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Canada can learn a lot from California as it prepares for marijuana legalization

On New Year's Eve, some Californians raised flaming joints in lieu of the traditional champagne toast – a fitting gesture given that Jan. 1 marked the launch of the world's largest legal commercial market for cannabis. Canada can learn a lot from California's experiences as we prepare for cannabis legalization on July 1, even though the respective jurisdictions have as many similarities as differences in the way they are approaching the end of pot prohibition. Cannabis remains illegal under U.S. federal law, so states have to tap-dance a bit around that reality. (Recreational marijuana is already legal in five other states, and medical marijuana in 30 states.) In Canada, cannabis will be legal from coast to coast. Story continues below advertisement In California, a person over 21 can buy up to one ounce of cannabis at a time, and grow up to six plants for personal use. Depending on the province, the legal age will be 18 or 19 in Canada, and a similar amount, 25-30 grams..

Globe editorial: In 2018, the fight for net neutrality must continue

Late last summer, Dana Barancik of Las Vegas, Nevada, and her father Frank filed comments in support of the U.S. Federal Communications Commission's desire to do away with net neutrality. Their submissions would have been entirely above suspicion had the former not died in 2014, and the latter in 2015, or if their letters had not contained the same boilerplate language as thousands of other apparently bogus filings. The consultation process leading to the FCC's Dec. 14 vote to kill rules that ensure all internet traffic is treated equally, regardless of content or provenance, was seriously problematic, even fraudulent. And the decision itself was even worse. Story continues below advertisement Critics in Congress plan to vote in early 2018 on at least two proposals to overrule the FCC decision, and either partly or wholly restore net neutrality. Canadians should hope they succeed. In Canada, net neutrality is the long-standing policy of our equivalent of the FCC, the Canadian..

MADDEAUX: #MeToo movement failing in Canada

BY SABRINA MADDEAUX Harvey Weinstein. Matt Lauer. Kevin Spacey. Charlie Rose. Russell Simmons. Louis C.K. Brett Ratner. Roy Moore. The list of alleged sexual predators and harassers outed and toppled by the #MeToo movement continues to grow by the day. The purge has been a long time coming. Never before have we seen so many powerful men, across multiple industries, forced to come to terms with allegations of abuse and the privilege that afforded them protection– until now. While Canadians have widely been supportive of the #MeToo movement, cheering on women and men south of the border, sharing stories online, petitioning for justice and boycotting the work of outed predators, we’ve yet to see #MeToo rock the core of any Canadian industries. Where is our Harvey Weinstein? Who’s the northern Louis C.K. in sheep’s clothing? There’s no question these men exist in the very upper echelons of the Canadian business, entertainment, sport and media industries. A recent survey by Insights West..

'Window Horses': Turning Poetry and Inclusion into an Animated Adventure

“The Breadwinner” isn’t the only female-driven animated feature directed by a woman inspired by peace and inclusion. In “Window Horses,” the darkest of dark horses in the Oscar race, Asian-Canadian director Ann Marie Fleming propels her Stick Girl avatar into the culturally rich world of Iran via a poetry festival. The fish-out-of-water novice not only attains more wisdom, but also reconnects with her Persian heritage. It’s a curious blend of hand-drawn styles that achieves a striking multi-cultural bridge to imagination and empathy. “A lot of my life experiences are in there except for the obvious bare bones of the family’s story, which is a compilation of a lot of people,” said Fleming (“The Magical Life of Long Tack Sam”), who financed through Indiegogo and co-produced with the National Film Board of Canada. Actress Sandra Oh (“Grey’s Anatomy”) not only voiced protagonist Rosie Ming, but also executive produced. [embedded content] Getting Personal Like the director, Rosie is also of..

Environment minister says she's not responsible for 'eat less meat' tweet

Alberta's environment minister said she's not responsible for a controversial tweet advising people to eat less meat. Shannon Phillips tweeted Friday that the message, which was posted on her Twitter account on Tuesday, came from a staff person during a period when Phillips was away from her Twitter account. Phillips said the tweet was regrettable and that she has been assured it won't happen again. The tweet in question suggested anyone who needs a New Year's resolution should consider taking the Green Challenge by Environment Lethbridge, which is an organization based in Phillips' constituency. The tweet said the challenge advises people to "reuse shopping bags, take shorter showers, unplug electronics devices, eliminate vehicle idling and eat less meat." Need a resolution? @EnviroLeth Green Challenge: use reusable shopping bags, take shorter showers, unplug electronics devices, eliminate vehicle idling and eat less meat. The Challenge runs Jan 15-Feb 15. Reg..

