A. I actually think it was less about Weinstein and more about the women who chose to speak out. This was one of the few, perhaps only, cases in recent history where the victims were vastly more famous than the abuser — and I think that was one of the many factors that contributed to the explosion. Social media played a part in the ripple effect, continuing to spread the message and to shift the conversation away from those famous women to the rest of us. And the rest of us are key to this. The #MeToo movement has sustained because sexual assault and harassment is a universal experience.
While debating sexual harassment legislation in Parliament this week, some of the legislators expressed concern that the #MeToo movement might flame out as rapidly as it rose up. What will it take to affect sustained changes?
I think we’ve already seen that that’s not the case. As journalists, we so often wait for when reader fatigue sets in, when our audience tires of a particular story line or the next scoop comes along. That truly hasn’t happened in this case. The stories keep coming, the complicity continues to be uncovered, and the major shift I’ve seen is the focus from pure accusations to what’s next. In what ways has policy not kept up with the times? If we know that most sexual harassment training doesn’t work — which we do — how will institutions work to eradicate the behavior? I don’t think this conversation is going away, but I do think it will shift from problem to solution.
Are Americans paying any attention to the debates in Canada and elsewhere in the world?
I think that social media has helped keep the conversation global. In France it was #BalanceTonPorc, in Spain and Latin America #YoTambien, in Italy #QuellaVoltaChe, in Israel #גםאנחנו—#MeToo has stretched from Canada to China.
Ms. Bennett will be coming to Toronto on Feb. 21, along with Jodi Kantor and Emily Steel, The Times journalists who broke the Harvey Weinstein and Bill O’Reilly stories, for a discussion about the current social reckoning. It will be moderated by Catherine Porter, the Toronto bureau chief, and held at the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. You can order tickets here, and there is a special price for Times subscribers.
Attend: Journalism and the #MeToo Moment
Sign Up: The #MeeToo Moment
One of The Times’s most successful recent ventures is “The Daily,” the podcast hosted by Michael Barbaro. It marked its first anniversary this week. (There was cake in New York and Washington but none of it made its way up here.) During the past year “The Daily” been downloaded an astonishing 200 million times and it was the most popular new podcast in 2017 in Apple Podcasts.
The guests for its birthday week included Dan Bilefsky, my colleague who is based in Montreal and who spoke about asylum seekers entering Canada from the United States.
Subscribe (free): “The Daily”
Interest rate increases by the Bank of Canada and new tests to make sure that mortgage holders can withstand them prompted predictions that Canada’s housing market might cool down. So far, however, that has not happened.
Within that context the On The Market feature of our Real Estate section headed out to take a look at two condos in Toronto.
When Toronto celebrated being among the 20 finalists in Amazon’s hunt to build its second head office, about a dozen other Canadians cities registered disappointment. But their bids may not be a lost cause. Nick Wingfield reported that Amazon may use the losing bids to plan future investments in warehouses and satellite offices. Someone familiar with the process told Mr. Wingfield that Montreal stood out because of “its thinking about attracting foreign talent to the region.”
You Speak Out on Nafta
A large number of Canada Letter readers replied to my request for your thoughts about Canada and the North American Free Trade Agreement. Kelly Virella has put together a selection of your considered and informative replies for the Reader Center.
Below are a couple of highlights.
From Tom Roach, Waterloo, Ontario:
“The real issue is not Nafta. Our politicians and pundits have been explaining for years that the old manufacturing jobs are gone for good: Canada needs to look in other directions if it is to grow.”
From Dale Coles, Harrison Hot Springs, British Columbia:
“I will always buy Canadian first whenever possible. However as the current U.S. administration becomes more belligerent toward Canada, I tend to look beyond the U.S. more often for my needs, even when the products are equal.”
More Second Chances
The Canadian government won’t reveal its plans for dealing with past criminal convictions related to marijuana until after legalized sales start, something currently scheduled for late June. And, for now, the police continue to make arrests related to marijuana purchases.
But several place in the United States have taken steps to wipe out previous convictions and others are openly debating the issue.
Mascots That Offend
In 2016, Douglas Cardinal, the prominent architect and Indigenous activist of Métis, Blackfoot and Algonquin background, unsuccessfully sought a court order blocking the Cleveland Indians from using their name and their Chief Wahoo logo at a playoff game in Toronto. This week, after years of protests, the team announced this week that it will abandon Chief Wahoo, an over the top cartoon stereotype that was widely seen as racist.
But that may not be the end of the cartoonish caricature. The University of Illinois dumped its mascot, Chief Illiniwek, in 2007. But Mitch Smith found that the mascot, and the debate surrounding it, have not gone away.
The beginning of another month means a fresh round of recommendations of Netflix Canada’s offerings from Watching, the Times’s guide to television and movies. “‘The Final Year,” a documentary about the Obama administration’s last foreign policy moves, looks particularly compelling.
—Many National Hockey League stars are bittersweet about not participating at the upcoming Olympics.
—But keeping the N.H.L. stars at home has opened the door to the possibility of exciting underdog stories from the Olympics.
—The last wish of a member of Parliament before his death means that after decades of failed attempts, the English version of “O Canada” will soon be gender neutral.
—Thomson Reuters, which is controlled by Canada’s wealthiest family, has reached a $20 billion deal to sell control of its business information and data service to a group that includes Blackstone, the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and a sovereign wealth fund set up by Singapore’s government. The Thomson family will keep its hold on the venerable Reuters news service, however.
—The police now say that Bruce McArthur, who was originally charged with two murders, may have killed at least five people and used planters to hide human remains.