100 Dolls to promote a vision of the Aboriginal women who are missing or have been murdered, to one of dignity and honor. British Columbia must stop housing conditions that are conducive to Native Women being hunted down and killed.

Monday, January 30, 2006

Native Women's Fan Club - NEW!!!!!!!!!

This was a fun night. Sunday, January 29th, 2006, met with Bevery Jacobs, President of Native Women's Association of Canada, at a mutual friends house for dinner. It was a wonderful evening, of five, strong Native women collaborating on life, laughter, and yummy food.

I can't say enough how much this night meant to me. As a native woman, part of the struggles I have had to overcome, was from within the Aboriginal community, in addition to "outside" forces. The discussions we had that night laid that out as one of the commonalities experience by all five. There are few safe habours in society, that the three of the five being single mothers, not further burdened with additional difficulties of being Native woman.

We had decided that night that we were going to form a Native Women's Fan Club. Yay!

The way things are now, are not how they always were nor how they always will be. As a Native woman, I have hope that this will come to pass.

I want to lay to rest the idea that the missing/murdered Aboriginal women of Canada chose their fates, and I will never be happy with societies concensus that these ladies are all "drugged out whores". I want this a day (Spring Equinox) to help support those who have been weakened by this negative view instilled by society.

Once again, I reiterate, these are our children, sisters, aunties, mothers, grandmothers, friends................and if nothing else matters, then they were at least citizens of this country, which they should have been given the judicial fairness afforded to all citizens, including the search for justice against those who did wrongs against them.

The fact that they were treated less than, indicates that, in particular, these Aboriginal women are thought of less then. For the generalized view of those that have fallen, to be carried over to those Native women still alive, indicates to this very much alive and kicking Native women, that there are those who must think the same of me.

And if not for my sisters who have fallen, than be it for my daughter, that I will fight like hell to make societies view towards Native women transform. From a negative, degraded view, to one where the contributions in the creation of this country are openly acknowledged for their value and worth. That Native Woman are valued and have worth. For those who live in freedom today conveniently choose to not be aware, this privelige was given in a large part by the hands, backs and bodies of Native women.

That their ancestors could live yesterday, now Native women should die today.


Saturday, January 28, 2006


In the course of updating my msn messenger list, and getting rid of many unwanted email addy's - I found myself with many email addy's of people who have either stopped talking to me, or I have stopped talking to, or both.

I recently updated my msn profile...my name, picture, information. The new system got me thinking about this type of exchange of information, particularily between Native people. Of course, I speak of no one else but myself when I say that.

I had the mindset that because I had nothing to hide, I didn't have to "fear" anything. That by being truthful and transparent, I was somehow immune to some of the horror stories you hear about. Things are not quite so simple though. It's not fear that drives my new feelings about things, but what people do with the information you put out there. Words have the capacity to harm, to do damange to fragile ego's - especially my own.

I do not want to hurt anybody with my words, even if they mis-interpret them. Reading only words can be interpreted in whatever way you want, dependent on what emotions you have reading it. I have mis-interpreted things I have read, or agonized over words I have sent "out there" into cyber space. Once you press that send button, the one thought that I keep in mind (although sometimes too lossely), is something that was taught to me as a child.

Growing up in Alberta and on a quiet sunny winter day, I was told that whatever you spell in the snow you can never take back. What does that mean exactly? Or that spoken words put "out there", you can't take them back. I have experienced this first hand through this msn messenger system, or email system. It's the new way of writing in the snow.

Things I have put out there, I know I will never be able to take back. The unfamiliarity of it's powerful impact is now known to me, but there were times when it wasn't. I put things from the heart - including when my heart was troubled, or hurt and I had faith that whoever I meant to read those words, would somehow understand. I respected the reader would give me some benefit to know that my words were never meant to hurt or scare, or cause bad feelings. I trusted that, you as the reader, would be able to read the feelings and emotions I put into writing the messages.

This is so far from the truth. Words do not convey emotion, or at least perhaps I did not put the correct sequence of words together to evoke emotion, but as I wrote, I put the emotion into the keyboard. Can you feel what I am feeling right now? Probably not. I cannot even begin to guess what emotion you may feel reading this. If you like long winded blogs - you might be able to read some sort of emotion and think this is coming from my heart, if you think I am running on, which I can be prone to do, you might think this is a bit annoying.

There is emotion. There is emotion I think into every word you put "out there" in any medium. If you put no words, that in itself is saying something. But once you decide to press that send button, you transmit the emotions you put into the keyboard, for if one does not receive that emotion directly through the elctronic message, another will. You are not sending words, but rather, emotions.

I think that is the message from the writing in the snow story. Emotions carry the power behind the words. What you evoke reading may not be what I put into typing, and vise versa. But at some point, those emotions will transmit somewhere.

Thursday, January 26, 2006


This morning, I will be participating in a teleconference with an invite by the Canadian Jewish Congress - Pacific Region. Mr. Weintraub is interested in one key area which would be lovely if it could ever happen, which would be a day to recognize the contributions made to Canada by Native Women - specifically the Spring Equinox.

It was in talking to Mr. Weintraub that the idea developed. Taking from what I was discussing - the fact that the early traders and nations and thus the development of the fur trade etc, was really instrumental BECAUSE of Native women. How so? Well, the division of labour for starts. Just on this basis, you would have to reconsider the whole scenerio of it as just being a man's world back then.

Native women skinned and tanned the animals instrumental for the fur trade to exist.

Then you would have to consider the whole relationship building process. One question that comes to mind, is why wasn't the "overtaking" of Canada more bloody? Now, I really do not want to imply that the Woman were solely responsible for Turtle Island's being "overtaken", but what I would like to suggest is this, in the course of the development of Canada, Native women played a key role in it's development.

If you consider how any political event happens, outside of total revolution based on violence, it's usually a subtle, quiet, sign on the dotted line event. Thus too, that in the early days of Canada, the Native men were making their "political" moves based partly on "a la facon du pays" or "marriage alliances", or as Sylvia Van Kirk says - "created reciprocal social ties", just as the traders were making "political" moves on similiar grounds, each doing business with each other, for the most part - especially in the early early days - on mutual trust based on survival.

Today - survival is still the question. The difference is that, the traders of the early days, do not have the same level of mutual trust or respect for dealing with the "natives".

From 1670 at the founding of the Hudson's Bay Company to 1820 when the Anglican missionairies established "a la facon du pays" immoral and debased, did the Native women enjoy freedoms in her lands (this area open to debate on definition of freedom, but in the day, the cultural roles dictated woman had certain roles to fullfill entailing much manual labour).

Since this time, the struggle to establish any type of position in the new society, or even respect for her contribtutions for keeping both her nation and the early colonizers alive, have been ignored.

Read: Sylvia Van Kirk, Susan Sleeper-Smith, I would like to read a book called: Fools Crow by James Welch - I did read a review by Barbara Cook on Fools Crow, which looks at his book from a feminist's perspective and applies it directly at the Native woman.

The one thing that I have found, personally, is the reality that Native woman do not have an established "position" in society today. It is an interesting thought to think that Native women in Canada are suppressed. But when you consider that from 1820 on, the religious institutions, in one fashion or another, dictated different norms based on religious values, taught the "settlers" how to treat Native women. The opportunity to establish any grounding for Native women was lost. It was suppressed before it was "allowed" to exist.

I do not want to be "allowed" to have a position in society. As a Native woman, my brown skin and my ancestors have given me this opportunity to say something today. Which I will, loud and proud.

I sound like such an activist!