Monthly Archives: March 2010

Anti-Racists 2, Gary McHale & CANACE 0

Anti-racists scored another decisive victory over Gary McHale this Sunday when more than 40 anti-racist activists joined about 30 of McHale’s supporters for the March 28th “Anti-Racism” rally. The anti-racists held signs stating their opposition to McHale’s approach in Caledonia, but they stood by quietly waiting for McHale and his followers to begin their rally, having made clear before hand that they had no intentions of disrupting the rally or stopping it from taking place.

The following is some video footage showing what happened. Higher quality versions of these videos are forthcoming.

1. Merlin Kinrade uses his megaphone to speak to the quiet and peaceful crowd about why he is unable to speak to the quiet and peaceful crowd. Doug Fleming then takes the megaphone, and like Kinrade continues without interruption to say his thing. Then McHale comes on the scene to blather on to the media — explaining rather incredibly that he is going to charge the OPP for nuisance because they didn’t break up a peaceful rally to separate the two groups.

2. The real reason that McHale didn’t want to continue his rally is because he is afraid that the people that he brings out to his rally will get another opinion on the matter. The FNSWG encouraged its members to talk as much as possible in a spirit of peaceful engagement with people from Caledonia, and here is the result of some of our conversations. As you can see both the people that we brought to the rally and the Caledonia residents are quite able to conduct themselves peacefully as they debate the issues.

3. Here is some footage of the gathering that shows how ‘unsafe and dangerous’ it really was. The song of birds enjoying the spring rain mingles with the hushed tones of Caledonians and out of town anti-racist activists talking about the issues that brought them out. Newsflash to Kinrade: nobody was breaking any laws, we live in a “free” country, and this was a public event. If you want to call a public “anti-racist” rally but are then upset that some anti-racists show up to the event holding signs expressing their belief that anti-racism means having an anti-colonial analysis, then that’s really your problem. This clip closes with FNSWG member Tom Keefer thanking the crowd for coming out and explaining that we did not stop Kinrade and McHale from speaking.

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Filed under 6NSN, Anti-Native Activism, Caledonia, CANACE, Gary McHale, Merlyn Kinrade

A Response to Gary McHale’s March 22nd Smears against Tom Keefer

Editorial Note: Gary McHale recently released a post on his forum discussion board as part of a smear campaign against FNSWG member Tom Keefer. Keefer replied to McHale’s attacks on the forum, but McHale swiftly deleted the post and banned Keefer from his forum. Since McHale won’t allow free and open discussion of the issues on his site, we are posting Mr. Keefer’s since deleted response to McHale below.

From Tom Keefer: As Gary has launched into his usual smear-a-thon antics against anyone who opposes him, I’m posting the response I sent out a few hours after Gary sent out his message above. For the record:

“Dear Minister Bartolucci, Commissioner Fantino, and Inspector Periversoff,

It would appear that Gary McHale is up to his usual tricks of trying to smear anyone who he doesn’t agree with. And it appears that I’m next on the block so to speak. I have attached the full documents from which McHale has selectively quoted so that you can see the full context of my writings and be able to judge for yourself the accuracy of his claims. Despite his insinuations to the contrary, I have no “history of violence” and nor do I have a criminal record.

It is true that I am on the left wing of the political spectrum, but when our non-native group of about 60 activists came to the anti-racist rally in Caledonia on March 21st, we broke no laws and acted completely peacefully in a spirit of constructive debate and exchange. From my analysis of the situation, Mr. McHale’s issue appeared to be that his flock of supporters were engaging in discussion with the anti-racists from our group and that they were getting another take on the whole affair. This loss of control would appear to explain his increasingly hysterical denunciations of me.

Irregardless of Mr. McHale’s attempt to slander and libel me, members of our group will continue to attend public events held by Mr. McHale and his group in Caledonia. While we have little interest in engaging with Mr. McHale (or Mr. Vandermaas, Mr. Kinrade, or Mr. Parkinson for that matter) we shall continue to enjoy our democratic rights to engage in peaceful and civil political discourse with his followers and to provide them with an alternative way of understanding the conflict. Over the past 4 years we have worked with a variety of native and non-native groups in Caledonia and Brantford to support dialogue and peaceful de-escalation of the conflict. It is our intention to encourage Mr. McHale’s followers to join us in working with these groups and to no longer partake in events organized by Mr. McHale’s group.

