Thursday, August 15, 2013

The headache that won’t go away We have ceased to say what we mean, and mean what we say.

The collective consciousness of the 19th and 20th century; is placing a heavy burden on the multicultural ethnic society that represents Canada today.
Canadians are incapable, and unwilling to shoulder the consequences of racist policies made on their and their descendants’ behalf.
It is Canada’s contention to posit the argument that European “manifest of destiny” and subsequent occupation of indigenous lands in nearly 500 years can lay legitimate claims to its territory.
In modern terms, it is a quandary. The collective Canadian consensus to outstanding issues in regards to First Nation’s agreements made 150 years ago-to be a thing of the past.
Worse yet, the notion of the “Indian” as being less deserving of equal rights under Canadian law was still a reality a mere 60 years ago.
To understand the issue, is to be cognizant of history; and not too many Canadians are aware of the genesis of this country’s true beginnings.
To argue the case ad nausea is not my intention. However there is still this persistence among Canadians that regardless of the contextual historical data, it is time for First Nations to accept and submit for the greater good-become Canadians yourselves.
This has always been the message; from the McDonald administration to that of Prime Minister Harper’s.
Have we past the point of no return?
Is there still such intransigence among non-indigenous Canadians and newly arrived emigrants to see justice done?
Is the supposition that treaty entitlements are no longer valid; in fact past its due date-does it benefit all who reside in Canada?
Many argue that it is so; and for that we have to thank not one but several Canadian institutions. It is still wrong.
We have in this country, tried to beat, starve, kill, murder, indigenous peoples since the late 1960’s.
We have allowed federal governments to dictate what is best suited (in terms of assimilation programs) and tolerate the Indian Act as a pact in efforts to “wash away” the responsibility to care for these people.
It remains pertinent to reflect that under no circumstances an “urban” reserve ever be permitted within a city.
It was, and is valid to this present day, that paying for the privilege of not being in proximity to a reserve-a necessary evil.
Now there are exceptions to the rule, and one cannot bring about a conclusion (which would give the impression) that the existing treatment of “Indians” living on reservations to be completely useless.
Why are these people so ...damn stubborn? Why can’t they just be more like us?
After all, didn’t successive federal governments “give” them enough concessions?
In this day and age you will have mainstream non-indigenous Canadians purposely convey “politically correct” point of views in the media.
Basically there is one official version of what it is that we really think...and then there is the un-official one.
We have ceased to say what we mean, and mean what we say. Seldom do we see anyone steadfast in their convictions, and have the courage to bring into question policy which is detrimental to us all.
Canadians have become more concerned about keeping their jobs, maintaining their standard of living; not rocking the boat.
Those that do so are scorned, labelled and identified. A yes, those that advocate on behalf of the environment....yes those people are definitely UN-Canadian. protested against the G-8 summit meetings? How dare are standing in the way of progress...UN-Canadian.
You support David Suzuki and the likes which continue to create such barriers for the Conservative government agenda?
You are definitely on Harper’s enemy list, number one and NOT a Canadian.
Optics, how is it going to look? What’s the spin? What’s the angle?
What about whether or not it is true?
 It is clear that if you look closely enough, very rarely do we see anyone put into print the unvarnished truth; the warts, the issues which makes us less than stellar.
If you do, protect that individual because if you do not they will suffer the consequences of doing so.
I have witnessed this already in The Pas, and frankly it smells of hypocrisy.
 If the media’s sole purpose is to control the “message” and no longer present the facts and different points of view on any issue...what is the purpose of having freedom of speech protected under the Charter?
We are deserving of successive federal, provincial, municipal governments if we no longer attribute the validity of speaking up for those who cannot, for those who have experienced injustice, for those who continue to be under the yoke of prejudicial, and racist treatment.
If there is a problem, if there is an issue, it behooves us all to discuss it. To be in the wrong does not make you a bad person.
So here we are, in 2013, still having to address an issue that should have been rectified long ago.
Yes the statute of limitations for some is a valid argument to wipe out all treaty agreements.
Residential Schools? We paid for that already... not enough you say? Too bad.
Reserves today serve no purpose. They are isolated, and do not offer economic advantages. Restructure them into municipalities and make “Indians” relocate once again.
The days of having Indian Status Cards is over. We’re done paying for status... have the same rights and opportunities like the rest of us... The buck stops here.
Well in fact the buck does not stop here. I’m afraid that from past Supreme Court rulings Indigenous Treaty Rights are valid and they need to be reflected within Canadian culture....that is essentially what it means to be Canadian.
We can no longer afford to treat indigenous persons as idiots, less aware of their inherent rights, in continuing to accept that their way of life is not congruent to that of the rest of us.
We should not continue to believe that the passage of time, or that what occurred under previous federal government policies void our collective responsibility towards the indigenous peoples of this country.
To do any less is know the ending already; why don’t you change it once and for all.

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