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The ethics of sex ed, combating guns and gangs, and how to tell the difference between science and marketing
By TVO Current Affairs - Published on Aug 28, 2019
Bill Blair talking to media
The federal government commits $54 million to the fight against guns and gangs. (twitter.com/BillBlair)

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Feds commit $54 million to the fight against guns and gangs

The federal government announced Monday that it would be dedicating $54 million over the next five years toward cracking down on criminal gangs and illegal guns in Ontario. The province intends to use the money for a number of programs, including supports for victims of human trafficking and a “gun and gang fund” for police projects and partnerships in the Greater Golden Horseshoe.


Ontario in talks with Alberta about free-trade pact

The Toronto Sun’s Brian Lilley reports that representatives of the Alberta government are in Toronto to lay the groundwork for free-trade talks with Ontario. If the talks prove successful, Ontario could become a member of the New West Partnership, a quasi-free trade agreement that currently involves British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. Some experts believe that removing interprovincial trade barriers could significantly boost the economy.


High-profile Liberals try to oust the NDP in Windsor

According to the Windsor Star, popular city councillor Irek Kusmierczyk will seek the federal Liberal nomination in Windsor­–Techumseh, a seat currently held by the NDP’s Cheryl Hardcastle. Earlier this month, former provincial cabinet minister Sandra Pupatello announced that she would be running to become the Liberal candidate in the city’s other riding, Windsor West, which the NDP’s Brian Masse has represented since 2002. With the New Democrats struggling in national polls, both seats are now seen as vulnerable.


Is Doug Ford a liability for federal Conservatives?

The CBC’s Vassy Kapelos spoke to several Tory insiders about what effect the Doug Ford government is having on the federal election race and on Conservative leader Andrew Scheer’s chances. They “freely admit they messed stuff up” over the past year, she writes, and concede that Ford’s decision to call a five-month break for the legislature was “intended to calm the waters for Scheer and his team” before the October 21 vote. “It’s the least we can do,” one staffer tells Kapelos.



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Brilliant Ideas: Marina Abramović’s Relentless, Violent Genius

Discover the story of Serbian performance artist, writer, and filmmaker Marina Abramović, whose 2010 Museum of Modern Art piece, “The Artist Is Present” — which saw her sit silently and one-on-one with strangers — created a stir in the art world. Get an inside look at her four decades of work, which explore feminism, the body, and the relationship between the audience and the artist.



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Why parents shouldn’t be allowed to take their kids out of sex ed

The Tories’ new sex-ed curriculum contains an exemption policy. Columnist Lauren McKeon asks: What message are we sending students when we tell them that subjects like consent and LGBTQ rights are optional? While she agrees that religious freedom and parental input matter, she believes that, on certain matters, they shouldn’t have the final say. “This isn’t about what rights parents have or don’t have,” she writes. “It’s about what values we want our public institutions to reflect.”



Tonight on TVO


8 p.m. The Agenda in the Summer: Can we trust nutrition science?

Marion Nestle, author of Unsavory Truth: How Food Companies Skew the Science of What We Eat, talks with Nam Kiwanuka about how food companies use funding to influence nutrition research — and how we can work to counter the bias such a relationship may create.


9 p.m. The Stairs

Filmed over five years, Hugh Gibson's profoundly affecting and compassionate documentary examines the lives of habitual drug users in Toronto's Regent Park. Visit a community health centre where the staff of social workers includes both former and current drug users — and learn how their life experiences provide them with a unique understanding of what their clients are going through.



From the archive


Dec. 18, 2004 Big Ideas: Erika Ritter

Broadcaster Erika Ritter’s The Great Big Book of Guys provides a humorous rundown of male behaviour and characteristics from A to Z — in this case, from “amigos” to “zealots.” In this episode of Big Ideas, she says, “It just seemed that the alphabet was kind of a way of lampooning the idea of everything you need to know about. If I would say to women — and this happened several times — ‘I’m writing a book about men, and it’s alphabetical,’ they'd say, ‘Oh, yeah, what's ‘a’: asshole?’”

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