We have no intention in providing Mr. McHale with the atmosphere of violence or intimidation that he so earnestly seems to crave, as we are a peaceful group and we fully respect the full flow of debate and the airing of alternative views in our society.

If you would like to get in touch with me, you can do so at this email address or over the phone at 416-XXX-XXXX. More information about our group can be found at and


Tom Keefer.”

Attached you will find:

1. The full text of my submission to the Concordia Board of Governors appeal panel which re-instated me as a student in good standing after I was “excluded” from that university (where I was an elected representative of the student union) without due process.

2. My article on Six Nations and Brantford entitled “Declaring the Exception: Direct Action, Six Nations, and
the Struggle in Brantford.”

3. For the full text of my posting to Jeff Parkinson’s website please see

And regarding Gary’s attempt to smear me as a supporter of “cop killers” to Ontario’s top cop and the Minister of Community Safety:

Gary, the whole point that I was making about Peltier, Jamal and Hayes, is that there is lots and lots of evidence that shows that they and many other members of the Black Panther Party and the American Indian Movement that were jailed were in fact victims of police set ups run through COINTELPRO or COINTELPRO-like programs.

So I don’t in fact believe that they are cop killers — we means that I’m not a supporter of cop killers, but rather a supporter of people who I think have been unjustly incarcerated. I maintain that there is lots of good evidence that shows that many of these activists are innocent, but have been targeted for their political beliefs. That was in fact the context of my remarks on this question that you edited out in your letter to Fantino and Bartolucci in your attempt to smear me.

I wrote: [in response to Vandermaas who was attacking me for supporting “Black Panthers”]

“If you were seriously interested in issues of racism and “two tiered” justice, I imagine that you’d be more familiar with the way in which COINTELPRO targeted the Black Panthers and the civil rights movement in America. So yes, we have no problem with supporting victims of state terror such as Leonard Peltier, Mumia Abu Jamal or Robert Seth Hayes who have spent long years in jail on trumped up charges manufactured by corrupt and unlawful police agencies, and nor should you (unless you don’t extend your critique of two tiered justice and police misconduct to people with more melanin than you.)”

The point being that if you were actually a serious anti-racist you would support and defend all victims of “two tiered, race based policing” and not just those relating (as you claim) to white people. I should also add that it’s not just left wingers or “conspiracy theorists” who think that the FBI was corrupt and out of control, the US Senate investigated the FBI over COINTELPRO in the 1970s, and their investigation came to the conclusion that:

“Many of the techniques used would be intolerable in a democratic society even if all of the targets had been involved in violent activity, but COINTELPRO went far beyond that…the Bureau conducted a sophisticated vigilante operation aimed squarely at preventing the exercise of First Amendment rights of speech and association, on the theory that preventing the growth of dangerous groups and the propagation of dangerous ideas would protect the national security and deter violence.”

So Gary do you denounce COINTELPRO and support the innocent victims of police frame-ups, or do you refuse to do so because these targets of illegal state repression have a different skin color than you and/or left wing politics? And if you do support them, then does that make you a “supporter of violence” too?



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Video of Gary McHale from March 21st Rally

Quite a revealing little video from Timmer. Really funny to see Kinrade say that it’s “his” rally and then watch McHale running around making all the decisions about what to do without telling Kinrade. It’s also funny how McHale can’t seem to get it through his head that the anti-racism protest is made of non-natives — he’s obsessed about “the natives” taking over his event, when it’s actually non-natives that are there protesting him. And Christie Blatchford make a lengthy cameo appearance, hanging off Gary’s every word.

