Saturday, January 26, 2013

Why Idle No More Matters

From Evernote:

Why Idle No More Matters

Aboriginals have no claim to sovereignty
From the Vancouver Sun article: "European and Indian civilizations were not equal. That is why Europeans came to the New World, not the other way around."

Part of my job, not just the teacher thing but that whole being a Native role model thing because I'm a grown up, is to teach our children, all children, that First Nations people, that our children, have value in this world and deserve to have the dignity of being respected without having to give up a part of who they are.  I guess I should say thank you Vancouver Sun, and the rest of Canada it feels like some days, for continuing to ensure that it isn't an easy job, what with everyone always telling them that they aren't, in fact, of any value.  Pseudo-intellectual ramblings like this follows the same line of reasoning that, last year, gave a non-Native student permission to call me an "uncivilized spear-chucker, living out in the woods" if not for Europeans saving us.

It is tripe, I'm sorry, and serves no purpose other than to divide, to put people in their place.

Idle No More matters to me, not because of the demonstrations against the erosion of Indigenous rights contained in Bill C45 (though those are incredibly important), but because, for the first time in a long time, I see hope in my students of Aboriginal ancestry.  I see engagement in the world around them.  I see pride in who they are.  I see them asking me questions about what is wrong in Canadian society that allows social injustice to exist in this "civilized" country.  I see them not wanting to be invisible or silenced.  I see them wondering why.  

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