To the editor:
I am responding to the letter from Paul Morgan ‘Hate me or not, this is my opinion’ in the Capital News (Friday, March 10).
Firstly, I do not hate you. In fact, I defend your right to express your opinion. I am not surprised by your opinion. I am sure that there are many people who would agree with you. I also know that there are folks (Europeans) who disagree.
What I find disturbing is your statement defending European descendents landing in North and South America committing genocide on indigenous people, who became collateral damage to the onslaught of Colonial oppression, power and greed.
Your statement that native Canadians are not going to get their land back: I noticed that you didn’t mention ‘stolen land’. However, I have to agree with you, knowing how determined the Federal and Provincial governments and resource extraction industries are in not honouring or signing traditional territorial title rights with First Nations people. It’s all about control, resources, and profits. But never say never. Justice will prevail.
In your statement that European descendents no longer feel guilty about what happened hundreds of years ago, I would remind you what happened hundreds of years ago is still happening today.
I can understand your feelings about not feeling guilty, which implies not having to take responsibility, and therefore not having to right the injustices inflicted against First Nations people. I guess it is much easier to live in denial, but this is 2017. It is imperative that we educate ourselves to the true history of First Nations people, not the fake history or non-history that I was taught.
I don’t know if it was a coincidence that the Capital News feature story was about saving and reviving indigenous culture. I hope that you read it so you can better understand my concerns. As Bev Sellars mentions in the article, that it is up to individuals to stand up, be seen and speak out. I have heard the same message from Grand Chief Stewart Phillip at the ‘Save the Peace’ rally (Site C Dam – Peace River).
Your comment about me having no use for the RCMP is incorrect. On the contrary, I was supporting the RCMP who were and are helping refugees. I also know that the RCMP (not all) has treated (and still do) indigenous men and women as second-class citizens deserving of the harsh treatment inflicted on them.
The government only acts when there is a crisis or when each of us as citizens demands action. Until we heal and right the injustices of the past, we will not have a healthy future.
I hope that your stand softens to make room for compassion.
Hajime (Harold) Naka, Kelowna