Idle No More – Native Protests Are Everywhere

Idle No More – Native Protests Are Everywhere

In this post you can find out everything to explain what Bill C-41 Protests are about that are going to affect every Canadian from now on to forever.. This is about the wholesale raping of Canada’s natural resources by China and foreign mega corporations.They are going to destroy and devastate Canada’s wilderness..

A ceremonial arrow awaits crime minister harper..hummmmm

Don’t miss The Halifax International POW WOW  here.



Idle No More :: Call to ACTION for ALL Canadians (en franglais)                            

Idle No More:: Canadian Winter – A song about Stephen Harper by Alishia Fox!

In Solidarity with ALL the Medicine People and Warrior Societies


Wab Kinew on the Stereotypes about Natives in Canada

Idle No More – Polo Park – Winnipeg, Manitoba #IdleNoMore

Published on 23 Dec 2012

Raw footage from the Idle No More round dance at Polo Park Mall in Winnipeg, Manitoba. With over 4000 peaceful protesters, the round dance stretched throughout the whole mall. Amazing.

Sorry for the shaking!


Sherri Lee says,  re-posted from a friend: We’re phone bombing Harper’s office today in support of Idle No More:
They actually answer the phone and their annoyed tone is an
absolute delight. Please Re-post
Everyone should make a phone call. They are answering.


Idle No More

Idle No More – In Solidarity





Pale people of pale character

Idle-No-More-Bill-Breakdown.pdf RIGHT CLICK TO DOWNLOAD


The Harper Government of Canada is currently putting through 8 BILLS that violate treaties and are meant to destroy and assimilate First Nations in the same way the 1969 White Paper was meant to. The 1969 White Paper aimed to eliminate the Indian Act, Get Rid of Treaty Rights, Do Away with Reserves Lands, and Assimilate. Never in history has there been so many bills regarding and impacting First Nations been pushed through the House of Commons at one time. They are below. All found below are changes of the Indian Act, impositions, and encroachments of legislations onto First Nation people without the right to free, prior,and informed consent
Bill C-45: Jobs and Growth Act (Omnibus Bill)
I. Land Surrenders • This process prevents any debate or Grand Chiefs to present views of amendments. • Indian Act changes with zero consultation of communities. • Lowers threshold for the surrender of reserve lands • The Minister will have the power to call a meeting, ask a band to surrender their lands, and whoever shows up as a majority – it is surrendered and the Cabinet does not get a say anymore. • It is no longer the majority of the band list that determines such a surrender of such Reserve lands, it is now just a handful of people (Ex. five in attendance and three voting yes). • The Minister can expedite this and First Nation people or leaders can’t even have a say on it. II. Navigable Waters Act • The Federal Government vacates jurisdiction over waters, parks, fisheries, etc. and the responsibility and duty to consult, honour treaty rights, as now they cannot do anything w/out talking to First Nations first. • By vacating it to the Province, the Feds wash their hands clean of Treaty Rights knowing the Province are free to do whatever they want. • Allows Provinces to have more powerful expropriation powers. • Power to decide fate of individual First Nations –even in Treaty Territory. • Harper Government wishes to “unlock” our lands for the maximized benefit of Canadians.

Bill S-2: Family Homes of Reserve Matrimonial Interests of Rights Act
• Does not recognize any First Nation by-laws that already set out matrimonial property laws. • That is denying First Nation law making power – and attack on sovereignty. • For the first-time in history – legal rights can be given to non-Indians over holds on lands on Reserve. • A majority of First Nation marriages are outside the community – 80%-90% out-marry rate in some places. • Reserve land can begin to start to transfer to non-First Nation people. • A judge (without notifying the First Nation, no attest, no evidence, or no charge) can give occupation of house and land to a non-First Nation person – indefinitely. • This will add to the overrepresentation is prison and does not apply to Canadian citizens. • Even though housing lists are long and there’s lack of land on reserve, this will add to it. • Land, protected under treaties, exclusively for First Nations, can be given and transferred to non-First Nation people through this bill. (Note: 0.2% of all land in Canada is on reserve. All reserves put together are smaller than Vancouver island.)

First Nation Education Act
• • • • • Incorporates and imposes Provincial Laws into First Nation Education on Reserves.

Violation of Treaty Right to Education.
The Feds wish to take the Treaty Right to Education – nationalize it, control it, legislate it. Does not account for Education being chronically underfunded – even in comparison to the Province. The Feds will vacate jurisdiction to the Province – not just stepping away from Treaty Obligations – but Funding Obligations. (“Want to apply for Post-Secondary? Go Apply for Provincial Scholarships.” is coming)

Bill S-212: An Act to Amend the Interpretation Act
• Non-Derogation of Aboriginal and Treaty rights

