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Women's Memorial March
February 14, 2012 11:23 AM   Subscribe

Today, across Canada, thousands of women March. The February 14th Annual Women’s Memorial March is held on Valentine’s Day each year to honour the memory of women from Vancouver's Downtown Eastside who have died due to the violence of physical, mental, emotional and spiritual abuse.

Now in its 21st year, the March is an immensely powerful women’s action that brings courage and commitment to remember and honour murdered and missing women, and to end the violence that vulnerable women in the DTES face on a daily basis.
This March was highlighted in the film (vimeo link;possibly triggering): Survival, Strength, Sisterhood: Power of Women in the Downtown Eastside, (previously).
Last October, the Women's Memorial March announced it would not participate in the "Sham Missing Women’s Inquiry" (previously), a position supported by many other groups. Today, women March, to once again denounce the inquiry and demand justice.
posted by what's her name (57 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

 
What is "spiritual abuse"?
posted by I am the Walrus at 11:26 AM on February 14, 2012


Your spirituality sucks?
posted by stinkycheese at 11:28 AM on February 14, 2012


They put that on Valentine's Day? Because relationships invariably equal abused women?
posted by small_ruminant at 11:28 AM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Spiritual abuse is a serious form of abuse which occurs when a person in a cult-religious authority or a person with a unique spiritual practice misleads and maltreats another person in the name of a deity(god)or church or in the mystery of any spiritual concept.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:30 AM on February 14, 2012 [6 favorites]


Good grief guys, this is a good cause for vulnerable people in very unfortunate circumstances. Can you try to not attack it right off the bat?
posted by Hoopo at 11:32 AM on February 14, 2012 [16 favorites]


Spiritual abuse may include preventing a woman from participating in spiritual or religious practices, ridiculing her beliefs, or using spiritual beliefs to justify controlling her.
posted by what's her name at 11:36 AM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


No idea why Valetine's Day is chosen to do the March, but I suspect it's because it is a high profile day. Highlighting that some women are wishing they were free from systematic abuse and violence while people are giving gifts is probably the point.

As to spirit abuse being mentioned (first time I ever heard it also), there's this bit from the About page: "This event is organized and led by women in the DTES because women, especially Indigenous women, face physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual violence on a daily basis. "
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:37 AM on February 14, 2012


I think this is a great cause but it seems focused on the notorious downtown east side of Vancouver, hardly a nationwide situation. I've been interested in the DTES for years now, and have friends working with the community there, and I had never heard of this march before. I was surprised to see it's in its 21st year. I looked into whether there were protests or marches being held in other Canadian cities today and indeed there are.
posted by stinkycheese at 11:38 AM on February 14, 2012


Not sure how that applies here. Maybe a combination of being ignored by moral-religious types (except they're not really a force in the government in Vancouver. Maybe the police though?), and being left with the scars of residential schools (for the native women)?
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 11:41 AM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


They put that on Valentine's Day? Because relationships invariably equal abused women?

Some people believe that Valentines Day is a pretty damned disgusting commercial exploitation of human feelings for corporate financial gain. Those women in the DTES were abandoned by the VPD, as they were perceived as having no worth whatsoever, and a career impediment to the officers in charge.

In point if fact then, Valentines Day is the perfect opportunity for thoughtful voices to be raised in protest by pointing out the inherent hypocrisy of a society that promotes and idolizes female sexuality in books songs and video, while also despising and abusing those who don't fit within the pretty little boxes designed for them by those with the money and power.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 11:49 AM on February 14, 2012 [5 favorites]


A Question of Honour: How We Remember the Dead in Canada.

