the public library remains an essiential historical landmark to the city of Brantford GABRIELLE LANTAIGNE COPY EDITOR
This year, the Brantford Public Library celebrates its 135th anniversary, and the library staff is hard at work planning events and activities to promote the occasion. “I think any opportunity to really get to share the library’s story is what we’re going for,” says CEO and Chief Librarian Rae-Lynne Aramburo. “135 isn’t a magic number per se, but it’s just another opportunity for us to remind our community the role that we’ve played over the years and how that’s changed and how it’s continuing to change.” “To track that history, it’s important because it tells the story of the community more than it does of the institution really,” says James Clark, marketing manager at the library. According to historical documentation provided by the Brantford Public Library, Dr. Charles Duncombe started the Brantford Mechanics Institute in 1836. The Institute was located in a small basement and had about 100 books. Working people could pay a small fee to go there and read books and newspapers. The Institute closed the following year, however, after Dr. Duncombe and the other board members were forced to flee the country because they had been on the losing side of the Rebellion of 1837. It was re-opened several years later. In March 1882, the Ontario government passed legislation that permitted municipalities to establish libraries that were open to everybody.
Two years later, the Brantford city council passed a bylaw to establish one of its own, and the Brantford Mechanics Institute became the Brantford Free Library. It was not until 1902 that County Court Judge Alexander David Hardy wrote to Andrew Carnegie asking for a grant to build a new library in Brantford. Carnegie had made a lot of money working in the steel industry, and was donating money to certain North American cities to build libraries. Since its creation, the library had been housed in many different locations across the city.
The world needs places where people can come together, probably even more in this age where we rely on our technologies to connect with people. -Rae-Lynn Aramburo, CEO and Chief Librarian
MADELIN MOSES/PHOTO EDITOR
The Brantford Public Library has continued to transform its resource and adapt its services with the changing times.
A few months later, Carnegie’s secretary confirmed that Brantford would be receiving $30,000 to build its new library. The cornerstone of the new building was laid in December of that same year. The Carnegie building was completed and opened to the public in 1904. This building housed the library for 85 years. Due to a growing need for space and a lack of parking, however, the city purchased an empty Woolco store downtown for $1.9 million in
1989. The building was renovated to accommodate the library. In 1992, the new Brantford Public Library opened at 173 Colborne Street, where it is still located today. In 2015, the library received funding though the Canada 150 grant to redesign the building’s front façade, and the renovations were completed in 2018. Looking back at the library’s history, Aramburo says: “I think what the core of what the library is and has always been continues, but I think it’s the types of resources
are changing. We’ve always been about access to information and resources, and we still are – it’s just the channels of [that] information and the types of resources – there’s so many more options than there used to be.” In addition to the eBooks, audiobooks, and music and movie streaming services that the library currently offers, Aramburo says they are even looking to start lending out WiFi hotspots within the coming year. Despite all of the digital options available, Aramburo also empha-
sizes the value of having a physical space for the community to enjoy. “The world needs places where people can come together, probably even more in this age where we rely on our technologies to connect with people,” she says. “When you think of it, it’s not a commercial place,” says Clark. “If you go to the mall and you walk around, you kind of have to buy something, or if you go to a coffee shop you have to buy a coffee. Where here you can just come and let that go and just do whatever you want.”
Swap Don’t Shop with EcoHawks
Laurier students were able to participate in a more sustainable shopping experience, as well as give back BRITTANY LEGAULT CONTRIBUTOR
For an entire week, EcoHawks and LSPIRG joined forces to host the Swap Don’t Shop event at Laurier Brantford. Students donated clothing or accessories that they were not using anymore, and could take something else that sparked their interest.
It’s more sustainable in that way so that it’s not like you’re ﬁlling up a landﬁll with a lot of these clothes -- and you get to save money in return. -Tori Reddings, EcoHawks member
“It’s more sustainable in that way so that it’s not like you’re going out and filling up a landfill with all of these clothes— and you get to save some money in return,” said Tori Reddings of EcoHawks. EcoHawks and LSPIRG aim to create a more eco-friendly campus, which is why this event
promotes the reduction of waste and challenges consumerism. The donated items had to be in great condition – as if they were being gifted to a family member or a close friend. Items that were in poor condition were rejected. Larger items also weren’t accepted, because most students who stopped by the swap were on their way to class or walking home
so things had to be small enough to carry. Four overflowing tables of donated clothing and other household accessories could be seen by both students and staff passing through the busy lobby. A few “ooh”s and “ahh”s could be heard throughout the RCW lobby, and many students left with a few “newish” pieces.
