Closing SJAM Parkway, September 30th Orange Shirt Day

An attempt to forever erase the First Nations Peoples of this country was made in Canada’s past by white settler communities and their elected officials. Genocide! It’s such an ugly word! Certainly not one you want connected to the country you love and raise your children in. Who would initiate genocide? Only monsters! The Pope admits to the church’s part in it but others too, stand as equals to the Catholics who felt it was their duty to rid Canada of Indigenous culture and identity. John A. “Kill-the-Indian-in-the-Child” Macdonald was the undisputed leader of the movement to exterminate the First Nations Peoples. No one can sensibly argue otherwise.

I do not believe in the existence of “hell”, the biblical eternal place where hot flames torture sinners for the wrongs they perpetrated while living out their lives on this earth. Indigenous spiritual beliefs that I embrace do not speak of hell, only that no one escapes justice. But if hell does exist, we can be sure that Macdonald is in the hottest part of it. His eternal home is where summer breezes will never again caress his face, nor will he ever again marvel at a sunrise. Flowers and berries, and standing face pointed upwards in a gentle rain, do not exist where he is. The songs of birds and the sight of glittering fish fighting the swift current of a forest brook are things unknown in the land where Macdonald lives forevermore. For Macdonald and men and women like him, the reward of white supremacy, forever theirs.

Macdonald is in a place now where no monument stands in his honour! No parkway is named after him either. But who knows, it could be that the road leading the evil among us to hell might very well be named after J.A. Macdonald (“JAM Highway to Hell”). After all, wasn’t it his laws and policies that cruelly placed many thousands of innocent children in their graves? There have been evil men on this earth since the beginning of time but in my opinion, none match Macdonald in the arena of evil-doing.

I write this as a call to action. We, all of us, must stand together in condemning what Canada’s first prime minister set out to do in the name of Canada and the British Monarchy. If the plan of genocide he proposed against the original inhabitants of this land disturbs you, then I ask that you do something about it. Remember, during the years of the Second World War, a man named Hitler attempted genocide on a segment of Germany’s population. Who would name a parkway after Hitler?

On September 30th we will meet at the War Museum, located at 1 Vimy Place. Please arrive by 8: 30 AM and be prepared to walk on the Parkway for 3 hours. Let’s commit to closing down the SJAM Parkway every September 30th (Orange Shirt Day) until Macdonald’s name is removed from it. A man who promotes the inhumane act of genocide should not have a roadway in the Nation’s Capital named after him. We call on politicians to join us, the clergy, students and teachers, on union members, on the folks at the NCC, on the old and the young, on the rich and the poor to do what’s right. If you despise those who support genocide, whether it occurred today or long in the past, then march with us on September 30th to show your disgust at those who honour Macdonald as some kind of hero.

Keep the circle strong,

South Wind (Albert Dumont)

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One Response to Closing SJAM Parkway, September 30th Orange Shirt Day

  1. Anne Marie Hogue says:

    In the spirit of Truth and Reconciliation, I will walk with you. Symbols are important and I want to parkway to be renamed to reflect the kind of country we need to and want build, one where all are equal. Back in 1763, when the British Crown signed the Royal Proclamation with Indigenous Peoples, the Crown promised to share the land equally. Unfortunately, that promise was not kept. Canada could have been an extraordinary country as Murray Sinclair said some time ago when he addressed High School students at HIllcrest High School. We have work to do to make Canada an extraordinary country. We can start right here with renaming the parkway.

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