Joint Press Release by CANACE and Caledonia Victims Project – Jan 28, 2011
Truth and Reconciliation Rally in Caledonia
on Sunday Feb 27 at 1 p.m., Caledonia Lions Hall Park
CANACE, founded by Gary McHale, and the Caledonia Victims Project, founded by Mark Vandermaas, are holding a Truth and Reconciliation Rally in Caledonia as part of their on-going efforts to bring about lasting peace, mutual respect and the restoration of the Rule of Law.
All who have read Christie Blatchford’s book Helpless are aware of the victimization of Haldimand residents by a small minority of Native extremists and by the OPP who used systemic racial policing practices to target law abiding citizens instead of upholding the law against those who chose criminal behaviour instead of peaceful protest and courts.
It has now been three months since Helpless was published, yet the OPP, the Ontario government and Six Nations steadfastly refuse to acknowledge or discuss – let alone apologize for – their responsibility in victimizing innocents who included Native people as well as non-Native. It is truly sadening that while the residents of Haldimand County desire to move forward and put the past behind them those responsible for tearing their community apart refuse to aid in that process.
It has always been our goal to help bring about healing through a realistic process based on honesty, justice and respect for all human beings. As early as September 29, 2008, Mark Vandermaas and Merlyn Kinrade (representing CANACE) appeared before Brantford Council to explain the vision we called ‘Reconciliation: the CANACE Path.’ Council was provided a visual representation in the form of a simple but illustrative step diagram by the same name [LINK] which was also included in Vandermaas’ 2010 presentation at Mount Royal University entitled ‘Listening to Victims: A Fresh Approach to Healing and Reconciliation.’ [LINK]
Gary McHale’s 2010 Christmas message for Caledonia’s Regional News expressed the need to keep the Christmas spirit alive throughout the year via a Truth and Reconciliation process. [LINK]
“It would be unreasonable to suggest Natives should simply move on or that Governments have no obligation to deal with the true experiences of Native people. In the same way, anyone claiming we should simply overlook the abuses committed by the McGuinty Government, the OPP and the violence caused by Native protesters are, in fact, acting in a way counterproductive to Truth and Reconciliation.”
One cannot have lasting peace or heal the deep psychological damage from the past 5 years under the banner of a lie. We would all agree that a family torn apart by an alcoholic parent cannot start healing while the family continues to deny there is a problem.
Read the rest of this news release:
- Caledonia Victims Project, Jan 28/11: JOINT NEWS RELEASE: ‘Truth & Reconciliation’ Rally in Caledonia
- Jan 28/11: JOINT NEWS RELEASE: ‘Truth & Reconciliation’ Rally in Caledonia Feb 27th [PDF]
- Feb 24/11: LETTER TO CHRISTIAN LEADERS re Truth and Reconciliation Rally in Caledonia on Sunday Feb. 27 at 1p.m. [NOTE: My email had an earlier, pre-release PDF version attached]
- Feb 23/11: Queen’s Park ‘Truth & Reconciliation’ news conference
- VoiceofCanada, Feb 24/11: ‘Where are the Christians?’ A Donkey’s Search for God and Justice in Caledonia
Mark Vandermaas, Editor