Merlyn Kinrade made them ‘believe’

Click for hi-res image and info re Barb Patterson-Tuck's award winning painting. Merlyn is at the top of the maple leaf in the middle facing left.

UPDATE 1847 EST June 13/09: Belleville Intelligencer editorial: Six Days too long to end protest no one wanted. REPRINT.

See also, ‘Proof positive native extremists have lost PR battle’

Is the OPP really changing?

After three years the people of Caledonia may find it hard to believe that OPP attitudes towards them are changing. One resident told me not to trust the OPP saying, ‘Once a snake always a snake.’

I understand where such skepticism and cynicism comes from given what the police have done to them – and to us, but here is why I believe that the OPP will not renege on their agreement with us to allow us to march down Argyle Street past DCE on the 20th in support of Randy Fleming.

As Gary McHale told me right from the beginning, it will not be one protest or one action or one letter that ends Two Tier Justice. It will only happen when police and politicians lose their jobs and/or go to jail or believe they could.

  • As I write this, two OPP officers have already faced criminal charges for assisting native protesters in the commission of their crimes thanks to McHale and Parkinson. Even though they were dismissed by the Crown, these officers will, for the rest of their careers, have to answer ‘yes’ when a defence attorney asks if they have ever been charged with a crime in connection with their duties as a police officer. In the two year process of certifying those charges, McHale and Parkinson created important case law that will help other citizens in the future.
  • Clyde Powless faces a charge of assaulting a police officer on Dec 01/07 directly due to Parkinson v. R., 2009.
  • Police and government lawyers have been warned that CANACE founders will pursue criminal charges against any government official who acts or conspires to illegally violate the Charter rights of Canadian citizens where we have evidence to do so.
  • Only this week Gary was in Superior Court making a brilliant legal argument before Justice Marshal to counter the Crowns attempts to thwart his attempts to lay charges against 3 senior government officials in connection with the Stirling occupation where Sam Gualtieri was nearly murdered.
  • Later this month, the case continues, along with another important motion by Gary to reinstate charges against two native protesters dropped by the Crown.
  • CANACE played a key role in ending an illegal occupation in Cayuga with the help of courageous builders who not only sought out our help to have native protesters charged, but pursued a separate court injunction that clearly rebuked the OPP for abusing their power and discretion.
  • Hagersville builder  John Voortman won a similar injunction in which the judge make a strong statement that vindicated CANACE’s position in our Legalized MYTHS report that the Rule of Law takes precedence over all other rights, including those of aboriginals.
  • Despite the attempts by OPP lawyers to have my Ontario Human Rights Commission complaint dismissed as vexatious and frivolous, the OHRC refused to do so, and have provided me with forms to resubmit to the new Ontario Human Rights Tribunal. I have until June 30th. Fantino and my arresting officers have already admitted they stopped me from putting up a flag because of threats by natives who might want to harm me and my ‘followers.’ 
  • Gary’s criminal case has exposed many revelations about Fantino’s bias towards non-natives, not to mention the testimony of an OPP officer that confirmed, under oath, the existence of racial policing. This will be used as evidence in other cases, including  the OHRT complaint.
  • Other lawsuits for false arrest and defamation are continuing against the OPP. And, let’s not forget the Caledonia Class Action suit.
  • Native extremists are being arrested on mass in Deseronto by their own police force – and the OPP.
  • There are clear signs that public opinion has turned against native radicals (even within their own community) and against the police who have enabled them.
  • Meanwhile, non-native protests are expanding requiring the OPP to justify why they are spending $150,000 per month just to stop law-abiding citizens from exercising their right to put up a flag.
  • Even the OPP leadership has stopped its public campaign of smearing the motives of non-native protesters.
  • Ontario PC leadership hopefuls are now calling on specific legislation to end illegal occupations now that ordinary citizens have made it politically-correct to do so. Sure, they may go silent afterwards, but the fact that they speak at all is noteworthy and a sign that times are changing.

Based on our experiences and the developments we see – in public and behind the scenes – everything tells us that the OPP are not lying this time. But, on the off-chance they are, if they do violate our rights and our trust again, we will use it against them – just as we have all along. More lawsuits. More charges. More complaints. More negative press. More protests.

The reality is this: the OPP and Ontario government know that they can never win a war where victory means overruling centuries of legal jurisprudence in order to undermine the rule of law and suppress the rights of citizens based on their race. Even if the OPP ‘change their minds’  it will not change the outcome; they will merely give us a huge propaganda victory for lying about something so important to the community. Either way, we will win.

We just don’t know the date of the final victory, yet. In the meantime, let us savour today’s accomplishments.

Merlyn made them ‘believe’

CANACE founders had a meeting with several government lawyers earlier this year. I remember listening while Merlyn (CANACE’s Caledonia Liason)told them he would never submit to racial policing and he would continue fighting for his community until the day he died.

I like to believe that was the day when the Ontario government finally realized they could never win. Because one courageous old sailor who once served his country on the most famous ship in the Royal Canadian Navy – HMCS Haida – made them ‘believe.’

