Keeping it Real…

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VICTORIA: Sir John A Came Down; Why Not the Beacon Hill Totem Too???

August 13th, 2018 · 18 Comments

If reconciliation is to work, it has to be a real TWO-WAY coming-to-grips with history … not just an orgy of hate against the white Europeans who founded this great nation and helped shape Canada into a country now the envy of so many in the world.

In Victoria, egged on by Mayor Lisa Helps (who famously took office in 2014 publicly declaring she would not swear allegiance to Her Majesty the Queen) , the spineless City Council voted to take down a statue of Sir John A Macdonald, arguably the most important founding father of Confederation.

Because a native leader asked them to do so.

This is just the latest in certainly what seems to be a national campaign by First Nations activists, backed by what I see as far left self-hating agitators, to literally TEAR DOWN wherever they can the personages and symbols of Canada’s EUROPEAN (white) past.

Earlier this year, Halifax regional council voted to remove the bronze monument commemorating Lieutenant General Edward Cornwallis, the military officer who founded Halifax in 1749.

“The decision comes after increasing controversy over Cornwallis’s so-called scalping proclamation that offered a cash bounty to anyone who killed a Mi’kmaw person,” reported the CBC.

Terrible .. yes!  By today’s standards. But remember, that was in the 1700s …  when the Mi’kmaw were warring against England …and Halifax.

“A wave of Mi’kmaq attacks began immediately afterwards. At Chignecto Bay, Mi’kmaq fighters attacked two British ships while two others were seized at Canso. At Halifax, Mi’kmaq attacks began on settlers and soldiers outside the fortified township, beginning with the first of several raids on the longhouse lumbering settlement at Dartmouth across the harbour. Five were killed in the initial attack and one escapee came to bring the news to Cornwallis,” explains the account in Wikipedia.

Where does it stop?  Remove …or burn …  the history books that praise the accomplishments of our European explorers, founders, leaders?

If we negate/tear down every accomplishment/symbol of Canadian history because native activists protest, what will be next?  Tearing down plaques/statues/street names our heroes from the First and Second World Wars because they bombed cities with civilians?  Or how they treated our Japanese citizens or turned away Jews fleeing Nazi persecution and death?

History allows us to look back, reflect and see where we could have done better. BUT we should/must not acknowledge ONLY the failings.

Let’s keep it real: it’s true the society and leaders of yesterday fell short by our standards today … not just in how they treated the Indians, but also the Chinese, the Jews, the Japanese, East Indians, Ukrainians, Italians, blacks, women, gays etc.

However, through it all they also accomplished the almost impossible, bringing together and laying the foundation for  a GREAT, DEMOCRATIC country … sea to sea … stretching 5,780 miles wide…or, as they say these days, 9,306 km.

And if our political leaders today are going to try to eradicate the symbols of  those accomplishments by Canada’s historical figures because of societal blemishes of their times … they should start looking at the TRUTH of native societies back through history as well.

Starting with the Totem Pole in Victoria’s Beacon Hill park.

“The park is notable for a few human-made features, as well. Most prominent is the world’s fourth-tallest totem pole, a 38.8-metre (127 ft) work carved by Kwakwaka’wakw craftsman Mungo Martin, and erected in 1956 and was when built, the world’s tallest,”  it says in Wikipedia.

The Kwakwaka’wakw!!!

Back in THEIR history, the encyclopedia says,  were indeed SLAVE holders  … a terrible thing to do by our standards TODAY … and remember, that’s the standard we are supposedly now applying to judge symbols relating to the past.

Is it really proper to keep a totem in any way honouring the Kwakwaka’wakw … a tribe with a history of Slavery???

If Sir John A came down …  shouldn’t also the Beacon Hill totem … following the logic of the modern day Indian activists, their far-left radical allies and our spineless politicians?