Bill S-212: First Nations Self-Government Recognition Bill and FNPOA
• The 1887 Dawes Act (United States) in Canadian Form (privatization of reserve land: will take community-held Reserve Lands and divide up into individual parcels. • This land can be sold to non-Indians and corporations, like any piece provincial lands, under provincial laws and registries, with no Aboriginal or Treaty rights associated anymore. • Even if the band has all underlying title, it can resemble management (not true governance). • The objective is to destroy our governance systems all-together and land grabs. • In the US, the biggest land grabs of indigenous land were not from treaties, but from the Dawes Act. • Wasn’t just reserve lands, but it took 90 million acres in treaty lands locked down by treaty and within two generations, 90,000 indigenous people in the US became homeless in their home territories. • After Dawes, more amendments were set to go and over half of the privatized lands were given to government, military, and corporations for resource extraction. • Canada is now eyeing-up the Tarsands, pipelines, Ring of Fire, etc – and so is China) • To put a pipeline through a community, the community’s consent is no longer needed nor Chief and Councils, but just the individual people where the pipe would go beneath. • This circumvents all Duty to Consult and Treaty Rights. • To get into this “opportunity” – a community must absolutely and unconditionally surrender the reserve land and all rights attached to it, to the Crown, and Canada will “give you back” Federal Title – a surrender of sovereignty. (A dwindled legal title moves from first title to fourth title)

Bill S-8: Safe Drinking Water for First Nations
• Will give the Federal Government the power to set up rules and regulations around water and sanitation and will be able to force Chief and Councils to do whatever the Feds see as necessary on water, but no funding. • They can demand that Chief and Councils fix water systems, but if there is no money to do so – it is taken from band operating funding formulas (that pays for housing, social assistance, etc.). • If the Federal Government’s contractors screw up, the Federal Government is not liable and they indemnify themselves from getting sued. If you don’t agree, you will go to prison. • Transfers jurisdiction and pushes Provincial • Contractors and Water Companies with ties to Harper aim to get very wealthy off of First Nations Poverty.

Laws on Reserve Lands.

Bill C-428: Indian Act Amendment and Replacement Act
• Rob Clark’s Bill to Repeal the Indian Act All-Together. • Getting rid of old Provisions with zero consultaIndian Act and leaves what happens if you do not have one – creates a battle between the Province and the Feds about what happens with your property. • It is up to First Nations to decide if they want to repeal it, how they want to, when they want to, how they wish to transition, to replace it with what, etc. • As terribly paternalistic and colonial as the Indian Act is, it currently protects a reserve from Provincial Laws, protects reserve Treaty Rights, prevents taking reserve land, prevents mining and development and pipelines. An all-out repeal of the Indian Act means Enbridge looking for a pipe to lay quickly. • The Feds do not have a say if they are kept on the hook of obligations or not.

• Getting rid of old Provisions without consulting (or with the informed consent) of those still in the TRC process who were impacted by it. (foregoes what community members and those who were impacted). • Doesn’t acknowledge a Band’s abilities to pass band by-laws. • Takes away the power of bands to pass by-laws to prohibit alcohol on reserves – by taking power away to create by-laws and govern. (“You will get drunk and you will like it.”) • Takes half of the Estates/Wills provision out of the

tion or with the consent of First Nations people.

Bill C-27: First Nations Financial Transparency Act
• This bill will force First Nations to open up all the books, source revenue, and business revenue (for the public) – in doing so, can continue making funding cuts and justifying it by high-lighting businesses on reserves trying to supplement poverty. • Fail to make business information public, one can be taken to court and funds can be cut off. • Is this truly meant to give access to information due to “mismanagement” for community members – or another way to continue cutting off funds? • Currently, anybody can get a copy from Indian Affairs if not from the band – the inaccessible claim is a myth. • Currently, if leaders speak up, they risk having budgets slashed. • There is the occasional mismanaging leader, but a study was done of all band audits ever done regarding evidence of corruption. Less than 3% of audits ever found anything about individuals mismanaging and using band funds for personal purposes, as well as misspending. This is a lower corruption rate than all Municipalities and provinces in Canada. • The average salary for a First Nation leader is $36,000. • The salary of the average Canadian (be it research of photocopying) is $46,000 • 30 of the 615 First Nation leaders are paid zero – as opposed to what Mayors and Premiers make.

Before attempting to push these through, Harper made a pre-emptive strike against First Nations by slashing funding (sometimes up to 80%) to fracture capacity where we could protect ourselves fully through our organizations. ****All points on this handout can be found in “Idle No More Alberta – Dr. Pamela Palmater” (Parts 1, 2, 3, and 4) (Youtube)***** All of these Bills are also in direct violation of Article 18, 19 &20 of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). IDLE NO MORE

POLITICAL OFFICE: Fort William First Nation 109 Mission Road Fort William First Nation P7J 1K7 (807) 626-9339 Tel (807) 626-9404 Fax

ADMINISTRATION OFFICE: 111 Peter Street, Suite 804 Toronto, Ontario M5V 2H1 Tel (416) 597-1266 Fax (416) 597-8365 1-877-517-6527 Website:


