Thanks for sharing your story. What a horrifying experience. Taxi companies need to have sexual assault prevention policies and training so drivers are at least aware that their company is paying attention. The companies should also require drivers on the overnight shifts to have dashboard cameras and account for where they are.
Kanata may well be the name of a suburb in Ottawa but it is also the origin of the name "Canada". It is a Huron-Iroquoian word meaning "village" that Jacques Cartier heard in 1535. He wrote it as "Canada" and applied it to the entire area north of the St. Lawrence. Yes, I do think that responsibility for the grand theft rests with the Europeans and their descendants in this country who continue to benefit from it, myself included.
It makes me sick to read some of these reactions to Bryson Syliboys insightful article. The treatment of Indigenous people by Europeans - from the moment we set foot on this continent to the present - has been filled with arrogance, violence and domination. Europeans took over the entire country, stealing land from the people who lived here, outlawing cultural practices, forcing people onto reserves and into residential schools and converting everyone, on pain of death, to Christianity. John A Macdonald was one of many esteemed leaders who have directed this national grand theft over the last 500 years. I agree with Bryson Syliboy that the 150 year anniversary of confederation is a perfect opportunity for leaders in Kanata to speak the truth about colonialism and what they plan to do about it.
I cancelled my subscription to the Herald when the newsroom staff were forced out on strike. Management is not bargaining in good faith. The union has already agreed to major demands for monetary concessions but the Herald has proposed a slew of non-monetary changes to the Collective Agreement including changes to the union's jurisdiction and scope and job security rights. The Herald also wants the right to retain its replacement workers at the same time as laying off striking employees. Hopefully, the Labour Board will recognize the Herald's strategy as bargaining to bust the union and force the newspaper to make every reasonable effort to finalize and sign a collective agreement.
Water doesnt currently have rights in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, but it could. Ecuador incorporated Rights of Nature in its constitution in 2008. In Blue Futures, Maude Barlow (National Chair of the Council of Canadians) argues that water has rights beyond its usefulness to us like the right not to be polluted. According to Barlow, our planet is running out of clean water; by 2030, our demand for it will outstrip our supply by 40%. So maybe we need to think about water as a public trust that governments guard for the benefit of current and future generations.
How could Premier and Aboriginal Affairs Minister Stephen McNeil task lawyer Alex Cameron, known for his hostile opinions of Mikmaq rights, with presenting a legal brief on his behalf? Why is the Province fighting the SipekniKatik Band in the first place? In all the treaties between the British and the Mikmaq, the British agreed not to disturb or interfere in Aboriginal fishing, hunting and other lawful activities.
Why is Alton Gas looking for approval from the Province when they should be getting it from the SipekniKatik and Millbrook bands? Mikmaq people never surrendered, ceded or sold Aboriginal title to lands and resources which means that they continue to hold Aboriginal title throughout their traditional territory. These rights are reiterated in the Royal Proclamation of 1763 which says that all land is Aboriginal land until it is ceded by treaty.
The SipekniKatik and Millbrook bands are concerned about the effects of salinity levels on the striped bass in the Shubenacadie River. Alton Gas says it will hold brine discharge to 28 parts per thousand but that might be too much for the striped bass eggs and larvae. Given that there is no study to show otherwise, I wonder what the striped bass might have to say about the extra brine. Or the Atlantic salmon, sturgeon, eels, tomcod who also swim in the river.
Do we have the right to change somebody elses environment?
And what about water? Does water have rights? Or the animals that drink from the water?
Everything is a system and were all part of it.
Alton Gas argues that their research shows minimal impacts but whose impacts are they talking about? Who got to be included in the study and who didnt?
According to earlier reports, the data hasnt even been peer reviewed. If what Alton Gas says is true then why dont they let other scientists see the data they collected? In fact, lets all have a look at the research.
Theres something about this project that smells to me. Im glad the SipekniKatik people are protesting its approval. They are doing what theyve done for 10,000 years protecting land, water and other species. Thats the job the Great Spirit gave them and they should be applauded for standing firm in the face of pressure from Alton Gas, the Province, the Town of Stewiacke and the Assembly of NS Chiefs.
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