What do those Indians want?
Variations on this theme, too often with racist responses, can be found all over Twitter and various online media comment threads. The other day, I got into it a bit with John Ivison, who expressed polite disdain for the allegedly “hapless” Chief Theresa Spence—and then admitted that he had no idea what her demands actually were.
That’s all too typical.
But not all of us who support #IdleNoMore are as informed as we should be either. Let’s start with the Harper government’s current treaty-breaking campaign—and yes, a flurry of bills in the House of Commons, rammed through without consulting indigenous peoples as the Constitution requires, counts as a “campaign.”
Here, to save us all time, is an excellent compilation of the effects of these bills, taken from an address by aboriginal Constitutional scholar Pam Palmater. Or you may wish to hear this straight from her own mouth, delivered with clarity and a wealth of detail.
That Canada’s first peoples want their treaties honoured should come to no surprise to anyone. And that the government is impugning the honour of the Crown with its hamfisted, racist assimilationist tactics is obvious. What can be done when one party to a treaty—the one with all the power of the state behind it—unilaterally breaks it? #IdleNoMore and Chief Theresa Spence are here to answer that question.
Will the white politicians and their tame media establishment, presently looking down their patrician noses at the pesky redskins, pay heed? Or will it take the insurrection that anti-Native cheerleader Christie Blatchford once called for?
[H/t Antonia Z.]