How is it -- simultaneous with a Missing Women inquiry that excludes the families of many hundreds of missing and murdered Aboriginal women -- that this nation has learned the names of Zainab, Sahari, and Geeti Shafia, and Rona Amir Mohammad, as the only newsworthy examples of women murdered in Canada? This is a question of honour: in a nation that has shown itself incapable of respecting the dead, how do we honour the memories of women killed by their families? And what is the etiquette for "remembering" people we meet only posthumously? How do we honour the fullness of their lives?

posted by Rumple at 11:52 AM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm speculating Pruitt-Igoe, but yes the DTES has a significant native population and this could refer to residential schools to some extent. Also speculating but oppositoin to InSite (supervised in injection site) has come from social conservative groups promoting Christian agendas. As a poor area with a lot of problems a lot of people in the area also rely on religious organizations for various kinds of assistance. I'm not aware of any specific examples of abuse stemming from this, but it's not inconceivable and I don't really see much of an issue including "spiritual abuse" among the subjects of the March
posted by Hoopo at 11:59 AM on February 14, 2012


I've been interested in the DTES for years now, and have friends working with the community there, and I had never heard of this march before. I was surprised to see it's in its 21st year.

I live down here and I've never heard of it. Here is the post detailing the origins of the march.
The first women’s memorial march was held in 1991 in response to the murder of a Coast Salish woman on Powell Street in Vancouver. Her name is not spoken today out of respect for the wishes of her family. Out of this sense of hopelessness and anger came an annual march on Valentine’s Day to express compassion, community, and caring for all women in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, Unceded Coast Salish Territories. Twenty one years later, the women’s memorial march continues to honour the lives of missing and murdered women.
Anyhow, sounds like it would be starting right now, but I might walk down to Oppenheimer at 3 for the healing circle and community feast.
posted by mannequito at 11:59 AM on February 14, 2012


A concrete example of spiritual abuse.
posted by bonehead at 12:07 PM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


DTES needs help, pure and simple.

What its getting is condo creep, rent inflation, and general gentrification via some sneaky and not terribly responsible monetary/tax incentives from the provincial government. It leads one to wonder, where the hell is the money the province should be spending on this district actually going?
posted by Slackermagee at 12:25 PM on February 14, 2012


In point if fact then, Valentines Day is the perfect opportunity for thoughtful voices to be raised in protest by pointing out the inherent hypocrisy of a society that promotes and idolizes female sexuality in books songs and video, while also despising and abusing those who don't fit within the pretty little boxes designed for them by those with the money and power.

Yeah, I'm not seeing that. Valentine's Day, however commercial it is or its roots are, is about appreciating the people in your life, no purchases required. I'm as social justice oriented and feminist as just about anyone I know, and I come from a family that's similarly oriented and even to me, parading on that day is a little to PETA-rific for me to appreciate.

How can you give your loved ones little cards with a heart on it, and possibly even a tulip when there are PEOPLE BEING ABUSED?!

I'm very glad they're doing what they're doing AND this sort of thing alienates people who would otherwise be on their side.
posted by small_ruminant at 12:26 PM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


I've been interested in the DTES for years now, and have friends working with the community there, and I had never heard of this march before. I was surprised to see it's in its 21st year.

I live down here and I've never heard of it. Here is the post detailing the origins of the march.


Seriously? Pictures from the march are inevitably on the front pages on the Sun the day afterwards, or on the news. I find it really odd that you haven't heard of it.
posted by jokeefe at 12:27 PM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Valentine's Day is a BS holiday to sell cards and chocolate, so I don't really see much issue having a march on Valentine's day any more than I see a problem having a march on Halloween.
posted by Hoopo at 12:30 PM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


Valentine's Day, however commercial it is or its roots are, is about appreciating the people in your life,

Valentine's Day is "about" appreciating people only because of its commercial roots.

The hoopla around it is all "cherish your spouse" and "show her how much you love her" by giving them expensive shit or at least flowers and chocolate and if you don't you're a jerk, I think a "holiday" like this is the perfect time for a march that focuses on just how shitty many people are at loving and cherishing. It also doesn't make it illegal to give candy or flowers for those who get their groove on that way. You can give gifts and still think about or talk about justice.
posted by rtha at 12:47 PM on February 14, 2012 [9 favorites]


this sort of thing alienates people who would otherwise be on their side.

