March for Freedom – Caledonia supports Dave Hartless

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NO MORE LANDCLAIM TERROR!
McGuinty – Fantino: protect ‘Dancer’ – NOW!

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UPDATE 2252 EST March 05/07: Thank you note from Laura Hartless, sister of Dave Hartless.
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2inch_voc_logo-url.jpgIn a recent post called, “Fantino muzzles victim of Caledonia violence” I talked about how the OPP Commissioner has filed a complaint with the Hamilton Police Service against Dave Hartless, a Caledonia citizen who has been an outspoken critic against Two Tier Justice and the OPP. Hartless happens to be a police officer, but he has never identified himself as such in his messages. I know because he has commented on VoC.

crowd2.JPGOn Saturday, March 03/07 Gary McHale and I, with the help of some very devoted Caledonians – and other ‘outsiders’ – organized a March for Freedom event at the request of Dave’s wife, Linda, as a way for the community to show support for her husband.

At 1000 a group of us met at the Canadian Tire parking lot and spread out across Caledonia to get signatures on two petitions, one to support Hartless and one to have Fantino removed from his job. The volunteers grabbed their clipboards, announced where they were going and took off without waiting for any direction. Several came back for more forms. Wow! Life is easy when you have help from committed people. Caledonia should be proud of these concerned citizens who were prepared to give up their Saturday to support a good man who has stood strong for their community.  You should also be proud that other ‘outsiders’ came to help. Three people drove in from Toronto, and  ‘Roy’ came all the way from Wallaceburg to bring signs he had made for people to carry. All the signs you see in the pictures were made by him. Thank you Roy!

While we were handing out clipboards and petitions, people drove up to drop off pages of petitions they had circulated throughout the week. Others just came to sign. It was great!

gary-craig-mark.JPGWe were originally going to assemble at the Hamilton Police station, but Dave Hartless requested that we move to a different location, so our March was held on the steps of the OPP station in Cayuga instead. Gary sent word out by email of the change, and both of us put bulletins on our websites. I’m told that at least one local newspaper ran a story about the event, but – due to the timing of publication – it still had the Hamilton location listed. (Thank you for carrying the event!) Apologies for anyone who ended up going to Hamilton. 

crowd1.JPGpre-speech-interview.JPGAt 1400 about 60 people, including reporters from (I believe) Turtle Island News, Sachem and the Spectator, met in a cold parking lot near the Cayuga. Craig Grice, Councillor for Ward 3 showed up with his family which was very much appreciated by all of us who were there.

I walked over to the station, knocked on the door and spoke with an officer to explain what we were doing, and that we weren’t there to cause any trouble. She was very gracious and thanked me for letting her know what was going on. 

councillor_craig_grice-speaks.JPGI went back to the group and we marched over to the steps of the station. Gary provided an introduction and turned it over to Craig Grice who spoke eloquently and passionately about Dave Hartless and his contributions to his neighbours during the Caledonia agony. I learned a lot about Dave Hartless yesterday from someone who knows – first hand – what he has done to aid his neighbours. Grice confirmed for me that Julian Fantino should be pinning a medal on Dave Hartless instead of trying to intimidate him into silence.

Here is the text of the notes Councillor Grice made for his speech: 

 Community Hero!

The issue before us is not about Land Claims, an Occupation, or race relations. It’s about the constitutional right of “Freedom of Speech” Throughout this entire ordeal in Caledonia I never thought I would need to defend this entrenched right. The right that gives every individual the power and protection to use their voice. At no time has this man, who we are here for today, spoken a racist word, commented on things he has no business discussing, or expressed hatred towards any individual. However, today we hear how he may be a discredit to his employer as he speaks out against the injustices placed before him and those he cares for.

He has stood tall not for himself, but for his neighbours and his community. Throughout the turbulent times alongside the Douglas Creek Estates, he sought to bring about a sense of security and provide a piece of mind to others. It was he who knocked on my door, telling me that if my family ever needed anything, he would be there. In fact, this truly courageous individual spoke to all of us in an effort to organize a call for help, as we all could see the O.P.P. with their hands tied. The gentleman I speak so highly of is David Hartless.

