Friday, June 01, 2007

The Legacy of Ipperwash

I don't have anything especially profound to contribute to the release of Justice Sidney Linden's Ipperwash Inquiry report. I do, however, agree with the National Post's editorial this morning (Ipperwash, 12 years later):

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.

* * * *

Update: PTBC - "Everybody is to Blame - except the natives". (H/T SDA)


Swift said...

Joanne, have you been keeping up with what is posted on Caladoniawakeupcall?

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Swift, are you referring to the AK-47 near Notre Dame school?

I wonder why we aren't hearing more about this in MSM? On second thought, never mind. I know the answer.

It doesn't sound like the Six Nations protesters will ever leave Douglas Creek Estates:

"The Douglas Creek lands have been repatriated," MacNaughton told reporters at the end of a meeting yesterday with negotiators from Ottawa and Queen's Park. "That's all I can say about that."

Mary said...

It is the survival of the rule of law that is at stake here.
As I see it the Americans are having the same problem with the overrunning of their borders.
The natives here ignore the rule of law and are financially rewarded for occupying territory illegally and the same thing is happening south of the border. The laws breakers are being rewarded with amnesty while the ones who apply legally to get into the U.S.A.,
are not.
Here the natives are laughing at all the attempts of the politicians, to hand off the political hot potato to others down the line, while down in the U.S.A., the politicians dither afraid to offend the Mexicans. Meanwhile the border is no longer a border and America in danger of draining away through its porous borders.
The U.S.A. is in immediate danger of losing what has made that country so desirable to migrate to and Canada is not far behind in losing what has made it great.
And it is happening, for when the rule of law goes, there goes the country!

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Oh boy. Red Tory must be biting his tongue off after Mary's comment. ;)

PGP said...

The victim game and the blame game played out at your expense.

Neo Conservative said...

Speaking of the dead... how come there's no closure for the family of Marcel Lemay?


Swift said...

No, not the AK-47, but I was refering to the evidence that was not heard by the inquiry, which is evidence that the inquiry was a whitewash.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

which is evidence that the inquiry was a whitewash.

Aha... Here are the links you're probably referring to.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

This deserves further attention. Lots of editorials pointing out the lack of native culpability in all this, including the Record, which knocked my socks off the morning.

I will likely do a follow-up post on this later. Thanks.

Swift said...

Yes, lot's of information there. There is some on that is organized into topics, so it is easier to find some specific information. A lot less in total, however.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Thanks, Swift.

I'm just ploughing through the Saturday Post right now. Lots of interesting history about native claims.

Anonymous said...

I find it funny that you all label these Native occupatons illegal, when the land was never taken from them by legal means (referrng to Ipperwash, not Caledonia).

People are so quick to refer to the ways in which laws are broken by Native protesters, but are far more hesitant to refer to ways in which their land are appropriated by illegal means. This isn't historical issue, contemporary settlements are destroyed by tourist campowners and hydro development constantly.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

I find it funny that you all label these Native occupatons illegal, when the land was never taken from them by legal means (referrng to Ipperwash, not Caledonia).

I agree with you about Ipperwash.

And therefore I don't think Ipperwash can be used as a model for how to handle Caledonia.