Yeah, that's a load of happy horseshit. No one has said not to celebrate Valentine's Day. Suggesting that there is something sacrosanct about the day, and that it needs to be treated with respect is pretty offensive to many people who actually care about gender equality, however.

In the case of the Pickton serial killings, we are talking about women who who were systematically kidnapped, raped, tortured, and rendered into pig-food. Anyone who is offended by having their precious hallmark holiday besmirched by those who date to point out how horrifically they have been treated by the people who stole their land, children, and culture deserves precisely zero sympathy for this idiotic "plight" you feel so offended by.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 12:55 PM on February 14, 2012 [7 favorites]


Seems a lot like taking a piss in the cornflakes o a lot of people who are excited and happy about the holiday...

...Which is in February, about the time of Carnival.

It seems to me that the modern St. Valentine's Day is a sanitized, protestant Carnival, a holiday that goes back thousands of years. So, yes, there is commercial involvement, and no, evil chocolate merchants didn't "create" a holiday in February. One was already there (a number of them, actually. Mardi Gras and even President's Day, when you think about it.)

So, on a day when people like to reflect on and renew their relationships with the people they love, this march is trying to force them to feel anger and outrage.

I applaud the purpose - awareness of domestic abuse - I am more than a little cynical about the motivation of the timing. Definitely falls under the "more harm than good" category.
posted by Slap*Happy at 1:05 PM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Valentine's Day is "about" appreciating people only because of its commercial roots.

However it started, around these parts it's now about little kids drawing hearts on doilies and giving it to their moms and friends. They may even get some of those awful, chalky, heart shaped candies that say "Be Mine." It's sweet and I am glad it exists. I don't know where so many people in this thread get the their baggage about Valentine's Day- maybe they're getting innundated with TV commercials or something.

You can ALSO point out how horrifically people have been treated pretty much every other day of the year (not Christmas please, even if it is terribly commercial for a lot of folks). Picking Valentine's Day is a boorish PR stunt set up to make people feel guilty or pissed off on a holiday that's generally good hearted and innocent.
posted by small_ruminant at 1:08 PM on February 14, 2012


Jesus Christ, if you could just ignore the "spiritual abuse" red herring and perhaps concentrate on the fact that Vancouver's Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood has been an open sore for a long, long time, a virtual ghetto where many, many women have met their fate.

For much of the 1990s the police ignored the fact that women were going missing. No one cared.

Many of the women came from "First Nations" communities (I believe Americans use the term "Indians"), so the neglect has been based on racism, pure and simple.

Despite the fact that William Pickton would be eventually arrested and convicted of murdering dozens of women (often fed to pigs), there really hasn't been any sort of resolution or reconciliation.

Indeed, if you drive Hwy 16 in the northwest corner of the province, you are driving the Highway of Tears, where a serial killer likely still is at large. I've driven that highway recently, and it is just chilling to see the number of young First Nations women (girls, really), often from small villages with just no concept of what the may be getting into, thumbing a ride, hoping to get to the next remote community.

So if you feel like splitting hairs about Valentine's Day-this, and spirtual abuse-that, why don't you go hang out somewhere else.

We're talking about mothers murdered. Sisters murdered. Daughters murdered. Often in the most gruesome ways, often in the shadow of one of the most affluent cities of the world, often forgotten by society.
posted by KokuRyu at 1:09 PM on February 14, 2012 [18 favorites]


Day is a boorish PR stunt set up to make people feel guilty or pissed off on a holiday that's generally good hearted and innocent.

I doubt the people who have suffered so much care very much at all about offending the delicate sensibilities of a disassociated stranger on the internet.
posted by KokuRyu at 1:10 PM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


I think they care EXACTLY about offending or they'd have picked a different day.
posted by small_ruminant at 1:13 PM on February 14, 2012


I think they care EXACTLY about offending or they'd have picked a different day.