Toronto, ON (December 20, 2012)—Ontario Regional Chief Stan Beardy issued today an urgent open letter to Her Majesty the Queen urging direct British Crown involvement in the Chief Theresa Spence hunger strike (urgent open letter attached). Contrary to Canada’s underlying message that the relationship between First Nations and the British Crown has ended, the letter explains that the legal and historical connection between the British Crown and treaty nations in Canada is still alive. Regional Chief Beardy stated in the letter to Her Majesty that, “You remain the Monarch of Canada, in accordance with article 17 of the Canadian Constitution Act, 1867 and that at this unprecedented moment of national peril, your direct intervention is urgently required.” The letter cites article 25 of the Canada Constitution Act, 1982 for the continuing enforceability of the Royal Proclamation of 1763 in relation to Canada’s repatriation. “This is precisely why Chief Theresa Spence is demanding to move an agenda forward with representatives of the British Crown—she is fighting for recognition of the long-standing relationship First Nations have had, starting with King George III, her Majesty’s predecessor. It is time Canada understands this,” stated Beardy. The urgent open letter is making its way to Buckingham Palace and it is undetermined at this time if it will reach Her Majesty directly but all efforts will be made to ensure a response from Her Royal Highness. It has also been posted publicly for the world to view. The Chiefs of Ontario is a political forum, and a secretariat for collective decision making, action, and advocacy for the 133 First Nation communities located within the boundaries of the province of Ontario, Canada. -30For more information, please contact: Andre Morriseau, Media Relations, Phone: 416-580-9320 Email:

 Association of Iroquois and Allied Indians  First Nations of Treaty #3  Independent First Nations  Nishnawbe Aski Nation  Union of Ontario Indians 


Idle No More – In Solidarity



Published on 22 Dec 2012

Camera Niel Bignell, VFX by Gabriel Constant, The real intent of this video is to raise our peoples spirits because we all have gone through enough BS – that its time to unite and make it known!!!
As for those who want to challenge the message of this video; Only a person with a hateful heart will see hate in any message being given….they will even see hate and blame in a positive message and challenge those who are trying to raise spirits of an oppressed people. if you fail to see the message in this video then perhaps you need to look within and check if you have the right glasses on.


Grand Chief Nepinak – Press Conference December 7, 2012

Published on 7 Dec 2012


Winnipeg, MB December 7, 2012 — Derek Nepinak, Grand Chief of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC) called on all First Nations and Manitobans to join young leaders to stand with our Women, Elders and Leaders from across the country in opposition to the federal government’s legislative agenda.
In addition to some of the issues Manitoba First Nations leaders are working on, many oppose the Government’s Omnibus Budget Bill. As part of their opposition, Manitoba chiefs will support events planned across Manitoba and Canada where grassroots members and youth are organizing rallies to express strong oppositions to the bill. On Monday, December 10th, at 12:00 noon, a number of chiefs will attend the Idle No More (Winnipeg event) to be held at the front steps of the Manitoba Legislature Building.

This week in Gatineau, Quebec, leaders from the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC), Southern Chiefs Organization (SCO) and Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak (MKO) attended the Assembly of First Nations (AFN) Special Chiefs Assembly. Members of the AMC, SCO and MKO introduced a resolution opposing Canada’s proposed First Nation Education Act. Manitoba’s regional position is that legislating First Nations Education is not in the best interest of First Nation students. The resolution that passed directed the AFN to ensure that the Federal Government does not federally legislate First Nations education in Manitoba, but rather provide for First Nations themselves to make their own education laws.

Grand Chief Derek Nepinak said, “The Manitoba Chiefs stand firm on our resolve to see an education system that reflects our cultures and embodies the teachings of our ancestors. We will not accept legislation being forced on our people that affects all aspects of our lives,” Grand Chief added, “Canada must honour its legal obligation on the Treaty Right to Education that recognizes First Nation distinct models, mechanisms, processes and approaches and negotiate a fiscal arrangement with our First Nations that provide equitable and sustainable funding for First Nation Education Law in Manitoba.”

Another resolution spearheaded by AMC that was passed at the AFN Assembly dealt with the Canada-China Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPPA) and other similar international trade agreements. This sought to challenge the FIPPA based on the lack of the duty to consult First Nations. Related to this resolution, Grand Chief Nepinak led a delegation together with the leadership from the Treaty Land Entitlement Committee and Grand Chief Stanley Beardy of the Nishnawbe Aski Nation of Ontario to meet with the head of the Commercial Section of the Canadian Chinese Consulate to discuss the relationship and future opportunities between First Nations and the Republic of China. “The meeting with Minister Councillor of Economic Affairs Jiang Shan proved to be a promising start of a working relationship with the Peoples Republic of China and we have plans to meet again on how First Nations and the Chinese government can move forward to forge a business relationship,” said AMC Grand Chief Nepinak.

During the three-day AFN Assembly, a sense of empowerment was expressed by thousands of people in person and through social media networks like Twitter and Facebook. People from around the world relayed messages of hope especially after a protest by Chiefs and supporters on Parliament Hill.

“We stand affirmed on the successes achieved this past week at the Special Chiefs Assembly in Gatineau, QC,” said MKO Grand Chief David Harper. “Our resolve in gaining support on the issues affecting our northern First Nations on areas including Education, Policing and Health and Well being of our citizens remains at the top of our priorities for our nations,” concluded Harper.

More plans include events throughout Canada on the Trans Canada on December 18th, 2012 and again on January 28th, 2013 in Ottawa.