“My room is filled with clothes that don’t fit me anymore, but I haven’t had time to donate them. So this was definitely a good opportunity to get rid of some junk,” said Adrianna Kriston, a Laurier student. Lindsay Martell, another curious student, made her way to the table with two grocery bags filled with old clothes.
“I just want it gone! I don’t even want anything in return. I’m just glad that someone can benefit from the things I don’t use anymore,” said Martell. More than 100 items of clothing were donated, as well as many books and common household accessories like kettles and coasters. “There is no limit to how much you take because we have had such a great turnout, more people are donating than taking,” said Reddings. By the end of the week, there were still so many items left on the tables. But the group had other plans for them. “Half of the donations are sent to Why Not Youth Centres while the other half is sent to Laurier’s Waterloo Campus because they are doing 5 days for homeless. Once that’s over and if there are any donations left, then they will donate the items to a shelter,” said Kris Gilmore, another EcoHawks representative. Regardless of the turnout, items will not be put to waste and can be reused by someone in need. Students could drop off donations at the EcoHawks office before the event kicked off in exchange for a ticket that they could use to pick something up at the swap. But students could also bring in donations the day of the swap.
FEATURES EDITOR/OLIVIA MCLACHLAN
The decline of volunteer engagement Non-profits like the St. John Ambulance therapy dog program suffer when volunteerism decreases
THE SIMCOE REFORMER
Former volunteer Judy Gillbert-Lindsay and her partner Dave Nakonechny with their two dogs Tigger and Mandy at a Alzheimer Society event. DELLESIA NOAH EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
All Judy Gilbert-Lindsay had to do was put on the red shirt and her dogs would wag their tails with excitement. Unfortunately for both her and her dogs, though, Gilbert-Lindsay had to retire the red shirt to the back of her closet. May 2018, Gilbert-Lindsay decided to step down from her position as division co-ordinator of Brant-Haldimand-Norfolk County for the St. John Ambulance therapy dog program.
There wasn’t a year when we didn’t do over 100 hours of volunteering; the dogs had 60 to 70 visits a piece. -Judy Gillbert-Lindsay, Former Co-ordinator
The program is dedicated to relieving stress and anxiety in people, from elderly folks living with Alzheimer's to students gearing up for exams to young children learning how to read. “There wasn’t a year where we didn’t do over 100 hours of volunteering; the dogs had 60 to 70 visits apiece,” said Gilbert-Lindsay. Gilbert-Lindsay had been volunteering with the St. John Ambulance therapy dog program for the past 10 years, five of which
were as a volunteer handler before stepping into the leadership role of co-ordinator. There was a host of reasons why Gilbert-Lindsay felt that she had to take a step back from co-ordinator position, but ultimately it was because her dogs Tigger and Mandy are aging. Since May 2018, St. John Ambulance has not yet found a person to fill the position in this division -- despite interviewing various applicants. Until they can find a volunteer to step into the co-ordinator position, the therapy dog program at Brant-Haldimand-Norfolk County has been suspended until further notice. Christina Klassen, branch manager at St. John Ambulance, is upset that the division is being suspended, but she is hopeful that they will eventually fill the position. “It is difficult to fill the leadership position because it is a volunteer position. It does take quite a bit of time,” Klassen said. “We’ll continue to look for someone to fill it and there will be someone who will fill it.” When speaking about their experiences with the therapy dog program both Klassen and Gilbert-Lindsay struggled not to get emotional. Both have had experience as volunteers for the organization before working their way up to leadership positions. Gilbert-Lindsay said that there is always something good that comes out of every visit, from every nursing home to every school. “The activity co-ordinators in the places know the day their coming and they say: ‘this person is in the
room not able to come out, we’d like you to call on them and it’s an amazing experience for both you and the dog’,” Gilbert-Lindsay said. Klassen shared the sentiment that there are amazing stories that come out of the therapy dog program every day. “We have dogs that go to school … and they sit with kids that have some difficulty reading and the kids get to read to the dogs one-onone in a quiet area of the school and it helps these kids to learn and feel more confident reading out loud,” said Klassen.
