26th Anniversary of the Montreal Massacre: Panel Discussion

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Image Credit: rabble.ca

Click HERE to download the Mp3 of the panel.

In commemoration of the Montreal Massacre that happened on December 6th, 1989 in École Polytechnique, CKUT’s Off the Hour hosted a panel discussion to analyze the event once again and the impact it had on the feminist movement and gun control laws.

CKUT’s Rose Woolhouse, Kateryna Gordiychuk and Emily Enhorning had a chance to speak to Maureen Bradley, a filmmaker, who produced a short documentary in 1995 titled “Refraiming the Montreal Massacre”; Rose Marie Whalley, a community radio programmer and a board member at Center for Gender Advocacy; and Kevin Vowles, a Community Engagement Manager for the White Ribbon in Toronto, that empowers men and boys to take a stand against violence directed at women and girls.

The panel tried to unveil the social circumstances within which the crime against women occurred by addressing the issues of gender violence in general and the work done to prevent it in the aftermath of the event.

Although, the speakers said that the issue receives much more acknowledgement nowadays, they emphasized the persisting facts of violence against women and girls in modern society.

83% of all police-reported domestic assaults are against women. This pattern is consistent for every province and territory across Canada.(Canadianwomen.org)

A big part of discussion was dedicated to the media portrayal at the time of the massacre and how the news reporting consequently framed the public’s reaction to the crime. Maureen Bradley, one of the speakers, produced a documentary “Reframing the Montreal Massacre” two decades ago to address this issue.

The matter of violence against women is not an issue for feminists only, but it must be recognized and acted against by all societal structures. Kevin Vowles, one of the speakers, talked about his extensive educational work with White Ribbon, an organization that teaches boys and men to react to gender violence.

What I see when engaging men and boys is that they are willing to come forward, stand up, and say something when they see violence and rape culture happening. White Ribbon encourages men and boys to move away from harmful gender norms.  When men and boys start truly getting in touch with their emotions (transcending toxic masculinity), moving away from straight anger, we can end violence against women.

– Kevin Vowles shared with CKUT after the panel discussion

Listen to an insightful discussion on the framework in which the Montreal Massacre occurred and its consequences. Rose Marie Whalley, one of the panelists, also provides a live account from the feminist demonstration held soon after the crime.

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