Daily Archives: March 26, 2010

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”
rally.

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
https://6nsolidarity.wordpress.com/

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 http://3903fnswg.wordpress.com/

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 3903fnswg@gmail.com
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
followers.

***

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”
http://www.stormfront.org/forum/showthread.php?p=1749334

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.
http://voiceofcanada.wordpress.com/2010/03/02/join-merlyn-kinrades-anti-racism-rally-in-caledonia-on-march-2110/

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.
http://caledoniawakeupcall.wordpress.com/2010/03/12/plenty-of-reasons-to-rally/

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
https://6nsolidarity.wordpress.com/the-far-right/.

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.
http://3903fnswg.wordpress.com/2009/06/21/a-call-for-a-peaceful-protest-against-the-formation-of-an-anti-native-“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