People who are offended probably deserve to be offended.
posted by KokuRyu at 1:15 PM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


People who are offended probably deserve to be offended.

1) How do you figure? That makes no sense to me at all. I'm on their side. I work for their same goals in my job and in my "hobbies."

2) Being offended and seeing it as a boorish PR stunt aren't exactly the same.
posted by small_ruminant at 1:17 PM on February 14, 2012


Slap*Happy the march isn't specifically about domestic abuse awareness.

Also not everyone gives a shit about Valentine's Day, and no one I know or have met before today considers it important enough for anything more than a nice dinner, so this is a pretty tasteless tangent to be running off on.
posted by Hoopo at 1:17 PM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


Picking Valentine's Day is a boorish PR stunt set up to make people feel guilty or pissed off on a holiday that's generally good hearted and innocent.

Well, good. It sounds like this kind of violence, especially when it's being systematically ignored, is something that people should feel guilty and pissed off about.
posted by kagredon at 1:18 PM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


small_ruminant, I think it's great that you work on behalf of these issues, but this is one of those times when the people being most directly affected by violence against women in the DTES need to have their own voice. So while you may be on their side, you have not lived through their specific experience.

And I don't understand why this is a boorish PR stunt. These are people in pain who have lost loved ones, and who have been ignored by the police, because of their race and their social class.

The people organizing this event have been excluded from mainstream dialogue, even within the women's movement. They're bound to have a different ideas about what works and what does not.
posted by KokuRyu at 1:27 PM on February 14, 2012 [11 favorites]


Well, when it comes down to it, I think manipulation of this sort cheapens the message, just as I think PETA so often cheapens the animal abuse message in favor of making a media splash. Obviously, they (and you) disagree with me.
posted by small_ruminant at 1:31 PM on February 14, 2012


While a lot of people may not give two shoes about Vday, it does symbolize "love". If the love of your life is abusing you, that is not love, so if it is some boorish PR stunt, then I'm all for it. Any reminder or leverage to get someone to think twice about who they're with, I'm all for.

[Excuse my tanget but for example, Xmas is supposed to be about family, peace, giving, and love. I remember it for being the worse time for my mom to get abused. We didn't open presents fast enough, she took too many pics of me and the dog getting our presents and yelled for it, and when we came home from my dad's sister that's when the beatings/arguments started--right before bed time because she hated going over there and seeing how they lived (rich while we lived in the ghetto). And now my son's bday is the day after. Good. I need something beautiful to remember the holidays for and replace the crap I had 37 years of memories. If Vday and this March can do the same for someone else, then woo hoo. ]
posted by stormpooper at 1:32 PM on February 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


@Small Ruminant====and Sarah McLachlan. "Arms of an Angel" song + abused animals = ruining my day. Damn her!!!
posted by stormpooper at 1:33 PM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


I think they care EXACTLY about offending or they'd have picked a different day.

Cite. For both "this is why they picked the day" and also "people who are offended." You are offended. I'm not seeing signs or evidence of SO MANY OFFENDED PEOPLE who are offended because a group highlighting the plight of these women had the goddamn nerve to pick a sacred holiday and who also! Made it illegal for you to do Valentine's Day in whatever way you wish. What terrible people they are!
posted by rtha at 1:35 PM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


I think they care EXACTLY about offending or they'd have picked a different day.
...
Well, when it comes down to it, I think manipulation of this sort cheapens the message


Are you also offended by Thanksgiving/holiday food/toy/pledge drives, the MDA Labor Day Telethon (your profile indicates you're in the US?), gay pride parades at St. Patrick's Day, etc...?
posted by kagredon at 1:35 PM on February 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


In winter the Aleutian Low hunkers down off the West Coast of North America, spawning a bitter wind which scours the mill-towns and fishing villages of the North West rain-forest. It stings the skin of the under-dressed Party Girls chased by lounge lizards and cocaine cowboys amongst the Canadian Legions and faux-medieval pubs.