Today, Dave is being personally harassed and I believe unjustifiably investigated for discreditable conduct. I ask you, how can Mr. Hartless be a discredit to his employer, when he is seen as a community hero? Every employer, whether private or public asks of its’ employee(s) two things, be charitable and try to be involved with your community. Mr Hartless has exemplified himself in both these tasks which any employer should applaud not condemn. Mr Hartless has never brought his employer into any communication written or otherwise, yet he is being defamed for his relation with law. Again, I ask, what disrespect to the law, to his oath, to his office has he brought forth? He helped a community feel that it could stand and be safe if it acted together. That, I contend is leadership and promise you, brought hope to a battered neighbourhood!

It is only because he speaks for the application of the law, as facilitated by an officer’s oath and duty that he is censured today. I propose to you, that at any other time he would be celebrated by his employer for his direct involvement with those he lives closest too.

Mr Fantino stated only two short days ago that Provincial Police “will continue to assume our responsibilities for keeping the peace, and do what they can to mitigate consequences.” I would suggest to Mr. Fantino that it was, and is, Mr Hartless who has helped keep that peace by bringing my community together and dealing with the consequences that the O.P.P., the Province, and the Federal Government have allowed to exist in our backyards. Mr. Fantino goes on to explain that he and the Province are trying to get the Federal Government to understand the volatility that we are faced with, yet to me it’s clear that Mr Hartless, and his community, already understand this.

My wife and I, along with those that Mr Hartless has touched with his kindness, have a lot to thank his family for and it’s time we speak for them as he is being silenced. The O.P.P. has stepped beyond its’ mandate as it tries to quiet a private individual who has shown one thing; he cares more about his community than he does his professional career. I am honoured by knowing Dave, not only as a neighbour and a friend, but in the fact that he stands for the law and the safety of others he may not ever know. Dave loves his job and as a result carries his sworn oath as a badge of honour. A badge that he gives the outmost respect to. He does this all, in order to serve and protect.

Craig Grice, Haldimand Councillor, Ward 3
March 3, 2007  

I know I speak for Gary and everyone who was there when I say how very grateful we were to Councillor Grice for his words and for the presence of his family. 

mark-calls-for-reinforcements.JPGAfter Mr. Grice was done, Gary talked about how Commissioner Fantino was abusing the rights of Canadians instead of defending them. 

He then announced the date for our Caledonia Legal Workshop which will be held at the Cayuga Lions Hall on March 24 between 1-4pm. Guest speakers so far include Lisa Parent from the HELP Funding Society; MPP Toby Barrett; lawyer John Findlay and others to be confirmed. We will be showing Caledonians how to use the legal avenues available to fight back against Two Tier Justice.

During his remarks, Gary made some wisecrack about me (I forget what it was), so I picked up the the after-hours police phone [photo, above right] and ‘called for help’ from “Julian” to see if I could get him arrested. Hey, if you don’t laugh, you’d cry at the absurdity that is Caledonia.

Gary then turned over the steps to me to make an statement about our upcoming news conference at Queen’s Park scheduled for 1100 on March 14/07. Here is the text of the notes I made for this statement:

“The media and politicians have repeatedly asked why we don’t take our protests about Two Tier Justice to Queen’s Park.

There is a reason why we have not done so – the injustice is in Caledonia. The evidence of the OPP’s violations of the Supreme Court and our Charter of Rights is in Caledonia.

We always knew that one day we would go to Queen’s Park, but we also knew that when we did go it would be on OUR time not theirs.

mark-voice-of-canada-speaks.JPGWe also wanted to make sure that when we did go to Queen’s Park that no one would ever forget our voices on behalf of Caledonia.

That day has arrived.

VoiceofCanada and CaledoniaWakeUpCall have been conducting a joint investigation into OPP activities in Ipperwash and how that legacy has influenced and impacted their failure to uphold the Rule of Law in Caledonia.

On March 14th at 1100 Gary McHale and I will be holding a news conference in the media room at Queen’s Park. We will be releasing what we call ‘The Ipperwash Papers’ – consisting of more than 400 pages of documents that reveal the truth of what really happened in Ipperwash, documents that the Ipperwash Inquiry apparently does not want the public to see.

While we do not wish to release further details at this time, I can say that the Ipperwash Papers will NOT present the OPP and the Ipperwash Inquiry in a positive light.

Thank you for coming out today.”

