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Why Dan Levy Won’t Celebrate Canada Day: “I Was Re-educated on My Place as a Canadian Settler”

By | July 2, 2021

Image Source: Getty / Taylor Hill

On May 29, the remains of 215 Indigenous children were found at Kamloops Indian Residential School in British Columbia. Last week, Cowessess First Nation uncovered 751 additional unmarked graves, most of which are also believed to belong to indigenous children, at Marieval Indian Residential School in Saskatchewan. More than 150,000 indigenous children were forcibly removed from their homes from the early 1800s up until the 1990s to attend these “residential schools.” Once they were in the institutions, the children were given new names, forbidden from speaking their native languages, and made to convert to Christianity. The discovery of these unmarked graves paints a dark and long-concealed picture of Canada’s history of abuses against the country’s indigenous populations.

“I encourage all Canadian settlers, myself included, to not celebrate Canada Day, but rather re-educate yourselves on the real history of Canada by taking this course.”

In an effort to encourage Canadian residents to educate themselves on their country’s history this July 1, aka Canada Day, Dan Levy shared his experience taking part in a virtual Indigenous studies course taught by the faculty of native studies at the University of Alberta last summer. “Over 12 weeks, I was re-educated on the history of Canada,” he said in a video on Instagram on Thursday. “I was re-educated on my place as a Canadian settler, my context, my privilege. And this Canada Day, with everything unfolding in the news, I encourage all Canadian settlers, myself included, to not celebrate Canada Day, but rather re-educate yourselves on the real history of Canada by taking this course.”

The 12-week class, currently taught by Dr. Tracy Bear and Dr. Paul Gareau, explores both Indigenous histories and Canada’s contemporary issues that Indigenous people face, with a focus on “national and local Indigenous-settler relations.” “Topics for the 12 lessons include the fur trade and other exchange relationships, land claims and environmental impacts, legal systems and rights, political conflicts and alliances, Indigenous political activism, and contemporary Indigenous life, art and its expressions,” the website reads.

For Dan, the class was an opportunity to engage in “meaningful, insightful, and transformational conversations about the lessons of the week.”

“I highly, highly, highly encourage all Canadian settlers to take this course to better understand your place within the country, to better understand your privilege, and to, hopefully, strengthen your ties of allyship and advocacy,” he urged. “Education is the key to being of better service to people.”

In an interview with The Guardian, Sol Mamakwa, a lawmaker from Kingfisher Lake First Nation, said Canada Day should be seen as a day of mourning for all those children who never made it home, not a day of celebration. “I don’t think people really understand how much Indigenous people were forced to pay to this country,” he said. “Our spirituality was taken away. Our way of life, our languages and our families were taken away. With the remains we continue to find, people are beginning to see that Indigenous people paid in full – with their lives.”

Watch Dan’s full video below, and enroll for free in the Indigenous Canada course, which is subtitled in nine different languages, here.

As Much as We Wish It Were True, Andra Day and Brad Pitt Are Not Dating

By | June 29, 2021

Andra Day is putting an end to those Brad Pitt dating rumors. During Sunday’s BET Awards, the 36-year-old actress responded to speculation that she’s romancing the 57-year-old actor. “We’re not dating. We don’t even know each other,” she said. “It is hilarious. It was thin air. Somebody was bored that day.” It’s unclear how the rumor got started, but even though Andra has never actually met Brad, she did acknowledge the fact that he’s a “great” actor. “Super talented, wonderful,” she added.

Andra is pretty private when it comes to her love life, so not much is known about her previous relationships. Brad, on the other hand, was previously married to Jennifer Aniston and Angelina Jolie, and more recently, he was linked to model Nicole Poturalski, but their relationship was short-lived.

The True Story of Netflix’s Fatherhood Is Probably Going to Break You

By | June 16, 2021

Image Source: Netflix

Netflix’s upcoming film Fatherhood has a completely devastating premise: a man’s wife passes away the day after giving birth to their first daughter, and they must rebuild the life that follows. Starring Kevin Hart, the drama is actually based on a bestselling book titled Two Kisses For Maddy: A Memoir of Loss and Love by Matthew Logelin. Heartbreakingly enough, the plot is actually based on a true story that happened to the author himself.

What Is the True Story Behind the Movie?