The small-town heroes are beyond tedious, with their vulcanized mullets and Trans Am minds. Another Saturday night, another meat-raffle, the Party-Girl is positively going to scream. The sulfur of the pulp mill is her lasting impression, fleeing The Res and her past in a jacked-up Pontiac.

It’s warmer in Van in winter. You can wear a skirt. Clubs are side by side, even right on top of each other. The barred doors of the secret after-hours joints magically unlock for freshly-minted Party Girls. You can boogie till dawn, no questions or money asked. There was always a place for the Party Girl in some circles. Mostly they were harmless fun. Others… not so much.

At age 18 or 20 everything glitters for Party Girls. No Fear isn’t a Brand; it’s a lifestyle. Dawns are sparkling and full of promise. Before free-base and Aids, the possibilities were limitless. But when the music stops, and the disco ball quits spinning, no easy pathway lays clear-cut amongst the empty bottles and discarded Baggies. The tips get smaller, the invitations aren’t so glamorous. Long necks and Harley Davidsons replace Dom Perignon and Porsches. Opening parties and chalets transform themselves into strip joints and trailer parks. Occasional becomes a habit. Friends are forgotten. Their wisecracks and jokes have turned into boring pleas and lectures. After all, she’s a Party Girl, she's in control. She can quit any time she wants.

The way down is always so much swifter than the way up. Blink and you’ll miss it. Besides, you did your best. It’s not your fault. You don't need to think about it. You had other priorities. You hadn’t thought of her in a decade, until you saw her picture in the paper.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 1:38 PM on February 14, 2012 [4 favorites]


making a media splash

I'm looking at the front page of the Vancouver Sun right now, and my god, it's just covered with in-your-face stories about this march, so I guess I can see how you might feel kind of forced to pay attention to this issue, instead of Valentine's Day.

Oh wait, no it's not.
posted by rtha at 1:40 PM on February 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


Well, when it comes down to it, I think manipulation of this sort cheapens the message, just as I think PETA so often cheapens the animal abuse message in favor of making a media splash. Obviously, they (and you) disagree with me.

The group is nothing like PETA, for goodness sakes. They don't have the same sort of organization. It's the families of women who have been the victims of sexual violence - they all have direct connections to people who have been murdered. It's not a club or a movement like PETA.
posted by KokuRyu at 1:41 PM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


[Folks, if you've said your piece and this topic just makes you angry maybe you can let other people just talk about the links. This thread is turning into a "few people argue with each other" situation that is sort of suboptimal. Thanks]
posted by jessamyn at 1:54 PM on February 14, 2012


To those in the Downtown Eastside, Ashley’s death, while tragic, is not mysterious: she is one of many women in the area who are killed or punished in a highly public way by drug dealers who want their debts paid. In this neighbourhood women with drug debts sometimes have their heads shaved or fingers cut off, and Ashley was not the first woman to have been thrown from a window.
posted by kagredon at 1:57 PM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


According to CBC radio here in Winnipeg, there is a Unity March for missing and murdered women going on right now.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 3:14 PM on February 14, 2012


>this sort of thing alienates people who would otherwise be on their side

I guess you and some others, but not me and a bunch of others. It seems appropriate to me. The day is about love . . . or in this case the lack of it. Works for me. Everyone doesn't have to be shinyhappy about it. I see a lot of grief in "romance" or whatever, the world in general, but it doesn't take anything away from my happy personal situation wrt this day.
posted by Listener at 3:23 PM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


Today, across Canada, thousands of women March. The February 14th Annual Women’s Memorial March is held on Valentine’s Day each year to honour the memory of women from Vancouver's Downtown Eastside who have died due to the violence of physical, mental, emotional and spiritual abuse....

posted by what's her name


I...I'm sorry, but this was the first thing I noticed about the post. Eponysterical?
posted by magstheaxe at 4:08 PM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Seriously? Pictures from the march are inevitably on the front pages on the Sun the day afterwards, or on the news. I find it really odd that you haven't heard of it.