Most people don’t know that Merlyn has a long history of kindness to needy Six Nations children. He coached hockey and baseball teams, and made a special effort to include them by providing transportation to and from practices and games, purchasing skates and other equipment for them and ensuring they were well fed during their time with the team. He fondly remembers treating them to ice cream at the dairy he used to own in Caledonia. As far as Merlyn is concerned he is fighting for the children of Six Nations, too.

Join us for the “Support Randy Fleming” rally on June 20th

I certainly hope that now the event has been ’sanctioned’ by police Canadians from inside and outside Caledonia will come to Caledonia on June 20th to march in support of Randy Fleming. Here are the links in case you missed them in the news release:

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


4 responses to “Merlyn Kinrade made them ‘believe’

  1. One small step for the rights of all.

    Dare I express my profound gratitude to CANACE and the public who have waited so long for even a small crumb of respect from the OPP or the Government. I am truly humbled by all the trauma you have endured, and the willingness to keep going, when those who should have helped have done nothing. The bell of equality in law, however, will also ring for them.

    VoC REPLY: Thank you for your kind words, but it is you who deserve our thanks for fighting this battle in Ipperwash for so many years; for coming to Caledonia to speak at the inaugural March for Freedom on Oct 15/06 and for making the Ipperwash Papers project possible – all so that others in Ontario and Canada might learn from your experiences.

    One day people will know how hard you tried to prevent the suffering of the people in Caledonia from ever occurring. What a shame that ordinary Canadians must carry the burden for cowards who feed at the taxpayers’ trough.

    Readers who don’t know who Mary Lou can check out this article:

    ‘The Strength of a Woman’ – Mary-Lou LaPratte, Ipperwash hero

    Thanks for all your great support and efforts to help the people of Caledonia during the last 3 years; I know it wasn’t easy for you or for Roland. Regards, Mark

  2. Hi Mark
    I still have a hard time believing the OPP have changed their tune but lets hope this time it’s for real. As this event is now “sanctioned” by the OPP, I fully expect to see every one of our local politicians/councilors out there with us on the side of the road in support of Randy.

    A huge thank you has to go out to you, Merlyn, Gary and Jeff for your tireless efforts for the rights of all apathetic Canadians.

    Also a very big thank you to Mary-Lou for all her efforts to aid in this battle. Mary-Lou, your kindness and willingness to help the people of this area has not gone unnoticed and will never be forgotten.

    VoC REPLY: Hi Larry. Thanks for your support along the way, too, especially your kind comments early on when things were tough and we were being smeared and arrested by the OPP. No one can ever accuse you of being one of those who complained while not participating.

    Although I could hardly believe it myself when I heard the news, I actually have more optimism regarding the OPP than I do regarding your elected officials. Haldimand Council as a whole has an uncanny knack for choosing wrong over right at every opportunity they’ve been given to help.

    CAO Boyle told Merlyn our protests are ‘unhelpful’ and ordered that an application for a ‘public event’ permit be sent to Merlyn even though the by-law clearly doesn’t apply to political protests all while he was in communication with the OPP who were going door-to-door getting residents/businesses to sign anti-trespassing agreements so their neighbours could be arrested for carrying a Canadian flag.

    Sloat says we are ‘abusing the Canadian flag’ for personal gain.

    Grice has abandoned his campaign promise to be a strong voice for Caledonia’s victims ever since Fantino threatened council back in April 2007. According to him, he now lives on a ‘quiet corner in a fun little community’ and gee, can’t we all just forget racial policing, the occupation, the crime and the smarmy smokeshacks that are selling cigs to the kids for a while so we can get down to making money for area businesses?

    Boyko wants council to send a letter to Merlyn telling him how unhelpful his protests are.

    John Nolan, the province’s negotiator, has told Merlyn our protests are ‘unhelpful.’

    But, and this is the biggy: none of them have offered a single idea that would be as effective as our flag raising protests. Not one.

    True story: Gary and I are suing Fantino in Small Claims Court for defamation. We’re having a coffee in Cayuga Tim’s with two government lawyers one of whom brings up our Fantino home protest. Then he proceeds to tell us he took a course in university about the psychology of social movements, and tells us, “You know, you guys have to take the high road” – as if we had been the ones terrorizing Caledonia for 3 years!

    After I point out that all our protests were peaceful and legal, including the visit to Fantino’s home, I ask him if, given his extensive education in the field of organizing and promoting social movements, he had any ideas that he thought would be more effective than what we were doing he replies, “Well, not really.”

    I then tell him the government should be thankful that, unlike native protesters, we only use democratic means to to pursue our grievances. But, he doesn’t really get it – politically-correct racism is ingrained in the government mindthink: in their bizzaro world natives are allowed to get violent during their protests, but when non-natives create tension through non-violent protests they are taking the ‘low road.’

