The country is made up of a diverse and vast geographic regions. From the arctic, the Atlantic to Pacific ocean – one would agree there is magnificent beauty in every part of Turtle Island. That beauty only goes so far to those whose lives are marked by violence. They may see this landscape differently. But regardless of […]
Rubber toy ducks with headdresses, ‘Drink like an Indian’ holiday poster, Sassy Squaw costumes, Dirty Drunken Half-Breed burgers, Matt Laur’s ‘Indian Giver’ comment to the much appropriated Navajo culture and design. The year? 2012. It becomes apparent that mainstream media -and mainstream society – has a problem representing ‘Indians’. Hardly news for those of us […]
Doing the math on the cost of education on reserves
Today marks the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. First designated by the UN over a decade ago, it’s meant to address what many consider an epidemic. But violence against Indigenous women and girls remains an active concern for many. Nowhere is that violence more visible than in the news media. Using […]
Quakes and pipelines and risks and rhetoric.
It’s that time of year again, the time when the leaves begin to fall and we reluctantly bring out our boots and heavy coats. But fall also happens to be my favourite time of year because that means the annual imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival is just around the corner. I like to think […]
For years, First Nations families, organizations and leaders have called on the federal government to hold a national inquiry into missing and murdered First Nations women and girls in Canada. Since the 1960s, over 700 First Nations women and girls have gone missing or died of violence. Bridget Tolley believes the number of cases is […]
It’s a colourless, odourless and tasteless gas that can be deadly. Now imagine your children playing in it, or community Elders sitting and visiting in it. That gas is radon, and, unbeknownst to the residents of the Tobique First Nation, a Maliseet community located in northwestern New Brunswick, some of them had been exposed to […]
As kids prepare to head back to school this week, I’m gathering up my PDFs and stocking up on coffee as I enter into the final year of my PhD. And yet, firmly entrenched as I am within academia, I still find myself asking just what the heck it is I’m doing here. As it […]
The recent debate about the Nepean Redskins is getting tired. Frankly, it’s a debate we’ve had over and over again, both in the U.S. and in Canada. Despite the very real fact that the term Redskin is nearly universally understood as offensive, White sports fans loyal to their high school, college or professional sports mascots […]
Chase King says the principle that guides him is simple. “Pretty much all Anishinaabeg people are tough and have a warrior spirit within,” he says from his home in Barrie, Ontario. “This spirit helps me to focus on my training and fight with intelligence, but most of all, with respect.” Originally from the community of […]
POLL: How should a BC Legion atone for publishing a joke about ‘beer-baiting’ and hunting Indigenous people to their death?
A Legion based out of Cranbrook BC is at the center of a storm over a racist joke printed in its August 2012 newsletter. The joke’s premise features non-native hunters from two different Prairie provinces discussing whether it’s okay to pick off Indians with a rifle. After the one shows the other how it’s done […]
The problem with funny.
Yesterday marked the United Nations’ International Day of Indigenous Peoples. This year’s theme for the Day: “Empowering Indigenous Voices.” As the UN noted, the aim was “to highlight the importance of challenging stereotypes, forging Indigenous peoples’ identities, communicating with the outside world, and influencing the social and political agenda.” And while we should take this […]
Last month’s election for the Assembly of First Nations’ National Chief has once again stirred calls for change. On election eve, for example, fellow MEDIA INDIGENA contributor Waubgeshig Rice published an op-ed on CBC.ca entitled, “How to make the AFN more relevant.” Then, in the midst of the election, author Richard Wagamese wrote an opinion […]
Victoria, the capital city of British Columbia, is celebrating its 150th anniversary today. In the lead-up to this occasion, local organizations, artists and businesses have partnered with the City to create a whirlwind of events, promotional material and educational swag to draw people out to its August 2, 2012 celebrations. Looking over the City’s website, […]
An Aboriginal boxer competing on behalf of Australia who also maintains clear allegiances to his people has gotten into some hot water for his visible display of the latter at the summer Olympic Games in London this week. In what is perhaps an ironically telling comment on the state of that country’s effort at Settler/Aboriginal […]
Yesterday, as I watched the decisive re-election of Shawn Atleo as the National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, my thoughts couldn’t help but turn to the perennial question hanging over the AFN: as an organization funded so heavily from the coffers of the Canadian government, just how independent a voice is it, anyway? […]
It’s an auspicious week for the Assembly of First Nations. The AFN’s Annual General Assembly will either re-elect Shawn Atleo as National Chief or select one of seven challengers to lead the organization through the next three years. Today’s vote is the culmination of a relatively short and mostly unexciting campaign, yet it is one […]
Summertime and the livin’ is powwow, gathering, or festival. It’s over-priced Indian tacos, bison burgers, moose stew and corn soup. It’s the endless drone of boring chatter and lousy jokes by an MC, stalls of snake oil salesmen hawking surefire cures for diabetes and arthritis, and traditional dancers wearing outfits with faux beadwork made of […]