IDLE NO MORE – Portage Place Flash Mob I – December 22, 2012

Support Chief Theresa Spence

Idle No More Alberta – Dr. Pamela Palmater (Part 1 of 4)

Published on  3 Dec 2012

Update and Information on each piece of Canadian federal legislation
that is being passed right now or on its way to being
passed and will adversely affect Aboriginal people.
Dr. Pamela Palmater
Mi’kmaw citizen and member of Eel River Bar First Nation


IdleNoMore Toronto FlashMob Shuts Down Dundas Square

Published on 21 Dec 2012 – Idle No More Toronto today -Over 1000 people! Idle No More FlashMob Round Dance Took Over Yonge-Dundas Square today in downtown Toronto as part of the Idle No More rallies happening in solidarity with First Nations across Canada and the world.

There’s a google map of all the worldwide #IdleNoMore events and rallies scheduled, find your local rally/Flashmob! View the Google Map here:




Video by: Derek @ Occupy Canada http://www.OccupyCanada.Org/


Idle No More Ottawa Dec 21 2012

Published on 21 Dec 2012

Near freezing temperatures and 20cm of snow couldn’t stop nearly 2000 people from descending onto Parliament Hill for #IdleNoMore
Follow me @BeRadYOW


Idle No More – Saints Are Coming – Inspirational Video – December 21, 2012 – World Wide Revolution

Published on 21 Dec 2012


December 21, 2012, thousands of people around the world gathered together for the planet’s last stand

Idle No More – Saints Are Coming – Inspirational Video – December 21, 2012 – World Wide Revolution

Published on 21 Dec 2012


December 21, 2012, thousands of people around the world gathered together for the planet’s last stand

No copyright infringement intended on any of the images used. Used under fair use… used to help bring awareness to our issues.


Idle No More – Cops Had To Leave (Thunder Bay)

Published on 20 Dec 2012

Cops came questioning, but many video recorders were on scene. so they had no choice but to let it happen.
That’s what happens when we stand UNITED. Keep it up people!!!


December 20, 2012
Thunder Bay Intercity Mall



  • When INM first began, Elders were consulted and direction provided from them. Their message and direction has been of peaceful solidarity and unity. One of the most sacred of Indigenous laws is peaceful resistance when Elders and children are involved and this is what we must follow.
  • Idle No More is a peaceful organization that is working towards profound social, political, and economic change. Our goal is to use education to build consciousness and awareness in all Canadians on the resurgence of Indigenous sovereignty and environmental protections. We are working on building relationships within our communities as well as across Canada and globally. We also call out to each community to organize teach-ins and peaceful demonstrations – we believe an educated public is the best form of action. Each community has different needs, and we support the various actions that are taking place across Turtle Island, however because of the many decades of colonialism, some community members are seeking stronger forms of action such as blockades. While we need to protect the land from further damage, we hope that this will be used as a last resort to protect Mother Earth, and not as a symbolic act. We are working hard to maintain INM as a positive movement that includes all cultures in a vision for justice for all people and for our earth.
  • Idle No More feels that any acts that are not in line with peace and solidarity only detract attention from our ultimate mission which is to assert our sovereignty and ensure protection to our Mother Earth and in essence our peoples health and wellbeing. We ask that you all keep in mind these factors when planning any acts of resurgence.

INM recognizes that the grassroots are the face of INM – we would like to state that any one individual does not speak for the collective in any of their acts or statements. Although we recognize that individuals will partake in their own acts, we support a collective grassroots voice that speaks to Indigenous sovereignty and environmental protection. We welcome creative acts and encourage people to generate peaceful ways to build community and defend the earth.


IdleNoMore Toronto FlashMob Shuts Down Dundas Square

Published on 21 Dec 2012 – Idle No More Toronto today -Over 1000 people! Idle No More FlashMob Round Dance Took Over Yonge-Dundas Square today in downtown Toronto as part of the Idle No More rallies happening in solidarity with First Nations across Canada and the world.

There’s a google map of all the worldwide #IdleNoMore events and rallies scheduled, find your local rally/Flashmob! View the Google Map here:




Video by: Derek @ Occupy Canada http://www.OccupyCanada.Org/


Idle no more inspirational video Saskatoon (Beautiful Song)

Published on 11 Dec 2012

Everyone Has a Voice! Saskatoon you demonstrated your voice loud and clear! This video is ment to inspire other youth and people to take the power back.
Use your own skills to promote awarness, I dont have a education in editing, however i do know that a little bit of time and effort does great things.

Thanks to everyone in Saskatoon, this is just the begining of yet to come!


Music is black eyed peas- one tribe


Chief Spence exclusive interview CBC December 18, 2012


Idle No More – Round Dance Flash Mob at WEM in Edmonton

Published on 18 Dec 2012

A round dance flash mob at West Edmonton Mall for Idle No More on December 18, 2012.


Angry natives attempt to enter Canada’s Parliament. Idol no more campaign.

Published on 4 Dec 2012

A group of first nations Chiefs confront Minister Joe Oliver and attempt to push there way into the House of Commons in Ottawa. Dec 2 2012
Jake Wright / Hill Times


Canadian Aboriginals Storm Canadian Parliament: Joshua Blakeney on Press TV

Published on 5 Dec 2012

On December 4, 2012, Canadian First Nations leaders stormed the Canadian parliament in an attempt to draw attention to their opposition to the Harper government’s federal budget bill. The fraudulently elected Harper government is proposing radically altering the legal standing of Canada’s First Nations peoples, doing away with many of their legally mandated collective rights. This in spite of the fact that Section 35 of the Canadian Constitution Act, 1982, the ostensible Supreme Law of Canada, purports to “recognize and affirm aboriginal and treaty rights.”,_1982

Add Joshua Blakeney on Facebook:

Aleisha Fox

Idle No More Alberta – Sylvia McAdam

Published on  3 Dec 2012

Sylvia McAdam,B.H.J, L.L.B.
Whitefish Lake Reserve Lands, #118
“Nehiyaw weyeswewna (Cree Laws) – Revitalizing Okicitaw
Iskwewak as Part of the Treaty Understanding.


