In mid-October, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) seized around 200 lobster traps from Mi’kmaq fishers in Unama’ki (Cape Breton, Nova Scotia). “It’s a struggle for them. They’re not making a lot of money, but it’s not about the money,” Bernadette Marshall told Robin Tress “It’s about the treaty right, and we’ve waited long enough.”
Sadie Beaton: I’ve been struck lately by one of white supremacy’s more insidious mechanisms- the illusion of disentanglement. How whiteness allows some of us to opt out of the recognition that we are fully enmeshed in and with this world. It’s a dangerous kind of privilege for those of us who benefit (on the surface), as Ross Gay describes, to ”pretend the possibility of disentanglement.” This pretending, it seems to me, is the very opposite of Peace and Friendship.
Robin Tress with an excellent article on the self-regulated Mi’kmaq fisheries and the RCMP: “Looking closely at the history of policing of Indigenous movements, and now the policing of the settler fishers enacting violence, intimidation, and vandalism, one thing becomes clear: When Indigenous people protest, they are considered enemies of the state. When settlers protest, they are treated as sensitive stakeholders critical to the resolution of the conflict.”
Mercedes Peters: “We as Mi’kmaq have rights that predate the existence of Canada. And as settlers began to move into our territory centuries ago, we made treaties with them—not to create rights, but to remind settlers that we had them, to protect our rights. We are taught as Mi’kmaq, not only to be memory-holders for ourselves, but to remind Canadians who live in Mi’kma’ki of the agreements that govern our territory, and the responsibilities they have.”
Raina Young: The violence and harassment against Mi’kmaq fishers is despicable, racist behaviour. Even more concerning is the failure of the police to stop it, revealing deeper systemic racism. Imagine if it were the other way around, and Mi’kmaq fishermen were harassing white people. Such behaviour would never be tolerated. The RCMP would step in immediately. The hypocrisy and double standards show a clear racist bias.
Close to 1000 people came together this Sunday afternoon at the Grand Parade in downtown Halifax in support of the beleaguered Mi’kmaq fishers along Nova Scotia’s French Shore.
Please join us on Sunday October 18th from 2-4 pm for an action in solidarity with Mi’kmaq Fisher folks. We are all Treaty people and it is our duty to uphold Mi’kmaq treaty rights.
“I am so excited to see you all here to experience the very first Mi’kmaw self-regulated treaty sale in Nova Scotia,” Dr. Cheryl Maloney of Sipekne’katik told Haligonians looking to pick up some treaty lobster. We did a brief write-up and took some photos at the historic event.
Media release: ON FRIDAY, OCTOBER 16 AT 12:00 PM, lawfully caught Mi’kmaw livelihood lobster will be sold to Nova Scotians, as fellow treaty beneficiaries, in front of Province House during Mi’kmaq History Month.
“The enemy of a healthy fishery is not the Mi’kmaq, but corporate profiteers like Mayer-Murphy and Risley who are bent on depleting this resource and resisting Mi’kmaq treaty rights. The Mi’kmaq fishery deserves our full support, while the corporate fishery should be shut down,” writes Chris Frazer.