It’s amazing it truly is. It’s sad that we have to do this but you know, it’s part of volunteering . -Christine Klassen, Branch Manager at St. John Ambulance
Klassen has said that the program tries to foster an environment that is both encouraging and non-judgemental for the kids. “It’s amazing, it truly is. It’s sad that we have to do this but you know, it’s part of volunteering,” Klassen said about the division program being suspended. Situations like these are a harsh reality for organizations that depend on the commitment of volunteers to do the work that is so greatly needed. “Especially with changes in gov-
ernment and with the decrease in financial resources in not-for-profits, they’re relying more and more on volunteers to keep the program and services going,” said Kerri Emberlin, team leader of volunteer engagement at Alzheimer Society for Brant-Haldimand-NorfolkHamilton. These divisions at the Alzheimer Society and at the St. John Ambulance therapy dog program have regularly collaborated on the Alzheimer’s walk together and both have experienced a dip in volunteer turnout and initiative at their own respective organizations. Emberlin, Klassen and GilbertLindsay all agree that there is a lot that goes into volunteering these days. “It’s a balance between having the appropriate staffing resources as well as engaging the right volunteers with the right skill sets and experiences to keep those programs up and running,” said Emberlin. Emberlin described the wide variety of programs and services that the Alzheimer's Society provides and the unique journey it takes to find the right person with the right skill set for the job. “We run an exercise program and we need volunteers with some rec experience,” said Emberlin. “We need office volunteers but office volunteers now versus office volunteers 20 years ago would typically have paper files that would be kept up, but now we need people with computer skills because we operate off of databases and computer programs now.” Klassen compares what it first took for her to get a volunteer position at St. John’s back when she was first applying and what it
takes now. “I was a volunteer here many many years ago and I just walked in and said: ‘hi, i’d like to volunteer here’ and they were like ‘great, we’d love to have you’ and that’s it. It’s definitely not like that anymore,” Klassen said. The significance of the volunteer has shifted from what it was in previous decades.
It’s a balance between having the appropriate stafﬁng resources as well as engaging the right volunteers with the right skill sets. -Kerri Emberlin, Team Leader of Volunteer Engagement
Whereas volunteers in the past could just walk in and get a job with an organization, there are many criteria that individuals now have to meet. Volunteers go through thorough background checks and fulfill organizations’ specific criteria. Each of Gilbert-Lindsay’s dogs had to go through two evaluations to meet St. John’s criteria for the therapy dog program before they got accepted into the program. Despite having to step down from the co-ordinator position, Gilbert-Lindsay has said that she has had a great time volunteering for the past 10 years. “They were awesome volunteers, they enjoyed the work they were doing and they had excellent dogs.”
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 27,2019
Your money, your choice to support
How ancillary fees support student experioences and resources and why the opt-out may be harmful
OLIVIA MACLACHLAN FEATURES EDITOR
With all the changes to OSAP that Doug Ford’s administration made, it is hard to keep up and understand how the changes affect you and your education. This editorial will address one of the major concerns for any student involved in on-campus clubs, councils and organizations. This concern is with the ancillary fees you see on your tuition statement. These are any fees that do not go toward your classes but rather Oweek, clubs and events the school wants to run. With Ford’s changes to OSAP, any fees not deemed mandatory by the school are optional for students to pay, similar to how Laurier Brantford handles the health and dental insurance for students. You can choose to pay into it to use it during your time at Laurier or you can opt-out.
They inﬂuence what events are put on, what opportunities are open to you and what change is inspired by your community.
will attend because they represent what the student body values. Think about what school would mean to you if you did not see your values reflected within it. Additionally, consider how the student experience differs from person to person. Some may need more support than others and more resources than others. At any given time, a student may need extra support through the services that ancillary fees pay for at this school. Students may find that these services will become inadequate if every student can choose to opt-out of them. To put things in perspective and to help paint a picture for you, services that offer support under Students’ Union, services that provide such as the student life levy, or services that inform and educate such as Laurier Students Public Interest Research Group (LSPIRG) are now at risk of being brushed off as non-mandatory, and therefore a waste of money. Recently there were protests that took place in Brantford, all across Ontario. We may not be advocating peace and love at the moment but we are asking our government to look after us. We are asking that our futures be protected and that
-Olivia McLachlan, Features Editor
While any student understands that paying for classes and textbooks is a burden on its own, there are some things to take into consideration when choosing what your invoice will list. These fees not only affect you. They go towards clubs, groups and organizations that may inforrm, educate and provide for students. These groups drastically shape one’s university experience even if one is not involved with them. They influence what events are put on, what opportunities are open to you and what change is inspired by your community. Schools competitively recruit new students based on what extra curricular programs they run and what other services they can provide that will enhance their students’ experiences. Along with athletics, these extra-curriculars influence which school a student
At any given time a student may need extra support through the services that ancillary fees pay for at this school. -Olivia McLachlan, Features Editor
our peers be thought of. Keep in mind that school is more than just school. Laurier Brantford, and every other university campus, is a place to expand your horizons, explore your interests and further your understanding of many significant issues in today’s world. This is not intended to be a complaint against the school or the Ontario government as a whole. The intention of this editorial is to share a student’s thoughts on the decision to change OSAP rules and
to possibly start a new conversation about it. We make it a point by using our money to spend it on things that we value and will be of use to us. These fees are one way students vote for what is important to them. If we want to have the full student experience and be offered the
If we want to have the full student experience and be offered the same resources that will help support us, it comes at a price. -Olivia McLachlan, Features Editor
same resources that will help support us, it comes at a price. Pay the ancillary fees you want to pay, get the most out of your money. Involve yourself in these groups, spark change, use your voice to make the school a wellrounded and interesting place for everyone. Enter every conversation, debate, argument with an open mind, try to look at politics and society in a new light. Change what you do not like. By doing what is best for yourself and choosing where your money and interest go, you are giving many students the chance to explore what our campus has to offer. Think critically about this situation from all angles. Yes, the government is letting students opt-out of non-mandatory fees, but what will the school do in response? Are students the main concern in this issue? Are we being fought for? The choice to opt-out of ancillary fees leaves other students who may not have the capabilities to provide these services for themselves with less. Your money your choice. You do not have to take care of other people. You are more than allowed to take care of yourself and your wallet. However, we speak with our wallet and that shapes our experiences on this campus.
