Happiness – who in their right mind does not want it? Chief Theresa Spence certainly does. She is willing to absorb a lot of pain and misery, to the point of placing her life at risk so prolonged happiness could be known, not only for her own community, but also for all the Indigenous Peoples in Canada. If you desire proof of Chief Spence’s commitment to our happiness, check out the teepee on Victoria Island. She is making her stand against tyranny in it, growing weaker with each passing hour. Her body is slowly deteriorating because this brave chief has been refusing solid food for more than three weeks now.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if our wish to one another (politicians included) at this time of the year was to “Have an Honourable New Year”? I will not be making promises or resolving to do things better on New Year’s Day. When someone asks me in 2013, “Do you want your potatoes fried, mashed, or baked?” my answer will be “fried, of course!” When it comes to potatoes I’m weak. But potatoes are only potatoes and if I consume a bit more French Fries than is physically good for me, so what? I will not be infringing on another person’s human rights by doing so. Fried potatoes are fried potatoes, human rights are human rights and basic human rights are a birthright of all human beings, wherever they are found on this planet. I may be weak in the area of fried potatoes but I am now and forever will be strong in the defence of human rights of human beings (politicians included) wherever violations of their rights are occurring.
Courage – it is one of our seven grandfather teachings. Do we need to be courageous to fight for the human rights of others when we see abuse and neglect of a human being taking place? No, of course not. It is natural for a human being to fight against human rights violations and unnatural, dumb, cowardly and against God, not to. Ask Chief Theresa Spence if it was courage which pushed her to make a stand. As an Anishinabe Kwe, courage is a trait Kichi Manido (God) instilled in her before she even left her mother’s womb. The fact is, the Harper government pushed her over the line. She has had enough of seeing her community in their resource-rich ancestral lands living in dire straits and is doing what she feels she has to do to put a stop to it. Her protest is an honourable one. It is a peaceful one and it is a noble one.
Let us all vow to be honourable in 2013. We all should at least make an effort to do so (politicians included).