    This lawyer isn’t the only one: not one person who has ever criticized Gary McHale/CANACE protests in the last three years has EVER come up with a single suggestion for a protest or technique that would be more effective in achieving the goal of ending racial policing, landclaim lawlessness and the blight of smokeshacks. It’s not that we didn’t like their ideas, it’s that they don’t have any other idea but to criticize ours and make excuses as to why they won’t support them!

    Meanwhile we are the first to support resident-initiated activities by people like Dave Hartless, Doug Fleming, Randy Fleming, and the organizers of the Caledonia Convoy,

    Speaking of which, I got an anonymous message today from someone making all sorts of silly accusations against CANACE. Claims he/she was one of the organizers of the Caledonia Convoy. Too bad the group doesn’t exist anymore. They did one good protest event two years ago (which we fully supported) and then…stopped. Didn’t have a single suggestion for working together. No ideas for protests or methods that might be better than ours. But, they accused me of being ‘arrogant.’ (How arrogant is that! :-)) Well, I’d rather be thought of as arrogant than ineffective and uninvolved. And at least I’ve got the guts to post and act under my real name. I said I’d post the comments if he/she did the same.

    We’ve used lawsuits; petitions; private prosecutions; court orders of Mandamus; peaceful protests; OCCPS complaints; OHRC complaints; and the media. And yes, we went to Fantino’s home – legally and peacefully to demand that he protect the people of Caledonia. One of our most controversial protests – but it was one of the most effective in gathering media coverage.

    I think it is fair to say that Gary McHale and CANACE have been mainly responsible for turning around public & media opinion to see Caledonia residents as the victims instead of a town of racist rednecks who have been oppressing native people for 200 years.

    We’ve met with U.S. government law enforcement agencies to provide evidence to help convict a violent native protester; and we’ve met with federal MPs who have distributed our reports in Ottawa to bureaucrats who, I was personally told, “are running for cover” because of the evidence we have provided on behalf of residents.

    We’ve tried to open communication with Six Nations leaders and been rebuffed.

    We’ve done research and documented crimes in both Caledonia and Ipperwash, but Council (with the exception of Mayor Trainer and Councillor Bartlett) isn’t interested in learning the lessons the work teaches. Instead we get sleazy insults about our integrity from the likes of Sloat.

    If someone has an idea for a protest or a tool that is more effective than the ones we have used to hold the government, police and extremists accountable, I’d like to know what it is!

    If they’re not going to help I wish these cowardly politicians would just stay quietly on the sidelines and keep on sucking their thumbs while the ordinary people do their jobs for them. At least they wouldn’t be making things harder for everyone who IS willing to risk something for the future of their community.

    Although I wouldn’t count on her at the speaker’s podium next Saturday I have to say that the only person on Council willing to publicly defend democratic rights of non-natives is Mayor Trainer and we hear she’s being harassed by certain councillors for doing so. Trainer understands what they do not – that businesses cannot flourish without the rule of law and the presence of justice for her constituents.

    A trip through Gaza would be most illuminating for those who think that compromising the rule of law and democratic freedoms is good for business. I was there in 1978 – before Hamas arrived – and it wasn’t great then!

    The politicians have made themselves completely irrelevant in this struggle. They have learned nothing from history whether it is the sacrifices of Canadians in places like Vimy Ridge, Dieppe, Normandy, Korea and UN missions, or from the civil rights lessons taught at such a high cost by people like Dr. King.

    Unfortunately, I doubt that they will ever have the decency to be ashamed for what they did and did not do in Caledonia when they were needed the most. In my opinion Haldimand Council has proven to be nothing more than a willing collaborator with those who violate our rights, and history should record it so. They have collectively dishonoured every one of us and every Canadian who ever served our country in uniform.

    Oh, but they and other politicians will appear one day. They will crawl out from under their beds only when the victory has been won without them. They will put away their soothers and run in front of the celebration parade pretending they supported the struggle for justice all along.

    We expect nothing from the politicians, but we continue to give them the opportunities to shine as leaders. We will inspire or shame them into action; it’s all up to them which it will be.

    Sorry I went on a bit there, Larry, but I used to believe that we somehow ‘needed’ the politicians on our side and your comment touched a nerve. You can’t believe how liberating it is when you finally grasp the reality that this struggle is in OUR hands, not theirs and that the outcome will be the same with or without them.

    Thanks for listening and writing. Regards, Mark

  3. We had the support of all of our Mayors, deputy Mayors, and councils at Ipperwash over the sixteen years, and you are right Mark, it did not make a difference in the long run.

    They( the Provincial and Federal Government) kept our whole community uninformed, segregated with useless OPP policy and most refused to even acknowledge our Council’s correspondence on the issues.

    We the people are responsible to change the public opinion of what is right and honourable. That shows at the ballot box. The threat of no re-election is the ONLY thing that matters to the Politicians. We found that out two decades ago. No new news there.

    VoC REPLY: You, of all people, should know ML. Mark

  4. William Jensen

    My experience with the OPP who police Tillsonburg is that they are incompetent and can’t be trusted.