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 2019 ARTS & CULTURE EDITOR HYRRA CHUGHTAI firstname.lastname@example.org
The War On Stupid comes to Brantford Comedians -- Ed the Sock and Red -- make their way to Club NV on March 8th for their War on Stupid tour
ALEX VIALETTE/WEB MANAGER
HYRRA CHUGHTAI ARTS AND CULTURE EDITOR
Imagine yourself sitting on the couch: It’s late at night sometime in the 90s to early 2000s, and you’re scrolling through channels trying to find something entertaining to watch – something that’ll really make you laugh. There are unlimited TV shows and channels that are true to what they say they are. But the best part is that the shows are hardly censored. It was a time when late-night shows were starting to thrive and some of the best hosts were getting their start. One example of this was “Ed and Red’s Night Party” on what used to be called MuchMusic: an angry sock puppet with a cigar in his mouth speaking his mind to his co-host, Red. Since the decline of MuchMusic – now called Much – and their good TV shows, Ed and Red have been scrapped. However, they have now taken it upon themselves to go on tour.
What people speak out on the internet and what people want to laugh at the world is really different -Liana Kerzner, Comedian
The tour, called The War on Stupid includes a performance date in Brantford on March 8 at Club NV. Steven and Liana Kerzner are
the comedians behind Ed and Red. The tour started out in western Canada first, where Ed the Sock realized there was something missing from his show and called on his co-host Red to continue the eastern leg of the tour with him. Liana, now predominantly a YouTuber, says performing for an audience in real life is a completely different than online. “What people speak out on the internet and what people want to laugh at the world is really different. It's kind of refreshing to be able to make jokes about ‘Transformers’ cartoons but it'll become instant culture war because people are right in front of you,” said Liana. The name for the tour, The War on Stupid, conveys much more of a politically direct approach. Steven Kerzner comes from a political background, having run for school trustee and for the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario. He has since changed his views and now considers them to be more centre-left. Carrying his politics into his comedy as Ed has become a way for him to create more dialogue, which he claims is needed due to the cultural oversensitivity when it comes to jokes. “Nowadays people get offended on behalf of other people, and is there anything more patronizing or colonial than getting offended on behalf of a group that you're not actually a part of?” asked Kerzner. To Liana, it seems as though most of the good comedy on TV started to die off in the early 2000s. Throughout their time on “Ed and Red’s Night Party”, they say there were only ever two complaints. In today’s online culture on sites such as Twitter, any little thing can
be blown out of proportion, and a sort of “cancel culture” has started where there is a complaint every time someone speaks their mind. “When the late-night show in the 90s started rising, that was the last wave of nature political correctness…the very minute you’re from some identifiable group and say something problematic you're totally thrown over the side, you're suddenly not the victim anymore, they can't use you anymore…” said Liana.
Nowadays people get offended on behalf of other people and is there anything more patronizing or colonial... -Steven Kerzner, Comedian
Censorship doesn’t apply equally to every form of media. Showing violence on the six o’clock news is something that people seem to be perfectly fine with, but when someone uses their words, everyone feels the need to cut that person out. “It's so weird that the one thing that seems to be okay by everybody for some reason is brutal violence,” said Liana. Often, people who have been censored or “cancelled” slowly move out of the public eye or start create much “safer” content, but that shouldn’t always have to be the case. There is a difference between being offensive and making jokes that play on people’s empathy,
and to Liana, the only way we can make people understand that and become comfortable with it is by continuing to keep doing it. “…Unfortunately, you got to keep doing it and you got to take the hit and I've had to deal with that because there are still people who are afraid of a woman with a sense of humor…” said Liana. By going on the road, the duo can have and create a new kind of experience for themselves, where they don’t necessarily have to be worried about being censored. There it is much more to it than their experience, though: it’s also about creating conversations and allowing the show to run based on what is happening then and there. “Every show takes its own shape. We know what we want to talk about, we have topics, we have material to fill in two and half hours, but we don't take two-and-half hours, so we got to figure out what we are going to do. A lot of it is based on [where] the conversation takes us with the audience,” said Kerzner.
