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350 or bust: Chief Spence Ends Her Hunger Strike, But The Struggle Continues

* Chief Theresa Spence has ended her hunger strike today. Here is the press release issued by her and her supporters: * Daniel Wilson reflects on the legacy of Chief Spence’s hunger strike today on Rabble.ca: We can help give success a chance, as Chief Spence and Elder Robinson are now doing by allowing the . . . → Read More: 350 or bust: Chief Spence Ends Her Hunger Strike, But The Struggle Continues

Montreal Simon: My Thank You Letter to Chief Spence

Dear Chief SpenceI was so happy to hear that you will be ending your long hunger strike.Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence has decided to end her six-week-long hunger strike after members of the Assembly of First Nations and the Liberal and New Democrat caucuses agreed to back a list of commitments supporting aboriginal issues.For you . . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: My Thank You Letter to Chief Spence

Stop the Insanity: Some Thoughts on Idle No More

Well, I said I would create a new post about the Idle No More movement.

Occupy The Parliament Buildings‘s photo.

In response to some of the backlash against Chief Spence, here is a good article in her defense:Chelsea Vowel – Tells Where the Attawapiskat Money Went

Here is a great documentary that talks about the . . . → Read More: Stop the Insanity: Some Thoughts on Idle No More

Stop the Insanity: Some Thoughts on Idle No More

Well, I said I would create a new post about the Idle No More movement.

Occupy The Parliament Buildings‘s photo.

In response to some of the backlash against Chief Spence, here is a good article in her defense:
Chelsea Vowel – Tells Where the Attawapiskat Money Went

Here is a great documentary that talks about the history of when settlers first arrived and how the native were displaced, moved, restricted, and how some treaties came about. This specifically covers what happened and it still happening in Ontario and Quebec.

***NFB – INVISIBLE NATION – full feature*** (93 mins.) – This is a “Must Watch”. This should be taught in all schools.

Invisible Nation – Trailer  (1:30 min)

Synopsis: Online release: November 30, 2012 The Algonquin once lived in harmony with the vast territory they occupied. This balance was upset when the Europeans arrived in the 16th century. Gradually, their Aboriginal traditions were undermined and their natural resources plundered. Today, barely 9,000 Algonquin are left. They live in about 10 communities, often enduring abject poverty and human rights abuses. These Aboriginal people are suffering the threat to their very existence in silence. Richard Desjardins and Robert Monderie have decided to sound the alarm before it’s too late.

Every Canadian should watch this before they post negative or racist comments on articles on the subject. If you can watch this and still say that the First Nations don’t deserve anything more than they already have, there is something very wrong with you.

And then there is this recent example of the treatment of a First Nations people in Manitoba. Shame on the Provincial government that flooded their reserve and then doesn’t properly relocate them. Shame on the Feds for not stepping in either. You have to read/watch this and click HERE to go to Causes and sign the petition.

Here is some more background information about the injustices done by the Canadian Government by trying to strip First Nations of their culture, and the Catholic Church for allowing cruelty to be perpetrated on these poor scared children. People need to be aware of what has happened before they should dare criticize Native people:
Feature: The Canadian Holocaust: Hidden No Longer – Kevin Annett – Unrepentant

Some more great wisdom:
The Old Mans Journal – A Call For Unity the Indigenous Spring of 2013 to Protect the Earth and Its People

There is so much out there on this subject, I’m sure there are many more good links, but I have to put a limit on it at this point… Now for my own words:

(originally posted on Facebook “Idle No More – Official” page on January 12th)
Here’s my take as of now….. It seems that things are getting a little muddled and the mainstream media loves to pick up on any weakness. I thought/believed/hoped that this movement was concentrating on Harper’s enacting bills that affect EVERYONE (all Canadians). In particular the gutting of environmental regulations, selling our resources to China, and the just all out exploitation of all resources, no matter what the environmental damage.

Now it seems to be getting confused with chiefs, and the hunger strike, meetings, etc. Yes, I realize that this is a Native driven movement, but it can’t become “Native” against “White”. What I want to see and what I believe will help everyone along is for this movement to be inclusive of all Canadians. As all Canadians respect clean air, land, and water. We all want wild spaces left wild and not contaminated. Spaces that support food/subsistence hunting and gathering.

What my hope was that through treaty rights and Indian Act laws, the First Nations would have a legal leg to stand on to challenge Harper on all these bills and regulations that he is making changes to without consultation with First Nations, which I believe is required.

What we all want is for Harper to back up and to be able to force him to reconsider what he is doing, because he is pissing EVERYONE off!!! All Canadians will back this movement as long as it is clear what we are really fighting for. The movement will lose support if it becomes all about renegotiating treaty rights and funding and all the issues that the government has done wrong. There is already an amazing amount of negative commenting that I have seen on some mainstream media articles (Ottawa Citizen, National Post). We should all know that people have been taught all those negative stereotypes about natives. That is going to take something special to get past for the majority of con supporters and urban dwellers.