Idle No More Alberta – Janice Makokis (Part 1)

Published on  3 Dec 2012

Janice A. Makokis, B.A., M.A (IGOV), L.L.B
Saddle Lake Cree Nation
“International Avenues of Asserting Nationhood: United
Nations and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights
of Indigenous Peoples”


Idle No More Rally – Halifax, Nova Scotia

Published on 14 Dec 2012

#idlenomore protest in Halifax on December 14, 2012, closing statements and round dance.
Idle No More calls on all people to join in a revolution which honors and fulfills Indigenous sovereignty which protects the land and water. Colonization continues through attacks to Indigenous rights and damage to the land and water. We must repair these violations, live the spirit and intent of the treaty relationship, work towards justice in action, and protect Mother Earth.

Indigenous people and allies stood in solidarity across Canada to assert Indigenous sovereignty and begin the work towards sustainable, renewable development.


The Road Block – Idle No More

Published on 16 Dec 2012

On December 15, 2012 People from across Manitoba to put up a road block on the Trans Canada Hwy – #16 Hwy to protest and send a message to the Federal Government.


Idle No More Alberta – Tanya Kappo

Published on 3 Dec 2012

History of the White Paper and the Red Paper
Tanya Kappo, J.D
Sturgeon Lake Cree Nation, Treaty 8


#IdleNoMore locked out of Manitoba Legislative Building, then triumphantly reunited

Published on 10 Dec 2012

When Winnipeg’s Idle No More rally wrapped up outside the Legislative Building, someone called for people to go inside and bring their signs. Security confiscated most signs and eventually locked the doors. But people found a way through, it was exhilarating.

Idle No More – Michael Redhead Champagne

Published on 10 Dec 2012

Michael Redhead Champagne (northendmc) speaks at the Idle No More Rally in Winnipeg on December 10, 2012


Next National Chief: Pam Palmater Full Interview

Published on 21 Jun 2012

Full interview with Pam Palmater, candidate for the Assembly of First Nation’s National Chief. Part of’s Next National Chief series. Graphics by Dwayne Bird.

Idle No More Solidarity Rallly – Tromsø

Published on 28 Dec 2012

Punktmarkering i Tromsø 28. desember 2012. #idlenomore

IDLE NO MORE -VAG Dec 23 HD Round Dance

Published on 25 Dec 2012

#IDLENOMORE Another large rally held on unceded Coast Salish Territores followed by a round dance, in front of the Vancouver Art Gallery, shows the unity between nations native to these lands and many non-aboriginal communities of allies. United to stop the anti-people, anti-sovereignty agenda of the Harper Conservatives.
With each day, the Idle No More movement is becoming larger and stronger.

Idle No More Los Angeles

Published on 22 Dec 2012

Footage from the “Idle No More” Rally held in front of the Canadian Embassy in Los ANgeles. TO stand in solidarity with our Canadian and indigenous relations throughout the world. With special apperances by native celebrities Red Cloud, Crystle Lightning, Sam Bear Paw, Adam Beach, and Drum Group Red Hand Singers with Hoop Dancer Sage Romero.

Like the movement on facebook here:!/IdleNoMoreCommunity?fref=ts!/IdleNoMoreCommunity?fref=ts

Camera by Sage Romero, and Christina Ortiz
Cut and editied by Sage Romero at Sage Smoke Studios for AkaMya Culture Group.
Music by Lindsey Stirling AC3 Theme Song

Flash Mob attacked by security guard

Published on 20 Dec 2012

a peaceful flash mob is attacked by mall security at the Northgate Mall in North Bay
contact info for the northgate mall if anyone wishes to complain


Woman Attacks Vehicle of Native Protester

Published on 19 Dec 2012

Woman with Hammer attacks vehicle of Native Protester during the #IdleNoMore Rally in London, ON.
Dec 19th, 2012


Published on 15 Dec 2012


Idle No More interview with Nina Wilson

Published on 19 Nov 2012

Idle No More is a grassroots movement that opposes the passage of Bill C-45, the latest omnibus bill. I interviewed Nina Wilson who was there this morning about their concerns with how it would affect First Nation peoples and rights if passed.

Placing #IdleNoMore in Historical Context

Three decades of Indigenous resistance in Canada inform today’s movement.

By Glen Coulthard, 4 Jan 2013,

Gathering at UBC Longhouse for Idle No More

January 3 gathering at the UBC First Nations Longhouse in support of the Idle No More movement. Photo: D. Beers.

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.

