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Then and now: Journalists on the wrong side of history

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One of the great hazards of journalism is that a writer may come down commandingly on the wrong side of history. The Idle No More movement provides just such an opportunity, for the risk is most pronounced when a marginalized group undertakes to struggle against some social or political orthodoxy. Thankfully, some writers possess a special kind of superhuman resolve which enables them to resist the temptations of prudence and generosity in the face of social change. At least for a while.

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What Jason Kenney doesn't want you to know about Canada's Temporary Foreign Worker Program

Photo: Vincenzo Pietropaolo

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Nine self-care reminders for the over-committed activist

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At the beginning of every year, I resolve to floss my teeth more regularly. But with two jobs, a family, and a near-constant feeling of urgency about a myriad of social and environmental issues, my goal seems forever elusive. I've made various styles of flossing charts, and left containers of floss all over the place as reminders. But at the beginning of the day I'm hurrying, and by the end of the day I'm too tired. The problem isn't actually a disregard for dental hygiene, so much as an unsustainable pace of life. And in this I know I am not alone.

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Idle No More in context: A history of resistance

Photo: CanadianProgressiveWorld.com

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Much has been said recently in the media about the relationship between the inspiring expression of Indigenous resurgent activity informing the #IdleNoMore movement and the heightened decade of Native activism that led Canada to establish the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples (RCAP) in 1991. I offer this short analysis of the historical context that led to RCAP in an effort to get a better sense of the transformative possibilities in our present moment of struggle.

The federal government was forced to launch RCAP in the wake of two national crises that erupted in the tumultuous "Indian summer" of 1990.

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I am Canadian! (because of treaties with Indigenous nations)

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As Chief Theresa Spence continues her hunger strike, her request that Prime Minister Stephen Harper meet with Chiefs to discuss treaties has many Canadians wondering what relevance treaties could possibly hold today.

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Criminal injustice: Idle No More, the prison system and Indigenous people in Canada

Photo: Prisonjustice.ca

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Idle No More is forcing many Canadians to be Willfully Blind No More. 

Ostensibly, the movement spearheaded by Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence is about the protection of First Nations' treaty rights. At its core, though, might be something more profound, perhaps best described as a demand for all of us in this country to re-think the relationship between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Canadians. The relationship is, of course, an uneven one, though it might be far more uneven than most of us in this country care to acknowledge. 

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Idle No More: On the meaning of Chief Theresa Spence's hunger strike

Poster by Andrée Cazabon

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Native peoples in this country have endured much worse than the disrespect Prime Minister Harper showed on Dec 21, tweeting about "mmm… bacon" while Attiwapiskat Chief Theresa Spence was on Day 11 of a hunger strike that won't end unless he agrees to a meeting between himself, the Governor General and First Nations leaders including Spence.

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Anxious apocalypticism, meaningful millennialism

Photo: http://www.mnn.com/

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There are two main camps concerned with the Mayan apocalypse.

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2012 at Queen's Park: A year of eroding democratic rights

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The last year has been a tumultuous one for education politics in Ontario and one that has seen democratic rights and principles die on the altar of political expediency.

The Liberals' approach to education sector collective bargaining, its draconian legislation (Bill 115), and Premier McGuinty’s decision to prorogue the Legislature just four weeks into the fall session are all examples of a government flouting democratic principles for political convenience.

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Community Corridor, Part II: Front line allies and the new solidarity

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 As the world teeters on the brink of catastrophic climate change and societal collapse, it is clear that those of us with the knowledge and capacity to resist have a responsibility to do so. It is not enough simply to withdraw or make lifestyle changes -- that is selfish and cowardly.

Rather we must turn to the front lines, where the battles which are determining our futures are actually being fought. One of those places is the Unist'ot'en Camp which rests along the bank of the river Wedzin Kwah (known in colonial society as the Morice River) on sovereign Wet'suwet'en Territory (in what you may know as Northern B.C.)

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