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Sunday, December 5, 2010

My commitment to learn more about the Caledonia crisis

At the Hanukkah party for Blazing Car Fur, I had the privilege of meeting a few members of CANACE (Canadian Advocates for Charter Equality). These people are representatives of the citizens of Caledonia who endured an extremely difficult time during the crisis there.

I had to confess to them that I know very little about what happened during those events. My general understanding was that it was a land claims dispute between local natives and the non-native population that erupted into violence.

From what I know of their history in Canada, I tend to be a little forgiving of First Nations civil disobedience, since, as a people, they have endured generations of injustice and abuse. But speaking to intelligent, articulate advocates like Gary McHale made me realize that despite the truth of those sentiments, it was glib to apply them to innocent citizens of Caledonia whose rights were being egregiously violated, and who faced discrimination in the face of injustice by a government and police who chose to appease violent aggressors.

I made a commitment to McHale, who has become famous as the man arrested, in Canada, for the crime of waving a Canadian flag, to learn more. McHale is an inventive and passionate defender of the rights of all Canadians, regardless of race, to be able to enjoy the rights afforded by our Charter of Rights and Freedoms. That seems like a reasonable position to me.

He contends what amounts to gross neglect of duty by the Ontario Provincial Police during the crisis and if that was the case, then it is in the public interest to investigate this and ensure it never happens again.

The crisis has regained a lot of public attention because of Christie Blatchford's recent book, Helpless, Caledonia's nightmare of fear and anarchy and how the law failed all of us and the efforts of the radical left to silence her.

This is something that we all need to learn more about.

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