Opinions



How about celebrating Canada Day by paying overdue rent for Parliament buildings!

By Maurice Switzer Canada always likes to see feathers and buckskin at their parties. They regard Indians as excellent window-dressing. So for years, a familiar scene has played out every Canada Day on Parliament Hill. The prime minister says a few words – in English and French,

Keeping Indians out of pool halls a Canadian priority

By Maurice Switzer As to why Indigenous peoples won't be out in droves to celebrate Canada's 150th birthday party, it's amazing there isn't actually a provision in the Indian Act to prohibit such a thing. The legislation first enacted in 1876 was littered with bans on activities

Canada: ‘Conceived under the influence of alcohol!’

By Maurice Switzer My Anishinabek Nation flag that flutters in the prevailing west winds off Lake Nipissing needs to be replaced twice a year. A dark red banner bearing the image of a white Thunderbird gets whipped about pretty briskly, and it only takes a couple of

Opinion: We’ll pass on the Liberal Lollapalooza

By Maurice Switzer So, if you had a neighbour who kept stealing stuff from your yard, and constantly screamed obscenities at your kids, would you attend his birthday party if you got an invitation in your mailbox? How about if you had a neighbour who stole your

Don’t throw Boydens out with bathwater!

By Maurice Switzer Anishinabek broadcaster Jesse Wente was shedding tears. He was participating in a CBC radio debate with Walrus magazine editor Jonathan Kay about the propriety of  creating a prize for cultural appropriation – writing stories about someone else's culture, particularly for profit. While critical of

Opinion: Sinixt Hunting Rights decision has potential for wider impact

By Karl Hele Ruling in March 2017, that a member of the ‘extinct’ Sinixt First Nation has existing Indigenous rights to hunt, a judge in Nelson, British Columbia may have issued the first decision that will eventually upend more than a century of Canadian border policies. These

Book review: The Ballad of Danny Wolfe: Life of a Modern Outlaw

By Shirley Honyust/ Yenatli:yo This book tells the epic story of Danny Wolfe, one of the lead founders of the Indian Posse, a prominent street gang in 1988 in Winnipeg, Manitoba. At that time the word, ‘Indian’ was still used in legal definitions of status, although it

Thin the herd, stay in your place

By Brad Gallant It seems caribou are becoming an endangered species in all regions of Canada except Western Newfoundland. I am speaking both of the woodland animal and the members of the newly founded Qalipu Mi'kmaq band. The recent decisions sent out by Ronald Penney, Chair of

When will the taking stop?

By Beverly Sabourin and Peter Globensky Since we have both developed a late-in-life allergy to snow and the shoveling of it, we escape to the American southwest and the traditional territory of the Apache for the snowless beauty of the desert and the 'sky-island' mountains. While here

Walleye Delirium, moose poop, and Foreman Grills

By Maurice Switzer Fishing on Lake Nipissing is not a body-contact sport...yet! Sometimes the feuding over who-gets-to-catch-how-much-of-what can reach alarming proportions.  But, we haven't seen  billy-clubs stuffed into creels, or gun barrels sticking out of rod cases, and there are no ministry gunboats patrolling the Manitou channels.

Federal Government seeks to settle class action from Sixties Scoop

By John Fox On the heels of a Judge’s ruling of a 1.3 billion dollar class-action lawsuit, on Wednesday Feb 1, the Federal Government, under the leadership of the Indigenous Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett, announced on Parliament Hill that they were prepared to come to a resolution

Future lawyers visit the Union of Ontario Indians

By Daniel Gatto Last October, I was amongst the group of a dozen University of Ottawa Law Practice Program (Programme de Pratique du Droit) candidates who travelled to Sudbury to attend the 2016 Colloquium hosted by the Sudbury and District Law Association and host a free mobile

Lemons and protests

By Samantha Restoule   A couple of weeks ago life handed me a lemon. “What am I supposed to do with this?” I asked myself. So I stood there, lemon in hand, wondering how to proceed. Well…you know what they say: when life gives you lemons, protest

Book Review: This is Indian Land

By Karl Hele Drawing inspiration and its title from Garden River’s CP Rail Bridge with its message “THIS IS INDIAN LAND”, the book seeks to explore different outcomes of the 1850 Robinson Treaties. While the sign may literally rest on Indian land, it speaks to the reality

Book Review: Price Paid

Submitted by Karl Hele Bev Sellars brings us another marvelous book drawing on her and her people’s experiences with Indian policy since the beginning. While her first book, They Called Me Number One, explored the generational impact of residential schools on her family, Price Paid nicely explores