Since 1995, politicians have been afraid to confront native criminals who set up barricades and seize private property -- for fear that someone will get hurt and another Ipperwash will be laid at their door. Through their inaction, our leaders have encouraged a proliferation of native lawlessness, such as the ongoing disgrace at Caledonia, Ont.
It is time for that to change. Dudley George's killing was a tragedy. But it should not continue to be used as a pretext to turn a blind eye to criminal behaviour.
It is no secret that this is exactly what is motivating the politicians who bend over backwards trying to appease various native factions. The natives themselves are obviously well aware that the deck is now stacked in their favour. Resolution will not come cheaply, nor easily.
Don Martin explains the politics of native protest (Disruption works; placards do not):
...Fifteen months after natives began illegally occupying a private developer's land, a dispute Ottawa insisted was not a bona fide land claim dispute and thus not a federal responsibility, the feds helped negotiate a proposal that works out to $6,250 for each of the reserve's 20,000 residents. And there's talk that's not good enough, so the tab could inevitably rise.
The Ipperwash inquiry, which condemned successive federal governments for the snail's pace of progress on land claims, was the result of a police action to end the illegal occupation of a provincial park. Now the feds are stumbling over themselves to offer a resolution that's bound to reward the protesters with millions more, possibly within a week.
So there's precedent for a payoff instead of a penalty when natives disobey the law and dare the police to enforce it...
Lorrie Goldstein points out in today's Sun that the McGuinty government, which ordered the inquiry is no doubt disappointed in the results. Mike Harris has been found guilty of uttering a racist comment and perhaps being impatient, but not much more. McGuinty would have liked to point to a complete condemnation of Harris' actions as a way to justify his weak efforts regarding Caledonia.
I invite your comments on this issue, but I do ask that everyone please refrain from racist remarks on both sides of the spectrum. We need to get beyond our anger and frustration.
On the other hand, I think that all provincial and federal politicians are fair game.