Elijah Harper’s filibuster. The first involved the legislative stonewalling of the Meech Lake Accord by Cree Manitoba MLA Elijah Harper. The Meech Lake Accord was a failed constitutional amendment package negotiated in 1987 by then prime minister of Canada, Brian Mulroney, and the ten provincial premiers. The process was the federal government’s attempt to bring Quebec “back in” to the constitutional fold in the wake of the province’s refusal to accept the constitutional repatriation deal of 1981, which formed the basis of the The Constitution Act, 1982. Indigenous opposition to Meech Lake was staunch and vocal, in large part due to the fact that the privileged white men negotiating the agreement once again refused to recognize the political concerns and aspirations of First Nations. In a disruptive act of legislative protest, Elijah Harper initiated a filibuster in the days immediately leading up to the accord’s ratification deadline, which ultimately prevented the province from endorsing the package. The agreement subsequently tanked because it failed to gain the required ratification of all ten provinces within three years of reaching a deal.

The Oka conflict. The second crisis involved a 78-day armed “standoff” beginning on July 11, 1990 between the Mohawk nation of Kanesatake, the Quebec provincial police (SQ), and the Canadian armed forces near the town of Oka, Quebec. On June 30, 1990 the municipality of Oka was granted a court injunction to dismantle a peaceful barricade erected by the people of Kanesatake in an effort to defend their sacred lands from further encroachment by non-Native developers. The territory in question was slotted for development by a local golf course, which planned on extending nine holes onto land the Mohawks had been fighting to have recognized as their own for almost 300 years. Eleven days later, on July 11, one hundred heavily armed members of the SQ stormed the community.

The police invasion culminated in a 24 second exchange of gunfire that killed SQ Corporal Marcel Lemay. In a display of solidarity, the neighbouring Mohawk nation of Kahnawake set up their own barricades, including one that blocked the Mercier Bridge leading into the greater Montreal area. Galvanized by the Mohawk resistance, Indigenous peoples from across the continent followed suit, engaging in a diverse array of solidarity actions that ranged from leafleting to the establishment of peace encampments to the erection of blockades on several major Canadian transport corridors, both road and rail.

Although polls conducted during the stand-off showed some support by non-Native Canadians outside of Quebec for the Mohawk cause, most received their information about the so-called “Oka Crisis” through the corporate media, which overwhelmingly represented the event as a “law and order” issue fundamentally undermined by Indigenous peoples’ anger and resentment-fuelled criminality.

For many Indigenous people and their supporters, however, these two national crises were seen as the inevitable culmination of a near decade-long escalation of Native frustration with a colonial state that steadfastly refused to uphold the rights that had been recently “recognized and affirmed” in section 35 (1) of the The Constitution Act, 1982. By the late 1980s, this frustration was clearly boiling over, resulting in a marked rise in First Nations’ militancy and land-based direct action. The following are some well-documented examples from the time:

The Innu occupation and blockade of the Canadian Air Force/NATO base at Goose Bay, Labrador. The occupation was led largely by Innu women to challenge the further dispossession of their territories and the destruction of their land-based way of life by the military industrial complex’s encroachment onto the Innu peoples’ homeland of Nitassinan;

The Lubicon Cree struggle against oil and gas development on their traditional territories in present day Alberta. The Lubicon Cree have been struggling to protect a way of life threatened by intensified capitalist development on their homelands since at least 1939. Over the years, the community has engaged in a number of very public protests to get their message across, including a well-publicized boycott of the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics and the associated Glenbow Museum exhibit, The Spirit Sings;

First Nations blockades in British Columbia. Throughout the 1980s, First Nations in B.C. grew extremely frustrated with the painfully slow pace of the federal government’s comprehensive land claims process and the province’s racist refusal to recognize Aboriginal title within its its borders.  The result was a decade’s worth of very disruptive blockades, which at its height in 1990 were such a common occurrence that Vancouver newspapers felt the need to publish traffic advisories identifying delays caused by First Nation roadblocks in the province’s interior. Many of the blockades were able to halt resource extraction on Native land for protracted periods of time;

The Algonquins of Barriere Lake. By 1989, the Algonquins of Barrier Lake were embroiled in a struggle to stop clear-cut logging within their traditional territories in present day Quebec because these practices threatened their land and way of life. Under the leadership of customary chief, Jean-Maurice Matchewan, the community used blockades to successfully impede clear-cutting activities affecting their community.

The Temagami First Nation blockades of 1988 and 1989 in present-day Ontario. The Temagami blockades were set up to protect their nation’s homeland from further encroachment by non-Native development. The blockades of 1988-89 were the most recent assertions of Temagami sovereignty in over a century-long struggle to protect the community’s right to land and freedom from colonial settlement and development.

From the vantage point of the colonial state, by the time the 78-day standoff at Kanesatake had begun things were already out of control in Indian Country. If settler-state stability and authority are required to ensure “certainty” over lands and resources to create a climate friendly for expanded capitalist accumulation, then the barrage of Indigenous practices of disruptive counter-sovereignty that emerged with increased frequency in the 1980s was an embarrassing demonstration that Canada no longer had its shit together with respect to managing the so-called “Indian Problem.” On top of this, the material form that these expressions of Indigenous sovereignty took on the ground — the blockade, explicitly erected to impede constituted flows of racialized capital and state power from entering and/or leaving Indigenous territories — must have been particularly troubling to the settler-colonial elite.

