My Little Corner of Canada, Sept. 26
Harper’s Record in Inuit Nunangat
Over the past nine years, Stephen Harper has come north every summer. During those trips, he avoided contact with Inuit leaders and had very little time for local residents.
Instead, he spent most of his time with military activities. He likes getting photographed standing on a piece of ice or on the deck of a battleship.
His government is spending $1.3 billion on an icebreaker and hundreds of millions more on navy patrol boats. Very little, if any, of all that money will benefit the North.
The benefits will go to cities in the south where the ships will be built and where the votes are. He also wants to spend millions more for a “gas station” at Nanisivik for his battleships but will not give a penny for a deep sea port in Nunavut.
Harper insulted many Inuit by his “use it or lose it” comments when speaking about Canadian sovereignty in the Arctic. He further insulted all Aboriginal peoples in Canada by telling foreign media that “Canada has no history of colonialism.”
Leona Aglukkaq, who came in with such promise and hope, has come up short. She has failed to defend Inuit rights contained in the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement.
She has sided with mining and oil companies and abandoned community interests and concerns. She has become like all of Harper’s ministers, who have been trained to behave like sheep.
She continues to support Harper who seems to pretend that Inuit don’t exist or matter in Inuit Nunagat.
Over the years, Harper’s government has had to endure scandals and controversy. Election fraud, the “robo calls”, the “in-and-out affair”, illegal contributions, and all the mess surrounding the Senate scandals.
When a government, of any color, has been in power too long, it starts to smell. The Harper government is not immune to the stink factor.
This Corner Quotes
“Colonialism on steroids.”
— Zebedee Nungak, describing the attitude of Quebec separatists towards the Inuit of Nunavik in the 1980s.