BC teen creating app, summer camp to revive First Nations language

VANCOUVER — A 15-year-old high school student in British Columbia is turning to technology to help address a decades-old problem — how to revive an Indigenous language nearly lost to the residential school system. Tessa Erickson of the Nak'azdli Whut'en First Nation is creating an app and organizing a summer camp to help get younger people in her central B.C. community speaking the Nak'azdli dialect of the Dakelh language. "To me, it's a bit of a symbol," she said. "The language is really important to me, personally, because it's a way to connect with my community and really bridge the gap between the generations." Members of her nation were fluent in the dialect about three generations ago, before they were sent to residential schools, Erickson said. The Grade 10 student said she's been told generations since then were afraid to teach the language to their children. "They didn't want the same experiences they went through to happen to their children..

Syrian refugees say thanks to Canada with New Year's blood drive

Dozens of Syrian refugees in Calgary rang in the New Year by donating their blood. Yo Rasso, who arrived in Canada about 18 months ago, said he decided to roll up his sleeves “to say thank you Canada for help(ing) me and my children.” Blood drive organizer Sam Nammoura, from the Syrian Refugee Support Group, said that giving blood is considered a big honour in Syrian culture. “If people are really committed they say, ‘I will do this with my blood,’” he said. “This is (an) opportunity for them to show their appreciation and gratitude to the country.” Jhoanna Delrosario of Canadian Blood Services said she suggested New Year’s Day for the blood drive because the New Year’s holiday and January in general are a slow time for donations. “We are very grateful for the Syrian community and the newcomers,” Delrosario added. “What a way to celebrate the New Year and give back to the community.” Syrian newcomers welcoming the new year by donating blood for Canada! Posted by Saima ..

A Review of Year-End Reviews: The Canada Letter

Advertisement Ritual certainly plays a role in the various year-end items that The Times and other news organizations unfailingly push out every December. And when I worked at a weekly newsmagazine, they provided a way for the staff to take a break. The New York Times’s headquarters on Eighth Avenue.CreditJabin Botsford/The New York TimesBut, speaking as reader, I find them useful not just to recall the year but also to catch up on things I missed. Between articles, videos, podcasts, graphics, recipes and visual essays, The Times puts out several hundred items every day. Many gems within that torrent will inevitably slip past even the most dedicated reader. For the holiday edition I’ve gone through and sorted out our year-end offerings, at least the ones which have been posted up until this point. The list below isn’t a complete accounting of our look-backs. But it should provide enough reading to fill anyone’s holiday downtime. Next week, the Canada Letter will be taking a week off. B..

Racism in Canada: Racist rant against Vancouver woman; Sen. Lynn Beyak ousted for residential...

On the same day that a Canadian senator was being removed from the federal Conservative caucus for defending residential schools, a Vancouver woman posted a video to social media that captures a racist rant directed at her. On Facebook, Anika Vassell uploaded a video on January 5 that she said she shot while she was sitting in her car at Ontario Street and West Broadway on January 4. In the video, a white woman with an accent tells Vassell that she sees that she is black, arrogant, and that she should go back to her home country. "So you are not like the rest of us," the woman tells her, and that "maybe we'll hold the majority". She adds that if there are people like Vassell are "free" then they are "in big danger". In an interview with CTV News, Vassell said that she didn't know the woman. In her Facebook post, she stated that she is from Vancouver and is of Jamaican and South African ancestry. However, the woman did not state which country she is from. Vassell told CTV News..

Pot's Not Legal in Canada Yet – So Why Are Dispensaries Selling it?

Walk down Queen Street West, one of Toronto's cooler shopping districts, and you'll find something new amid the designer boutiques and H&Ms: stores selling marijuana. The quality of these places varies widely, from unfinished rooms where weed is sold from folding tables, to chic storefronts with the sleek modernity of an Apple store. Whether they advertise themselves as medicinal or recreational, these shops all have one thing in common: as of now, they're completely illegal. RelatedCanada's Legal Weed: What You Need to Know Justin Trudeau introduced a bill that would make marijuana legal – but what will that look like, and what will it mean for the U.S.? On a recent afternoon, a polite young woman who answered the phone at one Toronto dispensary told Rolling Stone that no prescription was needed to come in and purchase marijuana. When asked if this was legal, she gave a long, regretful "No," before explaining that shops like hers were "peacefully breaking the law..

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