After we were finished, Gary and I spoke with members of the crowd, one of whom gave me a copy of a pamphlet called, “Road of Hope: Help the Sixth Line” produced by a 14-year old girl who lives on the Sixth Line – where there is no policing. Her words made me cry in sympathy and with rage. Watch for a VoC post today to be titled, “The Strength of a Woman – 14 year old ‘Dancer’

VoiceofCanada received several donations yesterday, one in person and one by PayPal. They will be used to pay for the press kits for our news conference and for the Cayuga Lions Hall rental for our March 24th Legal Workshop – details to follow. Thank you ever so much for that, Merlyn and Shawn.  Thanks to all who made sure we had enough to eat and a place to stay while we were in Caledonia. Thanks to Jeff for the pictures. Thanks to all the volunteers who went out in the cold with the petitions, and thanks to those who came out in the cold – some from great distances – to hear Councillor Grice honour a good man. Well done!

things-to-come.JPG[While – as mentioned above – it was ‘Roy’ who produced the physical signs, it was Gary McHale – who is notably ‘spelling challenged’ – who produced the paper notices that were taped onto them hence, “YOUR” instead of “YOU’RE.”

We joked about it afterwards – Gary thought that, by now, people had learned to read ‘McHale-ese’ and were able to figure out what he was trying to say. 🙂 Readers may enjoy reading a post I wrote way back on October 24, 2006 called, “If Gary McHale could do it with ‘kiddie GIFs, imagine what YOU could do!]

Watch CaledoniaWakeUpCall for details as to when the petitions will be delivered.

Thanks again for your help and support.

UPDATE: Laura Hartless, sister of Dave, sent the following thank you note to Gary McHale at CaledoniaWakeUpCall and asked us to publish it under her full name:

“Dear Gary, Mark and all the kind people who stood up for my big brother and all those who dare to have a different opinion from the OPP Commissioner and our poor excuse for a Government.

“I am proud to have him as my brother and as my friend and to know the man he is will truly show you why he stands for what he believes in.  From the time we were little he always knew what he wanted and who he wanted to be. 

“I am truly saddened by the OPP Commissioners attempts to bully my brother into submission.  As his sister I would like you to know that this will never happen.  David is true to his word and his beliefs and will deal with whatever comes his way with honour. 

“Proud Sister, Laura Hartless”

gary_and_mark.JPG

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6 responses to “March for Freedom – Caledonia supports Dave Hartless

  1. Lisa Parent

    Our thoughts and prayers are with Dave Heartless this Sunday.

    We also make room in our hearts for those on 6th Line who remain without effective policing. I too read the message from 14 year old Dancer and want everyone on 6th line to know that not everyone has forgotten about them.

    Only the ones who hold the power to do something about their situation seem to have forgotten them.

    Mark and Gary continue your struggle for balanced policing in Caledonia and Ipperwash. You may feel you stand alone at times in your struggle against Two Tier Justice but you must know that their are many who are with you in this struggle.

    Keep up the good fight!

    VoC REPLY: Thanks for the great words for Dancer and for us Lisa. We couldn’t do what we do were it not for the amazing support from the people of Caledonia and a few other ‘outsiders.’ This weekend really helped me – and my wife – realize just how welcome we are in your town. In many ways, this was one of the very best March for Freedom events ever. Also, I wish I could share all the great things going on behind the scenes. Your call to action that was published a couple of weeks back foretold, I think, Dancer’s letter. Thanks again! Regards, Mark

  2. What a crock. Hartless broke police protocol by getting involved in an ongoing dispute. He should have learned to keep quiet.

    VoC REPLY: Sounds like you have some inside information on what was done to try to keep Hartless quiet. Hmmmm.

  3. Just to clarify my earlier post, with regards to the Police Services Act of Canada, it states…

    49. (1) A member of a police force shall not engage in any activity,

    (a) that interferes with or influences adversely the performance of his or her duties as a member of a police force, or is likely to do so;

    (b) that places him or her in a position of conflict of interest, or is likely to do so;

    (c) that would otherwise constitute full-time employment for another person; or

    (d) in which he or she has an advantage derived from employment as a member of a police force.

    That can be found at…

    http://www.canlii.org/on/laws/sta/p-15/20040503/whole.html#BK60

    Hartless knew that his actions could be detrimental to the actions of the O.P.P. and as such deserves any punishment handed out by a disciplinary review board.

    VoC REPLY: Hi Jafo. Sorry, but how is it a conflict of interest for a victim of DCE criminality to speak out against the police force that is allowing it to continue, so long as he doesn’t use his position as a police officer. Now, if he were an OPP officer, Fantino could have something to say. But, if Hartless was an OPP he’d probably have resigned by now rather than serve as a security guard for organized criminals and terrorists. Nice try, though. Mark

    P.S. Did you know that the DCE ‘peaceful occupiers’ loosened the wheel nuts on his wife’s car, causing her to lose control with their 3 kids in the car? Did you know he was assaulted by ‘peaceful’ DCE thugs? Didn’t think so.

