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Gadfly

Gadfly asks pesky political and social questions, on the principle that you can't make an omelette without breaking a few eggs.

Why all the cool kids want a new electoral system

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Electoral reform might not sound very sexy. But it matters. A lot. Don’t let the footdragging wear you down.

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How parking drives automobility and harms us along the way

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As the province undertakes climate change consultations, the Pokémon Go craze and a story about a bike-using professional recycler should make us think twice about how parking provision and parking laws underpin a world engineered to isolate people from each other and the effects of our everyday actions.

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Why I am still wearing a white poppy for Remembrance Day

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The white poppy symbolizes grief for all victims of war, civilian as well as military, regardless of nationality. It also represents opposition to war and determination to work against the causes of war. Today it is relevant as ever in a Canada newly committed to humanitarianism and peacekeeping.

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Barbaric culture talk

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As politicians bid for votes in the last few days of a seemingly endless election campaign, it deserves to be asked: Is winning the best measure of leadership?

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Learning from “leadgate”

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Memorial University’s decision to close when faced with the possibility of lead in its drinking water was entirely sound. Now that the immediate risks have been addressed, what can MUN officials and the rest of us learn from the apparent crisis?

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Bike Lanes: Déjà-vu all over again

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As municipalities across the country try to encourage active transportation, why does it still feel like bicycles are Public Enemy #1 in St. John’s? Robin Whitaker reflects on the latest attempt of some city councillors to weaken our barely-existent bicycle infrastructure.

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Karl’s adventures in Newfoundland: Time for a healthy debate?

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Newfoundlanders were scandalized by Karl Ove Knausgaard’s observations on hefty waistlines. Can we take anything useful from the hoo-ha?

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Biking: to helmet or not to helmet?

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Why the government is wrong to make cycling without a helmet illegal, even though I (almost) always wear one when I rides a bike.

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Why I am wearing a white poppy for Remembrance Day

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The Peace Pledge Union asks people to wear a white poppy to symbolize their commitment to working for “the removal of all causes of war.” It’s an appeal Canadians should remember this year more than ever.

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Wolf in Shuping’s clothing?

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When Martha Shuping spoke at Memorial University on Sept. 25, her talk was billed as a primer in helping women. The story behind the headline was not so clear-cut.

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Trails: The case for sharing

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The debate over whether to allow mountain bikes on parts of the East Coast Trail has been ongoing all summer. Maybe it’s time to shift our focus.

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The trouble with charity

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Giving and generosity may reduce the burden of immediate suffering and desperation, but if we’re serious about finding long term solutions we can begin by questioning why some have so much while others have so little

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“When we can bicycle, bicycle”

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Cycling is good for our health, the environment, the economy, and all the cool kids are doing it. So why the hold up in making St. John’s a bike-friendly city?

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Abortion in Canada: Good legal principles, bad political faith

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Legally speaking, we live in the world’s most liberal abortion regime. So why do so many women struggle for access to this basic health service?

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George Orwell’s Guide to Canadian Politics

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A critical analysis of the Harper government’s behavioural patterns reveals two possibilities: it’s either an enormous coincidence or the Conservative Party of Canada is staging its own production of 1984.

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