{ Ryan Perks ]

Transmissions: A Pro Choice

[Transmis/sions} This past spring, when Peterborough City Council consented to the placement of several anti-abortion advertisements on the backs of city buses, many Peterborough residents got mad. A group of five Trent students, however, decided to get even. As part of a third-year social work class, they’d been given a unique assignment: to create a […]

Trent University Campus Clash

Scenes from a small liberal arts university in the year 2016. It’s early September. Student groups gather on a large courtyard in front of the library. One of them, alone among the others, displays one of those Make America Great Again hats—you know the ones—and plays excerpts from Donald Trump’s campaign speeches on a loudspeaker. […]

The Problem with Populism

{Transmi/ssions] Populism, a form of anti-establishment politics once kept to the margins of liberal democracy, has been thrust centre stage with the recent American election. But Donald Trump is only its loudest and most tawdry expression. Experts now talk of a global “populist wave.” In France, Greece, India, the Philippines, Poland, Spain, and Turkey (to […]

Coming to Terms with Trump

{Transmi/ssions] Just a month ago the world was a simpler place. Back then, you could still cling to some of the old certainties. The notion, for example, that demographics is destiny. This has become an article of faith among progressives in the West, who’ve said for years now that time is on our side—that our […]

What’s in a Name?

{Transmi/ssions] Friends of mine might be surprised to see me turn in a column about baseball. But like anyone, I’m a creature of my environment, which means that for the last couple of years at least, as summer turns to fall, I haven’t failed to notice the crowds of eager fans in blue and white […]

Kellie Leitch’s Base Appeal

{Transmi/ssions] When Kellie Leitch, the Conservative MP for Simcoe—Grey, joined her party’s federal leadership race back in April, you could bet that a majority of Canadians had never heard of her—an obvious problem for a politician hoping to one day be Prime Minister. But over the summer, having gauged her supporters’ reactions with an online […]

Cannabis Culture and the State of Pot Legalization

For the past two weeks downtown Peterborough has been consumed with talk of marijuana, legal and otherwise, after Cannabis Culture, the city’s first storefront pot dispensary, was opened, and then abruptly closed, at 282 George Street. You’re likely familiar with the details: the store, a branch of the Vancouver- and Toronto-area franchise started by Marc […]

Getting Women in Parliament

{Transmi/ssions] Before last year’s federal election the CBC published a detailed investigation into gender disparity in the House of Commons. At the time, women MPs made up just 25% of that body. Though clearly a far cry from the social and political equality to which most of us pay lip service, one-quarter female representation was […]

A Brexit Post-Mortem

{Transmi/ssions] The first and only time I stopped to think about Britain actually quitting Europe was a week or so before the June 23 referendum. An acquaintance had asked me which way I thought things would go, and with a shrug and a laugh I’d offered some smug-sounding bit about openness triumphing over fear, and […]

What Can I Say About Guns?

{Transmi/ssions] The editors of ECM and I thought it would be appropriate for this month’s Transmissions column, which tries to digest and make sense of international politics writ large, to deal with the issue of gun control in the United States. Last month’s mass shooting at a gay club in Orlando—with 49 victims, the most […]