...there are still people who are afraid of a woman with a sense of humor...
-Liana Kerzner, Comedian
Having gotten their start on TV, Steve and Liana feel the need to be able to fill spaces on different media platforms. As many have probably seen, the
prevalence of comedy specials is rising on Netflix. Ken Jeong had recently had his first Netflix special. Earlier this year we saw Hasan Minaj’s very own show where he talked about politically driven topics mixed them with comedy. As a Canadian, Liana believes that there are a lot of artists creating content in Canada but that there are not enough Canadians consuming the content.
I love the shows who are off beat...I ﬁnd that the audiences are more comfortable with just laughing at stuff... -Liana Kerzner, Comedian
“…They are making the projects in Canada they are not really partnering with people in Canada right now but absolutely, that's another audience and ideally in the current media... the ideal thing is to be everywhere…” she said. With their Brantford show slowly approaching, the duo is looking forward to the small-town show. Liana believes that the smaller shows make the best experiences, even though she aims to create a unique experience for each audience. “I love the [shows that] are off the beat... because I find that the audiences are more comfortable with just laughing at stuff. They come not to be impressed, like dance monkey dance, they come to have a good time,” she said.
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 2019
ARTS & CULTURE
Creating a career in music after university
Chandler Berardi talks believing in her music and in herself HYRRA CHUGHTAI ARTS AND CULTURE EDITOR
Chandler Berardi has began to build a name for herself in Brantford.
Going into university, some of us feel dead-set on what we want to do with our lives. Even if it isn’t completely clear, you often have an idea of what career you may want to get into and where you’d like to eventually work or even possibly live. What I didn’t realize until later in my years at Laurier is that you can change your mind and diverge from what you originally had planned on doing. It seems very scary to even think about, I know, and seeing others striving in their careers that relate to their degrees is very intimidating. Luckily, after talking to a few people it seems as though following a different path than what you originally intended on doing is entirely normal. In fact, for Laurier alumna Chandler Berardi, music, and not journalism, ended up being her calling. “My whole life revolved around music and I knew that it was definitely something I wanted to keep in my life because if I didn't then I feel like I'd be giving a up a part of myself,” said Berardi. Having friends in the music scene, she was exposed to a lot of the business side of the music industry. Her first gig was in Paris, ON when she was sixteen. In high school, many 16 yearolds would try to find a retail job to save up for school, but Berardi decided to create music and play shows instead. Common places of part-time employment like Tim Hortons and McDonalds didn’t interest her as much as handing out her CDs to local coffee shops and record stores and planning where to play next. Throughout her high school career, Berardi was always stuck on planning what she wanted to do
after she graduated. She wanted something in her back pocket as a safety net. With her options limited to writing and the arts, Berardi wanted to find a good middle ground. “I had taken a couple of journalism courses in high school... Journalism will give me the chance to write and talk to people and taking what they tell me and turning it into a story...” said Berardi. To her, creating a story in journalistic writing was like writing stories in her music.
There are times where I am second guessing and being like 'should I be looking for something in my ﬁeld? -Chandler Berardi, Musician
Berardi says there are skills that she learned in journalism school that have helped her in her music career today, such as being able to track down and talking to people freely. As it has become increasingly easy for this generation to create music from just about anywhere, we’ve seen numerous developing artists post their music to social media and eventually become hugely successful. We’ve seen this happen to artists like Halsey, Brockhampton and even Troye Sivan. To Berardi, now seems like the perfect time to put more of her music and for people to see her talent. “I think it's a really cool thing... I play my guitar, I do a lot of covers
just literally in my dining room in my house. I'll sit down and face the wall because there is good acoustics in there and do little clips of stuff. I found that it's almost exciting because it's organic, it's all real, it's not produced, I'm not in a studio,” said Berardi. But despite her passion, there always seems to be that creeping doubt. As it can be for anyone in a creative field, it can sometimes feel hopeless when more people aren’t appreciating your work. It can create a negative mindset and even drive you away from what you once believed in. As a university graduate, Berardi sees most of her friends creating a path with their degrees, which creates a lot of questions for her. “There are times where I am second-guessing and being like, 'should I be looking for something in my field? Should I be getting that typical nine-to-five job and looking for a home or is it okay to be where I am and have a different path than the typical twenty-threeyear-old?” said Berardi. At the end of the day, happiness is what Berardi strives for – whether that is by using her degree or creating music. She wants to live a non-regretful life, not being afraid of failing or afraid to reach further than what she is comfortable with. Confidence is key, and making people listen to her or even give her a chance is something that she wants to work towards. For anyone else who wants to pursue their hobbies and passions, the easiest way is to just do it, says Berardi. Try now or live in full regret. Berardi always carries a piece of her mother’s advice with her: “The universe doesn't give you a gift for no reason... [so there is] no reason why you can't do it”
Annual chili cook-off returns to Brantford
Residents of Brantford gathered downtown to eat chili, while vendors hoped to be voted the best of the best HYRRA CHUGHTAI ARTS AND CULTURE EDITOR
The Chili Willy Cook-Off happening in Harmony Square on Feb 24 has had many residents and contenders looking forward to the event since it was first announced. With the weather going to the extremes and even facing a polar vortex, there isn’t anything better for Brantford locals than experiencing a nice warm bowl of chili and some friendly competition. Hosted by the City of Brantford and Strodes BBQ and Deli, contenders are vying for the title of Brantford’s best bowl of chili. With a $5 entrance fee, residents can try as much chili as they can handle and can vote for their favourite chili to be the winner. Tom Mercante, the owner of Mercasa Little Italy Eatery, has been attending the chili cook-off every year. Thanks to his newly opened restaurant, this year he gets to be contender. As the cook-off is wide-
ly advertised, Mercante is looking forward to the new customers that may come from the event.
