An all-to-familiar juxtaposition has arisen with the recent arrests of Indigenous land defenders and journalists by the RCMP. On the one hand, we have politicians like Justin Trudeau and John Horgan insisting on the importance of climate change and that we must act now. On the other, these same politicians buy or approve new pipelines, grant fossil fuel subsidies, and arrest protestors.
Our political leaders have a deficient understanding of reconciliation. What they want to reconcile are the contradictory interests between Capital and Indigenous self-determination. Ultimately, our political leaders, embodied by the Canadian state, side with Capital. There is a much more radical, transformative understanding of reconciliation available.
The Liberal Party is out of touch with the needs of working-class and Indigenous people. More and more people are realizing this as time goes on. This is not new, either. Given the recent comments of former Prime Minister and minister the (previously named) Indian Affairs, Jean Chrétien, this out-of-touchness seems to be Liberal Party standard operating procedure.
While confederate statues get bashed down in the south, Canada's own architects of genocide and apartheid have also come to a crumbling demise. Statues of John A MacDonald and Egerton Ryerson have been defaced and torn down across Canada. My opinion on this is very clear: this is a good thing.
Reconciliation with First Nations has been described as many things: complex, difficult, and multifaceted. I've even seen it described as a "shitshow." But is this really the case?