Toby Barrett, MPP
Dear Mr. Barrett,
Today I had the distasteful experience of reading your assistant’s insulting email about our invitation to give Tim Hudak and the party the opportunity to march in Caledonia with us against racial policing so you all can share in the positive media coverage we are generating on this issue. After investing more than five years of my life working alongside other citizen volunteers to honour the oath I swore as a soldier to defend Canada so long ago, I scarcely know what to say to a ‘Conservative’ MPP whose long time assistant denigrates our efforts to hold McGuinty accountable as “Just more of Gary’s same ol’ shit – at least it keeps him busy!!”
I appreciate that Rob called Gary to apologize, but why did he bother? Clearly his attitude reflects the party’s. The only thing I suspect he’s really sorry for is forwarding a copy of the email to Gary McHale in error.
Some Canadians have paid a heavy price to give you opportunity after opportunity to take a stand against McGuinty’s racial policing, but your leader won’t even come to Caledonia, let alone work with us to develop policy and strategy to ensure there will be no future victims. We presented our ‘Caledonia Act’ recommendations to you, based on our years of full time, volunteer work in Caledonia so you could learn from our experience fighting lawlessness and racial policing in and out of the courts. We received no response, no follow-up request to help the party move them forward.
As the leader of the Ipperwash Papers project I am utterly dismayed that during the 5 years since we first released the 400 pages of documents on March 14/07 at Queen’s Park (just months before Sam Gualtieri was nearly murdered in the Stirling subdivision) the Ontario PC Party still refuses – to this day! – to hold McGuinty accountable for his use of the racially-skewed Ipperwash Inquiry recommendations to ‘justify’ why the people of Caledonia have been ignored and allowed to suffer via an illegal ‘peacekeeping’ mission on Canadian soil.
Despite being the MPP that made the media studio available to us, not once did you or anyone in your party rise during the last five years to say:
“Mr. McGuinty: you know full well that the Ipperwash Inquiry did not allow residents to testify about the native violence to which they were subjected; that the inquiry did NOT study the issue of preventing native violence against innocent residents, and THAT is the reason not one of the 100 recommendations has anything specifically to do with preventing such violence. Your use of these dangerously flawed recommendations to conduct racial policing is an affront to Caledonia’s victims, and to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. When will you call an end to the illegal peacekeeping mission in Caledonia and order the OPP to obey the Police Services Act?”
You even remained silent after Senator Bob Runciman (Ontario’s Solicitor General during the Ipperwash crisis) denounced the so-called peacekeeping recommendations of the Inquiry on July 12/11. What are you waiting for: more injuries? More psychologically-damaged people? More vandalism? Please tell me how many people would have to die or be injured before the Ontario PC Party would be willing to tell Dalton McGuinty you had finally found your collective spines, and would no longer be silent co-conspirators in his awful crimes against democracy?
Five years ago ordinary citizens – including Gary McHale, the man your assistant so dismissively denigrated – used their own resources and their commitment to good citizenship to gather irrefutable evidence for you and your party to use to ensure that Ipperwash Inquiry would never be able to be used to justify the lawlessness in Haldimand County. Your silence was deafening.
I have tried my very best to be patient for 5 years as I begged you repeatedly to speak out, hoping upon hope that your party would finally expose McGuinty’s Ipperwash Inquiry sham. The callous attitude it has shown to people who have done their best to give you the tools and information needed to push forward with a realistic plan to resolve the Caledonia issue shows the party has no intention of opening the debate by slaughtering the sacred Ipperwash cow. Unfortunately, no solution is possible until and unless the Ipperwash Inquiry is utterly discredited.
I cannot be silent any longer. If any Ontario citizen is hurt or killed because another community falls victim to yet another illegal McGuinty ‘peacekeeping’ mission to appease lawlessness against innocents, the victims’ blood will be on your hands not on the hands of the Caledonia Eight and our supporters.
We did our duty as citizens; instead of demeaning our work perhaps you and your party should finally do yours so we can move forward to a solution based on truth, justice and apologies from those responsible instead of ignoring the Ipperwash elephant in the room that is surely going to get someone killed or seriously injured sooner or later.
Leader, The Ipperwash Papers Project
Founder, Caledonia Victims Project
TO ONTARIO MPPS
I know I speak for Gary McHale when I say that we stand ready – as we have for 5 years – to assist you in understanding the true facts about the Ipperwash Inquiry recommendations and the dangerously-flawed process from which they were derived. May I suggest you begin here:
- Regional News (Caledonia) series, Mark Vandermaas, Gary McHale, Mary Lou LaPratte, Feb 1-25/09: McGuinty’s Ipperwash Cover-Up: The Caledonia Legacy
- ‘Caledonia: No More Nightmares’ event, Ottawa, March 22/11, Mark Vandermaas presentation, Caledonia Myths & Policy Issues: An Illegal Peacekeeping Mission on Canadian Soil [VIDEO] [speaker’s notes, incl. citations PDF, 36p]
- The Ipperwash Papers project: IpperwashPapers.ca
- CANACE/Caledonia Victims Project recommendations: ‘The Caledonia Act’ [PDF, 4p]
- Rob Willet (asst to MPP Toby Barrett) email, Feb 28/12: “Just more of Gary’s same ol’ shit – at least it keeps him busy!!”
- CANACE/Caledonia Victims Project news release, Feb 22/12: Caledonia 8 invite PC leader Tim Hudak to march in Caledonia against racism [PDF
- VoiceofCanada, Feb 13/12: Queen’s Park news conference — NGOs stand with Caledonia activists for release of Caledonia Act recommendations to end racial policing
- Caledonia Victims Project, July 14/12: Thank you note to Senator Bob Runciman: FIRST to denounce Ipperwash Inquiry ‘peacekeeping’ recommendations
- GaryMcHale.ca: About Gary
- Caledonia Victims Project: About – Mark Vandermaas
- Toronto Sun, Feb 28/12: Tory staffer ‘hit the wrong button’ on e-mail to Caledonia activist
- MooseFM Haldimand County, Feb 28/12: Sixth anniversary of the Caledonia occupation today “Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Toby Barrett says there is little hope of action from the McGuinty government and local residents must continue to pressure elected officials to act.”