I don't read the paper or own a TV. And most every day I'm out walking there's some kind of crowd or rally, somewhere at Main and Hastings, by the courts, in the park ... hard to keep up with all of them.
posted by mannequito at 4:12 PM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


I think you mean eponydepressing, magstheaxe.
posted by Devika at 4:26 PM on February 14, 2012


Maybe a combination of being ignored by moral-religious types

That's unfair. Most of the major DTSE shelters are run by Christian groups, some left-Christian (e.g. First United), some right-Christian. Take Union Gospel Mission. I have a hard-right Baptist friend who's on their board (hard-right by Canadian standards). She does the work because she thinks she has a religious duty to alleviate the extreme poverty that is afflicting her neighbors. One time she gave me a soliloquy about vegetables (how hard it is to shop for fresh vegetables in the DTES, the amount of food allowed to spoil in downtown grocery stores, the possible logistics of a subsidized grocery store, etc.). She's as passionate about poverty as Republigelicals are about their latest cause du jour, except well informed and well intentioned.

It's hard to live within walking distance of the DTSE and not be freaked the heck out that it exists in Canada. I can't speak to what's happening in the rest of Canada, but Vancouver evangelicals actually do care about poverty and genuinely want to do something about it.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 4:40 PM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


How can you give your loved ones little cards with a heart on it, and possibly even a tulip when there are PEOPLE BEING ABUSED?!

So, on a day when people like to reflect on and renew their relationships with the people they love, this march is trying to force them to feel anger and outrage.

Picking Valentine's Day is a boorish PR stunt set up to make people feel guilty or pissed off on a holiday that's generally good hearted and innocent.

Well, when it comes down to it, I think manipulation of this sort cheapens the message, just as I think PETA so often cheapens the animal abuse message in favor of making a media splash.

Most of the survival sexworkers I meet have no teeth. They also have no dentures. This is because they remove their dentures to give blowjobs in a john's car and when he rapes, beats, strangles or stabs them they often can't grab their dentures while fighting to get out of the car alive.

My co-workers at the Washington hotel across the street saw Verna Simard laying on the sidewalk in front of the Regent Hotel across the street. They thought she was passed out in a pool of puke. She was actually dead in a pool of her brain matter.

This is what happened to the woman whose death in the early nineties, amid many, many others inspired this march; both her breasts were slashed off, her skull was crushed and her vagina tissue was cut away, discarded and strewn about on the streets nearby. Her killer was convicted of first-degree murder after the jury heard he sought out a prostitute after watching the movie Silence of the Lambs.

But yeah. It's all about you. Pardon the confusion.
posted by moneyjane at 9:48 PM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


[The difficulty with posts about horrific things is they make people angry... which too often results in threads full of people just being angry and fighting with each other for no real reason but frustration with the true problem. All efforts to subvert this paradigm greatly appreciated.]
posted by taz at 10:50 PM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]


This is one of the most disappointing Metafilter threads in recent memory - even the people defending the march seem to be missing the point, and the message, which as anyone who has ever attended one of these marches would know, is about love. Love for their missing sisters and daughters and mothers, love for each other, and for everyone else. There's more bitterness and outrage in the air this year due to the "sham inquiry" that's going on, but the message of healing is the same every year. Despite this they're still full of love!
posted by dinsdale at 11:13 PM on February 14, 2012 [3 favorites]


I just wanted to add that spiritual abuse may also include the residential schools history for First Nations people. That is a complex intergenerational trauma and it percolates throughout communities.

As somebody who lives in Vancouver, I have no problem at all with the march being today. I think that's the point. Because it isn't all hearts and roses and sometimes the people giving you the hearts and roses are the ones beating or raping you.
posted by Chaussette and the Pussy Cats at 11:21 PM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]


Matthew Huzsar went missing on December 16th. His family and friends plastered the area with hundreds of missing posters. I was walking home from a shift at one of our projects along Hastings at Cambie on the evening of December 22nd and saw a guy ripping down missing posters and realized I hadn't seen many around lately.

