Happy 200th birthday, Sir John A.

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swallow swallow's picture
Happy 200th birthday, Sir John A.
swallow swallow's picture

Since Jan. 11 will be his 200th birthday, a couple of perspectives from the Walrus.

[url=http://thewalrus.ca/old-macdonald/]The racist drunk who gave us this country[/url]

[url=http://thewalrus.ca/canadas-first-scapegoat/]How dare you criticize such an upstanding gentleman?[/url]


Good articles,  but too bad that both start at confederation, and leave out Macdonald's actions at the time of the rebellion losses bill, initiating a duel challenge with a member of the government, speaking at a rally where the PM was hanged in effigy, and being an ally to those Orangemen who burned down parliament. He stood up for Canada except when it meant giving Quebec residents the same reparations those in Upper Canada got.


Maysie Maysie's picture

John A. Macdonald’s Aryan Canada: Aboriginal Genocide and Chinese Exclusion


 Macdonald proposed that “Chinamen” should not have the right to vote on the grounds that they were “foreigners” and that “the Chinese has no British instincts or British feelings or aspirations.” When a member of the opposition asked whether naturalized Chinese ceased to be “Chinamen”, Macdonald amended his legislation to exclude “a person of Mongolian or Chinese race.” The opposition object that the Chinese were “industrious people” who had “voted in the last election,” or had “as good a right [to] be allowed to vote as any other British subject of foreign extraction". This led Macdonald to make clear that Chinese exclusion was necessary to ensure European dominance.


Macdonald declared twenty-seven bands to be in insurrection even though he knew that few First Nations were involved in the resistance. Innocent chiefs were arrested and imprisoned, while Aboriginal murderers were publicly executed at Battleford in contravention of the law of the time. The now conquered people were forcibly confined on reserves and were subject to an extralegal system of pass laws which prohibited them from leaving without a written pass from the Indian Agent.   He then denied rations to the people trapped on reserve, resulting in a government-organized famine.   As James Dascuk shows in his recent award-winning book, Clearing the Plains, these were deliberate acts of genocide organized by Macdonald so as to empty the plains to make them available for European resettlement. Finally, as Superintendent General of Indian Affairs, Macdonald was even responsible for establishing the system of Indian Industrial Schools (i.e. residential schools) that were designed to disrupt the transmission of traditional culture while imbuing the supposed habits of European civilization in the rising generation.


Ryan McMahon Gets Angry podcast: [url=http://www.indianandcowboy.com/podcasts/2015/1/6/rmga-ep14-ridding-the-c... The Country Of The Sir John A Macdonald Problem[/url]

And FWIW, I don't care about Macdonald being "a drunk". It's the rest of the stuff that's significant.


On Frog Lake executions of 8 Cree warriors, Wandering Spirit, Little Bear, Crow Leg, and others, the largest mass hanging in Canadian history, Mac said:

The executions of the Indians ought to convince the red man that the White Man governs.

swallow swallow's picture

[url=http://ottawacitizen.com/news/national/niigaan-sinclair-stop-apologizing... Sinclair: stop apologizing for John A. MacDonald[/url]

swallow swallow's picture

Maybe we were the “Bread Basket of the World.” Just as likely, though, our settler society was founded on a famine – of a complicated making no doubt – managed by Macdonald with his “greater good” in mind.

[url=http://activehistory.ca/2015/01/dont-think-of-macdonalds-motivation-thin... Daschuk in activehistory.ca's MacDonald series[/url]

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

Yawn...Who cares besides King Stephen?

NS NS's picture

White-washing history by National Post

Sure, John A. Macdonald was a racist, colonizer and misogynist — but so were most Canadians back then

"For Indigenous Peoples, the first PM's 'policy of starvation and coercion' a harsh legacy"

Sir John A. Macdonald's birthday cause for reflection, not celebration for First Nations


Processions to honour Sir John A MacDonald cancelled to avoid conflict with protestors in Hamilton on Jan 11, 2015





NS NS's picture


10 Crimes of Sir John A MacDonald


1. Founded Canada on stolen land

2. Criminalized abortion

3. Criminalized homosexuality

4. Used of starvation as a weapon

5. Created a repressive police

7. Promoted residential schools


Ah, the man under whose leadership the residential schools system was founded. May God forgive him.