All of this activity was an indication that Indigenous people and communities were no longer willing to wait for Canada (or even their own leaders) to negotiate a just relationship with them in good faith. There was also growing concern that Indigenous youth in particular were no longer willing to play by Canada’s rules – especially regarding the potential use of political violence – when it came to advancing their communities’ rights and interests. As then national chief of the Assembly of the First Nations, Georges Erasmus, warned in 1988: “Canada, if you do not deal with this generation of leaders, then we cannot promise that you are going to like the kind of violent political action that we can just about guarantee the next generation is going to bring to you.” Consider this “a warning,” Erasmus continued: “We want to let you know that you’re playing with fire. We may be the last generation of leaders that are prepared to sit down and peacefully negotiate our concerns with you.”

In the wake of having to engage in one of the largest military operations since the Korean War, the federal government announced on Aug. 23, 1991 that a royal commission would be established with a sprawling 16-point mandate to investigate the abusive relationship that had clearly developed between Aboriginal peoples and the Canadian state. Published two years behind schedule in Nov. 1996, the 58 million dollar, five-volume, approximately 4,000 page Report of the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples includes 440 recommendations which call for a renewed relationship based on the core principles of “mutual recognition, mutual respect, sharing and mutual responsibility.” The material conditions that informed the decade of Indigenous protest that led to the resistance as Kanesatake created the political context that RCAP’s call for recognition and reconciliation was supposed to pacify — namely, the righteous anger and resentment of the colonized transformed into an insurgent reclamation of Indigenous difference that threatened to unsettle settler-colonialism’s sovereign claim over Indigenous people and lands.

The power of economic disruption

With respect to the emergent #IdleNoMore movement, although many of the conditions that compelled the state to undertake the most expensive public inquiry in Canadian history are still in place, a couple of important ones are not. The first condition that appears to be absent is the clear threat of political violence that was present in the years leading to the resistance at Kanesatake. #IdleNoMore is an explicitly non-violent movement, which accounts for its relatively wide spectrum of both Native and non-Native support at the moment.

However, if the life of Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence continues to be recklessly put in jeopardy by a prime minister who negligently refuses to capitulate to her reasonable demands, I predict that the spectre of political violence will re-emerge in Indigenous peoples’ collective conversations about what to do next. The responsibility for this rests solely on the state.

The second condition that differentiates #IdleNoMore from the decade of Indigenous activism that lead to RCAP is the absence (so far) of widespread economic disruption unleashed by Indigenous direct action. If history has shown us anything, it is this: if you want those in power to respond swiftly to Indigenous peoples’ political struggles, start by placing Indigenous bodies (with a few logs and tires thrown in for good measure) between settlers and their money, which in colonial contexts is generated by the ongoing theft and exploitation of our land and resource base. If this is true, then the long term efficacy of the #IdleNoMore movement would appear to hinge on its protest actions being distributed more evenly between the shopping malls and front lawns of legislatures on the one hand, and the logging roads, thoroughfares, and railways that are central to the accumulation of colonial capital on the other. For better and for worse, it was our peoples’ challenge to these two pillars of colonial sovereignty that led to the recommendations of RCAP: the Canadian state’s claim to hold a legitimate monopoly on use of violence and the conditions required for the ongoing accumulation of capital.

In stating this I don’t mean to offer an unqualified endorsement of these two approaches, but rather a diagnosis of our present situation based on an ongoing critical conversation about how these differences and similarities ought to inform our current struggle.  [Tyee]


Idle No More and Canada’s Prison Apartheid

Indigenous people here, like African-Americans in US, face criminal injustice built on structural discrimination.

By Matt Moir, 2 Jan 2013,

Indigenous people here, like African-Americans in US, face criminal injustice built on structural discrimination.

By Matt Moir, 2 Jan 2013,


Barbed politics: Will Idle No More force Canadians to be blind no more? Source: Prison Justice.

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.

Against this backdrop, policy makers and average Canadians alike would be well advised to ring in the New Year by considering the lessons Michelle Alexander highlights in her important book, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindedness. The context is American, but the lessons may hit closer to home. In the book, Alexander writes the following in regards to African-Americans and the United States’ criminal justice system:

“It is fair to say that we have witnessed an evolution in the United States from a racial caste system based entirely on exploitation (slavery), to one based largely on subordination (Jim Crow), to one defined by marginalization (mass incarceration). While marginalization may sound far preferable to exploitation, it may prove to be even more dangerous. Extreme marginalization, as we have seen throughout world history, poses the risk of extermination.”

It’s a narrative equally provocative and compelling. Alexander argues that Americans’ obsession with ‘law and order’ began as a conservative attempt to breed white opposition to the burgeoning civil rights movement. Politicians on the right labeled civil disobedience a precursor to criminality, and branded supporters of civil rights legislation as promoters of lawlessness. Exploiting the fears of poor and rural whites, Republican politicians invented and propagated the ‘War on Crime’ and, more specifically, the ‘War on Drugs’ as a means to incarcerate, and thus control, the black population.

