Canadian Civil Liberties Association turns blind eye to Caledonia’s agony

UPDATE 1531 Dec 19/07: The CCLA responds to this article. See Canadian Civil Liberties Association replies to our cries for help

UPDATE 2047 EST Dec 11/07: Nov 09/07 cover letter reprinted

t-shirt_free-caledonia-now_sep22-07.jpgThis article is long overdue, but a comment from a regular reader to McHale strikes back at OPP’s “nice little package” drew it out of me as I wrote my reply to him. Thanks WL; this is the perfect time to write it, given the events of the past week.

WL Mackenzie Redux   December 9, 2007 7:41pm

Mark: First I want to thank you and Gary for the burdens you have shouldered in fighting for civil liberties most Canadians are unworthy of having.

Second: Can you clue me as what repugnant denizen of McGuilty’s anus issued a communications ban between 2 co-defendants?? This scum should be removed from the bench/bar.

WL’s remarks about defending civil rights made me think of how very hard I have tried – unsuccessfully – to get the Canadian Civil Liberties Association interested in helping us stop OPP abuses in Caledonia.

Canadian Civil Liberties Association turns blind eye to Caledonia 

I am ashamed of my country today.I have been aware of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association and its longtime spokesperson and General Counsel Alan Borovoy for as long as I can remember, so it seemed like a logical move to turn to the CCLA to seek help for Caledonia in its fight against Two Tier Justice. To my great sadness, I must report that I have personally contacted the Canadian Civil Liberties Association at least four times, and they have never responded to my requests for a meeting to discuss civil rights abuses in Caledonia.

I called and pointed out posts on VoiceofCanada after we were arrested for trying to raise a Canadian flag, and Gary McHale was held overnight without charge.

I asked them to meet with us when we presented The Ipperwash Papers to Mayor Trainer before going to Queen’s Park on March 14/07.  

I sent them a link to the Chris Syrie video showing how OPP refuse to arrest or identify native lawbreakers.

I told them how the OPP and OPPA have lied about us  [note: this complaint was dismissed by the OPP] despite having broken no laws. For more recent examples of OPP defamation, see Fantino – delusional or desperate?

I told them how Dancer has to take medication and go to counselling because she lives on a street with no policing. 

I sent them the $12M Brown/Chatwell lawsuit in which they allege (among many things) that three cabinet ministers made deals not to enforce the law; that the OPP tried to convince them to allow them to lay bogus trespassing charges against us; that Brown was arrested for ‘trespassing’ on his own property; that the OPP placed a hidden camera in their home without permission; and that the OPP refused to respond to 911 calls.

I sent them a link to my article that eventually became the ‘Victimizing native people‘ feature that includes a native media story about how two women were raped on the lawless DCE.

I even invited General Counsel Alan Borovoy to speak at the October 08/07 ‘Remember Us’ March. See my email below.

My last attempt to reach out and beg for help from the CCLA was during Holocaust Education Week the day after I watched a movie at a synagogue in Hamilton about Simon Wiesenthal and his quest for justice for the victims of the Holocaust. I awoke the next day (Nov 08/07) and felt an overwhelming urge to try yet again to make them understand.

I drove from London to Toronto – using gas we couldn’t afford – to deliver a draft copy of a 100+ page book Gary and I are writing called, ‘The Human Costs of Illegal Occupations’ to their office.

I have never heard back from the CCLA regarding my request to meet with them. They simply refuse to respond. 

see_no_evil_woman.jpegI’ve called, faxed, emailed and finally, delivered the evidence in person. Two of my emails are printed below. Apparently, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association doesn’t give a damn about the civil rights of innocent people caught up in land claims through no fault of their own. The CCLA will defend drug dealers, panhandlers, and a guy who was charged for putting up posters on hydro poles (Ramsden v. Peterborough, 1993 is the decision that gives us the right to place items like flags on public utility poles.), but they absolutely refuse to even meet and listen to innocent victims of systemic race-based policing and landclaim lawlessness from Caledonia.

The police won’t protect you because you’re the wrong race? Tough. The police arrest you because you are the wrong race? Nope. The police arrest you for putting up a Canadian flag and hold you overnight without a charge? Not interested. Cabinet ministers making deals with native criminals not to enforce the law? Yawn. Native women being raped on lawless land? Only if it’s non-native criminals doing the raping, I suppose. 

