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Thu, 02 Dec 2021
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Canada's worst mass shooting helped push 2020 murder rate to 15-year high

Police block
© John Morris/Reuters.jpg
Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) block the entrance to Portapique Beach Road in search of Gabriel Wortman, a shooter of multiple victims.
The murder rate in Canada last year rose to its highest level since 2005, pushed up in part by the country's worst-ever mass shooting, in which 22 people died, Statistics Canada said on Thursday.

Statscan also noted societal stresses had been caused by lockdowns linked to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Canadian police reported 743 murders in 2020, up from 687 in 2019. The murder rate increased to 1.95 per 100,000 people, the highest in 15 years.
"While homicide continues to be a relatively rare occurrence, representing less than 0.2% of all violent crimes in Canada in 2020, homicide rates are considered benchmarks for levels of violence."
By comparison, the overall U.S. murder rate in 2020 was around 6.5 homicides per 100,000 people, according to FBI data.


Schools tell families how to 'decolonize Thanksgiving'

kids american flag
© Getty Images / puhimec
The District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) has provided families with the resources needed to "decolonize" Thanksgiving, including guidance on indigenous land acknowledgement.

"Thanksgiving is a day that can be difficult for many to celebrate as we reflect on the history of the holiday and the horrors inflicted on our indigenous populations," DCPS Chancellor Lewis D. Ferebee said in an email sent to the families of students on November 18.

He added that, for those who did choose to celebrate, the equity team was sharing suggestions "for how you can consider decolonizing your Thanksgiving."

"If you host a Thanksgiving meal, consider doing a land acknowledgement," said Ferebee.

Comment: No, thank you. We would prefer to simply spend quality time with family and friends, and to be thankful for whatever small comfort there is in a world run by crazy people like you.

A link provided in the email led to tips on how to correctly support the indigenous people "to whom the land belongs."

"Don't sugarcoat the past. Use terms like genocide, ethnic cleansing, stolen land, and forced removal to reflect actions taken by colonizers," one of the recommendations read.

Comment: Make sure to drain every last ounce of joy and goodwill out of everything. Then you'll have nothing, and be happy.

The guidance states that indigenous people should not be treated as "a relic of the past" and that land acknowledgements should function as "living celebrations of Indigenous communities."

Comment: By all means, learn history. Just don't shove it down people's throats like some zealous school marm.


The Atlantic calls for Americans to use Thanksgiving to 'report conservatives to the FBI'

Thanksgiving dinner
© Getty Images
The Atlantic published an essay on the eve of Thanksgiving, calling on readers to utilize family Thanksgiving get-togethers to "deprogram" and sow doubt in conservative relatives, suggesting that one may even succeed in changing their mind or perhaps "need to report [them] to the FBI!"

In an essay penned by Daily Beast contributing editor Molly Jong-Fast titled "Deprogram your relatives this Thanksgiving," the left-wing pundit called the national celebration "terrible" and "no one's idea of a great time," though insisted using the time to "deprogram" relatives could make it worthwhile.

"Thanksgiving is terrible, and if you at least spend the time trying to deprogram your niece, you won't be bored or depressed," she wrote. "[T]hough you might be enraged that Fox News or Infowars has convinced her Trump can 'save America' from Joe Biden's radical agenda of giving people hearing aids and free pre-K."

Arrow Down

Police use tear gas to disperse Central Iranian farmers demanding drought aid

iran water crisis protest
Police have used tear gas to disperse hundreds of people demonstrating in the Iranian city of Isfahan to demand government action over a drought.

Video footage on social media appeared to show police and protesters clashing in the dry bed of the Zayandehrud River on November 26. Other videos showed similar unrest in nearby streets of Isfahan.

The gathering of some 500 people in Isfahan was ended by what the Iran's semiofficial Fars news agency said was a large security force.

Stock Down

More than 75% of US hit by inflation and most blame Biden

Joe Biden
© Reuters / Evelyn Hockstein
More than three out of four Americans say inflation is affecting their lives as the holiday season approaches and more than half say President Biden deserves at least some blame for the high prices, according to a new poll. ​

A Yahoo News/YouGov survey released Tuesday found that 77 percent of Americans say inflation has recently affected them to some extent, while 61 percent say the same about the ongoing supply chain crisis and the resulting shortage of goods and services.