The scheme was so successful that any politician that questioned the effectiveness or morality behind the supposedly colour-blind ‘War on Drugs’ was accused of being ‘soft on crime’ — the death knell for one seeking public office. In 1992, Bill Clinton recognized that Democrats could peel off right leaning white voters by outflanking the Republicans on issues like crime and welfare reform, and promptly advocated for a number of policies that resulted in the largest increases in federal and state prison inmates of any president in the history of the United States, the overwhelming majority of which were people of colour. The normalization of racial marginalization, according to Alexander, was finally, quietly complete.

The book is more than a lament; it’s a warning. Alexander paints a bleak portrait of a future in which the majority of African Americans — increasingly economically vulnerable in a nation of skyrocketing inequality — being under the control of the criminal justice system is not entirely inconceivable. It’s an ugly commentary on contemporary American society. Canadians should pay attention.

One in five Canadian prisoners are Aboriginal

Troublingly, there are significant parallels between the plight of African Americans in the United States, and the Aboriginal population in Canada.

As American history is steeped in institutional savagery toward African Americans, Canada’s history, too, is pockmarked by the white majority’s mistreatment of Indigenous peoples. Most notable among a litany of gross violations of justice are the permanent occupation of ancestral lands beginning in the 18th century, the noxious attempt to ‘civilize’ Aboriginal people in residential schools in the early 1900s, and the refusal to recognize Aboriginal Canadians as legal ‘persons’ until the middle of the 20th century. And the similarities, unfortunately, are not only historical.

Though Canada doesn’t yet lock up the same percentage of its citizenry as its southern neighbor — the most heavily incarcerated society in the world — measures passed by Prime Minister Harper’s Conservative government have resulted in a steady increase in the number of Canadians behind bars. Canadians of Aboriginal ancestries have borne the brunt of the surge of prisoners.

The proportion of African Americans and Aboriginal Canadians in prison far exceed their representation in the U.S. and Canada, respectively. In the U.S., black Americans account for 12 per cent of the total population, but represent nearly 40 per cent of the prison population. In Canada, Aboriginal peoples make up four per cent of the total population, but 20 per cent of the prison population.

These significant discrepancies are not shrinking. In the U.S., over 40 per cent of new offenders to state and federal prisons are African American. In Canada, more than one in five new admissions to men’s prisons are of Aboriginal descent. Among women offenders, over one in three are Aboriginal. In the U.S., one in three black men can expect to be incarcerated at some point in their lives. In Canada, young Aboriginal men are more likely to go to prison than complete a high school diploma. And once in custody, a significantly larger proportion of African American and Aboriginal Canadian prisoners are recommended for maximum levels of security than white prisoners charged with similar crimes.

Structural discrimination

While it might be unfair to claim that Canadian politicians and the Canadian criminal justice system have joined forces to consciously ensure that our Aboriginal communities remain repressed and disenfranchised, it cannot be denied that Aboriginals across the country suffer from poverty, injustice and lack of opportunity more than other type of Canadian. One in four Aboriginal children live in poverty.

The life expectancy for Indigenous people in Canada is eight to 20 years less than non-Aboriginal Canadians. On First Nations reserves, 60 per cent of children do not graduate high school, and the lack of suitable housing and access to clean water is endemic. To be Aboriginal in Canada today is to be a second-class citizen.

As a new year begins, we should take this opportunity to look closely at the society that we have created, and address the appalling inequalities of our criminal justice system. There is still time to prevent the prison state of our southern neighbors, but only if we hurry.

No Canadian should be idle.  [Tyee]


3 thoughts on “Idle No More – Native Protests Are Everywhere”

  1. Hello, do you know of any events in Los Angeles today? I heard about it in KPFK but have found any details (I don’t have or use, Facebook). Thanks


  2. There are many innocent live born Canadians prenatally exsposed to alcohol that where injured by products sold by Crown Corporations and their suppliers that have caused long term disabilities but because of the bilions and millions and sin taxes hst gst taxes and lets face it because these appointed judges trained to spot fetal alcohol syndrome fasd fae but can not bring justice to these people injured by the Crown Corporation products that have disabled about one percent of Canadians when will the Canada Pension plan pay full compensation for persons of live birth disgnosed with fetal alcohol syndrome see the web site that I assisted the Fas fae support network of Nova Scotia I would like to thank Chief Deborah Robinson of The Yarmouth Band for the help in research for the support network fas fae of Nova Scotia over the years . I ask Idol No More to help with a class action law suite against the brewers and distillers and their salesmen at the Crown Corperations as the justice for these innocents can no longer wait for justice call Yarmouth Comunity Services in Nova Scotia as my wife s two children Michael Ashley Nickerson and his sister Chantelle Diane Flemming where both born at Yarmouth Hospital in Nova Scotia with each had been diagnosed with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and twelve years ago in Family Court of N.S. and disability payments where paid but now for years now there is real trouble at a Yarmouth Comunity Services with full disability pension although they know all about all the facts their mom had a dwi when in the first trimester while pregnant with Mike and blew nearly three times the legal limit and she told me she drank a lot about more while pregnant with Chantelle . My family came to Shelburne in November 1783 with the Port Rozeway Associates and among first settlers on Scotch Point Port Joli N.S. and my mom s line Gaspe I am the Viceroy of Gaspe welcome to the happy hunting grounds that my grand dad who was a Cornel in the Canadian Army stationed at supreme alied comand London. Scott Mcintosh U.E. scottlandyardcan


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