November 19th, 2018

Land claims letter lacking in fact


By Letter to the Editor on July 12, 2018.

Dale Brooks’ letter to the editor about Blood Tribe land claims is not only dismissive, but also lacking in fact. The treaty the Blood Tribe made with Canada was filled with problems from the start. Government translators incorrectly told the provisions of the treaty, and the first land survey done in 1882 was mysteriously shrunk a year later.

Mr. Brooks fails to mention that the Indian Claims Commission did find that the Government of Canada did not follow the Indian Act regarding its obligations. He also fails to mention how much work the Blood Tribe is doing to combat drugs on the reserve, and that reserves are sovereign lands with their own tax codes. It is like complaining that people in the U.S. don’t pay GST and Canadian taxes.

I am not Canadian, but it wasn’t difficult for me to pick up some books and read about the local history when I moved here. I lived in Lethbridge for six months and was appalled at the racism I witnessed all the time – people assuming because I am white that I shared their anti-First Nations sentiments. Coming from the United States, that was very shocking for me to realize. I sense most of that racism is based in ignorance and apathy of historical fact, which is fairly easy to see when so few Canadians seem to understand how First Nations federal funding, sovereignty and rights work.

These aren’t some foreign people on your land you’re talking about. You’re the foreign people on their land. You might try getting to know them and building community with them.

Michael Brinkman

Airdrie

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3 Responses to “Land claims letter lacking in fact”

  1. IMO says:

    Indeed, Michael Brinkman!

  2. chinook says:

    Society is a 2 way street. While indigenous people have a right to land claims; we have a right to an orderly society. Too many migrate to our cities with no clue how to conduct themselves or contribute in a meaningful way. Have you not noticed all the lost souls fueled on drugs and alcohol?

  3. Dennis Bremner says:

    Quote- I lived in Lethbridge for six months and was appalled at the racism I witnessed all the time – people assuming because I am white that I shared their anti-First Nations sentiments. ………………..He also fails to mention how much work the Blood Tribe is doing to combat drugs on the reserve, and that reserves are sovereign lands with their own tax codes. Enquote

    What the blood tribe seems to be successful at is removing people from the reserve if they are hardened drug and alcohol people. Now, I am not suggesting 100% of the approximately 500 drug addicts in Lethbridge are indigenous but using 98% would likely not be a distortion.
    So, Lethbridges exposure in real terms to indigenous people tend to be the ones that the Blood Tribe or perhaps other tribes want OFF their reserve.
    Racism- I have news for you, if the person puking on a storefront after drinking mouthwash all day was white, I would be equally disgusted as I am at the native who is doing it. So,if you define that as a racist because that’s all we tend too see day in and out, I guess the planet must be racists because I know of no one who cherishes an individual or group of individuals who conduct themselves as these individuals do.
    If your exposure to “Canadians were all bandito motorcycle gang members” your impression of Canada would be totally different. So your minute exposure to Canada and its issues, are just that, minute.


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