Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The Metis Jig Impossible

Aug.13, 2013
    We  got a letter a few years ago in which the writer objected to our views because  “The Europeans have already apologised to the natives and you can’t do a thing about it.” It was signed “ Parish Coordinators.” I knew this woman to have been a former nun, and at one time a devout Catholic in a Catholic Church who had priests not parish coordinators..
    I could not understand how all the Europeans or former Europeans got together and agreed to apologise for anything, nor was it clear for what they were apologising and why they were apologising to people who had some ancestors who had arrived in North America after 1800 B.C. and had other ancestors who had arrived after 1100 A.D.. If she had said some priests or some civil servants in government had apologised, it still would not have been clear as to the why, what, when and by what authority.
    How does a Metis accept an apology from “whites” to “natives”/ A metis is by defintion someone who is part white and part native and doesn’t  have a treaty card. I have only met one Treaty Cree in 47 years who claimed to be completely native. Her last name was McKay. Virtually all people with treaty cards are in reality as metis or mixed as those who spell Metis with a capital” M.”  How do these people know which ancestor to hate when they’re in the victim mode?  Are they supposed to resent that their white grandfather married their darker grandmother and accept the apology because they exist?  Or are they victims because their high cheek boned grandmorther from Sweden married their high cheek boned gramdfather from Overshoes Lake?
    How does a Metis know if he or she is the Apologiser or the Apologisee?Is he supposed to cring with shame over the alleged sins of the white race or pout with downward eyes and stooped shoulders as acknowledged victim? Does the left leg apologise to the right leg? The right side of the brain apologise to the brain’s left side?  Or are all the cells of the boday suppose to quiver alternately from naughty to nice on the Politically Fashionable scale?
    Oh.You’re suppose to look at the book from Pemican Press that lists who got scrip after the Riel Rebellion of 1870. If an ancestor or two got $120 from the government you are Metis and therefor deserving of redress. What if that ancestor spent the time rolling bandages and married a soldier who rode the CPR to help Macdonald put down the fuss? Many, many metis opposed Riel and Dumont and refused to fight or fought with the Government forces. Are they allowed Metis victim status or are they now considered traitors to their real “country” called Metis Nation?
    What if you are a Catholic first and a metis second and think that the three murdered   French priests at Frog Lake should be considered Martyrs to the Faith? What if you are a person who loves historical truth and believe their murders by Rebellion forces in 1885 should be admitted and made known? What if you think the whole story should be told whether or not it fits the myth that it was Metis vs. White, Catholic vs. Protestant, French vs. English?
    The one thing that the non- treaty Metis had and has over their Treaty metis cousins is that they were compelled to look after themselves. They did not get ready government handouts so they were innovators, adept, businessmen, ready to learn , ready to work, willing to swing from culture to culture and willing to be Canadian first. Now some socialists who happen to be somewhat tanned are working to destroy that initiative and make the Metis another Canadian captive “ nation” within a nation.   Gay