BRAINSTORM COLUMN ARCHIVE

Experts and social media users offer solutions to the world's greatest problems.

How Do You Deal with Negativity on Social Media?

It was a dream gig that turned into a nightmare. When Jessi Cruickshank, the host of Canada’s Smartest Person, hosted the Juno Awards gala, she playfully roasted some A-listers. Unfortunately, the fans of one of those celebs were not amused. The next morning, Cruickshank awoke to discover more than 8,700 “angry, terrifying and downrigh...

August 23rd, 2016 read more

Where are the Positive Dads in Pop Culture?

If you believe what you see in pop culture, fathers have failed to evolve. Fictional dads aren’t taking paternity leaves or sharing child-raising responsibilities, they’re stuck in old stereotypes. Too often father figures are portrayed as comically inept, cruelly dominant, or as Toronto International Film Festival artistic director Camero...

June 8th, 2016 read more

Do Awareness Days Make a Difference?

What better way to usher in spring than spending a day planting flowers in the buff. Isn’t that what every Canadian did on World Naked Gardening Day in early May? The year is full of some pretty wacky days of awareness we’re all encouraged to acknowledge: International Talk Like A Pirate Day, National Hairball Awareness Day, and our pe...

May 17th, 2016 read more

How Can We Raise Boys to Care About Women’s Issues?

Reading the news headlines reminds Glen Canning of how much work he has to do. “Every day there is some story about a girl or woman being harassed, assaulted, raped or slut-shamed,” says Canning in dismay. Canning put himself in the national spotlight when he took on the role of impassioned activist after his daughter, Rehtaeh Parsons, hu...

May 4th, 2016 read more

What Support Would You Offer a Young Person Dealing with Mental Illness?

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recently came out with a bold recommendation: Primary care physicians must routinely screen patients aged 12 to 18 for depression. We’re certain parents would be relieved if such a measure were introduced in Canada, where there’s a mental health crisis among young people, with family members on the f...

April 20th, 2016 read more

Have Your Say: How can each Canadian help refugees settle in their new home?

There may be fewer news cameras and cabinet ministers welcoming Syrian refugees at Canadian airports since the first exhausted arrivals landed to great fanfare. But the warm greetings have continued for newcomers in communities from Antigonish, N.S., to tiny Brownfield, Alta., reflecting a whole nation’s generous embrace. Our parents are two of ...

January 28th, 2016 read more

Have Your Say: Dreaming of a green Christmas

No treetops glistening. The great Christmas crooner Bing Crosby would not approve. Canada may be renowned as a winter wonderland but on Dec, 25, 2014, Environment Canada’s senior climatologist estimated that 85 per cent of Canadians – especially those living in urban areas – saw their dreams of a white Christmas dashed by a mild December. We...

December 3rd, 2015 read more

Have Your Say: How can we help our communities’ homeless people?

The mammoth St Martin-in-the-Fields church in London’s Trafalgar Square held a packed memorial in November for local residents who had died homeless on the city’s streets. Similar services happen outdoors in Canadian cities, offering a final touch of dignity to lives lived largely in the shadows. Of the almost quarter of a million Canadians wh...

November 30th, 2015 read more

Have Your Say: How would you build a more neighbourly city?

On the last night of October, Canadian communities come alive with zombies, princesses and superheroes. Neighbours gather on sidewalks and porches. The next morning, homes seem shuttered as people scurry straight from the front door to car door. Of course, this isn’t a universal portrait. But last year Maclean’s magazine reported that 30 per c...

October 30th, 2015 read more

Have Your Say: What’s the first thing you would you do as PM?

Unless you’ve been focused entirely on the Toronto Blue Jays’ exhilarating quest for the World Series, you’ll know there’s another race happening in Canada that feels as excruciatingly long as the baseball season. It’s the longest federal election since 1872. If the 78-day campaign went any longer, there may be no candidates left. Not aft...

October 9th, 2015 read more