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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.

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Because 153 years of sex discrimination is enough

Bill C-3, An Act to promote gender equity in Indian registration, received royal assent on Dec. 15.

On Nov. 26, Sharon McIvor, the First Nations woman whose constitutional challenge to the Indian Act is the inspiration for Bill C-3, filed a complaint against Canada with the United Nations Human Rights Committee.

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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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B.C. First Nations groups criticize Bill C-3 as marching aboriginal women reach Ottawa

The AMUN Marchers reached Ottawa after a month-long protest march. This photo is from earlier in the march. Left to right: Viviane Michel, Danielle Guay, Sharon McIvor, Michele Audette.
The AMUN Marchers reached Ottawa on June 1, after a month-long, 300-mile walk against Bill C-3, while three B.C. First nations groups show concern that inequality will remain.

Related rabble.ca story:

Indian Act remedy Bill C-3 is flawed

Its intent may be to promote gender equity in Indian registration, but Bill C-3 [now before Parliament] does not ensure that women and their descendants will be treated the same as men and their descendants for the purposes of determining Indian status.

Witnesses told the standing committee on Aboriginal affairs this spring that the Conservative government's bill to address sex discrimination is not a remedy they support.

The bill is Ottawa's response to McIvor v. Canada, a 2009 B.C. Court of Appeal ruling that found that Section 6 of the Indian Act violates Section 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The court gave Ottawa a year to fix the legislation.

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Fighting for disenfranchised First Nations women

Sharon McIvor wants MPs to vote against the upcoming Bill C-3, Gender Equity in Indian Registration Act.
Sharon McIvor, who has fought for the rights of aboriginal women for 20 years, wants MPs to vote against the upcoming Bill C-3, Gender Equity in Indian Registration Act.

Related rabble.ca story:

Redeye

Film: How A People Live

March 11, 2014
| The Nakwaxda'xw and Gwa'sala people were forcibly removed from their homelands in 1964. Now a new film by Lisa Jackson tells the story of their dislocation and of their fight to return.
Length: 22:23 minutes (20.5 MB)
Pamela Palmater

First Nations don't want Harper's Family Homes on Reserves Bill

| August 14, 2013

Idle No More is an opportunity to realize the promise of democracy in Canada

Change the conversation, support rabble.ca today.

It is sometimes quipped that democracy is like two wolves and a lamb voting on dinner. This Darwinian image of vulnerable minorities falling prey to a "tyranny of the majority" is why few believe that democracy can be reduced to participation in elections. If democracy has value it is because it allows people to have a meaningful say in the rules that govern them. Anything that precludes or impairs this "voice" is anti-democratic by extension.

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