Category Archives: Crimes Against Democracy

Haldimand Council, Mayor and Minister of Aboriginal Affairs in secret talks following ‘Caledonia Eight’ arrests

A reliable source says that secret meetings have been taking place in Haldimand County regarding the occupied Douglas Creek Estates following the arrests of the Caledonia Eight on Dec 03/11 for ‘trespassing’ on a county road that passes through the occupation site. 

On Monday Dec 19/11 Haldimand Council held an in camera meeting to discuss the Douglas Creek Estates.

On Wednesday, Dec 21/11 Ontario’s Minister of Aboriginal Affairs visited Haldimand County to meet with Mayor Ken Hewitt for another private meeting to discuss the Douglas Creek Estates. 

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Gerofsky re Caledonia Eight – Dear Prime Minister: ‘Just plain unfair and unconstitutional’ to favour violent groups

 Letter to the Prime Minister, Ontario’s Premier, the OPP and others by a member of the Never Again Group, several members of which attended the Dec 03/11 march where the Caledonia Eight were arrested…
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Subject: Caledonia on my mind                     
Sent: Sun 12/4/2011 2:15
 
 
111203 Caledonia 8 arrests - Bonnie Stephens PHOTO: BLOGWRATH.COM, CLICK FOR MORE PHOTOS/STORY.

111203 Caledonia 8 arrests - Bonnie Stephens PHOTO: BLOGWRATH.COM, CLICK FOR MORE PHOTOS/STORY.

Dear Prime Minister Harper and Premier McGuinty:

I am a law-abiding citizen and have never had any reason to give much thought to policing in Canada. I took it for granted that everyone was treated fairly, according to the same laws applied in the same way for everyone. Our police, I assumed, are well-paid and professional in carrying out their duties. I also assumed that there was a fire-wall between the politicians and the police.
 
Recent events in the past several years in Caledonia have shaken my complacency because in Caledonia the law has become a political matter rather than a policing matter. Some people have become the untouchables (the native community) regardless of their behaviour, lawlessness, displays of violence and objectives. Taxpayer money has gone into a huge appeasement package that will encourage more of this type of “occupation” of land that is really no longer in dispute because settlements and restitution has been made in the distant past and there is a statute of limitations on land claims that must be considered as part of any big picture. New targets are now being pursued by the native community (like in the Dundas Valley Conservation Area). These urban green spaces are being claimed as hunting grounds now precisely because the pursuit of racial policing has set a disruptive and dangerous precedent in Caledonia.
 

VIDEO: The Caledonia Eight Arrested

UPDATED Dec 09/11 — CANACE’s Director of Multimedia Production Jeff Parkinson has released a short movie that tells the story of the arrests of the Caledonia 8 on the Douglas Creek Estates on Dec 03/11.

Jeff himself was arrested, but handed the camera over to Christine McHale when it was his turn line to wear handcuffs so she could continue documenting the scene. Jeff is shown kneeling in the photo below.

111203 Jeff Parkinson (kneeling) with the rest of the Caledonia 8 at OPP's Caledonia sub-station following arrests. PHOTO BY STUART LAUGHTON

The Caledonia Eight (L-R): Randy Fleming, Doug Fleming, Mark Vandermaas, Gary McHale, Jeff Parkinson (kneeling), Jack Van Halteren (w/hat), Merlyn Kinrade, Bonnie Stephens. PHOTO by Stuart Laughton, taken at OPP Caledonia sub-station after arrests.

TRIVIA: You’ll see a rather humorous scene where I’m bent over trying to get into the paddy wagon but the door is too small for my shoulders and it was almost impossible to twist sideways with my hands cuffed. As you watch me try to get through the door you’ll hear me say, “If the van doesn’t fit you must acquit” (with apologies to Johnny Cochran).

MORE TRIVIA: While we were inside the van Jeff asked if anyone knew any civil rights songs so I led the seven of us (Gary McHale was taken by other means of transport) in ‘We Shall Overcome,’ so that’s my voice you first hear singing from inside the van. I didn’t see Bonnie so I assumed she had been taken away with Gary, but she was, in fact, with us in another part of the paddywagon:

There was a separate, small cell built into the van directly behind the front passenger side seat.  I was sitting in there, but I could see out because there were rows of small holes in the side, sliding door that closed off the approximately 4′ x 4′ “cell” where I was.  I could hear you guys behind me in the back.  I heard you talking to each other, but I couldn’t make out all the words.  I heard you singing and I joined in, and I heard Randy Fleming most clearly, so that might help you figure out where I was in relation to yourself.  I think that you were on the driver side, so I was across from you. I might add that I was quite proud of my calmness because I am very claustrophobic.” 

