The young students of Elgin Park Secondary make a number of salient points in framing the issue of the Wet’suwet’en people and the CGL pipeline in a wider context.
Take, for example, two recent national reports: the Truth and Reconciliation Commission characterized residential schools as cultural genocide, and the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls report named violence as “race-based genocide.”
The Supreme Court of Canada has recognized the history of colonialism and dispossession of Indigenous lands as having translated into myriad Indigenous social problems. In Daniels v. Canada (2016), the court stated, “As the curtain opens wider on the history of Canada’s relationship with Aboriginal peoples, inequities are increasingly revealed and remedies urgently sought.”
I might be pessimistic about reconciliation (perhaps conciliation or rebuild are better terms), but I very much applaud and am grateful to students who learn about and support Indigenous causes.
Bob Burgel, Fisher River Cree Nation