Thursday, 21 March 2019

Brenda Thompson, author of Poor houses of Nova Scotia, on the only poor house in the province that segregated its residents based on the colour of their skins. Other poor houses did not allow the sexes to mix but allowed African-Nova Scotians and Mi’kmaq to live under one roof with white people. Not in Bridgetown though.

Ricky RIchard reflects on the tremendous debt he and fellow Acadians owe to the Mi’kmaq for shielding them when they were chased and deported by the British. “I am alive today because of the Mi’kmaq. I want to thank them. I owe them my life and that is a debt I cannot possibly repay. … My life is theirs, but I am ashamed of the way we have treated the Mi’kmaq. We have dispossessed them of their land, their livelihood, their ways, their dignity. History teaches us that too many injustices have been brought to bear on such a generous and welcoming people,” writes Richard in this remarkable open letter.

This September Nova Scotia’s Town of Windsor formally commemorated the little known fact that David Ben-Gurion, future prime minister of Israel, was trained along with the rest of the Jewish Legion at the town’s Fort Edward. But while Ben-Gurion came to fame as the founder of Israel, there was a darker side to this Zionist leader that is too often ignored, writes author and Cape Breton University teacher Garry Leech.

Picture yourself as a poor person, 125 years ago in Nova Scotia. Brenda Thompson, author of a wonderful book on poor houses in Nova Scotia, on what it would take to be accepted in a poor house, a place so horrible it would always be your last resort.

There’s a wonderful new book on the history or poor houses and poor farms in Nova Scotia, written by poverty activist and frequent NS Advocate contributor Brenda Thompson. Things are better now, of course, but in a way not much has changed for people who are very poor.

Yesterday we published Judy Haiven’s take on the Halifax Explosion, arguing that in essence a war crime occurred, today Tony Seed makes a similar case in this well-researched article. “The tragedy of the Halifax Explosion, the subsequent Naval Magazine explosion of July 1945 and other preventable incidents since then shows that the granting of military-naval concessions and other privileges to the superpowers and their naval fleets represent nothing but great danger to the democratic right of the people to live in peace and to their freedom.”

Judy Haiven on why the many context-free commemorative events of the Halifax Explosion centenary are missing an important point: There was no military justification for the presence of a ship loaded with 5.8 million pounds of TNT in our harbour. The Halifax Explosion was a war crime, and innocent women, men and children paid an awful price.

A moving story obout a four-year old little girl at the Shubenacadie Residential School and her doll, as remembered by Elder Elder Magit Sylliboy, and filmed by students of the We’koqom’a Mi’kmaw School in Waycobah, Cape Breton. A must see!