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Filed under Anti-Native Activism, CANACE, Gary McHale

Anti-Racism Rally in Caledonia, Sunday March 28th

Dear friends,

Anti-native activist Gary McHale has recently had his bail conditions
altered to allow him to enter Caledonia, where he has organized numerous
protests directed against the Six Nations reclamation. Last week, on March 21
(the International Day for the Elimination of Racism) over 60 non-native
anti-racist activists mobilized on short notice to show up un-announced
to McHale’s most recent “anti-racist” protest aimed at denouncing the
OPP for not having arrested enough Six Nations land defenders. After
standing alongside the road with signs saying “Anti-Racism =
Anti-Colonialism”, “McHale is not an Anti-Racist”, “Negotiations Yes,
Injunctions No!” the anti-racist activists began their rally alongside
the nearly 100 people that came out McHale’s anti-native “anti-racist”

Anti-racist speakers drew out the connections between anti-racist
struggles and anti-colonial movements over their sound system and
mingled with local residents that were there for McHale’s rally. Visibly
worried that the speeches of the anti-racists and the intermingling of
the crowds might be loosening his ideological grip on his followers,
McHale abruptly canceled his planned rally and rushed his supporters
back in their cars before they could be “contaminated” by the speeches
coming over the anti-racist sound system. For further details please see

The attendance of large numbers of anti-racist activists standing in
solidarity with Indigenous rights was successful in creating dialogue
with Caledonia residents and in showing the mainstream media that McHale
does not speak for all non-natives. McHale is now planning to organize
another rally on March 28 in Caledonia at 2pm. We call on all
anti-racist activists and supporters of indigenous struggles to come to
Caledonia to join us in building an anti-racist dialogue to help resolve
the issue of Six Nations land rights, to peacefully show with our
presence that Gary McHale does not speak for all non-natives, and to
underline the fact McHale’s political program and political activities
are most certainly not “anti-racist”.

Please join us again this Sunday, April 28th, outside of the Caledonia
Lions Hall at 100 Haddington St, Caledonia where we will begin our
protest at 1pm sharp.

For more information about the CUPE 3903 First Nations Solidarity
Working Group please check out

If you have any questions about our counter rally or if you need a ride
or can offer a ride to the protest please email
to arrange details. We would appreciate it
if you could RSVP to our email address so we can get a sense of how many
people will be joining us at the protest.

In solidarity and struggle,

The CUPE 3903 First Nations Solidarity Working Group.

We append below the text of our call-out for the March 21^st Rally which
provides further information and background about Gary McHale and his


Protest Gary McHale’s Anti-Native “Anti-Racism” rally in Caledonia,
Sunday, March 21 at 1pm.

March 21st is the International Day for the Elimination of Racism — a
day that grew out of anti-colonial resistance to South African
apartheid. Increasingly, it is also becoming a day which neo-nazi groups
are trying to co-opt by claiming it as “World Wide White Pride Day”

Now Gary McHale, the noted anti-Native activist who has made a career
for himself by stirring up tensions between people in Caledonia and Six
Nations is getting in on the action. On March 21 he and his followers
are organizing a so-called “Anti-Racist Rally” in Caledonia, claiming
that white people in the town are the victims of ongoing “racism” at the
hands of people from Six Nations and the provincial government.

McHale’s followers are planning to gather for a “rally” outside the
Lion’s Hall in Caledonia and then according to one of the organizers,
they are considering trying to march onto the Six Nations controlled
former Douglas Creek Estates in order to have a “potluck” – a move
calculated to raise tensions and produce further conflict in the area.

As far as we know, Gary McHale has no formal connection with neo-Nazis,
but his constant attempts to portray white people as ever present
victims of “land claim terrorism,” his painting of activists from Six
Nations as ‘violence prone thugs’, and his misrepresentation of the
colonial reality that indigenous people face every day in Canada, lays
the groundwork for openly racist groups and individuals to spread a
message of hatred and fear in white communities surrounding Six Nations.
There is documented video evidence that prominent Canadian neo-Nazi Paul
Fromm has attended McHale’s rallies in the past, as have members of the
neo-nazi Northern Alliance group

The CUPE 3903 First Nations Solidarity Working Group took the initiative
to organize against McHale and his followers when he organized the
“Caledonia Militia” group for the purpose of carrying out citizens’
arrests of Six Nations people defending their land rights last summer.“militia”-in-caledonia/

Now that he is again organizing a public rally, we call on all
anti-racist activists and supporters of indigenous struggles to stand in
solidarity with Six Nations and show that Gary McHale does not speak for
all non-natives, and that his political program and political activities
are most certainly not “anti-racist”.

