A post about Canadian Treaties by Kelsey

I realize I am a bit late in writing this because Treaties Recognition Week was the first week of November, but the ignorance I found in my ANTH*3670 Indigenous People’s discussion thread has pushed me to share my response on a larger platform. I wanted to share to Storyteller because I feel that people who read these submissions want to learn through other individual’s experiences. Myself, being of Indigenous background, have had to deal with classmates who do not understand Canadian’s history with its Indigenous population. This can sometimes be very frustrating to me, but I also realize the oppressed history of the Residential School System legacy is to blame. For this exact reason, this is why I believe education is extremely important.

Teacher Discussion Question: Are We Really Treaty People?

Student Answer:
We Are Not The Product Of Treaties.
I would argue that the average Canadian is not the product of treaties so much as we are the natural conquerors. Indigenous people are the ones who abide by the limits treaties place. The average Canadian does not concern themselves with any particular treaty and if all treaties where suddenly destroyed it would not effect the life of the average Canadian but it would cause a crisis in the indigenous community in Canada. Treaties have been more of a way for Europeans to legitimize their conquering to new lands and the negotiate a system in which the indigenous peoples are essentially bought out so that they do not have to be conquered by force. Is this system the equal, no, but should it be, no. Indigenous peoples and Europeans where not at an equal balance of power historically or presently and it is only right that the more powerful decide the system of institution that will govern the lands. The treatment of indigenous peoples is not meant to be equal it is meant to be fair and many of the treaties have proven to be fair and those that where done through unfair means are resolved through the court system of the Canadian government, the dominant power, which is willing to accept its mistakes of unfair treatment if they have been fairly proven.

My Response:
Continue reading “A post about Canadian Treaties by Kelsey”

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Jobim Novak’s Lyrics about Gun Violence

The other day someone died outside of my school
The event had me spinning, man I felt like a fool
Cuz I remembered how I used to glorify using tools
A rebel without a cause, hittin’ blunts playing pool
The truth, is he bled where I usually hang
I was lucky to not have been there to be hearing them bangs
Doin my thang blessed, I was safe in my class
Til I hears someone say that they heard 15 blasts
I couldn’t believe it, it was just like a dream
I was lucky that I wasn’t outside with my team
The dudes lit him up, then jumped in a truck
I thanked god for saving us, praisin our luck
But the guy lay there, bloody and bruised
His soul went out, like it was a blown out fuse
It’s fucked that it happened so close to home
To the place where I learn, to the streets that I roam

I remember the day, when I heard Grimmie died
That shit broke my heart, man I’m not gonna lie
So young, so precious, wit a voice as a gift
liked to put on her songs cuz they gave me a lift
She was my age, born in the same year as me
I still think all the time, of what she could be
But she’s gone, and I can’t really turn back the clocks
Can’t knock away the gun that they all tried to block
The shit makes me wonder, about my own fate
Like if I might getting taken by somebody’s hate
Fans can be nuts, this has happened before
Like what happened to John Lennon, back in the days of yore
I often wonder, if musics the life I’m gon’ lead
If the stage is for me, or just for me to leave
I like to believe, peeps are inherently good
But those thoughts lay in the shadow, cloaked by my hood

“My Self-Harm Never Involved a Razor” by Kristine Harwood

“Have you ever been treated for an eating disorder?” My counsellor’s words were ringing in my ears as if she had screamed it. Moments before, I had inadvertently admitted I hadn’t eaten anything solid in four days. My mind began racing. An eating disorder? Me? ME?! Someone who is all about body love, acceptance, and health at any size, an eating disorder? Someone who had supported my friends through very real, painful bouts with eating issues? Sure, I could be a bit critical of myself at times, but who isn’t? I didn’t have an eating disorder. As I sat flailing for the words to reject her question, her eyes softened and she kindly suggested: “I think you’re suffering from anorexia and bulimia, and I think you’ve been self-harming for a very long time.”

