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Monthly Archive: August 2012

Aug 30 2012

White “flight”? Not exactly

Chart 3: Status in 2005-09 of Diverse Neighbourhoods from 1980 15 Metropolitan Areas with Regional School Integration Strategies

This morning we looked at a demographics paper by the Institute on Metropolitan Opportunity that looked at the phenomenon of suburban diversity, and found that while they tended to have tons of advantages over segregated communities (political balance, integrated schools, economic opportunity, increased cultural tolerance), they were also the least stable in terms of demographics. …

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Aug 30 2012

Absence makes the heart… familiarity breeds…

Table 2: Social and Economic Characteristics of the Community Types Compared to Metropolitan Averages

One fascinating historical narrative from the United States is called “white flight“. Essentially, this was a mass migration of white Americans out of major urban centres, into the suburbs. As with previous mass migrations of white folks in the USA, this was the result of various factors as kind of a ‘push-pull’. The ‘pull’ was …

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Aug 29 2012

The past is not passed

If you were reading the blog this past February, you are at least somewhat familiarwith Canada’s history of overt, ‘classical’ anti-black racism. Despite its avowed contemporary multiculturalism, Canada’s history is stained with the kind of racism that we only talk about in American History class (and even then, in hushed, clucking tones and sighs of …

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Aug 28 2012

A ten-percent solution, a ten-percent problem

Profiles of the parties among registered voters

An enduring American meme within the contemporary Republican party*, especially in this latest primary season, is that America is a white country. This one is no longer explicitly vocalized as plain and notorious expressions of racial supremacy have become less acceptable, but in the current political climate the layer of rhetoric that is cloaking the …

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Aug 27 2012

The eye of the beholder

One common claim that comes up in discussions of social justice issues is the following, predominantly uttered by a member of the majority group: I am against all kinds of discrimination. In fact, I am never hesitant to call others on their own prejudiced behaviours! What usually follows is the word ‘but’, and then some …

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Aug 24 2012

Skepticism and Social Justice

Ed cropped

One of the arguments that I often hear from skeptics and the skeptical community is that while skepticism is a powerful tool for analyzing truth claims or the efficacy of medical modalities, it is poorly suited to examining issues of social policy or politics. Examining claims about the efficacy of homeopathy is relatively easy (it …

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Aug 24 2012

Movie Friday: Edwin Hodge defines white supremacy

If you haven’t yet picked up on it, blog contributor Edwin Hodge is a smart fucking guy. I felt privileged, therefore, to be able to see him speak to the British Columbia Humanists Association last Friday night. Unfortunately I had to duck out early to play a gig, but I managed to grab the first …

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Aug 23 2012

Today’s word-boner: Ta-Nehisi Coates

One of the great tragedies of my life is that while I love language, I can barely find enough time to write as much as I want, let alone read. There are writers out there like Teju Cole, Amanda Marcotte, Jamelle Bouie, Sikivu Hutchinson, Touré, Greta Christina, Tim Wise, and countless others whose ability to work …

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Aug 23 2012

Because I am an atheist: Miriam

Today’s contribution comes from Miriam, who blogs at Brute Reason, where this post originally appears. Because I am an atheist… …I get to develop my own moral code. Many people get their sense of morality from religion. That’s totally okay. But I relish the opportunity to create my own. My morality is a sort of combination …

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Aug 22 2012

Atheism Plus? Sounds awesome!

  I’d like to begin by stating that I’m in full agreement with Jen McCreight’s general sentiment in her recent essay: “We can criticize religion and irrational thinking just as unabashedly and just as publicly, but we need to stop exempting ourselves from that criticism.” 100% agreement, no reservations. While the so-called New Atheists (or …

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