[It's a] great community event that will give our new resturant some exposure
-Tom Mercante, Owner of Mercasa
“[It’s a] great community event that will give our new restaurant some exposure,” said Mercante. But the Chili Willy Cook-Cff isn’t only about the chili itself: all proceeds will go towards having free events and programs in Harmony Square, like Frosty Fest, which we had earlier in February.
A lot goes into planning for this event: the strategy around perfecting the chili recipe, deciding who is going to serve the chili to the people and having an execution plan that creates a great experience for the people as well. “We have been preparing some test recipes, organizing our equipment, confirming staff and constructing a production and execution plan,” said Mercante. With over 11 contenders looking to claim the best chili in Brantford, Mercante said that isn’t the most important thing about the chili competition. Being able to give back to the community and to show your support for people to come out and enjoy events together is important for everyone to come together, and chili is just one the ways to do that successfully.
ALEX VIALETTE/WEB MANAGER
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 2019 SPORTS EDITOR JESSA BRAUN email@example.com
Laurier alumni shining in the sports world Big names in sports got their start right here in the small gyms of the Laurier athletics department HANNAH KASTEIN SPORTS WRITER
Wilfrid Laurier has a lot of important history, especially when it comes to its accomplishments in sports. There have been a lot of students who have played for Laurier and then went on to accomplish even greater things in sports. Here is a look at some of Laurier’s biggest star athletes so far. Paul Bennett: Paul Bennett attended Wilfrid Laurier University and played for the football team in 1975 and 1976. He was a hard-hitting and fierce punt returner and the Toronto Argonauts saw his potential when they drafted him in the 1977 CFL draft. He is currently a member of the Canadian Football Hall of Fame and won a Grey Cup with Hamilton in 1986. He won the CFL’s Most Outstanding Canadian Award in 1983 and 1985 and the James P. McCaffrey Trophy in 1985. Bennett would play for Toronto from 1977-1979 and then again in 1984 after playing for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 1980-1983. In 1984 Bennett was traded to the Hamilton Tiger-Cats where he would play till he retired in 1987. When he retired he had the CFL record in return yards, punt return carries, and interception return
yards. Rod Connop: Connop played for the Laurier Men’s football team in 1981 and was drafted 9th overall in the 1982 CFL daft. He spent his whole career with the Edmonton Eskimos as an offensive lineman and retired in 1997. He won the Grey Cup with the Eskimos in 1982, 1987, and 1983 and was inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame in 2005. Connop was named a CFL All-Star six times and won the CFL’s Most Outstanding Offensive Lineman Award in 1989. Jenna Lambert: Laurier alumnus Jenna Lambert was the first female with a physical disability to swim across Lake Ontario. She was only 15 at the time. She started in Baird Point, New York on July 18 and ended in Lake Ontario Park in Kingston Ontario, a total of 34 kilometers. Lambert lives with cerebral palsy, which made it impossible to use her legs during the swim. On top of this, she faced strong winds that made the swim take an extra 8 hours than expected. She is also a marathon swimmer and is swimming as part of Team Canada. Cheryl Pounder: Pounder was the captain of the
Wilfrid Laurier ice hockey team and later went on to play defence of the Mississauga Chiefs. Pounder represented Canada in the 2002 and 2006 Winter Olympic Games where she won gold both times in
women’s ice hockey. She also competed for Canada in the IIHF World Women’s Championships, where she won six gold metals and one silver metal from 1994 to 2005.
