January 29, 2013

Idle No More

Idle No More has been growing as a movement since it started in early December 2012. What started as a direct response to omnibus Bill C-45 has since turned into a larger-scale Indigenous resurgence movement that seeks to address not only forthcoming legislation, but also the long and violent history that led up to it. It seeks to address the centuries of colonialism that the state is built upon.

As people who live, work, study, play, eat, and learn at UBC, we have a responsibility to support Indigenous Peoples sovereignty and self-determination struggles. UBC is on the unceded and occupied land of the Musqueam People. The land was not, as many folks these days argue, handed over nicely and compliantly. It was stolen through a series of state-sanctioned policies that displaced thousands of Indigenous Peoples from their lands. So, as we continue to work and study and be on Musqueam land, we must acknowledge that we are here because of this dispossession.

Universities and western education systems are central to the production and distribution of colonial mentalities. They are spaces where young minds learn and grow, and this education neglects all too often the reality of the colonial processes that brought them there. UBC, as one of these institutions, would have you be complicit in the ongoing colonization of Musqueam land. But we cannot let that happen. As people who benefit from this land (through education, jobs, or homes) we must stand in solidarity with Indigenous Peoples, because we have a responsibility to do so.

There are dozens Idle No More of rallies and flashmobs happening across the city in the coming weeks, and two of them are happening right here at UBC. SASC encourages all people, students, staff, faculty, and visitors alike, to attend one or both of these important events:

Two important Idle No More actions this week at UBC (Point Grey Campus):

1) Idle No More Demonstration – UBC Point Grey Campus:

Thursday January 31st, 2013

10:30am – Meet at Museum of Anthropology
6393 North West Marine Drive

11:00am – March around campus, lead by Indigenous Students

12:00pm – Demonstration and speakers in front of the Student Union Building (SUB) – 6138 Student Union Boulevard

2) Idle No More Teach-In:

Friday February 1st, 2013

1:00pm-3:00pm – First Nations Longhouse
1985 West Mall

Distinguished Aboriginal faculty will provide a background to the movement, outline the aspects of Bills 38 and 45 that are seen as problematic and discuss ways that classroom dialogue around this issue can be incorporated in an informed and productive way.

Everyone is welcome including students, staff, faculty, Teaching Assistants, and community members.

A few readings to get you caught up:

Idle No More, “Manifesto

Taiaiake Alfred & Tobold Rollo, “Resetting and Restoring the Relationship Between Indigenous Peoples and Canada

Tobold Rollo, “I AM CANADIAN! (Because of treaties with Indigenous Nations)” (January 1)

Naomi Klein, “As Chief Spence starves, Canadians awaken from idleness and remember their roots

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