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NNSL Opinion Stories

Love each other as much as possible

Editor’s note: Columnist Catherine Lafferty is writing a series on the Dene laws. This week’s installment is on the third of the nine laws, which is: “Love each other as much as possible.” Love each other as much as possible. Treat each other as brothers and sisters. Help each other and don’t harm anyone. We...

Plumbing matters

In the immortal words of American actress Jenifer Lewis, “You sit in (expletive) too long, it stops smelling.” Lewis, best known for her role as Will Smith’s aunt Helen in the sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, was talking about how we tend to grow accustomed to our bad habits until we no longer recognize...

Go green? Go local

Yellowknife, during its formative years, was not just pulling gold out of the ground but carrots too. Back in the 1940s and ’50s, many homes had garden patches out back, or out front, or on whatever side of the yard had better sun. At one time, Bevan’s Farm, where the Multiplex and Fieldhouse now exist,...

EDITORIAL: The case for a name change

Editor’s note: Shene Catholique Valpy is the daughter of NNSL publisher Bruce Valpy. Shene Catholique Valpy’s battle for her children’s names reflects the basic need to have the world recognize them as they truly are. Since the birth of her first daughter Sahᾴí̜ʔᾳ in 2014, she has been petitioning the territorial government to recognize the...
The City of Yellowknife is pursuing the acquisition of shoreline properties at the former Con Mine site in an attempt to avoid a crunch for boat launch access with remediation activities expected to shut down the boat lanch at Giant Mine in the coming years. Image courtesy of the City of Yellowknife

EDITORIAL: Launch on with Con

The story of Yellowknife is, at least in part, a story of poor access to one of the largest freshwater bodies of water in North America. Much of this reality is due to a mixture of unfortunate factors that have built up over time, including haphazard and poor community planning, and quirks of geology. The...

IN MY VIEW: Define social justice

How would one define or try to understand social justice? This is a very broad and complex matter that involves everyone from infant to adult to grandparents and the community in general. Not an easy conversation to engage in, but with a collective attitude we can come up with ways of finding a path in...

COLUMN: The wisdom in learning from elders’ knowledge

I don’t usually go out of my way to track down the latest edition of the Cornell (University) Chronicle, but this past summer was different in that I was keenly interested in a story I was sure would be in there that focused on the eighth annual Youth Development Research Update, held May 30 to...

EDITORIAL: A Liberal wave no more

“It’s clear something inappropriate happened,” NWT MP Michael McLeod told Yellowknifer on Friday when asked to comment on the growing scandal engulfing his chosen Liberals. McLeod, a former cabinet minister in the non-party affiliated territorial government, rode the Liberal wave in 2015 that swept out the bad old Conservatives and replaced it with a supposedly...
Aaron Hemens is the editor of the Inuvik Drum.

Vaccinations saves lives

The individual with measles who travelled to Inuvik and sparked a regional scare turned out to be a child who did not have the proper immunizations. The child’s identity and age has been concealed, but what we do know is that hundreds of people have been potentially exposed to measles as a result. The obvious...

Let’s hand out some hardware, shall we?

So a lot of good things happened to Nunavut at the Canada Winter Games. Rocco Canil of Iqaluit hangs out Waskasoo, the mascot of the 2019 Canada Winter Games, in Red Deer, Alta., on Feb. 27. Canil seemed just happy to be there and why not? photo courtesy of Sonja Lonsdale The boys hockey team...

Hickes has the boots, so time to get working

Last week, we reported that Finance Minister George Hickes was instructed by his father, former Manitoba MLA George Hickes Sr., not to follow in his footprints, but to leave his own – and they had better be prints made by work boots. He wore those boots to present his first budget. What you won’t see...

Why helping matters

Editor’s note: Columnist Catherine Lafferty is writing a series on the Dene laws. This week’s installment is on the second of the nine laws, which is: “Help each other.” One of the most important Dene laws is to help each other. Help the poor, the sick and elders who are in need. Visit them. Give...

Getting forgetful? Have your hearing checked

Getting forgetful? Think it’s the early stages of dementia? Maybe, and maybe not. The University of Toronto did a study that found some forgetfulness might be caused by hearing troubles. That reminds me of when Billy’s son was born. He proudly told my dad he was now a father and said, “I named my son...

EDITORIAL: 50 Street boondoggle

Nearly two and a half million dollars spent and all the city has to show for its 50 Street revitalization efforts is a snow-covered pop-up park on one side and a parking lot on the other. The city didn’t buy the three lots on the south side of the street for $975,000 – now home...
Aaron Hemens is the editor of the Inuvik Drum.

Show people what they’re drinking

When I went to Inuvik’s Community Healthy Living Fair on Feb. 21, I stopped by a booth that was warning Northern residents about the negative side effects high sugar consumption has on youth and their teeth. Adama Stevens, the regional dental therapist stationed at the booth, showed me a clear plastic cup that contained around...

