Open letter to the privileged Andrew Scheer
Mr Scheer, you said, I guess without much thought, that the Indigenous people have the “privilege” of living in this country called Canada (a St. Lawrence Iroquoian name for village). Mr Scheer, what have you ever done for them? I suggest that you go to your priest and ask for forgiveness, for you have sinned. You have children; have you given a thought to them, their tomorrow (in our oncoming conflicts around climate change), and other complexities ahead? Or do you not think about such luxuries as breathing clean air, as long as money keeps coming in?
I have heard many times from many a privileged person, “if you don’t like it here, you can go back where you came from”. Strangely, I have never heard it from an Indigenous person. As a matter of fact, when I spoke with an Indigenous elder at Lac La Vie (Algonquin territory), he said to me “Welcome to my country”!
That was in 1981, a time of my own conflicts in Art – when I felt the wrath of the political “pyramidal structure of power” with its political appointments of vassals, lackeys, capos, all the old colonialist attitudes. That was my time to realize the “if you don’t like it ...” and I took my Art abroad to USA, Japan, Europe, etc. in understanding the meaning of democracy as freedom of choice, not the feudalistic exercise of power then in force.
So, Mr Scheer, think about your children, Indigenous children, and the children of the whole world. If you do not see it yet, you do not belong where you are “privileged” to be! That’s the privilege granted you by the “privileged Indigenous”. Maybe this is the time for you to depart from politics -- before you can cause serious harm!