UPDATE 1400 EST Jan 23/10: I received a gracious reply from ‘John’ promising to review the info I provided in this post. Posted at the bottom.
UPDATED 1144 EST Jan 23/10
Well, it’s started already folks…
Those opposed to a debate that includes an airing of the tragic lessons learned from the victims of native violence and intimidation in Caledonia and Ipperwash are throwing mud to (try) to smear those of us who believe that true healing and reconciliation can only come about when the rule of law and equality before that law is respected for all citizens – native and non.
Dr. Frances Widdowson, author of the groundbreaking work, ‘Disrobing the Aboriginal Industry,’ a 2008 Donner Book Prize finalist, recently invited Gary McHale and me to speak at her ‘New Directions in Aboriginal Policy’ forum that will be held in Calgary later this year. A self-described “Haudenosaunee citizen” I’ll call ‘John’ published an article that calls for the struggle by native people to remain peaceful and respectful.
Unfortunately, the article’s entire point was to make his readers believe that Ms. Widdowson and her forum shouldn’t be taken seriously because she invited a “thug” who is “inciting violence”:
“…Gary McHale is…a thug [who moved to Caledonia for the purpose] “of inciting violence.“
‘John,’ Jan 21/10:
I sent the comment below to the woefully misinformed ‘John’ and to Dr. Widdowson. Hopefully, he will have the good grace to be embarassed, apologize and reach out so we can build some bridges with a productive debate. NOTE: hyperlinks shown thusly [LINK] were not in my original comment:
I apologize for the length, but you have made some statements that deserve to be addressed in a manner which enables readers to access evidence and judge for themselves if we are, as you say, acting in a manner which appeals to the best of us:
A. A THUG INCITING VIOLENCE?: As someone who has worked with Gary McHale on a daily basis for more than 3.5 years I really must take exception to your characterization of him:
“…Gary McHale is…a thug” [who moved to Caledonia for the purpose] “of inciting violence.”
[The comment I left on ‘John’s’ website included the complete offending paragraph from ‘John’s blog that I originally included in my comment. I have replaced it here with the shortened sentence which captures the essence of his attempt to smear Dr. Widdowson and her forum by attacking Gary McHale. I have also removed other minor content which might identify him or his site. I have no desire to assist the writer of such falsehoods in obtaining an audience for his website which, as of yesterday, had but two posts on it.]
These repugnant comments about Gary McHale have no grounding in fact. He/we and our organization Canadian Advocates for Charter Equality (www.CANACE.ca
) have a track record of advocating peaceful protest against racial policing and the terrible native lawlessness that has victimized thousands in Caledonia and elsewhere – including native people.