What happened in the last month can only be described as revolution. I am inspired and humbled by the strength and courage of the First Nations young people I see stepping up and taking on the role of leaders of today. This is an important time when we step forward and take responsibility of the situation that is before us. Our Nations and communities are sick and they need the gifts that WE have inside of us to get better. Our hopefulness, our resilience and our commitment to one another. There are some important pieces of info we must all have before moving forward.
- BILL C-45 is an example of another piece of omnibus legislation that removes environmental laws leaving our waters at risk and negatively affects legislation that infringes upon treaty rights (especially prior consultation which is required before changes are made)
- Chief Theresa Spence is in Day 15 of her hunger strike and needs as many prayers as we possibly can send. People can only last apporx 1 month without food so she is at the halfway point. While others are eating their Xmas dinners, she is fasting until she can meet with Stephen Harper. Also, lets send a letter/email/phone call to the Prime Minister at the info below
Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A2
- Rallies, Round Dances, blockades & more! Have you seen what we are capable of when we work together? Videos and messages from across the world are encouraging us as Aboriginal people, and indeed encouraging all Canadians to stand with us. What is so unique about this, is this movement is led by us, the young people!
- No response from our Prime Minister Stephen Harper – his silence on the issue is downright offensive. In recent weeks his only public comments have come from him being saddened by the NHL Lockout and tweeting about Bacon. Disgusting. Insensitive. especially considering the fact that there is a high profile First Nations Chief on his door step (Victoria Island) on day 15 of her Hunger strike. Her mission – a meeting with him.
They thought we weren’t paying attention. They thought we were sleeping. But as you have seen we are not asleep. We are beginning to realize that if we speak with one voice we can have our concerns raised. As a result of this realization of responsibility, we have seen a massive organization, world-wide of young people organizing events in support of Indigenous people in Canada. David Suzuki, Amnesty International and communities across the world have sent their support for Idle No More. And we, the people, have responded.
We Need To Prepare Ourselves & Get Educated!
Although this has been amazing, I warn you all we cannot let the momentum fall now. We cannot allow ourselves to rely on the happy glow of what we have accomplished, we must hunker down, put all of our gifts on the table and work cooperatively with one another to keep this issue on the national attention beyond the Christmas season. We need to organize teaching opportunities or learning opportunities where we ass young people can have an opportunity to learn about how these policies work, why many people are so upset and what you can do to get involved.
Next Step: BRING IT
My final message is to you, the young Indigenous leaders in Canada; we gotta bring it. We must bring on our creativity and our energies to this struggle. I don’t know (yet) when the next national event is going to be, but I am in conversation on a consistent basis with other organizers from across Canada to discuss what the next coordinated steps of this movement will be. I would like to say EKOSI to all of you reading this who have participated in raising awareness or attending an event. I thank you, and I challenge you to help us keep up the pressure, write the media, write Stephen Harper, write the queen and tell your friends! We can do this!! I have been so inspired by the work that has been done so far and am pumped to see what we can accomplish next. I am only one person, and only have one perspective but I am giving what I can to this movement and encourage you to do the same. Also, I am happy to hear from others who have ideas or comments they would like to share AYO has set up a special email account for this purpose, shoot us an email if you got an idea.
And before we go, I want you to take a moment to listen to this song by an artist we all should know. Leonard Sumner, Lorenzo, who sang this song at the Winnipeg event on December 21st…brought tears to my eyes and hope to my heart. I hope each of you have a chance to find your gift and share it with this movement of love very soon.
Respect, Love & Courage