Refraction

By: Katie Neustaeter

Katie Neustaeter is a creative writer/producer/announcer for the Jim Pattison Broadcast Centre, fill-in host for the CFJCTV Midday Show, community volunteer, emcee and speaker. Katie grew up in Kamloops and is dedicated to the people who live here and the issues that effect their lives. 

Five basic rules for commenting online (if you're not a troll)

April 14, 2019 - 7:00am Updated: April 14, 2019 - 12:45pm

WHEN BOUNCING THE CONCEPT of this column off of my husband I asked, “What would you say is the most important rule for interacting on social media?”

His answer?

“Don’t.”

Wise man I married.

But for those of us who are invested in communication in the virtual world, want to encourage healthy public dialogue around difficult issues or just plain can’t resist the interaction, some basic boundaries for online discussion can improve the quality of our conversations — especially when we disagree.

Organ donation: presumed consent and why I'm all for it

April 7, 2019 - 7:00am

THERE ARE MANY MOMENTS IN LIFE that you just can’t prepare for, and equally as many that you hope you’ll never have to face.

When you have a critically ill child those unexpected and unwanted moments often come in fast, dizzying succession and usually without warning.

For me, one of those moments happened when I was handed an organ donation consent form to sign for my beautiful, perfect and very broken newborn son in the hours leading up to his first open heart surgery.

The saga of the rings: Slaying stereotypes after my Mexican misadventure

March 31, 2019 - 8:05am

YOU KNOW WHAT TRAVELS FAST? Bad news.

You know what’s really easy? Stereotyping, labelling, blaming, branding and believing the worst in people.

A lot of negative stories seem to be finding their way to us from Mexico right now. On a fairly regular basis we hear about the “bad hombres”, the drugs, the unfortunate experiences of tourists and how we should build walls instead of bridges.

But you know what we don’t seem to hear about often enough? The many good, honest, kind, and generous Mexican people.

One Week or Two – the Great Spring Break Debate Lives On

March 24, 2019 - 7:56am

Right now School Districts 73 and 54 are the only school districts in the province of British Columbia that have a one week Spring Break. The length of Spring Break has been an ongoing and contentious discussion and while there are valid arguments on both sides there are some implications and accusations that need to be removed from the dialogue in order for the conversation to be productive and beneficial.

It is often implied, and sometimes even explicitly stated, that:

1. Parents who want a 1 week Spring Break don’t want to spend the additional time with their children.

There shouldn't be an International Women's Day

March 3, 2019 - 7:00am

THIS COMING FRIDAY, March 8, is another annual International Women’s Day.

The celebration of International Women’s Day began in some parts of the world just after the turn of the 20th Century and was adopted by the United Nations 1975. But while it is a national holiday in some countries, I don’t even remember hearing about International Women’s Day in Canada until I was an adult.

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