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      Mother of All Struggles - Lee Maracle

      (July 2, 1950 - November 11, 2021)
      Sto:lo Author, Poet, Instructor [University of Toronto - INS] and Traditional Teacher First Nations House

      Your previous governments secured this country by hook and by crook. These “newfound” lands cost Indigenous people their lives. Headhunting and epidemics were the forces most commonly used. Now by policing that is so chronic and relentless it feels like a solid wall of semi-military occupation: Canada controls us instead of protecting us. Not a single Canadian has ever asked us how this happened without our consent. Couple this with the majority population’s accepted belief that this is all good and proper, and you have summed up Canadian colonial strategy.

      We cannot say no to the development and rape of the land and our persons. We have been infantilized and animalized and finally objectified and commodified. Canadians are horrified at some of the answers to their questions: “No,” they blurt out, and then they gasp. That is just annoying. Sometimes they say, “I don’t understand.” “Actually,” I answer, “you do. This is English, this is your language.” They admit that they do understand, but they are shocked. It is the shock of the innocent.

      Exerpt from My Conversations With Canadians(1997) From Conversation 1: Meeting the Public

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