Please join us in gathering outside of the Caledonia Lions Hall at 100
Haddington St, Caledonia starting at 1pm.

The CUPE 3903 FNSWG.

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Filed under Anti-Native Activism, Caledonia, CANACE, Racism, White Supremacists

CAW activist Steve Watson’s response to questions from McHale Supporters

Before our anti-racist rally, I engaged many of Gary McHale’s supporters in one-on-one conversation. Afterwards, I framed my speech to the anti-racist rally by way of responding to arguments that McHale supporters made to me personally. Here’s how I framed my comments – not word for word but the general ideas.

McHale supporter Argument #1: We can’t negotiate with Six Nations. They have too many groups at the bargaining table. They are not united. They have no coherent bargaining position.

My answer: Interesting argument. However, often when we negotiate, we face situations where the other side doesn’t seem to be all on the same page. I remember the CAW president expressing frustrations on a recent set of major auto talks where he said out loud at one point he didn’t know who he was actually bargaining with. Still, we got a deal. Disunity is an issue for each side to sort out in its own house.  If you want to see a really dysfunctional situation, just walk over to the other side of the table and look from the Six Nations sight lines at who’s there from “our” side of the two row wampum – I mean the non-aboriginal side. You have municipal and provincial governments passing the buck on land rights negotiations to the federal gov’t while they press ahead with development on land that is still subject to aboriginal claim. Then the federal government has resolved only one of 29 specific land claims in the Grand River. Then we have groups like the one we protested on Sunday going around saying that they have no intention of ever respecting any aboriginal rights anyhow. So, what is “our” strategy? I would say it looks dysfunctional at best. At worst, it is a pretty cynical exercise to pretend to negotiate while land that has never been surrendered gets taken away, piece by piece.

So, our responsibility on our side of the negotiations and the two row understanding is to demand that our side’s negotiators — the federal government — get serious about making a comprehensive, just and fair settlement of the outstanding land rights of Six Nations, in particular, and First Nations, generally, and that municipal and provincial
governemtns respect aboriginal title.
McHale supporter Argument #2: Look, you’re talking about stuff that happened 200 years ago. Let’s move on.

My answer. Yes, we are talking about stuff like the Haldimand Proclamation (1784) and the Royal Proclamation (1763) that happened a long time ago. A lot of things we cherish come from things that happened a long time ago – things like respect for other people’s property, laws, human rights, constitutions, representative government, right to vote, etc. Not everything that comes from a long time ago has no value. We don’t get up the in the morning, roll out of bed and make it up as we go. If we throw out commitments made more than 200 years ago to people we recognized as nations in their own right, what are we saying about respect for our own rights? The Old Testament didn’t say, “Thou shalt not steal – unless you’re stealing from an Indian.”

McHale Supporter Argument #3 Yes, I am a union member too. I have been on picket lines, but I never broke the law the way these Six Nations people did here in Caledonia. I resent union flags being flown at their protests. And I told my union that.

My answer: Actually, besides picketing, workers have had occasion to have to occupy factories and do things that look pretty similar to a native protest, but the irony is that natives might be trying to block development on land they never legally surrendered which suggests that they might actually own the land they are protesting. It would be nice if we owned the factories we have to occupy from time to time to defend our rights. (Maybe some day we will.)

So, there’s food for thought.

I thoroughly admire the way the Six Nations Solidarity Network conducted itself on Sunday. We poked holes in McHale’s arguments and made fun of a few things but we didn’t insult anyone. It was non-violent resistance at its best. It was education transformed into action. And, it was a tactical victory of sorts. McHale decided to disperse his rally rather than engage us in any debate.

Steve Watson, CAW.

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Filed under Caledonia, CANACE, Racism, Unions, White Supremacists