Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Haldimand "My account of May 23rd"

I found out through a phone conversation this morning at around 8:00am, that a group of natives were occupying a site in Hagersville. I decided to get my camera and witness this first hand as I did in Caledonia some time ago. The following is what I witnessed.

What I was expecting, was a very short seizing of land? I had expected to get there and find everyone gone. I had expected that the O.P.P. would have already put a stop to this occupation by the time I got there. I would then just enjoy my day and go to the Farmers Market in Hagersville and do some shopping.

Well I was wrong! I didn’t get to the Farmers Market! I didn’t do any shopping! I spent my day observing; watching and listening to the events unfold.

The site that the natives confiscated was where the old Northview School use to be on Main Street just a minute or two walk from downtown Hagersville, and is adjacent to Norcliff long term care facility. An Almas Construction trailer sits on the site, and obviously they are the contractors that are doing the sewer and piping work. My understanding is that a senior’s apartment or condo was to be built there.

What I witnessed was about 20 natives on the site, and about 7 O.P.P. officers standing in a line blocking the entrance to the site. There were a few O.P.P. officers parked on the side of the road and a few officers walking around. I am sure there were plenty more O.P.P. there, but we couldn’t see them. There were no news crews there when I arrived. Things seemed very peaceful.

The mood inside the site was one of joy and contentment. One native woman was playing a drum while others chanted. There were many vehicles driving by honking in support, so this had obviously been planned well in advance. There were just a few residents walking up and down the street, but I really don’t think that most people knew what was going on, or they did know and stayed away because they were fearful something might happen.

Haldimand County CEO Bill Pearce was already there when I arrived, and a short time later Councillors Dalimonte, Sloat and Ricker and M.P.P. Toby Barrett arrived. I observed Bill Pearce speaking to an O.P.P. officer a few times as he was on his cell phone. Councilor Dalimonte and Sloat were speaking to a few individuals and I could tell by their expressions that they were greatly distraught, as they can do nothing, only stand by and observe as I did.

Slowly the press started to arrive, and things started to happen. I observed two bulldozers feverishly filling in a huge hole that had been dug to maybe lay piping. Once the hole was filled other equipment started picking up concrete pipes, plastic pipes and moving this material to the back of the site. Once this material was moved, piece by piece the equipment was being moved and parked in what seemed to be a line at the back of the site. I couldn’t believe what I was witnessing, in a very short period of time the site was pretty well cleared except for a huge pile of stone that had a native flag flying at the top.

At one point when I was sitting in the shade across the road I witnessed a few O.P.P. officers that were standing in the front line move the barricades, stop the traffic, and let a small white car drive onto the site. I couldn’t believe my eyes! I can almost say for certainty that the occupants of that vehicle where not the owners of the land, but were the occupiers of the land. I did take a photo of this, but have not even looked at them yet. So maybe someone will correct me if I am wrong in what I have stated!

At one point there seemed to have been an altercation that took place between an individual on the street and the native occupiers. I learned later from the news that apparently there was a discrepancy of what band actually originally owned the land. I don’t know if this is factual or not.

I also heard in the news that a deal was made between I believe the owner of the land and the natives to clear the site of all the equipment and the occupation would end. And so it did!

When I left, I drove to the back of the site and low and behold I couldn’t get through. The road was barricaded, and there were three police cars at the back of the site. I wanted to get some pictures, but as a law-abiding citizen I didn’t cross the barricade.

What I witnessed today was far from a peaceful movement. In my opinion this was not a peaceful occupation, a peaceful rally, a peaceful takeover, a peaceful seizure, a peaceful confiscation of land or what ever you want to call it. This was an act of intimidation on the part of the occupiers, and the sad part of this is they got away with it!

What I witnessed today was a total breakdown in our system, the system that is suppose to protect us, the system that is suppose to ensure that we live in a peaceful and fear free community. I don’t blame the O.P.P. officers that were present today, as I witnessed a few of them constantly on their cell phones obviously speaking to their superior, who was giving them their orders.

What I witnessed today was a total breakdown in our Provincial Government that has turned a blind eye to the events that have happened in Haldimand County and to the events that are obviously going to keep happening. As today I witnessed a group of individuals that have been given a free ticket by the O.P.P. and the Provincial Government to do as they please, where they please, how they please and when they please!

I will be putting in a complaint of what I witnessed today, and I would hope that many others would do the same. I don’t have the answers, or a solution to the problem, but that isn’t my job, we have elected officials that took that responsibility on our behalf.

We have the right to DEMAND ACCOUNTABILITY!