The CCLA’s indifference to the suffering of innocent people in Caledonia due to systemic civil rights abuses by the OPP that are destroying the very foundation of our democracy is one of the most disappointing aspects of this struggle. One day the Canadian Civil Liberties Association – and all those who support them – will be ashamed that they did not act. When that day comes, they will not be able to say that they did not know.

While we’re waiting for the CCLA’s day of enlightenment to arrive, feel free to contact them yourself and ask why they keep ignoring our pleas for help:

Canadian Civil Liberties Association
506-360 Bloor Street West
Toronto, ON  M5S 1X1

General Counsel: Alan Borovoy
Phone: 416.363.0321
Fax: 416.861.1291

References (see also VoC/CANACE correspondence to CCLA below)

Email #1 – follow-up to initial telephone call

 Hi xxxxxx,

1. Thanks for speaking with me a few days back. I appreciate your time.

2. Do you think that anyone at the CCLA is interested in meeting with us?

3. We understand that you may be reluctant to do so given the ‘Extreme Caution’ notice released by the Ontario Provincial Police Association. For your information, we are about to launch an action for libel against the OPPA and its President, Mr. Karl Walsh, personally, for that release. I received a draft copy of our lawyer’s letter this evening.

4. You may also be interested in the most recent post at VoiceofCanada, “VIDEO EVIDENCE: Two Tier Justice – By the Numbers.” This annotated video shows – along with the other evidence gathered during our protests – that the OPP is engaging in systemic, race-based policing that re-victimizes law abiding non-native people who suffer intimidation and crimes at the hands of criminals who happen to be native.

4. I’d like to add the CCLA to the VoiceofCanada newsletter mailing list, if that’s OK. It’s an ‘opt-in’ system, so you’re going to get an email asking you to confirm your subscription. If you’d like to receive the newsletter, just click on the link in the message; if you don’t, you won’t go on the list.

There’s also a link inside every newsletter that allows you to unsubscribe with just a click at any time.





Email #2 – The Ipperwash Papers, Dancer, news release



March 06, 2007
Canadian Civil Liberties Association
394 Bloor St. W., Suite 200
Toronto, ON M5S 1X4

tel: 416.363.0321
fax: 416.861.1291

Attention: Mr. Alan Borovoy, General Counsel 

Re: 1. Release of ‘The Ipperwash Papers’ at Queen’s Park – March 14/07     
2.  ‘The Strength of a Woman – 14 year old ‘Dancer’ 

Dear Mr. Borovoy, 

I have contacted your office on several occasions, by phone and by email to provide web links to evidence that the OPP are violating the civil rights of Canadian citizens in Caledonia, Ontario, rights guaranteed in part by the Supreme Court decision in which your organization acted as an ‘intervenor’ – Ramsden v. Peterborough.  I have requested that you or someone from your office meet with us to discuss this situation, but you have ignored my requests. 

  • I have been arrested for trying to raise a Canadian flag despite having broken no law. The OPP ripped the flag from my hands with such force while I was sitting peacefully on the ground that the 1” aluminum pole it was mounted on was broken into two separate pieces.
  • An innocent man trying to exercise his constitutional rights was arrested with me and held in jail overnight even though the OPP knew they weren’t going to charge him.
  •  The OPP and the OPPA have viciously slandered and libelled us despite our having broken no laws, and despite our consistent emphasis on non-violent protest to restore the Rule of Law and equality before that law. 
  • Innocent homeowners are being victimized as the OPP watches, but refuse to arrest or even identify the thugs. 

An entire town has been terrorized by criminals using an invalid land claim as an excuse for their evil. Despite all this you and your organization have remained silent. There is no reason for the Canadian Civil Liberties Association not to know the truth of what is going on in Caledonia. I personally spoke with a member of your staff and showed her where to find the relevant posts and evidence on VoiceofCanada. 

The CCLA logo claims to stand for: Justice, Equality, Anti-Racism and Freedom, yet you have ignored my pleas for help to defend these values.    Now…a 14 year old girl who has to take drugs and attend counselling because of the trauma caused by the OPP’s refusal to patrol her street in Caledonia is asking for your help.