She then went on to be a colour commentator for CBC for the women’s hockey at the 2014 and 2018 Olympic Winter Games.
LB extramural team concludes the season
Despite results, the team has improved greatly from last season JESSA BRAUN SPORTS EDITOR
Laurier Brantford’s extramural volleyball team concluded their season with a tournament at Centennial last Friday. Results weren’t exactly what the team wanted, but team captain Joel Schellenberger was happy with the performance. “For sure our best tournament of the year,” said the second-year student. “Played within two points of the strongest team at the tournament in the first game, followed up with a decisive win in the second game. Overall quite happy with the effort and compete level of our players.” Despite the results not being what they wanted, the Golden Hawks did better than they did in their last tournament. This time they went one win and two losses in the preliminary round as opposed to losing all three. The games that they lost were close, many of them ending within two or three points of each other. Had the Golden Hawks executed on those late-game chances, they would have been 3-0 going into the playoff round. The Golden Hawks lost closely to rivals from Humber Lakeshore and Centennial College. “We’re good buds with the
people on the teams so I’m not sure about rivalry, but our teams are similarly matched skill-wise so they’re usually the tighter competitive games,” said Schellenberger. To Lakeshore, Laurier Brantford only lost by two points, and they only lost by three to the Colts. The Golden Hawks won the second set of both games by at least five points each time.
We’re scrappy, we’re hungry and we’re learning from the process so that we don’t throw away our shots moving forward. -Joel Schellenberger, Captain
“The good news is that we’re putting ourselves in positions to play in those close games, to learn from the tight matches, to grow as players and we’ve got a young team that’s absolutely ready to take those next steps moving forward into next season,” said Schellenberger. Laurier Brantford took a victory against Durham College in just two sets. The first game finished with a
score of 25-14 and the second one 25-12. “We’re a young team,” said Schellenberger. “We’re scrappy, we’re hungry and we’re learning from the process so that we don’t throw away our shots moving forward. If we trust our process and stick together, I’m really excited for the future of volleyball at Laurier Brantford.” In addition to being team captain, Schellenberger also plays the role of team coach. His responsibilities include running team practices and making the line-ups for games and tournaments. In the other pool were Humber North, University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT), Trent University and University of Toronto Scarborough (UTSC). UOIT exited the day as tournament champions. Humber North took the finalist spot and the Fair Play award went to UTSC. They played a long, hard-fought day and ended the tournament with a loss in an overtime battle. The team has a chance to redeem themselves in their final tournament of the year on March 8, which will be hosted by Laurier Brantford at the YMCA. Joining them will be the men’s tournament in which the Laurier Brantford men’s basketball team will also compete.
Coach and captain, Joel Schellenberger on the courts.
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 2019 OPINION EDITOR AVERY MCISAAC firstname.lastname@example.org
Mandatory Indigenous studies classes People are still so ignorant to what the Indigenous peoples of our country have suffered -- we can do better EMILY ERNST STAFF WRITER
I remember the first time I heard the land acknowledgement crackle through the decades-old speaker in my Grade 12 English class after morning announcements. I recall being confused and somewhat irritated with the puzzled whispers and murmurs that engulfed the classroom shortly after. Many were asking what the names “Haudenosaunee” and “Anishinaabe” were, as they were completely foreign to our ears. I remember many grumpy complaints, mostly focusing on why we had to listen to another annoying interruption in the morning. It’s with great regret and shame that I admit I agreed. After some questioning of my teachers, many of whom could not provide a proper answer, I found out that what we heard was a message all schools are now required to play to inform students that the land on which we study belonged to Indigenous tribes, many of which are still alive and functioning today. Now, I had taken history, but all I could tell you about the Indigenous population of Canada was that they were people who existed here when the world superpowers arrived and settled the land. Apart from that and the Disney movie “Pocahontas”, I had absolutely no clue about the Indigenous population that, to my surprise, still lived in present Canadian society. That’s where I see a problem. A major part of Canada’s history was never taught. We never learned about the two Great Wars, the roaring 20s and the Great Depression. We even learned about Canada’s role in slavery at the young age of 11, yet we never learned anything about Canada’s Indigenous peoples and the destructive role the Canadian government had in
their history. Now here’s the best part: just because this stuff was never taught doesn’t mean its gone away. Despite the fact that the average citizen has no idea of the horrors of residential schools, the 60s scoop and life on the underfunded and neglected reserve lands, all these things are still a reality for Canada. Here at Laurier Brantford, most of us are studying humanities or social sciences. With that, most of us intend to graduate and work in a job in which we interact with all members of Canadian society. So let me ask you: how do you plan on working with the Indigenous people, their families and communities, which you undoubtedly will encounter, if you don’t know the first thing about their cultures and the massive amounts of intergenerational trauma they’ve been subjected to? The answer is simple: you can’t. This is why I believe an intro to Indigenous studies course should be mandatory for all university students – especially those that are studying the social sciences. People are still so ignorant of what the Indigenous peoples of our country have suffered. Being pushed off their land, tricked into giving up their rights, restricted to tiny reserves, having their traditions and cultural practices banned. Indigenous children were sent to schools where they were stripped of their Indigenous identities and were repeatedly mentally, sexually and physically abused. How are we going to move forward from this? How do we expect the people who have been greatly affected by these occurrences to move forward with us if we don’t ensure that Canadians know what happened? If we ensure that all students leave their post-secondary education with even just a general understanding of Indigenous cultures and history, then I am sure we will
EMILY ERNST/STAFF WRITER
Laurier Brantford’s Indigenous Student Centre, which offers a variety of services for students.
