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On Street Preachers Being Jerks and Tiny Violins for Vancouver’s Wealthiest Whiners

Tea & Two Slices is a long-running local news round-up by NEEDS frontman and veteran dishwasher Sean Orr, who lives and works in Gastown, deeply aware of his privilege.

Vancouver mayor says lack of action on racism by city police is ‘indefensible,’ steps down as spokesperson. I cautiously applaud the mayor for taking a stand on this, something no mayor has done in recent history. But as Meenakshi Mannoe reminds us, “let’s disrupt the notion that ‘respectable & innocent’ ppl should live free of police violence, harassment, brutality & murder. No one should be subjected to police violence, harassment, brutality & murder”. Likewise, Geoff Berner asks what sort of policy change is Kennedy demanding and what would ‘reform’ mean to someone who was hitherto a fan of the VPD?

But I do like how he defined systemic racism: “Systemic racism is that the institutions are designed in a way … that justice is unequally distributed across the population … Individual racists are people that actively promote hate.” Because apparently 66% of Canadians are tragically ignorant of this: Is Canada a racist country? A third of people tell pollster ‘yes’.

As a result, Kennedy is polling quite high in this Vancouver and District Labour Council commissioned poll: Vancouver mayoral race: (Very) early pre-election polling has Stewart at 49 per cent approval. Although less than 10 points ahead of someone who isn’t even running isn’t great. Remember, it was a poll exactly like this one, commissioned by the VDLC, that made Kennedy decide to run. Also, all of the people mentioned in the poll are hardly even left of centre. Carr? Reimer? Jody Wilson Rayboud? Where is the extremely witty yet foul-mouthed virulently anti-cop candidate?

Because, when I see an officer run and grab the neck of a person of colour who was handcuffed and restrained by two officers, then play the victim, I just… English Bay altercation shows how officers are targets for violence, Vancouver police say.

Meanwhile, they calmly watch the anti-gay street preacher charged with assault last year as he terrorizes elders at the memorial for the missing 215 children at the Vancouver Art Gallery. Unfortunately there’s no link for this except this Facebook post. I guess until he breaks someone’s fucking leg again it isn’t news.

Yesterday, BC argued in the Court of Appeal that Aboriginal title does not exist until a court declaration says it does in a Kwikwetlem First Nation case.

So much for UNDRIP. Colonial law once again resorts to terra nullius arguments that we figured out with the Calder decision back in 1973 (“the first time that the Canadian legal system acknowledged the existence of Aboriginal title to land and that such title existed outside of, and was not simply derived from, colonial law.”).

Lexicon: Terra nullius.

Breaking: Hundreds of bodies found near former residential school at Cowessess.

The release from the FSIN states that “the number of unmarked graves will be the most significantly substantial to date in Canada.” That would suggest it exceeds the 215 remains found at a former residential school near Kamloops weeks ago, which prompted shock and grieving around the country.

Related: ‘In their silence, they woke the world’: Squamish Nation releases powerful video.

Diversity of tactics? Two Catholic churches burn to ground on First Nations land overnight.

Welcome to the City of Vancouver: B.C.’s taxpayer shakedown capital:

The proposals have been likened to using taxpayers as an ATM, but this is untrue. An ATM has a seemingly endless supply of funds but a limit on what you can withdraw. The taxpayer has a finite supply of what the city increasingly treats as a bottomless reservoir. I can’t wait to see the next property tax proposal.

Yeah, except that property taxes have been so historically low that people ended up using their homes as ATMs and the city lost out on a massive source of revenue that could have gone to affordable housing. We’re playing catch-up because no mayor wanted to upset the West Side honeypot. We could have taxed mansions years ago but they kicked and stomped their feet.

And we could have had a capital gains tax: BC and Ottawa Reject Changes to Reduce Inequality between Renters and Homeowners. “We must do something about housing affordability!” Ok, let’s commission a panel of experts. “Great!” Here’s what they came up with: a $1 billion tax revenue stream that could be spent on new housing for everyone, not just the wealthiest. “Absolutely not!”

And then there’s all the money lost to tax evasion: Citizen researchers comb through B.C.’s real estate data trove. Louder for the people in the back: No one should own 3 or 4 properties until everyone has a roof over their head.

Jill Atkey and Thom Armstrong: Mixed-income developments are the most effective way of getting more non-profit homes built. The market is the only way to make non-market housing! We can only make housing for poor people, low income BIPOC families, people with disabilities and new immigrants if we also make housing for the middle-class! I mean, it might be true, but it just sounds like a hostage situation.

To wit: this is first of its kind. It’s 2021, this should already exist, but we constantly have to pander to the market: Proposed Vancouver rental project designed, delivered and for women. Queue the NIMBYs:

The developer has had to make major alterations to the concept already. Guerrera says they had originally envisioned a 20-storey building which included retail and office spaces, but they were sent back to the drawing table after city officials discovered the tower interfered with the city’s view cones. The revision meant 30 units of housing were lost.

BC would be cooler if: Nova Scotia’s 7 provincial ferries free for passengers from now on.

Cancel Canada Day of the day: Saskatoon beaver takes down Canadian flag, makes off with flagpole.

Honour Bound: HEAR MY VOICE: Survivor Stories at the Rio on Sunday, June 27.

Sports/satire of the day: 5 ways to explain the Habs’ success without admitting they’re a good team.

Bonus: The Record Temperatures Enveloping The West Are Not Your Average Heat Wave. Stay cool this weekend, everyone.

There is 1 comment

  1. Hi Sean, wondering if you can amend this post to include the Indian Residential School Crisis Line, 1-866-925-4419.

On Ken Sim’s So-Called “Swagger” and ABC’S Class War

Sean Orr is back from his hiatus with a rundown of the local headlines that have been running on a ticker tape through his mind over the past six months...

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In his latest read of the local news headlines, Sean Orr finds a park ranger with a grudge, a gross misuse of air quotes and Tripadvisor slander.

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In his latest read of the local news headlines, Sean Orr hones in on the recent Langley shootings, and the ongoing criminalizing and dehumanizing of the homeless population.