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Canada's national resolutions: Our bloggers bring on the best for 2016

| January 8, 2016
Flickr / Victor Bezrukov

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It's been a week since New Year's celebrations lit up the first early morning of January, and for some, the resolutions are already starting to slide. However, regardless of whether you're iron-willed or slowly softening to temptation, this list of 2016 national resolutions should have you itching for more social and political action in 2016.

First and foremost, Canada needs a drink. Freshwater has been largely left off the national agenda, but as Brent Patterson explains, this isn't a good thing. Under the Harper government, more than two million lakes and rivers lost their main protection against big oil -- the Navigable Waters Protection Act, which was amended to exempt pipelines. He also weakened the Environmental Assessment Act and the Fisheries Act. Want to dump your deleterious chemicals into a lake? As long as that substance (at full concentration) doesn't kill more than half the fish in a 96-hour period, you're golden. It's high time we clean up this fishy business.

While Canada should certainly clean up its act domestically, it can also consider implementing a few changes abroad. After the recent Saudi execution of 47 individuals (labelled "terrorists," though four were actually advocates for Saudi Arabia's human rights movement), Canada was presented with a choice: it could speak up, or ignore the problem in favour of lucrative arms deals. As Shenaz Kermalli writes, we seem to have chosen the latter.

And then, as Meghan Murphy points out, there's the issue of sexual assault and violence against women. From mass assaults in Germany to close-to-home encounters across Canada’s university campuses, it's a topic that’s gained quite a bit of attention. It's time to drive the point and enact a policy, a strategy a …curfew? Murphy explains how a facetious argument soon gained credulity.

New Year's resolutions don't have to be all action though -- there's also a bit of talk. Specifically, talk about how issues are presented in the media. To illustrate, John Baglow takes a look at the Bill Cosby case, and how misogyny is alive and well in today’s journalism. Did Andrea Constand, who Cosby sexually assaulted a decade ago, really just cry wolf so she could cash in on the lawsuit? Of course not, but that didn’t stop one New York Post writer from speculating.

As for your final resolution, Canada: it's time to take care of yourself. While many Canadians are looking ahead to 2016, for the tens of thousands of workers were laid off this past December, things aren't that easy. Nora Loreto looks at a disturbing trend, where corporations across the country use December as an opportunity to "balance the books off their workers’ backs." Unless something changes, next December could see much the same thing occur. Heads up, kids: as Loreto explains, "parents suddenly without work are terrible Santa Clauses."

And that’s the list for 2016! From clean water to a safer workplace, Canada has a lot to strive for. Luckily, if willpower wins out, we may soon be celebrating an even better holiday season in 12 months.

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