FALL 2017 48
Quit fighting, start getting along
A liberal, a socialist and a conservative
walk into a bar . . . the standard punchline
might include a knock-down, a takedown
or a flat-out brawl. That doesn’t have
to be the case; people with opposing
political views can get along.
That’s the idea behind Shelf Life Books’
Political Book Club “for conservatives
and liberals who want to get out of their
bubbles and bridge the great divide.”
Scholar and writer Julie Sedivy founded
the monthly Calgary club so she could
use books from different sides of the
political spectrum as a tool to “practise
conversations and build informed
empathy.” About 20 people belong.
To learn more, visit shelflifebooks.ca.
RRomance, sex and sexual health As a parent, you teach your child about sexual health, not just sex. Both can be sensitive subjects. Harvard University’s The Talk: How Adults Can Promote Young People’s Healthy Relationships and Prevent Misogyny and Sexual Harassment says that although most parents and educators aren’t talking to teens about healthy romantic relationships, young people want o have those conversations. Although many parents feel intimidated because of their own romantic history or because they don’t know what to say, the report says all adults can share their wisdom and values in age-appropriate ways with children, teens and young adults. If you want to make a difference in a young person’s life, consider following critical guidelines outlined in the report: • Talk about love and help teens understand the differences between mature love and other forms of intense attraction • Help teens distinguish between healthy and unhealthy relationships • Be prepared to intervene if you see an unhealthy situation • Teach youth to be self-respecting and respectful in romantic and sexual situations; and address misogyny and harassment, such as catcalling or using gender-based slurs • When talking to young people about romantic and sexual relationships, you can stress the importance of dignity and respect. — A.G.
If you’re on your own and find yourself
in a heated political discussion, be sure
you are informed before you engage.
Listen with an open mind; and finally,
agree to disagree. That way, political
opinions won’t jeopardize friendships
and business or family relationships.