|"Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence enters her fourth week on a hunger strike outside the Canadian parlaiment, thousands of protesters in Los Angeles, London, Minneapolis and New York City, voice their support. Spence and the protesters of the Idle No More Movement, are drawing attention to some deplorable conditions in Native communities, and recently passed legislation C-45, which sidesteps most Canadian environmental laws. "Flash mob" protests with traditional dancing and drumming have erupted in dozens of shopping malls across North America, marches and highway blockades by aboriginal groups across Canada and supporters have emerged from as far away as New Zealand and the Middle East. This weekend, hundreds of Native people and their supporters held a flash mob round dance with hand drum singing, at the Mall of America, again as a part of the Idle No More protest movement. This quickly emerging wave of Native activism on environmental and human rights issues has spread like a wildfire across the continent.
“Idle No More” is Canadian for “that’s enough BS, we’re coming out to stop you,” or something like that. Spence is the leader of Attawapiskat First Nation, a very remote Cree community from James Bay, Ontario. The community’s on reserve 1,549 residents ( a third of whom are under l9) have weathered quite a bit, the fur trade, residential schools, a status as non-treaty Indians, and limited access to modern conveniences- like a toilet, or maybe electricity. This is a bit common place in the north, but it has become exacerbated in the past five years, with the advent of a huge diamond mine."
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Winona LaDuke: Idle No More, Indeed
(Indian Country Today 1/3)