North Dakota Fascism – A Wake-Up Call?

Bleakness abounds. Politicians with considerable power turn away. Mammon rules with asymptotically growing crudity, cruelty and excess, even without Trump in “power.” No big surprise that American “democracy” is a crock if one’s eyes are truly open to HRC’s portrayal by Wikileaks. We have learned nothing from the fascism of the past and, ironically, we minions who have benefitted from neocolonial atrocities committed upon others around the globe for over a century will, in turn, be ground under.

So wrong on so many levels.

And, President-Elect Trump, the idea of Greatness in the old-fashioned, Roman sense of economic growth and world dominance, is meaningless. In a finite biosphere, growth, as we have known it, is unsustainable. Get over it.

It is time for a Damascene Conversion.

True greatness Continue reading “North Dakota Fascism – A Wake-Up Call?”

Advertisement

An Opportunity For Old Canucks To Learn From New Canadians

A Quaker friend of mine from Saskatchewan recently sent me an article posted on Sikh24 dot com  – a fascinating and sensitively written article in solidarity with Idle No More. The Sikhs are prominent members of our local community. The writer(s) outline what their people have gone through in suffering the negative effects of colonialism and explain how they can relate to what our First nations have suffered. I learned a lot by reading this description of some of the non-violent acts of heroism performed by past leaders of their community. While the article expresses solidarity with our First Nations, it shows a special understanding of the especially tragic situation here in Canada:

Yes, one hundred and seventy years ago the British annexed Panjab and ended Khalsa Raj. But the British did not exile us from our own villages and towns. The British did not take our land and build new cities. The British did not migrate to Panjab and force us to live on inadequate reserves.
The article mentions heroic acts by historic Sikh leaders in defending the rights of non-Sikhs in India. Two of those leaders are Gurus Nanak and Tegh Bahadur.
Guru Nanak Sahib:
We need to demonstrate our commitment to the revolutionary message of Guru Nanak Sahib, that every human being contains equally an aspect of the divine and that we are all truly worthy of having our basic human needs and rights protected and defended.
Guru Tekh Bahadur Sahib gave his life in the year 1675 to oppose the forced conversion of Hindus.
The fact that recent “settlers” in Canada can relate so sensitively, and bring a fresh perspective, to the plight of our long-abused native peoples is a very encouraging sign.
We can learn much from them.

Idle No More = Hope Some More

I have been ignorant of so much about our native peoples for so long – like my whole life, for example. The author Wade Davis years ago made me appreciate the value of seeing Mother Earth from a worldwide indigenous perspective which recognizes the oneness of every single thing on this Planet, a point made superbly by Winona LaDuke in this wonderful talk.

The recent Idle No More movement highlights for me these points:

1. We continue to colonize our native peoples through, among other things, ruining their unceded lands and waters by making them hostile, barren and toxic via the unbridled extraction of minerals, oil and trees.

2. Our First Nations are experiencing huge rates of disease due to these activities. The pollution is also affecting us, though less obviously. Ninety-nine per cent of scientists and a large, growing number of lay people realize that continued economic growth that depends on pollution is unsustainable.

3. Many of us “white folk” are coming to realize that multinational corporations, many with foreign profit centres like Brazil, China and Holland, with absolutely no connection to the land, are being given the right to exploit it. While First Nations are the canary in the coal mine, we all are being quickly colonized, and, ultimately, impoverished and poisoned by the world economic system.

4. The Movement is a valuable, attention-grabbing focal point whose many contentious, non-unanimous issues, some of which are highlighted in Michael Enright’s CBC Sunday Edition interview with Cindy Blackstock, can be unified, I believe, by the unanimous chant that “Enough Is Enough.”

I see this phenomenon as a reason to hope again. For a glass-half-empty person, that is some accomplishment.