see the stigma surrounding such an important part of Canadian society begin to decline. We need to make sure that the leaders of tomorrow are equipped with a working understanding and appreciation for this marginalized portion of our society. Now if you’re sitting there rolling your eyes about the notion of another mandatory class being inflicted on your schedule, then consider this: we are already faced with at least two mandatory courses here that revolve around the lengthy and sometimes incomprehensible writings of rich old white men. So, do you really think that hearing what Montesquieu thinks about revolution or what
Machiavelli would think about surveillance is anywhere near as important to your future than a working knowledge of a whole living minority you will likely interact with? This isn’t a tough question people. We need to be informed about all aspects of Canadian society in order to allow it to function as the free, equal and safe country we promote. Decolonizing a university is something that happens when Indigenous professors and Indigenous students are accepted and welcomed on campus. When Indigenous people are finally given a place in which they can help design and decide how to educate Canadian people, our society may finally begin actively begin to par-
ticipate in reconciliation. It’s not enough that we have to stand for an extra 10 seconds listening to the same recording of a simple land acknowledgment. It’s not enough that some campuses are fortunate enough to have a few Indigenous studies courses available. It shouldn’t be acceptable that some Canadians can look you in the eye and claim with full sincerity that “Indians” no longer exist. We need to do better. We can do better. Better needs to start in schools, as it is education that will teach us how to move forward with respect and live our lives constantly aiding in the crucial process of reconciliation for all Indigenous peoples of Canada.
I’m hesitant to call myself a Christian
When I tell people I’m a Christian, they hear, “I’m homophobic”, “I’m racist”, or “I don’t like other people with other beliefs” JESSA BRAUN SPORTS EDITOR
I believe in God. I’m a follower of Jesus, but I’m embarrassed to call myself a Christian. This is because lately, the definition of Christianity has gone haywire. It’s a shame as my faith has always been a significant part of my life, but when I tell people I’m a Christian, they hear, “I’m homophobic,” “I don’t like people with other beliefs” or “I’m racist”. This is a result of the way fellow Christians have portrayed our religion to our communities and the media. Especially in a time of such polarizing politics, traditional Christians have made their values and beliefs more loud and clear than ever. I wish they would stand up that passionately for love and equality. I’m just very confused as to how “love your neighbour” led us to where we are. There is almost
EMILY ERNST/STAFF WRITER
nothing about President Donald Trump that reflects the values of Jesus. Jesus wanted us to love one another. He wanted us to care for God’s earth and to share our bread and fish. But some Christians voted against love, against LGBT, against immigrants, against the
poor, against saving the environment. A lot of them voted for Trump . . . and for some reason proceeded to call themselves followers of Jesus. According to exit polls, 81% of white evangelical Christians voted for Trump. Every person has their
own reasons for which way they cast their vote, but most conservative Christians share the common value of wanting to protect unborn life. I too believe every life is precious, but that is exactly why I am against Trump.
The amount of existing lives, rights and identities that have ended because of the way he runs the country is disgusting. I have no doubt in my mind that traditional Christians are kind, loving people. They just show compassion in ways that are different than what the world needs in this day and age. For a lot of Christians, their faith is one of the biggest parts of their identity and the way they live their lives. It’s a source of hope and guidance when they can’t see the light. It’s scary for anyone to change a mindset about something that they’ve been so sure about their whole life. But we can’t keep discriminating, hating and judging the way we do. That’s not what Christianity is about. As someone who wants to feel okay about calling myself a Christian again, I pray God can help guide future generations of Christians to an open mind and back to the true meaning of Jesus.
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 28, 2018 OPINION EDITOR AVERY MCISSAC email@example.com
News and stories from Laurier Brantford's independent student voice.