REVISED as of 1830 EST April 08/07
On April 05 I joined CaledoniaWakeUpCall.com in shutting down VoC in protest against the apathy and obstructionism of Caledonia’s citizens and politicians. Apparently, however, there are some people who were offended by what I had to say in connection with the shutdown. Several supporters have said that “I shot myself in the foot.” I can tell you that Gary McHale, too, was not pleased with everything I had to say.
I always try to admit when I am wrong or even when I think I could be wrong so I have taken some time to carefully reconsider my words. After doing so, I realize that I was very unfair to Bo Chausse, and I will address that at the end of this post and in my next.
For now, here is why I felt justified in speaking out in the way I did:
1. I have no interest in Caledonia other than defending your town against the evil of Two Tier Justice and Landclaim Terror.
2. I have nothing to gain by holding back what I believe to be the truth, and neither does Caledonia.
The truth is that Caledonia is in great danger. Your rights have been illegally taken from you. Your safety has been illegally taken from you, and the people who are elected to defend those rights are hoping you will eventually do what the people of Ipperwash did – learn to live without them, and turn on any ‘outsiders’ who ‘stir things up just when everything’s quiet.’
It may be ‘quiet’ in Caledonia today, but your rights have been stolen from you to pay for that ‘quiet.’ ‘Quiet’ means that your local politicians are quietly hoping that the criminals will leave you alone long enough for someone else in the provincial or federal to ride to the town’s rescue. If you actually believe that’s going to happen , take a few minutes to watch our Queen’s Park news conference at The Ipperwash Papers. Your pain is just beginning.
In addition to some well-deserved criticism, I have received several letters supporting the position I have taken. One resident even asked for permission to publish some of my comments in an ad in a Caledonia newspaper. That makes me hopeful. I remember a time only a few months back when it would have been unthinkable to use the words “native” and “crime or terror” in the same sentence. Now, mainstream newspapers are slowly beginning to understand that crime and terror are not limited by race. Perhaps one day, it will be politically possible to talk openly about the price of apathy and self-interest in the face of Landclaim Terror and Two Tier Justice.
I have been forced to confront the issue of resolving the burning passion I have for fighting Two Tier Justice and Landclaim Terror with the reality that few people in Caledonia seem to want my help.
I have decided that for now, I will no longer play a part in organizing protests in Caledonia. I will, however, gladly work with anyone who wants my help. I will be continuing with my own OCCPS police complaints (I have already submitted two) and I will assist those who would like help with theirs. If your council decides it would like to know about the lessons of The Ipperwash Papers I will speak to them if they wish me to do so. I will also come to Caledonia and march with you as a concerned citizen of Canada whenever Gary McHale calls on all of us to do so.
I will continue to write about Caledonia, and I will continue to speak the truth, however, it is not in my nature to candy-coat my words or lie to people I care about, and I will not start now.
I have always tried to answer comments at VoiceofCanada personally, however, it has proven to be very time consuming. I have decided, therefore, to turn off the comment function. If you wish to reach me, please contact me at email@example.com . When I choose to publish comments from now on, they will include the writer’s real name and town. In addition, I require a valid email address, street address and telephone number for my records although these will not be published. This is no different from any print media outlet.
I want you to know how much my heart aches for your town and for the towns that will follow yours if you do not unite and fight back. I urge you to support Gary McHale; he is the most selfless individual I have ever met, and we are all lucky to have him leading this struggle.
Last, but definitely not least…at least one of my statements was personally insulting to Bo Chausse, even though I did not mention him by name. I want to make it clear that I have nothing but respect for Bo as the first person to be arrested for trying to erect a Canadian flag, for his efforts on behalf of Caledonia in general and for his attempts to both unite the town and inspire Haldimand Council at the recent townhall meeting. I will be publishing a separate apology to Bo in my next post.
Mark Vandermaas, Editor