  4. Did you know that the DCE ‘peaceful occupiers’ loosened the wheel nuts on his wife’s car, causing her to lose control with their 3 kids in the car? Did you know he was assaulted by ‘peaceful’ DCE thugs? Didn’t think so.

    Any evidence or arrests?

    Didn’t think so.

    VoC REPLY: No arrests. Exactly. Thank you. Evidence – I know, I know. Hartless must have loosened the lugnuts on his wife’s car just to make the DCE gangsters look bad, right? Let’s see now…they’ll assault a camera crew, beat police officers with baseball bats, burn down a bridge, blockade a road, destroy a power station, but tampering with a courageous man’s car is beneath them? Uh huh. Join the ranks of the Landclaim Terror deniers.Mark

  5. For starters, there is no evidence to say who caused the fire at the power sub-station. It could have been anyone including a Caledonia resident. You are starting to sound more and more like McHale. It never ceases to amaze me how someone who’s main objective, according to him, is the 2 tiered level of policing and yet his website is all about what the natives did. Who the natives attacked. What the natives want. What has that to do with 2 tiered policing? The stench of McHale’s racism is permeating your website as much as it is his. As for Hartless, he deserves nothing short of a suspension from his job for interfering in the actions of the O.P.P.

    VoC REPLY: Man, don’t you get tired of trying to tell us the sky is green? Next, you’ll be telling me that it was the residents dressed up in warrior masks that dug up the main road. 🙂 As for the ‘racism’ card, that tired old insult is the last result of someone without an argument. I’m sorry, but I don’t have time to waste on Landclaim Terror deniers like you. If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem. Please don’t write any more. Mark

    P.S. You might want to want to have a look at The Ipperwash Papers to see what your peaceful ‘heros’ did in Ipperwash to innocent residents – both native and non-native.

  6. One more thing Mr. Vandermaas… You declare that everyone is entitled to free speech. You have been heard saying it alongside Gary McHale and yet, in your last post here, you say and I quote ” If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem. Please don’t write any more. Mark”
    I would say that would make you a hypocrit, wouldn’t it.

    That is just a sample of your “Free Speech”. there is more on this very site, but I think you know that.

    VoC REPLY: Well, Jafo. You finally said something worth replying to. You seem to be under the mistaken impression that VoiceofCanada exists to allow you to spread your propaganda on behalf of the DCE Landclaim Terrorists, propaganda that suggests the residents of Caledonia have been terrorizing themselves just to make a group of poor, misunderstood, peaceloving native people who stole an entire subdivision from the deeded owner look bad.

    VoiceofCanada is not a mainstream media outlet pretending to tell both sides of a story while selling advertising space. If you have actual evidence that a non-native resident destroyed the power station or loosened the wheel nuts on Dave Hartless’ wife’s car send it to me and I’ll be the first to admit I was wrong. Until then, my money’s on the criminals who have spent a year burning things, blockading things, pushing cars off bridges, stealing things, damaging things, and assaulting and intimidating other human beings.

    Although I strive for accuracy and I will admit when I get it wrong, I am not a journalist. I am an activist and VoC is my voice – not yours.

    My mission is to 1. destroy Two Tier Justice in Ontario by restoring the Rule of Law and equality before the law, and 2. to build bridges with honourable native people who can help my readers understand their pain in hopes that we can all learn to work together and solve our differences without violence. There is also a brave 14 year old girl on Sixth Line who has to take drugs and attend counselling because she doesn’t feel safe in her home thanks to the people you make excuses for, so if, in my judgement, you cannot contribute anything worthwhile that will help me in my goals then your comments don’t get printed. If you don’t like it, start your own blog – and THAT’S free speech. By the way, free speech means that I get to remove your blog’s URL – I don’t give free publicity to propaganda from Landclaim Terror deniers.

    Hypocrites say one thing and do another. If there’s one thing my readers, the OPP, the criminals they protect and the politicians should know by now – it’s that Gary McHale and I NEVER say things we don’t mean, or can’t prove, and we never make promises we can’t keep. Mark Vandermaas, Editor, VoiceofCanada