Editorial: Montreal Massacre anniversary reminds us there’s still work to do

Their names were Geneviève Bergeron, Hélène Colgan, Nathalie Croteau, Barbara Daigneault, Anne-Marie Edward, Maud Haviernick, Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz, Maryse Laganière, Maryse Leclair, Anne-Marie Lemay, Sonia Pelletier, Michèle Richard, Annie St-Arneault and Annie Turcotte.

Last week marked the 30th anniversary of one of the darkest moments in Canadian history; the day a gunman on an anti-feminist rampage walked into an engineering class at École Polytechnique in Montreal and murdered all of the 14 women named above, after separating them from the men and making his motive crystal clear.

It was a watershed moment on both gun violence and violence against women in this country, and yet we continue to struggle with both.

Encyclopedia Britannica’s website Britannica.com defines feminism as “the belief in social, economic, and political equality of the sexes.”

We might thus well be baffled by the use, still, of the words feminism and feminist as perjorative terms. Some even spit out the word “feminist” as if it was an expletive. Who would be against equality for women in all of these important aspects of life, and why? Shouldn’t we all be proud feminists, men and women both?

And yet, there are an estimated 1,000 physical or sexual assaults against women in British Columbia alone every week. Women also remain vastly disproportionately the victims of domestic violence. And these are just the most visible and extreme signs of an inequality the persists to this day.

Politics and other influential fields are still dominated by men. It is astonishing that a progressive country like Canada has had only one woman prime minister in its entire history, and she was quickly swept from office. A wage gap persists. And beyond that, fields of work where women outnumber men are often some of the most underpaid in the workforce.

So not only do we remember Dec. 6 for a single act of horrific violence, but we remember because we still have work to do to address the underlying tensions in our society that it laid bare.

– Black Press

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Campbell River Remembrance Day Ceremony 2019. Campbell River Mirror file photo
Campbell River Remembrance Day Ceremony to go ahead in reduced form

Public asked not to attend; event will be streamed on social media, Shaw TV

Father Charles Brandt, a hermit priest. File Photo
Black Creek environmentalist and Catholic priest-hermit Father Charles Brandt passes away

He devoted his life to protecting and preserving natural habitats

Two suspects seen outside of Gord Knight Auto on Oct. 27 at around 4:15 a.m. Campbell River RCMP are looking for information on these suspects’ identities. Photo supplied by RCMP
RCMP look for suspects in break-in cases

Two suspects caught on surveilance video

Campbell River RCMP. RCMP photo
Police investigation results in multiple property crime charges

A Campbell River RCMP investigation has lead to multiple property crime charges… Continue reading

Michele Babchuk sat on the SRD board, a position that will need to be filled after she heads to the legislature. Photo contributed
Good timing for Babchuk’s seat replacement at SRD table

SRD Board scheduled to hold chair election next week

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, Oct. 26, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps by 287, another senior home outbreak

Two more deaths recorded, community outbreak in Okanagan

Janet Austin, lieutenant governor of B.C., was presented with the first poppy of the Royal Canadian Legion’s 2020 Poppy Campaign on Wednesday. (Kendra Crighton/News Staff)
PHOTOS: B.C. Lieutenant Governor receives first poppy to kick off 2020 campaign

Janet Austin ‘honour and a privileged’ to receive the poppy

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Cowichan Search and Rescue set up near the Silver Bridge in Duncan on Wednesday morning, Oct. 28, 2020 to rescue a dog from the Cowichan River. (Citizen file)
Cowichan Search and Rescue save dog from icy Cowichan River

Search and Rescue’s swiftwater team was called in

Premier-elect John Horgan and cabinet ministers are sworn in for the first time at Government House in Victoria, July 18, 2017. (Arnold Lim/Black Press)
Pandemic payments have to wait for B.C. vote count, swearing-in

Small businesses advised to apply even if they don’t qualify

The Calgary Zoo is aiding in recovery efforts for the Vancouver Island marmot, an endangered species. Pictured here, a marmot at Mount Washington. (Black Press file)
Despite challenges, 2020 good year for Vancouver Island marmot population

In 2019, the foundation counted 60 pups; this year, it reached 46

Items seized over four days of targeted vehicle checks Nanaimo and Victoria by members of the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of B.C. (CFSEU-BC photo)
Gang enforcement team seizes drugs and weapons in Nanaimo and Victoria

Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of B.C. checked 33 vehicles over four days

A raccoon paid a visit to a Toronto Tim Hortons on Oct. 22, 2020. (shecallsmedrew/Twitter)
Who are you calling a trash panda? Raccoon takes a shift at Toronto Tim Hortons

Tim Hortons said animal control was called as soon they saw the surprise visitor

Most Read