The treaty rights issue is important but it is also HUGE. It can’t be dealt with quickly and the protests will die out before anything could possibly be changed. That way Harper will win, if it all dies out quietly. What we need is to concentrate on one battle at a time, starting with the highest priority, and something that can be attainable and measurable as a win. 

PhotoI believe that that fight needs to be the issue of unbridled exploitation of the oil and gas development without regard for the environment. PERIOD. Let’s start there because it deals directly with the contamination and use of treaty territories without consultation, which shouldn’t be allowed. And it stands to be the most harmful and irreversible issue (to me anyway) that is the biggest threat to all Canadians and especially to the health of all nations in the north. Most Canadians also are now aware of the FIPA issue and CNOOC deals, and do not want to sell out our National resources to China.

I believe if we concentrate on the environmental oil and gas issues, we will have the support of millions of Canadians, no matter what colour they are. And that they will all stand behind the Native leaders if they have the intention of taking the Harper government to task in COURT on the issues that the newly rammed through Bills infringe on.

Care needs to be taken as to not cause any undo hardships on working Canadians. They need to get to work freely. Blockading access for regular-working-stiff/slave Canadian’s freedom of movement is not the way to go. It will only create backlash attitudes in those that you are trying to win over.

Now this is what I have wanted to see and what I have been advocating:

Kamloops News – Canadians Urged To Fight Omnibus Bill

 - From left, Shane Camille, Joe Meldrum and Randy Sam perform drum songs before the start of Friday's march through downtown Kamloops. - Murray Mitchell
From left, Shane Camille, Joe Meldrum and Randy Sam perform drum songs before the start of Friday’s march through downtown Kamloops.

Excerpt:

Organizers of Friday’s rally repeatedly stressed that Idle No More is an inclusive movement, not confined to aboriginal issues. All Canadians need to understand the implications of environmental protections weakened by bills C-35 and C-45, the omnibus legislation passed in December.

“We’re being very cognizant of the fact that we have a lot of non-aboriginal allies,” said Lenora Starr, a march organizer.
Idle No More is all about making people understand the impact of the new legislation, she told the rally.
“We’re just really thankful that aboriginal people have the constitutional right to be able to challenge this legislation,” said Anita Strong, who joined the march. “The rest of us don’t have that.”
“There should be 5,000 people here, not 50,” said another non-aboriginal who didn’t want to give her name. “What they’re doing to Canada is appalling and unforgivable.”

The Mikisew Cree Nation has declared its intention to bring a constitutional challenge against Bill C-45, Good said. It would take 10 years to fight the case to the Supreme Court of Canada, but if the litigants can demonstrate that the legislation could cause irreparable harm that money could not mitigate, they could obtain a court injunction against the legislation as an interim measure.

“I think it should be a groundswell of Canadian efforts to repeal the act,” Good said. “My hope that the entire bill will be repealed and that, in the interest of democracy, it can be unbundled and Canadians can understand what it means.”

Ok, so let’s go. If there is legal standpoint to get an injunction, then we can at least delay the destruction of the lands for as long as we can drag it out for; the courts seem to allow those stall tactics. Ten years, ok. That will cost the government a few billion in tax revenues – billions more in lost profit to the oil and gas companies. In order to get their attention, it has to cost them money, as that is the only thing they hold dear.

All this talk about high level meetings and such just slows the process of protecting the lands, and gives Harper and Big Oil the idea that all they have to do is negotiate a bigger pay off to the native leaders. If they absolutely want to destroy and rape all the lands and water, then you need to hold out for a really big pay out so that you can move to where there is clean water (that might be an impossible challenge in itself). I do not recommend allowing your leaders the idea of biting at the golden carrot. It is a sell out to everything you hold dear and everything that other Canadians hold dear (at least most of us). To sell out would be to give up on the territories and would be the end of the natural world of the north. It would also be the selling out of our last hope to stave off the gluttonous big oil companies and the Harper pigs.

Spreecast – Idle No More – Where Do We Go From Here – Part 1

Via Geoffrey Rankin

There are 3 parts to this presentation. You will find the other 2 at the link for Part 1. The Spreecast went down a few times during the broadcast, but it seams together without missing anything when you watch all 3 parts. Highly recommended. This was a great, spirited, informative, inspirational get together at UVIC on the evening of January 16th. Wait until they finally swing the camera around and so you the standing room only, and out into the hallway crowd that attended. It was awesome!!

Nathan Cullen – Describes What the Cons Consider Consultation
A quick 1:30 clip of Nathan Cullen, NDP, Leader of the House on December 5, 2012. His constituency includes the Central and Northern Coast including Kitimat where the pipeline is proposed to go to.