Matt and Liz Logelin were high school sweethearts who had finally settled together in Los Angeles with a beautiful marriage, new home, and baby girl on the way. One day after welcoming baby Madeline into the world, Liz suffered a pulmonary embolism and died instantly, without ever holding Madeline. As Logelin told The Guardian, “All of a sudden it hit me . . . she was going to die, today, here in this hospital. And she was never going to hold her baby.” He continued, “I always thought I’d be a good parent alongside Liz. Doing it alone had never occurred to me.” Facing both debilitating grief and the beauty (and responsibilities) of raising his daughter, Matt chose to keep moving forward for Maddy.

Logelin poured his grief, with dashes of humor and bittersweet joy, into a blog he started to document his experience and connect with other people going through similar situations of loss. On his blog, the writer documented his new daily life, describing both heart-wrenching and tiny, funny moments he experienced. Writing about Liz’s memorial service, he depicted every detail, then going on to talk about how he went to the record store to collect some new albums. The contrasts were what readers kept going back to: the honesty – and the raw reality – of grief. And all the people reading the blog made clear their support: they offered child-rearing suggestions, plus items he would need for Maddy like tiny nail clippers and hair accessories.

From Blog to Book to Movie

Eventually, Logelin turned his blog, which was attracting nearly 50,000 people a day, into a memoir. Two Kisses for Maddy: A Memoir of Loss and Love is a book that details Logelin’s early days with Liz, from the very beginning of courtship as teenagers to their marriage, the pregnancy, and eventually, both the passing away of Liz and the beautiful birth of their daughter. Always bittersweet, the memoir depicts Logelin’s experience blogging, with the incredible community of strangers he found who both offered and looked for support, all the funny, real moments with Maddy and dealing with grief, and how he has honored Liz’s legacy every day. Logelin also started a charity, The Liz Logelin Foundation, which he said “was created in honor of my wife to provide hope in the form of financial grants for widowed families with children.”

Logelin makes it clear that Maddy’s mother’s story will always be a big part of her life. As he told the Star Tribune, “We still talk about her daily . . . I don’t know all the answers, but for us, it’s worked really, really well. She seems incredibly happy.” Maddy continues to get to know her mom through photos, places, and the many stories Logelin retells.

As Kevin Hart said in a statement regarding the upcoming movie, “When I started reading this script, I was immediately touched and brought to tears.” He continued, “At HartBeat, we seek to provide the audience with stories that evoke true emotions and this story does just that.”

Fatherhood premieres on Netflix on Friday.

Image Source: Amazon

Dove Cameron and Rezz’s “Taste of You” Video Features a Sexy Lip Bite You Won’t Forget

By | June 15, 2021

Things are getting hot this summer, and we don’t just mean outside. Fashion, movies, and music are all a little bit sexier this time of year, including Rezz’s recent “Taste of You” music video featuring Dove Cameron. The two artists have captivating chemistry, and sealed their collaboration with a steamy kiss. A punk vampire meets a hypnotic goggle-wearing DJ – a tale as old as time, right? To no one’s surprise, Cameron and Rezz’s fans are already adamantly shipping the duo together.

This music video debuted shortly after Cameron opened up about her experience coming out as queer. “I was never confused about who I was. [But] I felt like I wouldn’t be accepted and I had this strange narrative that people wouldn’t believe me,” she told Gay Times. Cameron said she wanted fans to know she’s “super queer” and that this is a part of her life she wants represented in her music. “With the process of coming out, it was about who I am as a whole rather than who I choose to date or sleep with,” she continued. “I’m choosing to love myself, to be who I am every day and not edit myself depending on the room that I’m in. I’m making no apologies for who I am.”

15 Books to Read If The Soulmate Equation Is Your Favorite Book of 2021

By | June 10, 2021

Modern romance novels are my weakness – seriously, I’m addicted to the drama, anticipation, flirting, sex, and happily ever afters – and Christina Lauren’s novels never fail to delight. Made up of writer duo/best friends Christina Hobbs and Lauren Billings, Christina Lauren are bestselling authors of 27 books and recently released the uplifting The Soulmate Equation, which stayed in my head days after reading it.

Despite what every love story would have you believe, Jessica Davis and Dr. River Pena’s meeting in a coffee shop is not a meet cute. She works freelance statistics (and gossips with best friend Fizzy), and River comes in every day at 8:24 a.m. to order an Americano, grumble at everyone, and leave. So when Jess submits her DNA to matchmaking company GeneticAlly and is matched with one of its founders, she is definitely not happy it turns out to be grumpy coffee-shop guy. Surely, he can’t be her soulmate, right?

After falling in love with these characters, I understand if you need a moment before you’re ready to dive back in to another book. When you are, check out these 15 amazing contemporary romance books to read next.