IN MY VIEW: The fast pace of life

The first month of this New Year has come and gone like a stiff west wind, fast and furious, and already the second, too, is almost done. It makes you want to stop and look at where you ended up. In My View with Harry Maksagak We find that we forget very quickly what we...

COLUMN: National fundraising capital

I’ve been acutely aware of the fundraising efforts going on across the Kivalliq region during the past six months, especially in Rankin Inlet. And, while I tip my hat to Jonah Amitnaaq Secondary School in Baker Lake for not allowing its potential grads to use Bingo as a fundraiser, the fundraising in Rankin has reached...

WHEN THE HEART SAYS NO: Stay off your phone during meetings

The other day I heard about a boss who got so tired of his employees being on their phones during meetings that he told them not to bring phones to meetings or they could get fired. Eschia – take it easy, eh! That reminded me of a time when I was in a large conference...

A MOUNTAIN VIEW: Research is ceremony

Friends, this simple statement, “research is ceremony,” is what first made my Indigenous PhD studies come alive five years ago. The years since then have given my mantra new meaning, mainly because of the practice and discipline my studies have involved. Not the least of the challenges were the 120 textbooks we had to read....

EDITORIAL: Diesel addiction

After years of fanfare, renewable energy has gone mainstream in much of the country. Enormous wind projects have moved ahead in oil-rich Alberta, efforts are underway to harness the Bay of Fundy’s world-famous tides to generate electricity and thousands of homeowners nationwide are installing affordable solar panels on their rooftops. But here in the North,...

EDITORIAL: Chinese tourists will always be welcome

It’s not likely our territory will find a market for “NWT snow” any time soon, which is too bad because we would all be filthy rich by now and there wouldn’t be any need to prop up our economy with diamond mines or Heaven forbid, 4,700 territorial government employees. Fortunately, we have stumbled on the...

EDITORIAL: City dodges human rights bullet

There’s no question about it, living in Yelowknife is expensive. There are arguably few who know this reality better than parents raising their children here. One such parent is Aya Burshan, who gave birth to her third child in August and is currently on parental leave. Burshan was looking to get outside the house this...

Editorial: Can junk have historic and cultural value?

We have to admit to being a bit conflicted when we heard that some old decommissioned vessels and other equipment were being removed from the Marine Transportation Services (MTS) shipyard in Hay River. On the one hand, it’s junk. But it seems Hay River has a soft spot for junk, especially when it’s any sort...

COLUMN: Two days from long ago

I have two distinct and crystal-clear sets of images locked in my head from my days as a Grade 1 student at Central School in Glace Bay, N.S., and I’m sure they’ll remain with me until my final breath. The first is of the summer of 1964. I had strayed a little outside of my...

IN MY VIEW: Meaningful talks

A meaningful meeting is one that results in well-informed engagement for all parties of interest. This involves planning and understanding the scope of the issues at hand. When we look around us, we recognize that social matters are complex but relative; a connection with other entities. For example, when we talk about mining this involves...

EDITORIAL: Price of internet too darn high

Stephen Hawking once said, “We are all now connected by the internet, like neurons in a giant brain.” What he failed to mention is that some of those neurons would be more connected than others and that those on the shallow-end of the connectivity dream-pool would be left at a substantial social, educational and commercial...

NORTHERN WILDFLOWER: Share the caribou stew

Growing up with my grandmother I don’t remember eating very much store-bought meat. We always had a freezer full of caribou meat or moose meat and fish. Sometimes we would have the odd duck or rabbit. Today my family eats store-bought meat at least three days a week. It is rare that we have wild...

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Housing and northern allowance for home owners in the NWT

From: Ernest Taylor Pokiak, Tuktoyaktuk Dear editor, This is an opportune time to send a message to the GNWT regarding home ownership in the territory. In 1984-85, the government introduced the HAP program as a first for Northerners. Since then other housing programs have come into being. The government also introduced the housing allowance of...
GNWT Local 1 members attend a strike preparation meeting at Mildred Hall School on Saturday. The strike was narrowly avoided later that night after 11th hour negotiations produced an agreement to put outstanding issues to mediator Vince Ready to decide. NNSL file photo

EDITORIAL: Yk a company town and that company is the GNWT

If territorial government workers had an extra spring in their steps Monday morning, they could hardly be blamed. They were going back to work after all. It was a far cry from Saturday afternoon, when many GNWT workers in the city were under the impression that they would be out in the cold this week...

JOHN HOWE: Yellowknife’s Own Lot in Life

Oh, so that’s what improvements look like. I recall my first memorable view of the downtown 50/50 intersection when I was here for a brief visit in 1992. There was a fenced off hole in the ground and in it, vestigial remains of what must have been a significant demolition. It’s 2019 now and given...