Saturday, December 22, 2012

Some said the Mayans predicated that the end of the world would happen on the 21st of December, 2012.  Others said not so much.  More like a new beginning.  As the first prediction didn’t happen, I’ll go with the latter group. I think there will be new beginnings and a most important one will be the rise of women in leadership roles around the world.  And I predict that these women risings will not just occur in our established male dominated hierarchies but in grass roots movements like IDLE NO MORE.

 Of course there will be a lot of push back from the firmly established government structures, both provincially and federal.  Their spin doctors on all levels study psychology and anti-public participation methods and know how to cut people’s movements into shreds.  They have begun work early on IDLE NO MORE and they   use vehicles that people generally trust, like CBC TV.

I don’t have TV but I do watch CBC “The National” on the Internet.  And I often listen to CBC radio in the mornings because I like the program “The Current “with Anna Maria Tremonti.  And a funny thing happened with the reporting on CBC, an inconsistency between Anna Maria Tremonti’s radio interviews with one of the four women who started the IDLE NO MORE (Dec 19,) movement, and CBC’s TV reporting the following night.

On radio, Sylvia McAdam from Saskatoon told Tremonti that she and three other women stared the group because when they understood what was in Harper’s Omnibus Bill C-45 they were alarmed and very angry at Harper’s government.  McAdam was also personally angry at Grand Chief Atleo.  She stated that Chief Atleo, who had been aware of the dangers for First Nations people, contained in the bill, had not bothered to alert First Nations communities and make sure they understood what was at stake.

Sylvia McAdam was particularly upset by the removal of the protections for Canada’s water that had been contained in the Navigation Act.  The protections of most of Canadian waters have now been removed by the Omnibus Bill which had included protection for fish bearing waters as well as watersheds.  McAdam wanted to ask Chief Atleo why he had not explained to the people  what was actually in the Omnibus Bill, that if the First Nations people had understood what was in the bill from the beginning they might have had time to stop it.  And then she asked the more troubling question…why hadn’t the Canadian public in general been alarmed enough by the Omnibus Bill to do something, anything?

Why, indeed.  Good question, Sylvia McAdam.  Perhaps it was because our chiefs, like your Chief Atleo, are so dazzled by the political structures they have become part of that they are paralyzed and incapable of any real action that might save Canada from political and environmental degradation. Elizabeth May is the only political leader who has been trying her darndest  to alert Canadians to what this Omnibus Bill actually means, that it means total permission for resource pirates, both foreign and domestic, to leap on board for the plundering of  Canada. And Canadians?  From the line of an old country song…”They can drink muddy water and sleep in a hollow log.”

 Stephen Harper is spinning IDLE NO MORE as simply another unreasonable gripe from First Nations about treaties and is nothing new.  And CBC TV is helping to spin this message.  The following evening after Sylvia McAdam spoke on the radio; there were marches and spontaneous gatherings around Ottawa and Toronto. The peculiar thing was that the only people I saw actually interviewed by CBC TV were men, even though women had started the whole thing and there was only a brief mention that Chief Spence from Attawapiskat has been on a hunger strike in front of Parliament Hill for some time. No mention at all of the Omnibus Bill in the reporting.    Only that the IDLE NO MORE commotion was about, and by, First Nations and totally concerned with their treaty rights.  The meaning the rest of us are to take away?

The message Harper is giving out and the CBC TV faithfully reports is:  “Don’t worry, you real Canadians, this is only an aboriginal issue and nothing for you to worry about.  Go back to sleep.”
Let’s not fall for it.  That Omnibus Bill was and is, extremely dangerous and unprecedented.  The bill is worthy only of a man who is shrewd enough and cruel enough to impoverish most who live in Canada by divesting us of our natural resources.  It will take a movement like IDLE NO MORE to jar this man loose from his death grip on Canada.  Let’s stay focused.  IDLE NO MORE is about Canada’s land, water, and resources; it’s about life, it’s about all of us.


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