I only just became aware of her courage and her heartbreaking story at our recent March for Freedom event to support a victim of DCE violence who has been silenced with a dubious Police Act complaint by Commissioner Fantino. A family friend gave me a pamphlet containing Dancer’s words. Here are some of them: 

“You can’t call the police because they can’t help you. You’re locked in your own home. A few days later, when I calms down, you have to go to school. But you can’t get to school by bus anymore so you have to drive a 30 min. ride to school when it only took 2 minutes unless you went through the blockade. But you could only do this if you had a pass, but even when we got one, it was whether they felt like letting you go through or not. If they did let you go, it was like you’re in prison, gates everywhere, men with masks over their faces only to see their eyes. Men holding bats some even with guns, it was a living hell. You don’t know what life is like until you have lived through it.  

“I’m a competitive dancer, and love to dance outside on the side lawn, but I wasn’t able to unless I could take the pressure of getting stares or firecrackers thrown at me. Now I take medication and go to counselling because of all of this. A 14 year old should not be doing that! 

“This is why we need your help! I’m 14 years old and I will fight with as much power as I have to get police and justice back on my road.” 

14 year old ‘Dancer’
Sixth Line Resident

You can read the rest of Dancer’s story in “The Strength of a Woman – 14 year old ‘Dancer’ at It is listed in the right sidebar. 

So, Mr. Borovoy…will you ignore Dancer’s plea for help, too? Or will you come with us to Queen’s Park next Wednesday and stand with us when we release ‘The Ipperwash Papers’ – 400 pages of documents that show the horrors endured by innocent property owners in Ipperwash, a topic that the Ipperwash Inquiry has seemed not have addressed in its mandate to prevent future violence. The attached news release provides details. We are prepared to show you the Ipperwash Papers in advance. Please review the VoiceofCanada articles listed below, and call me ASAP to set up a meeting if you would, please. Our schedule is very tight as we prepare for March 14th, but I will gladly make time for a man whose very name is synonymous with Civil Rights in Canada. 

Sir, we are two ordinary citizens doing the very best we can to defend the values of our country despite a serious lack of resources. We need help and we need it now. 

Respectfully, Mark Vandermaas, Editor

Encl: Joint News Release: VoiceofCanada and CaledoniaWakeUpCall to release ‘The Ipperwash Papers’ at Queen’s Park – March 14, 2007 

References – 

1. ‘The Strength of a Woman – 14 year old ‘Dancer’

2. Fantino muzzles victim of Caledonia violence

3. OPP and OPPA vs. Supreme Court of Canada

4. VIDEO EVIDENCE: Two Tier Justice – By the Numbers5. CALEDONIA PHOTOS (top menu) You may find the class action Statement of Claim document interesting.    

Joint News Release – Voiceof Canada and CaledoniaWakeUpCall

Voiceof Canada and Caledonia WakeUpCall
to release ‘The Ipperwash Papers’at Queen’s Park – March 14, 2007  

The media and politicians have repeatedly asked why we do not take our March for Freedom protests against 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 schedule, not one desired by those who have opposed us.

We also wanted to make sure that when we did go to Queen’s Park that no one would ever forget the day we delivered our message with the help of citizens from both Ipperwash and Caledonia.That day has arrived.VoiceofCanada and CaledoniaWakeUpCall have been conducting a joint investigation into OPP activities in Ipperwash from 1992 onward and how they contributed to the lawlessness now seen in Caledonia.

On March 14th at 1100 Gary McHale and Mark Vandermaas 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.

The Ipperwash Papers will clearly show – in painful detail – the suffering endured by innocent, law-abiding property owners who were victimized by native violence and intimidation during a number of land claim disputes, and by the OPP adherence to Two Tier Justice policies currently used to undermine the Rule of Law and non-native civil rights in Caledonia.

