Sunday, January 6, 2013

Idle no More

There’s a new protest movement going around that members of the First Nations community are calling idle no more. Evidently they are playing on a stereotype about being idle and not working. So when I hear a group of people rally together and publically commit to being idle no more, I’m sure others join in with me cheering their commitment to get a job and not being idle any more.

I do have two concerns. There clearly are problems on many Native reservations. This news video may be propaganda, but it talks about numbers of dollars going into some of these reservations and how that money is being sucked up by chiefs, elders and politicians while the condition of their reservations continue to deteriorate. Something fishy is going on.

Yes there is a problem with repairs but there is also a problem with money allotted for repairs filling someone’s pocket and not going to where it’s supposed to go. This is something that needs to be addressed especially when you talk about inherit right to self government. I know several natives that don’t trust their chiefs and elders with the money that is currently given them. You wanna turn around and make those shady politicians kings and queens in a monarchy? I think many members of the reservations have concerns with that.

There has been some past history of injustice that has affected the First Nations community in Canada. They aren’t the only ones. Chinese Canadians were exploited to build the railway. Japanese Canadians had their land taken away from them during the war. Recognizing an injustice is important to heal and over come it. It doesn’t turn us into victims for the rest of eternity. Nor does it give victims a license to become bullies themselves.

Canada is full of people from different ethnic backgrounds from all around the world. It’s not just a matter of the white man coming here and taking over. It’s a matter of a global population sharing the earth mother nature has given us to be stewards of. All of us, regardless of what ethnic background we come from, have to get a job and provide for ourselves. Going back in time and living off the land in tents doesn’t cut it any more. Times change and no one has a right to extort others to avoid having to get a job and take responsibility for their own life.

Not paying taxes is bad enough. I suppose no Native in Canada drives on a public road or ever goes to a public hospital. Idle no more means getting a job and paying taxes like everyone else.

This is a woman who makes $70,000.00 a year tax free, has no mortgage because she gets a free home and pays no property tax. Most of us contribute to United Way in some form. How much of that excessive salary does she spend on the starving members of her band? An audit of the bands finances has found significant documentation lacking for the $104 million transferred to the band between 2005 and 2011.


Theresa Spence said she demanded a meeting with Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Then she said she won’t be attending. I’m sorry but this woman is a nutbar.


Habitat for Humanity can oversee repairs and building new homes on Native reserves. Members of the reservations can chip in and help build their new homes. This will give the youth something constructive to do that will not only help the suicide rate but give them a life skill where they can get a high paying job in construction industry. Volunteers who care can join in and help build these homes instead of blocking railways and extorting the general public. “The Prosperity of Canada’s First Nations begins at home” Shawn Atleo

Quebec Grand Chief calls on Spence to end hunger strike

"I'm not sure who is advising her,"


  1. Her Res. blew thru $100 million in six years, w/o docs...? Incredible, but sadly the case in so many reserves. Canadians will not understand or support her troubles with these wild facts coming out.

    And I've seen the horror of the fly-in only Reserves. Wasbasca in Alberta & God's Lake Narrows in Manitoba. Real 3rd world; garbage & mud & wrecked houses. Yet, somehow we must change this, but I don't really know how...

    1. We can offer humanitarian aid. Yet give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach him to fish and you feed him for a lifetime. Suicide rates on rural reservations is off the hook because the youth have nothing to do. Give them something constructive to do. Their self respect will rise and the suicide rate will drop. Get Habitat for Humanity involved and have the youth help build the new homes. They will be less like to trash something they helped build.

  2. You are being a little ignorant. Idle no more means we as natives have been silent too long and this is a chance to speak up. The protest is for EVERYONE! As it affects EVERYONE! The bill C-45 removes protection for almost all lakes and rivers and changes the Indian act so the government can have easier access to their land. With this bill they can now implement pipelines and power lines easier and faster.
    I'm tired of anything related to natives people jump on the lazy they should pay taxes" wagon without even looking into the issue first. To not pay taxes you need to live on a reserve where they have agreed upon this in their land claims. Where I'm from we still need to pay taxes even on reserve. Also I agree that there have been horrible things that happened to other races at the hands of the government and they should be compensated for that too. That doesn't mean that the agreement we made with the government should be null and void. I still feel the affects of what they have done to my parents and grandparents. My mother is still traumatized 40 years after being in residential school which in turn she didn't know how to raise her own children. And yes a majority of people still live off the land where I'm from. My grandparents built their own cabins, trap, fish and hunt for their food. My grandmother makes her own hide still which she sells so she can buy sugar, milk and things like that. So yes it still works and people still do it. They don't know how to live any other way.

    I agree that there is a lot of corruption on these reserves. It's essentially a lawless land. That is the problem with self government. There is usually one family who takes all the money and the rest suffer. This should be another issue that is protested about. I don't know cheif Theresa's motives and should not be confused with idle no more. She did not initiate this protest but she is using it. She does not represent all natives of the country, nor do I trust her.

    1. I appreciate your input. I don't think this protest is for everyone. It is clearly about aboriginal issues and gaining public support for those issues. Personally, I believe all people are equal. I don't believe any group of people should be superior to any other group of people and I don't think any group of people should hold the nation at ransom and demand they be taxed so no one from that group ever has to work and earn a living.

    2. This is where most Canadians get it wrong. First Nations status has been enshrined in the Constitution. It’s not about one ethnic group claiming superiority or pre-eminence over another, it’s about full redress. First Nations want Canada to honor a covenant in the form of treaties that predate confederation, to negotiate in good faith.
      And I’ll tell you, FNs have won every court challenge. One supreme court ruling stated in so many words that government must deal with the treaty process or the courts would do it for them.

    3. I disagree. All people are equal period. The distinct society clause failed. Treaties are one thing, constitutions are another. As soon as you try and elevate one group of people above the others it becomes very divisive. As soon as you extort the rest of the country and tax them so that other group doesn't have to work, then you have war.

  3. Spence is a disgrace, and I do not even believe her hunger strike is real. Never seen someone two weeks into a hunger strike sporting a double chin before.

    1. Turns out it's not as hunger strike it's a liquid diet. Without being too blasphemous one has to wonder if her liquid diet includes abstinence from alcohol.

    2. Actually it's not a colonialist view nor is it racist. It is a constitutional multicultural view. Claiming one group of people is superior to another and has the right to tax everyone so they don't have to work is racist. Years ago we had a referendum on distinct society. It was proposed that we write into our constitution that Natives and the French constitute a distinct society within Canada. At the time I supported the idea. It was a Canadian friend of Japanese ancestry that shared his position and said he preferred the all people are equal model. He said he felt giving anyone one group distinct society status was racist. I'm beginning to see his position. I too prefer the all people are equal model.


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