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CAUGHT ON TAPE: Native occupier threatens non-native woman in Caledonia’s ‘no-go zone’

UPDATE: VIDEO: The Caledonia Eight Arrested

CANACE’s videographer Jeff Parkinson caught a threat made against Bonnie Stephens by a native occupier while she was waiting for police to arrest her during our Saturday protest in Caledonia where eight of us were arrested for ‘trespassing’ on a Haldimand County road. The man can be heard clearly saying, “Come again and the cops won’t be here to protect you.”

  • CANACE video, Dec 03/11: If you come again, the cops won’t be here to protect you [VIDEO, 0.03]

VoC Comment

Even after 5 years of work in Caledonia, even after I and my associates were smeared and assaulted (several put in the hospital) and our property stolen and destroyed by Six Nations militants who ripped apart the community I must confess to still being surprized at just how much violence permeates the attitudes of some of the occupiers. Imagine – threatening a non-native woman for simply daring to stand on a county road! A road that has been declared off-limits to non-natives (and police!) by violent racists whose delusions are backed up by our province’s police force and the Ontario government.  

I am reminded of Christie Blatchford’s observation:

“…the law in Haldimand County operates as the law in America’s Deep South once worked, where there was one law for the white man, who could break it with impunity, and another for the black man. In Haldimand County, since the occupation began, there has been one law for natives and another for non-natives.“

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The Caledonia 8 – arrested in non-Native ‘no-go zone’ occupation site

111203 The Caledonia 8 at OPP's Caledonia sub-station following arrests. PHOTO by Stuart Laughton.

UPDATED – VoiceofCanada editor/Caledonia Victims Project founder Mark Vandermaas was one of eight people arrested yesterday while walking on the occupied Douglas Creek Estates (DCE) in Caledonia.  The protest was organized by Canadian Advocates for Charter Equality (CANACE) to draw attention to the racially-segregated site owned by the Ontario government and Haldimand County, a ‘no-go zone’ for non-natives and police.

According to Gary McHale, Executive Director of CANACE, the goal of the protest was to remind the OPP, the McGuinty government and Haldimand County that citizens will never surrender their freedoms and rights to OPP racial policing policies.

111203 Caledonia 8 - Bonnie Stephens. Threatened by native occupier on Douglas Creek Estates 'no-go zone.' Click image to read story.Rule of law activists from London, Richmond Hill, Binbrook and Norfolk lined up quietly with Caledonia/Haldimand residents to wait their turn to refuse OPP orders to leave the road into DCE. We were then arrested, handcuffed and loaded into a paddy wagon which took us to the Caledonia OPP sub-station where we were issued tickets and released. The photo above of the ‘Caledonia 8’ was taken in front of the station after our release. Additional photos can be found below.

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David Strutt election cartoon: Lest we forget CALEDONIA

Many thanks to artist David Strutt  – who also happens to be the Freedom Party candidate for Durham – for remembering what the other candidates for the major parties have completely ignored during this election: the billions of dollars lost and the thousands of people traumatized due to Liberal refusal to uphold the rule of law in Caledonia.

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Caledonia good news catch-up

applause.jpgI had no idea of just how time-consuming the Blue Beret vigil would be when I started it. Not an exaggeration to say that I’ve been going on 3-4 hours sleep per night trying to keep up with all the writing and behind the scenes developments that I can’t talk about, all the while monitoring and reporting on the stunning developments in the Caledonia crisis. Normally I like to cross-post material from the Caledonia Victims Project here on VoC, but while I was covering it in my daily updates to the Blue Beret vigil, I just didn’t have time to re-post.

That was why I was sending out updates on the vigil to my ‘Caledonia list’ and if you were following them you might have gotten a sense of just how related the issues were as the vigil progressed. If not, go back and have a re-read. Or, you can catch up here. 🙂 

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