I thought maybe Matthew had been found but the man was tearing the posters down because he was angry about how the police had treated his girlfriend Wendy years earlier. On January 2nd I saw (and photographed) graffitti on plywood hoarding next to the Potter's Place Mission that stated; "People of the DTES will tell what happened to HUAZAR as fast as VPD looked at the PIGFARM. PAYBACK is a BITCH, VPD! (VPD is the Vancouver Police Department) I noticed another a couple of weeks ago; "FUCK THE POLICE and their pig farm".

There is love, and there is healing, but the pig farm is not over down here.
posted by moneyjane at 3:23 AM on February 15, 2012


small_ruminant, Slap*Happy, et al.: Did it ever occur to you that the people who participate in this march are showing love for their lost friends, lost family and their community? That they might be joining together to remember the lost people whom they still love, to share and commiserate with people who are uniquely qualified to understand their pain?

How is that contrary to your espoused ideals about the meaning of Valentine's Day? It isn't. Love isn't yours to define. Love is for everyone.
posted by i feel possessed at 4:17 AM on February 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


Also, violence against women doesn't stop simply because it's Valentine's Day.

If you can't handle a march to raise awareness of violence towards women because it's on Valentine's Day, maybe it's time to rethink your priorities. You do not own Valentine's Day. You can celebrate it however you want. Others can celebrate it however they want. To speak bluntly, you're upset that people even talking or thinking about murdered and missing women on VDay might hurt your feelings. Do you even comprehend how callous that makes you seem?

It find it disheartening that here's this march that wants to raise awareness about murdered and missing women and it gets labeled a "boorish PR stunt" and a "media splash". I understand that some people are so entrenched in their idea of Valentine's Day as some perfect high holy happy holiday that they want to celebrate without having the real world intrude on their lives, but come on. Entitlement is ugly. Friends and loved ones of dead and missing women have come together to remember them, to join together in solidarity, to ask that justice be done for those dead and missing women. Equating that to PETA's questionable behavior is beyond the pale.
posted by i feel possessed at 4:31 AM on February 15, 2012 [4 favorites]


Turn the march into a snappy tune then give it a few years, it'll be a holiday classic in no time!

how hard it is to shop for fresh vegetables in the DTES

Even when I lived down there I hated this argument because it's patently not true and it never has been. Even now. After Woodward's closed and there were no more $1.49 Tuesdays, what was hard to find was a lot of western groceries, but Chinatown is rife with businesses that sell fresh fruit, vegetables and Asian groceries. Cheaply even. Sunrise used to be the cheapest place, even cheaper than Save On Meats, for fresh chicken for instance.

Where the problem really lies is in things like access to kitchens for the areas residents since some SRO's don't even offer hot plates in their units let alone fridges to store food in along with a host of other issues that come up over discussions about poverty and nutrition.
posted by squeak at 8:20 AM on February 15, 2012


Did it ever occur to you that the people who participate in this march are showing love for their lost friends, lost family and their community? That they might be joining together to remember the lost people whom they still love, to share and commiserate with people who are uniquely qualified to understand their pain?

You're completely right and I hadn't thought of it that way. Somehow mostly what I originally took away was the Pissed Off part, probably, as dinsdale said, because of the Sham Inquiry element that's going on currently.

When you put it that way, Valentine's Day seems completely appropriate and pretty awesome.

I'm sure they'll be relieved to hear of my approval. /sarcasm
posted by small_ruminant at 12:20 PM on February 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


> the message, which as anyone who has ever attended one of these marches would know, is about love.

Even better. I don't do marches, so I wouldn't know. Thanks for letting us know.
posted by Listener at 4:04 PM on February 15, 2012 [1 favorite]


Thanks for actually listening, small_ruminant.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 5:51 PM on February 15, 2012


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