The poll also found that more than half of Americans (51 percent) have expressed worry they "won't be able to afford what they need during the holidays due to inflation," while 45 percent fear they "won't be able to get what they need" ​because of the ​supply chain ​disruption.


Oklahoma lawmaker files self-defense bill named after Kyle Rittenhouse

kyle rittenhouse
© Sean Krajacic/Pool via Reuters
Kyle Rittenhouse walks during his trial at the Kenosha County Courthouse in Kenosha, Wis., November 19, 2021.
Oklahoma state Sen. Nathan Dahm announced that he filed a self-defense law named after Kyle Rittenhouse.

The legislation would ensure that Oklahomans who use self-defense won't have to face trial for political reasons, according to a news release. If the measure becomes law, Dahm says victims of malicious prosecution would be able to receive compensation for expenses and damages.

Dahm filed Senate Bill 1120, which is called "Kyle's Law," on Tuesday.

A jury recently acquitted Rittenhouse of all charges in the deaths of two men and wounding of a third during a protest in Kenosha, Wisconsin, in 2020. He claimed self-defense in the shootings.

Bizarro Earth

US workers 'traumatized' by organized retail crime wave

Best Buy black Friday shopping
© Reuters / Shannon Stapleton
People wait in line for Black Friday purchases at the Best Buy electronics store in Westbury, New York, November 27, 2009
Amid a surge in organized shoplifting, Best Buy CEO Corie Barry has said that the crime wave is "traumatizing" employees and making hiring and keeping staff difficult. The retailer is not the only outlet targeted by criminals.

Organized shoplifting has "increased dramatically" over the last two years, Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul warned in September. Raoul pointed to shocking figures from the retail industry - theft investigations were up 86% at Home Depot, shoplifting was up 30% at CVS, and Lowe's Home Improvement recorded $1.3 million in losses due to theft last year, compared to $388,000 in 2019.

Since Raoul sounded the alarm, shocking videos have emerged showing brazen thefts by organized gangs in the AG's own city of Chicago, and as far afield as San Francisco, California.

Comment: Also see:


Canadian teachers' union devalues white votes to 'appease minorities'

Ontario Secondary School Teachers
A teachers' union in Canada decided that the votes of its indigenous, black and racialized members will have extra weight in decision-making processes if not enough minority delegates are present on the board.

Since the start of the school year, the so-called weighted voting has been in effect at a local bargaining unit of the larger Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation (OSSTF) in Halton Region, Ontario the National Post reported.

The unit, which represents some 1,400 teachers and school staff, voted in the controversial system - said to be aimed at improving the representation of minorities - this June. It was supported by 68% of the delegates at its annual general meeting.

Bad Guys

Sex change hormone treatment injured Swedish children - media

sweden hospital
© REUTERS/Anders Wiklund/TT News Agency
A general view of the Karolinska hospital in Stockholm, Sweden
As many as 13 children have suffered side effects from hormone therapy while receiving treatment for gender dysmorphia in Sweden, according to national broadcaster SVT.

In a report published on Wednesday, Swedish broadcaster SVT revealed that doctors at Karolinska University Hospital in Stockholm stopped new hormone treatments for children suffering from gender dysmorphia in May amid concerns of "potential side effects."

The hospital noted in new guidelines that the treatments are controversial and that there is a lack of scientific support for it. Data concerning the extent of the side effects and the number of children impacted was not made public.

Comment: See also:


56 dead following explosion in Siberian coal mine, gas leak believed to be to blame

© Reuters / Kemerovo Region Government
Members of emergency services take part in a rescue operation at the Listvyazhnaya coal mine in the Kemerovo region, Russia, November 25, 2021.
A mining accident in Siberia has killed more than 50 people, including six rescue workers, Russian media have reported citing preliminary data from emergency services, with all the missing persons presumed dead.

Over 260 miners have been rescued from the facility after reports of an explosion, with 40 of them ending up hospitalized. Some 11 miners were confirmed dead shortly after the accident unfolded, while 35 mere were considered missing. At least three out of six emergency workers have also perished during rescue efforts.

Late on Thursday, RIA Novosti reported that all the missing persons were presumed dead, citing sources in the emergency services. The assessment, however, has not yet been officially confirmed by Russia's EMERCOM, with its press service telling RT that the fate of 35 miners and three rescuers remains unknown.

Comment: Other explosions and fires in the news recently: