History in the making

The Royal Canadian Legion announces a new anti-hate policy, protestors take to the streets in Hong Kong and the latest news from E3 2019.

History in the making

The Royal Canadian Legion announces a new anti-hate policy, protestors take to the streets in Hong Kong and the latest news from E3 2019.

Good morning! Today is Monday, June 10, 2019, and sometimes, there really is a need for speed.


• The Background

In a bold move, the Royal Canadian Legion is implementing a new policy, barring any of its chapters from associating with hate groups. This decision comes one month after it was revealed that an Alberta chapter was comprised of half a dozen members of the far-right, anti-immigrant group known as Soldiers of Odin. The Canada hate group is a branch of a neo-Nazi group that goes by the same name in Finland. The Royal Canadian Legion also rented its hall in Grand Prairie, Alberta to Soldiers of Odin for its community Easter dinner (yikes). In response to the public controversy, the legion unveiled a new policy, which reads: “no branch or command within the legion may affiliate itself in any manner whatsoever with a group or organization that promotes or is known to promote hatred or violence due to ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation or any social determinant.” Global News

• What Else You Need to Know

The new policy also indicates that a branch cannot allow a hate group or a group affiliated with a hate group to host an event at any legion branch. Clearly, the Easter dinner caused quite the ruckus (understandably).

• What’s Next?

The investigation into the Grande Prairie Easter event at the northern Alberta legion is still ongoing. Corrective actions are expected to be outlined once the investigation is complete.


• Shades of Grey

It’s estimated that somewhere between 240K and 1.03 million people (it’s a big range, but can we blame anyone who stopped counting?) marched in protest in Hong Kong against a controversial Chinese extradition bill that would require Hong Kong authorities to hand fugitives over to mainland China. (For those who didn’t know, Hong Kong has only been a part of modern-day China since 1997 and, as such, the two have operated individually in many aspects of law and politics.) The concerns? There’s a lot of grey area in the bill’s wording, essentially allowing communist China to demand that anyone be handed over to its authorities for political reasons (such as opposition) and “inadvertent business offenses” in addition to crimes such as, you know, murder. Lawmakers have been using the murder case of a 20-year-old Hong Kong woman in Taiwan by her boyfriend as the scapegoat for fast-tracking the bill into law, since the current law prevents Hong Kong from sending him to serve time in Taiwan (his jail time in Hong Kong is up this fall). The protest, which was peaceful throughout the day, turned violent overnight as police beat back crowds with batons. CNN


• U.S.: (New) Mexican Deal

Mexico has narrowly avoided Trump’s latest tariff tantrum, agreeing to do more to stem the flow of illegal immigrants across the U.S.-Mexico border, but Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has also emphasized the American and Canadian role in responding to the root cause of migration by investing in Central America. President Obrador celebrated the new deal struck between the U.S. and Mexico at a rally in Tijuana that was originally organized in response to the tariff threat; Mexico has promised to expand the deployment of its national guard across the country to stop asylum seekers in their tracks, particularly at the southern border, and the two countries have agreed to work together to accelerate the adjudication of asylum seekers back to Mexico. Bloomberg

• World: “Dangerous” Democrats

This weekend has been all about the cries for democracy — Kazakhstan just saw its biggest protest in years in capital Nur-Sultan over what the protestors have called a rigged election. The country is voting to “elect” its first new president in 30 years after former leader Nursultan Nazarbayev stepped down and hand-picked successor President Kassym Jomart-Tokayev to take over. (No surprise why so many are calling the “voting” process a sham.) Though the protests were peaceful, hundreds of demonstrators, including journalists and activists watching the protests, were arrested. It’s thought the protests were led by opposition group Democratic Choice of Kazakhstan, though it’s widely believed that a democratic Kazakhstan is “an illusion.” BBC News


“We demand observance of the law by all and for all.”

– A statement made by three of Russia’s top newspapers, which teamed up to question the arrest of investigative reporter Ivan Golunov. Golunov was arrested Friday and subsequently placed on house arrest. Though Golunov was arrested on charges of drug trafficking, it’s believed the arrest has more to do with his reports on official corruption. Radio Free Europe


• Uber Big Changes

Uber’s seen enough success that it has decided to nix Chief Operating Officer Barney Harford and Chief Marketing Officer Rebecca Messina’s roles. Instead, the heads of Uber’s departments will report directly to CEO Dara Khosrowshahi. The shakeup was announced in an email sent to employees Friday where Harford and Messina were also said to be stepping down. Apparently, Uber’s progress means Khosrowshahi has the time to be more hands-on in the company’s day-to-day operations. (Will he be doing the coffee runs, too?) In addition to the new role-call, Uber’s marketing, communication, and policy departments are now one, led by Jill Hazelbaker who was formerly senior vice president of communications and public policy before the company’s switcheroo. A meeting will be held in Washington, D.C. tomorrow where Khosrowshahi has promised to address employees’ questions and concerns. Since the announcement, shares have slipped about 1%. CNBC


• Expo Excitement

The Electronic Entertainment Expo, otherwise known as E3, is the world’s premier event for all things computer and video games-related hosted by the Entertainment Software Association. The 25th expo kicks off this week, during which folks from the video game industry will present new and upcoming products and projects. And the excitement is already brewing in the gaming world. Some of the biggest trailers that have been released so far include: Madden 20Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order and The Sims 4: Island Living, among several other thrilling new games. In other gaming news, Microsoft announced the first details about its mysterious, next generation Xbox hardware, codenamed Project Scarlett. The new console, which is set to release in the fall of 2020, will be four times more powerful than its predecessor. CNET


Kids & Company, Canada’s largest corporate child care provider, is introducing co-working spaces: communities to host like-minded hustlers who prioritize both work and family. (Hear, hear!)

In select cities, Kidco Work will pair high-quality child care and early learning with work and collaboration spaces designed with true work-life balance in mind.

The first Kidco Work location will open on Queen West in Toronto this June. To find out more or to pre-book your spot, visit kidsandcompany.com or email kidcowork@kidsandcompany.com.


• Tennis: Long Live the King!

Rafael Nadal, a.k.a. the King of Clay, downed opponent Dominic Thiem to claim his 12th French Open title at Court Philippe Chatrier after a nail-biter of a contest. (It almost looked like Thiem had Nadal beat.) Spectators were shocked when the younger Thiem nearly bested Nadal, who holds the historical record for most frequent major tournament wins. But just when it looked like Nadal was down for the count, he put his head (or racket, in this case) back in the game and walked away with another French Open victory, besting Thiem 6–3, 5–7, 6–1, 6–1. That puts Nadal at 18 Grand Slam trophies, just two away from Roger Federer’s record-holding 20. Still, Thiem is one to watch; the 25-year-old is seeded at No. 4 and upset No. 1 Novak Djokovic​ in a two-day long semi-final. Sportsnet

• Championship Update 🏒

↳The Boston Bruins kept their hopes of another Stanley Cup win alive last night, pummelling the St. Louis Blues 5–1. With the series now tied 3–3, the two teams will face off in a game seven in Boston for the championship (Wednesday, 8pm ET). 
↳ The Toronto Raptors are ready to make history tonight, as the team takes on the Golden State Warriors in game five of the NBA Finals. With a 3–1 series lead, tonight’s game could be the last. Tune in at 9pm ET.


• Broadway’s Big Night

Last night, the stage’s biggest stars gathered at Radio City Music Hall in New York City for the 73rd annual Tony Awards. Hosted by comedian and late-night host James Corden, the show was full of singing, dancing, and of course (thanks to Corden’s pretty stellar sense of humour) quite a few jokes. But most important were the awards and their recipients. The Glee Project‘s Ali Stroker won for best actress in a featured role in a musical for Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! — and simultaneously made history as the first wheelchair-using performer to win a Tony. Elaine May won her first Tony at 87, taking home best leading actress in a play for The Waverly Gallery, while Bryan Cranston won for best leading actor for his role in Network. The biggest award of the night (best play) went to The Ferryman, and Hadestown won the most awards, picking up eight. You can see the full list of winners here.


• In the Weeds

Since the dawn of cannabis legality in Canada, weed dispensaries have been cropping up all over the country. The problem? Many of them are not licensed. In an effort to block illegal pot dispensaries from operating, the city of Toronto resorted to a “firm” measure: placing massive concrete blocks at the front doors of unobliging dispensaries. After a clear warning from officials that one dispensary chose to ignore, the city took it upon themselves to “block” the shop from operating, literally. In a simple yet effective solution, 12 massive concrete blocks covered the front doors of the dispensary over the weekend. “A few days later, we did another illegal storefront where we also placed concrete blocks in front of the doors to prevent unauthorized entry into those premises,” said the director of municipal licensing standards in the city.


• Thanks to a massive storm, a crane collapsed yesterday in Dallas, Texas, killing one person and injuring six others.

• Despite not being first across the finish line, Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton managed to snag his seventh straight win of the season at yesterday’s Canadian Grand Prix.

• Rory McIlory won the RBC Canadian Open over the weekend, becoming the sixth player in history to win the U.S., British and Canadian Opens, the three oldest championships on the PGA Tour.

• Chris Pratt is officially off the market — again. The actor married Katherine Schwarzenegger on Saturday in California. 


• Closing the Gap

Fifty-six years ago, President John F. Kennedy signed a monumental bill into law to abolish wage discrimination on the basis of gender, known as the Equal Pay Act. And while this was the first step in gender equality in the U.S. workplace, there’s still a ways to go both in America and abroad. In Canada, the pay gap is still fairly conspicuous. A recent report shows women in Canada earn 84 cents for every $1earned by men. 


• Locks Worth Loads

Seriously, though. Would someone honestly pay that much for this?

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