What we have now is a one-sided reconciliation farce: natives demand and left-wing politicians, who are afraid to stand up for TRUTH … bad and good …   instead give in and ERADICATE symbols of  our European-based history? But we say/do nothing to condemn/reject and dishonour the historic failings of  warring, murderous, slave-keeping native tribes/leaders or any other groups/societies with sordid records in their past, but who now proudly help make up Canada.

And it’s too bad we lack experienced or impertinent media reporters or their assignment editors informed or brave enough to ask politically incorrect … but worthy questions challenging the one-sidedness of “reconciliation” or the repudiation of only ONE side of our history.

The real solution should be to educate: leave the statues … but have signs beside each explaining the truth about the individual, contributions AND flaws, and the historical context of the times.

But if not … then our politicians must take a look as well at our natives’ historical record, in terms of cruelty and brutality … one band to another, one settlement to another, one people to another before honouring THEIR history/chiefs.

And what better place to start than the history of the peoples HONOURED by that totem in Victoria’s Beacon Hill park … and then, maybe even the “human rights” record of those tribes/bands whose totems are CELEBRATED in Stanley Park as well.

Harv Oberfeld

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It’s About Time We Denounce Saudi Barbarity!

August 8th, 2018 · 16 Comments

Well, there goes my vacation: but the current flailing about and frothing at the mouth by Saudi Arabia because Canada DARED to call it out for its latest disgraceful human rights violations are well deserving of comment.

Saudi Arabia is a barbaric medieval society where arrests, imprisonment, torture, executions are still commonplace … not just for major crimes … but for the tiniest amount of dissent, protest or even for women, minorities, gays, bloggers, intellectuals … anyone just trying to express ideas and beliefs critical of the ruling dictatorial regime or the Wahabi religious extremists who terrorize the kingdom.

Kudos to Canada for speaking up … and taking a stand!

For far too long, too many countries have sacrificed their values and moral standards for economic trade and political alliances … and remained silent or averted their eyes and ears as human rights are trampled in far too many nations around the world.

And Saudi Arabia has been among the worst!

Hard for Canadians … and anyone living in other civilized countries …   to imagine a society where public beheadings and public lashings are still carried out today at all.  And not just for murder, but almost incredibly, in Saudi Arabia,  for a whole list of other “capital” crimes including: burglary; adultery; blasphemy; and … how’s this … atheism.

Animals!

Of course, most world governments … hungry for Saudi oil …  seldom point out the abysmal Saudi record and practices … preferring to heap praises on the new Saudi Crown prince for “progress” … like permitting women to drive and allowing the opening of movie theaters.

Really?

Those are causes for celebration in 2018?  When protestors/dissenters are still rounded up, beaten and tortured …sometimes to death?

In fact, the number of executions in Saudi Arabia have actually been on the RISE for several years: 79 (2013); 90 (2014); 158 (2015); 154 (2016); and 146 (2017).

In the latest cases, which finally drew condemnation from the Canadian government, the Saudis have jailed two women’s rights activists, Samar Badawi and Nassim al-Sadah.  For daring to suggest women deserve equal rights!  Despicable!!

But there’s more. Clearly the Saudi government/establishment is trying to send a wider harsher message

As CBC has reported: “Badawi is the sister of Raif Badawi, a Saudi dissident blogger who has been imprisoned by the Saudi government since 2012 on charges of apostasy and “insulting Islam through electronic channels.”

Think about that.   Raif has been imprisoned in a Saudi prison for SIX YEARS for blogging his ideas!  And he has also been sentenced to 1,000 LASHES … still to be carried out.

Incredible.

The Saudis DESERVE to be called out on their barbarity … and in this case, Canada had a special role to play, because Raif Badawi’s wife, Ensaf Haidar, and their three children live in Quebec,  after fleeing the kingdom in 2015.

If I have any disappointment at all, it’s that MORE countries have not spoken out in support of Canada in exposing Saudi’s inhumanity and demanding the country join the civilized world if it wants respect.

Instead, the Saudi’s are throwing a tantrum, trying to bully Canada into apologizing.

Nuts, I say!

Harv Oberfeld

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