10 comments:

  1. I followed the events throughout the day yesterday.

    The most striking moment for me was when the elder of the Mississauga New Credit Reserve confronted the occupiers. He pointed out to them rightfully that they were occupying land that was not theirs in the first place. He pointed out that this was Mississauga New Credit land that was sold to settlers in the 1900s.

    Six Nations people have no right on this land.

    It is time that the OPP understand what is actually land claim land and what is not. The Provincial, Local and Federal Governments are all to blame for allowing this fiasco to take place.

    Arrest each and every one of the illegal occupiers of this land taken by intimidation yesterday.

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  2. Hi Donna,

    Thank you so very much for the detailed account and interpretation of yesterday's events.

    It appears that the OPP have become quite comfortable in their role as taxpayer-funded security guards for organized crime.

    Hagarsville is the last in a long list of outrages against the Rule of Law. The question, of course, is who will put an end to it?

    Thanks again for the great reporting.

    Mark Vandermaas, Editor
    VoiceofCanada

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  3. Let us look at a child. Child throws tantrum, parent gives in and gives child what it wants. A short time later the child pulls the same stunt and each time the parent gives in the child continues with its tactics. The child will ask for more and more until someone puts an end to the tantrums and I wants by being firm and saying no,,enough! Now read the above and substitute native for child and government for parent...seems to me it is the same thing. By letting the natives (domestic terrorists) have their way we ask for more and more such events ever escalating and demanding. Governments, local authorities etc. stop wringing your hands and bring the full force of law and the courts down on these terrorists. Courts solve land disputes, disrupting communities does not. Do you get it Canadian citizens, and authorities?

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  4. It is not just Haldimand County that is in trouble. It seems that our whole country is decending into chaos, by allowing a relatively small group of urban terrorists to carry on criminal and illegal activities unchallenged. They are gaining momentum in their evil cause of destruction and have been empowered by our law enforcement. How can we tell our children to report bullies at school, when bullies in society are not apprehended ?

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  5. Interesting that the Mississauga New Credit Natives dispute the claim of the terrorists.

    Very similar to the in-fighting betweem Hamas and Al Kida in the Middle East.

    At least there the terrorists don't have the police protecting them, and the taxpayers supporting them.

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  6. wheres my post ???
    oic your going to pick and choose each post to what suits your agenda is that it ???
    this blog is here only to promote like minds as you see things
    so any post that r in favour towards natives to not apply here

    if thats the case then you should state your censourship
    this blog site is a farce !!its here only to promote hatred and racism towards natives

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  7. the new credits do not speak for all natives ,if they want to relinguish thier claim to common territory thats thier business but they cannot and will never speak for other nations who have a interest and cliam to the very same land they once used

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  8. Thank you everyone for your comments.

    I would like to touch base on a few things that were stated in one of the comments.

    (1) “oic your going to pick and choose each post to what suits your agenda is that it?”

    The answer would be I don’t. When you do a post to my site, you see it before I do.

    (2) “If that’s the case then you should state your censorship”. I will only censor a comment if it is profane, racist, or promotes hatred.

    (3) “This blog site is a farce, it's here only to promote hatred and racism towards natives”.

    I would ask that before you make a judgement, take the time to read all the articles on my blog, as well as why I started my blog. You will then understand why it is called "Haldimand's Unheard Voice".

    You will discover that I am not a person filled with hatred, nor do I promote racism against "any race".

    I look forward to hearing back from you again after you have completely read my site.

    I would ask that when you do respond back with a comment, be dauntless and use your real name, as I do.

    Thanks Donna

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  9. It's so easy for the natives to cry "racism" but that's not what we want. We want all citizens, regardless of race, to be treated equally by our law enforcers.

    The O.P.P. have lost the respect of both native and non-natives by allowing the natives to continually break the laws of the land.

    It's frightening to the general public to have witnessed O.P.P. officers turn a blind eye while citizens were terrorized and even beaten by native protesters.

    What about our rights?

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  10. Thank-you Patsyrose for your comment.

    We seriously need to define "racism". What I mean by that is it seems that too many have used this term loosely.
    Racist is not what you call someone just because you don't agree with their opinions or their beliefs.

    "Racial"..... as defined in the Lexicon Dictionary, pertaining to or caused by the distinction between races "racialism"..... race, hatred, or race "discrimination"..... the making of distinctions (often unfair).

    My belief is that the issues at hand have nothing to do with racism. So in saying that, I don't believe that natives view the issues as racist, no more than you or I do.

    What would be interesting is doing some research to find out when and where the term "racist" was first used regarding this issue.

    Donna

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