Please Click Here to Vote Up/Recommend on Progressive Bloggers

Continued…. 
In response to the comment by R.J. Pare below, I expanded on this posting with another post.
More Thoughts on Idle No More Click to go there.

. . . → Read More: Stop the Insanity: Some Thoughts on Idle No More

Montreal Simon: Idle No More and the Great Day of Protest

Oh boy. I sure picked the wrong day to be felled by the flu eh? Because I wanted so much to be there.But even on the small TV in my death bed bedroom, it was an awesome and inspiring spectacle. As members of the federal government and First Nations community met behind closed doors . . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: Idle No More and the Great Day of Protest

BigCityLib Strikes Back: AFN Demands: My Favorite One

All legislation must be unquestionably consistent with s.35 of the Canadian Constitution and the UNDRIP.  Legislation and provisions of legislation as in C-38 and C-45 that contravene our Treaty and inherent rights must be reconsidered and implementation of these provisions be put to a halt. We must have an environmental regulatory regime in this country . . . → Read More: BigCityLib Strikes Back: AFN Demands: My Favorite One

Montreal Simon: Idle No More and the Great Confusion

Well I think it's safe to say that it was quite a day in my home and native's land eh?As if the great Ojibwa Mishipeshu of Lake Superior was thrashing its tail around and causing a great confusion. Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence says she won't be at a meeting Friday between First Nations leaders . . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: Idle No More and the Great Confusion

Montreal Simon: The Harper Cons and the Big Smear

Well it's not in the Book of Chaos, the 200-page handbook the Cons once put out to disrupt the opposition, and shut down committees.But it clearly comes from the same cesspool of depravity.From the same Con operatives who brought you Stephen Harper's catalogue of dirty tricks.And it's filthy instructions couldn't be more disgusting:Read more . . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: The Harper Cons and the Big Smear

BigCityLib Strikes Back: Chief Spence Is A Sideshow

This is the shit.  And you know what?  When First Nations sue the federal government, they win.  Its a bit like when someone sues Ezra Levant–its a slam dunk.  That not actually a coincidence.  Harper’s droogs and Ezra share a lawsuit losing gene.

Montreal Simon: How Idle No More Humiliated Stephen Harper

In all my years of watching Stephen Harper I have rarely seen him looking so frustrated and so humiliated.But there he was today at a ridiculous photo-op in a Ford factory, looking like was about to implode.And no wonder.Read more »

. . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: How Idle No More Humiliated Stephen Harper

Montreal Simon: Why Idle No More Will Make Harper Eat Crow

For some ghastly reason I couldn't help wondering tonight what Stephen Harper is eating while Chief Theresa Spencer dies of hunger. As Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence continues her hunger strike, a critical care doctor is warning that the human body begins to break down after such a long period without food.Jones said after three . . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: Why Idle No More Will Make Harper Eat Crow

Montreal Simon: Idle No More and the Anti-Harper Revolt

One can only imagine what Stephen Harper is thinking as he watches Chief Theresa Spence getting weaker and weaker.Is there even a flicker of sympathy in his cold dead eyes, or is it all false pride or cold calculation?Is he appealing to the racism of his rabid base?Read more »

. . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: Idle No More and the Anti-Harper Revolt

kirbycairo: Chief Spence and Our Quiet Racist Traditions. . . . .

Unfortunately racism is an incredibly powerful and shockingly nefarious thing. It seeps into people’s blood and bones in ways that they don’t even notice. Racism is not just a conscious and blatant force. Rather, like many aspects of human relations, racism often lies in the background of people’s conscious feelings. I once saw an illustration of this kind of subconscious racism . . . → Read More: kirbycairo: Chief Spence and Our Quiet Racist Traditions. . . . .

Montreal Simon: Idle No More and the Power of Solidarity

One day historians, or forensic psychiatrists, will no doubt argue over why Stephen Harper was prepared to let Chief Theresa Spence die.Was it because that cold, cruel, man couldn't feel the pain of others?Or was it because he was a coward?Read more »

. . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: Idle No More and the Power of Solidarity

Montreal Simon: Chief Spence, Harper, and the Attawapiskat Christmas

I didn't want to blog tonight. I just wanted to enjoy Christmas.But I couldn't get these two contrasting images out of my mind. Chief Theresa Spence slowly starving to death.While Stephen Harper, with a weird look on his face, plays cribbage. Read more »

. . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: Chief Spence, Harper, and the Attawapiskat Christmas

Montreal Simon: Why is Stephen Harper Afraid of Chief Spence?

It's hard to believe that a native leader from a suffering community, would have to go on a hunger strike, to try to get a meeting with a Canadian Prime Minister.On the eve of a day of aboriginal protest, the hunger-striking chief of the troubled Attawapiskat First Nation is again calling for a meeting . . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: Why is Stephen Harper Afraid of Chief Spence?