Mark Vandermaas, Editor

Gary McHale, Editor

– 30 –

Email #3 – Invitation to speak at ‘Remember Us’ March; victimization of natives; Brown/Chatwell lawsuit

Dear Ms. xxxxxx,

1. Attached, please find a copy of the shocking Statement of Claim for the $12M suit by Caledonia residents Chatwell and Brown against the OPP and Ontario government. I would be very appreciative if you would ask Mr. Borovoy to review the document and considering meeting with us and/or agreeing to speak out against the outrageous interference with the justice system as a guest speaker at our upcoming ‘Remember Us’ March in Caledonia on October 8th.

2. Native people are also being badly victimized in Caledonia, and I would direct you to a post on VoiceofCanada called, Victimizing Native People.

We need the voice of the CCLA to speak out on behalf of all victims of state-sanctioned lawlessness – both native and non-native. Please, will you meet with us or speak out on Oct 8th?

Thankyou for your time. Please call any time, day or night.



Cover letter included w/draft copy of McHale/Vandermaas book, delivered in person to CCLA office on Nov 09/07

BY PERSONAL DELIVERYNovember 07, 2007Canadian Civil Liberties Association
506 – 360 Bloor St. W.
Toronto, ON M5S 1X1
tel: 416.363.0321
fax: 416.861.1291

Attention: Mr. Alan Borovoy, General Counsel

Dear Mr. Borovoy,

Last night I attended the second of two Holocaust Education Week events. After listening to the words of Sibylle Sarah Niemoller von Sell and Simon Wiesenthal I awoke this  morning with an overwhelming urge to drive from London to your office in Toronto to deliver the enclosed draft copy of The Human Costs of Illegal Occupations to you.

This document represents an overview of the civil rights abuses and victimization of human beings in Caledonia – both native and non-native – and our efforts to expose them.  

I have also enclosed, in the back cover, a CD-ROM containing presentation notes and supporting evidence given to students who attended our November 1st presentation at the University of Waterloo.

I have contacted your office several times in the past requesting that you meet with us, but have received no response. I do not understand your reluctance, but I cannot stop trying to help you understand. Today, I have come in person to beg you to read the documentation enclosed and meet with us to discuss the fundamental human justice issues at stake.


Mark Vandermaas, Editor
Co-founder, Canadian Advocates for Charter Equality

Encl:     Draft copy of ‘The Human Costs of Illegal Occupations

            Notes & supporting evidence for University of Waterloo presentation, Nov 01/07

4 responses to “Canadian Civil Liberties Association turns blind eye to Caledonia’s agony

  1. WL Mackenzie Redux

    I hate to validate to your shattered illusion Mark but I came to the same startling revelations about the CCLA. I had a similar complaint about 15 years back where I was a victim of similar government initiated abuse of my, and many Canadian’s, charter rights.

    The parallels to your abuse are so close it’s almost déjà vu. What I learned from the responses of Mr. Borovoy and his minions is that the CCLA is a very soft spoken ornamental organization which is deeply steeped in partisan race politics/ideology.

    They run on the unstated premise that it is impossible for a member of a majority race or ethnicity to experience “rights abuse” because they presume the majority to perennially be the “oppressor” of minorities…never can roles be reversed in their dogmatic mythos.

    Secondly, as a deeply partisan-left organization, they will NEVER act to embarrass a Liberal government which is engaged in civil rights abuses ( historically it has been Liberal governments who have created the greatest rights abuses and charter breaches)

    So, Mark, shed no tears over the prejudices which stagnate the CCLA, they have been a politically corrupted ornamental show piece for a long time.

    In a battle for equality of civil liberty a member of the so called majority has only one friend…that is your own resolve and passion for civil justice…and your ability to arouse empathetic resolve and passion in your fellow citizens….and civil justice is in very low supply on Ontario these days, there is plenty for the majority to express civil indignation over.

    The bright spot is there are still some good people left in the judicial and bureaucratic hierarchy who function on civil principle and the rule of law….NOT collusive race politics.

    VoC REPLY: Thanks for the jolt of reality, WL. I – and others around me – never cease to wonder at my continuing optimistic willingness to believe the best of people in positions of power, at my naivety in thinking that if only they understood the truth, they would act. Still, my conscience is clear as I have done what I can. Mark

  2. I called the CCLA and left a message with Donna the receptionist. We’ll see.

    VoC REPLY: Thank you. Very much.Mark

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