Continue reading ““My Self-Harm Never Involved a Razor” by Kristine Harwood”

Social justice and religion – where and how do they connect? By Jamie Lupia

I grew up skeptical about religion because I have seen the harm it has done when encountered from a judgmental lens. I have seen the hate it spreads and the people it oppresses. I’ve seen anti-abortion protests on the streets of Toronto, shameful Christian signs about how the gays will go to Hell. I’ve seen it all. I was raised in a Roman Catholic household, and in return, placed in a Catholic school in which I was not proud to go to. Last year when I began a journey with my partner Caleb, who is a devoted and passionate Christian, I really took it upon myself to open up Christianity and to reflect about what identifying as Christian entails and if it was something I could be proud of. The only way to do this was to fully educate myself on the religion itself. I just wanted to share some of my thoughts in hopes to allow people to see that yes, there are people from all religions that hate and do harm — but that it should not reflect on the religion, but rather displaced as an improper reading of spirituality. With all religions being equal and incredibly close in morals, I will use the bible specifically to discuss this connection due to access and knowledge, as well as personal connection.

The first stigma I had about devoted Christians was that they were all homophobic, and that if I were to outwardly identify as Christian, that I’d be seen as harmful and hateful. Supporting human rights — by default outwardly and passionately supporting LGBTQ+ rights, I was scared to what I’d find out about what the bible says about this. What did I find out? Continue reading “Social justice and religion – where and how do they connect? By Jamie Lupia”

A Story about Depression by Lavinia

I’ve been cooking up the courage to post something like this for a very long time, because I think it’s important for people to read.

Since starting University in September of 2014, I was diagnosed with severe clinical depression. I had walked around with the weight of it since before starting high school. It asserted itself into my life through a series of fights with my parents, failed friendships, bullying others, closeted insecurities, avoidance of parties, skipped classes, skipped track practices, skipped cadet events, more fights with my parents- and more. Most evenings I spent during my formative teen years behind my closed bedroom door alone, thinking about how I was worthless, annoying, stupid, fat, ugly, a bad friend, a bad sister, a bad daughter- and I believed this was how everyone felt when they were alone behind closed doors. I saw no point in growing up. I once told a friend that I had no image of myself at 20, because if this is life then I don’t want to be doing it for that long. I interpreted these things as the awkward parts of adolescence; those bits of life everyone has, and I considered it average. But the severity of these beliefs I cycled through my brain was the abnormal part.

The rate at which these negative thoughts multiplied as I got older began getting out of hand, and that’s where I differ. I absolutely hated myself inside and out, and believed the rest of the world walked around feeling that way, too. It wasn’t until a conversation with my first year roommate when I learned that insecurities are normal, utter self-hatred is not. I went to see a counsellor for the first time. She suggested I speak with a doctor, and I wrote her off as a conformist, a corrupted big-pharma worshipping sellout, and I didn’t go back until a year later, when I completely broke down again in November of 2015.

Continue reading “A Story about Depression by Lavinia”

Polytechnique Remembrance Post by Jamie Lupia

December 6th, 1989, at the École Polytechnique in Montreal, 14 women were shot to death, 10 were wounded, and any man that tried to help was shot as well. A murderer who does not deserve to be named went into a classroom with a rifle and ordered all men to leave and the women to stay. Many of the men who obeyed the perpetrator committed suicide later on due to feelings of guilt for abandoning the women. The reason for all this? The man claimed to have hated “feminists”. He hated the radical idea that men and women could be seen as equal.

Take a moment of silence today because women matter. Take a moment of silence because antifeminism still exists. Take a moment of silence because it could have been your daughter, sister, mother, friend, partner. Take a moment of silence because these women were victims of hate. Take a moment of silence for Geneviève Bergeron, for Hélène Colgan, for Nathalie Croteau, for Barbara Daigneault, for Anne-Marie Edward, for Maud Haviernick, for Maryse Laganière, for Maryse Leclair, for Anne-Marie Lemay, for Sonia Pelletier, for Michèle Richard, for Annie St-Arneault, for Annie Turcotte, for Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz, and their families and friends. Take a moment of silence to reflect on the importance of not doing any harm, especially not based on gender, class, race, ability, sexuality, and religion. Take a moment of silence because feminism in NOT the F word.

STOP VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN.