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The cadets of Hobbema are a good news First Nations story that the media ignore

Photo: Jesse Winter

It's no secret that the media love to sensationalize violence and conflict, but this is particularly dangerous for marginalized communities like First Nations.

"‘If it bleeds it leads' isn't new, and it's not unique to Aboriginal issues," says Duncan McCue, an Anishinaabe reporter who covers Aboriginal affairs for CBC's The National.

"The problem, though, is when it's focused on a racial group you end up with the concern that Indians are being painted as problem people."

The people of Hobbema, Alberta, are well use to this attitude.


Attawapiskat and colonialism: Seeing the forest and the trees

If you can cut through the racism, ignorance, and half-baked opinions of pundits, politicians and sound-bite media, most folks will realize that Attawapiskat and many other First Nations have been labouring under the repression of colonialism far too long.

The antidote for poverty is self-determination and no one can give you that. You have to stand up and take action yourself to make it happen. Colonialism does not give way on its own; it must be defeated through vigorous and enlightened opposition.


Committees report by rabble.ca's Parliamentary reporter

Photo: Simonov
Parliamentary reporter Karl Nerenberg shines a light on Ottawa politics.

Related rabble.ca story:

Equity in Aboriginal education is the only way forward

Canada is celebrated for its contributions to human rights: a beacon of hope for immigrants, a safe haven for refugees, a country of high quality of life. Yet when it comes to the experiences of First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities, we are hard pressed to deal with a blind spot that has been with us throughout our history.

Canada was a leading force in the 1948 UN Declaration on Human Rights, but denied status Indians the right to vote in federal elections until 1960. Today, Canada is in the top 10 countries on the UN Human Development Index, but First Nations communities ranked 68th, reflecting structural inequities in access to education, housing and clean water.


A daughter wants justice for her mother's death

Bridget Tolley, right, with a poster of her mother, Gladys Tolley, who was struck and killed by a police car in Quebec in 2001. Photo: Bridget Tolley
Algonquin elder Gladys Tolley was killed by a police car driving through her reserve in 2001. Her daughter still fights for answers.

Related rabble.ca story:

Confronting the hidden legacy of residential schools

In an attempt to discuss the impact of residential schools on the families of survivors and strategies for the future, the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs is opening a national intergenerational conference next week in Winnipeg. It is the first intergenerational event on the issue that is First Nations-led.


Miigwech to our Elders

Thanks to Elders of Turtle Island: Shirley Horton-Kampa and Agnes Grover, of the Rainy River First Nations. Photo: Robert Animikii Horton

This is a sincere and humble message of appreciation and acknowledgement to the Elders who have made a difference in my life as teachers, counsellors and mentors.

To all those who have brought their strong and resilient voices forward in the Canadian Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

And, respectfully, this piece is dedicated to ALL our Elders across Turtle Island.

This is for all the Elders who we told how much they were appreciated; and all the Elders who we didn't remind, or who we don't remind enough.


Stop Canada's cultural genocide at Barriere Lake

Canada and Quebec are waging a war of attrition on a small band of 500 Algonquin Indians a few hours north of Ottawa. Today, this war has reached a critical juncture: its outcome will be a judgment on whether Canada is able to share the land with First Nations while respecting their right to maintain their cultures and determine their own destinies, or whether Canada can only offer resilient Aboriginal cultures a menu of assimilation, dependency, and cultural death.


Privatizing First Nation land would be disastrous

A debate that has been swirling around in Indian Country has gathered more speed recently.

The issue revolves around Indian land and its ownership status. Should it be privatized or should it stay as a part of a collective? The question about what to do with Indian land has always been on the table.

In the early part of the 20th century, after most of the available land was opened for settlement, land speculators cast greedy eyes upon Indian land. We were considered a vanishing race at the time, with much more land than we needed.


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