In the Network: Media Co-op Dominion   Locals: HalifaxMontrealTorontoVancouver

Support the VMC, donate today!

Advertisement
This post has not been reviewed by the Vancouver Media Co-op editorial committee.

A Stain on the Flag of Canada: Spooky christmas greetings from the Yukon

Blog posts are the work of individual contributors, reflecting their thoughts, opinions and research.
A Stain on the Flag of Canada: Spooky christmas greetings from the Yukon

This message was written by Yukon first nations activist/worrier Linda Bonnefoy. Linda investigated and documented the deaths of leading activists including Raymond Silverfox and Elijah Smith. Believing that evidence would be investigated, Linda brought her findings to the RCMP. To the contrary, the police officers refused on multiply occasions to even accept her evidence, suggesting that she would not want to have this case investigated. There was no sign that the alleged assassins were ever questioned or investigated by the RCMP however, Linda was since multiple times arrested under bogus charges and brutally beaten, and Police and Judges continuously ignore not just missing evidence to convict her but even obvious proof from the police evidence that the police was plainly lying. 
Linda is by banned for more than 10 years from her community and despite government officials being very open and thorough about ruining her life, Linda stays a shining example of an freedom fighter.

 

A Stain on the Flag of Canada

As we prepare for the Christmas season and usher in a new year, I am concerned that
the effects of colonialism have, with the exception of a privileged few, not changed for
Yukon First Nations citizens in our territory since 1898. Three unsettled disputes of
justice have held local and national news frontlines in 2012: the Peel Watershed , the
Kaska sovereignty and the outcome of the Raymond Silverfox coroner report which, in
itself, stands alone as another parody of Yukon judiciary process—the infamous inquiry
into RCMP lack of duty of care resulting in death.
Of the latter, I have awaited further charges of accountability for the death of a well
loved man and valued citizen in our Territory. Raymond Silverfox would not have died
if he had been provided with appropriate medical care by the RCMP who mocked and
ridiculed him as a drunken Indian and permitted him to die humiliated and defenseless.
Why have charges not been laid, against the public authorities responsible for this man’s
neglect resulting in death?

I can recall a letter to the Editor when his family was calling for accountability through the local media and a racist cold hearted letter emerged from
a woman requesting that the family, “get over it”. I, as a member of the body politic,
in support of the Silverfox public interest’s response to those involved in the collusion
of facts and ultimate destruction of evidence and life want to see retribution for crimes
against humanity. I am enraged that police incarceration and customary beatings and
torture, which at times end in death, are whitewashed as accidental. There appears to be
a grave absence of responsibility required of those men & women in uniform who have
been to date called for with no consequence. No jail sentences have been meted out to the
RCMP for hostage taking, torture or death of citizens who lose their basic human rights
when put into jail.

Bill C38 and Bill C10 were announced this year by Mr. Harper’s conservative
government despite overwhelming protests of Canadian citizens throughout our nation.
I have sat and watched Ms.Hansen Leader of the NDP challenge the Yukon party
for transparency and accountability in the proposed developments of the Peel Plan.
Where are the rights of Yukon First Nations people to protect the land, water and their
grandchildren for 7 generations? The Yukon First Nations people are the kindest, most
hospitable and generous people I have met in my life. Complimenting this altruism is
a keen perception of environmental and societal damages that the development of the
Peel Watershed will produce. A mere century ago immigrants established control of the
populated territory through Canadian Indian Policy and its forced assimilation of Yukon
First Nations by stealing their children and corralling them into residential schools. I have
heard hundreds of horror stories graphically detailing the paternalistic child molesting,
the beatings and the deaths that resulted from the mass incarceration of Yukon First
Nations children. Most recent immigrants perhaps do not understand that Yukon First
Nations, for the most part, did not celebrate in the handing over of their children to the
mission schools but rather, were coerced through threats of incarceration by the Indian
agents and the RCMP if they did not comply.

At this seasonal junction, nearing year’s end, as Yukon citizens gather to share their
Christmas meal and to give thanks for their families and their health, I sincerely entreat
them to remember many less fortunate and aggrieved, like the Silverfox family who’s
loved one is no longer with them. Meanwhile, the RCMP will warm their guilty hands by
a decorated hearth, clicking their glass over holiday good cheer, secure in never having
been docked a days pay for the tragedy that they were responsible for.
As we sing peace on earth and goodwill to all men I question the heartfelt conviction
of the lyrics that bespeak Christmas sentiments to all. What will 2013 herald, I wonder,
remembering also, Quebec student demonstrators who were imprisoned for standing
united, claiming their protection under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Mr. Harper’s
Bill C38 and Bill C10 may be used to arrest First Nations leaders and environmental
activists in their appeal for protection of the Peel Watershed and Kaska Tribal Lands.
How is it possible that over one hundred years later with Land Claims signed that the
First Nations, who are Gods chosen people to protect this land for future generations,
face such discrimination and racism perpetuated by prevailing colonial ignorance. It is
a stain on the Flag of Canada. It is shameful, it is unconstitutional and it is arrogantly
shortsighted racist propaganda that the Yukon Party and Ryan Leaf continue to impart;
refusing to honor the rights of those who stand united with Yukon First Nations claims
for the protection of the land and its people. And this is not only a priority, but it is a
sacred duty to the Creator above.

Linda Bonnefoy Chair/Yukon Civil Liberties
 

Catch the news as it breaks: follow the VMC on Twitter.
Join the Vancouver Media Co-op today. Click here to learn about the benefits of membership.

Creative Commons license icon Creative Commons license icon

User login

Advertisement