Opinion : Stanley Verdict of Not Guilty, a Slap in the Face of Reconciliation

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The following was issued by The Association of Iroquois and Allied Indians

All across Canada indigenous peoples have been angered, shocked, and saddened by the not guilty verdict in the Colten Boushie case.  It is a stark reminder for many indigenous peoples that for them, there is no justice. It’s a reminder for all of us that discrimination is alive and well in Canada.  The mere fact that an all-white jury found a white man not guilty of murdering a First Nations youth is questionable in itself, but the effect has been an outpouring of open racism on social media and in real life against First Nations people.  Will this verdict signal to racists that it’s now open season on Indigenous peoples?  Can we expect more of the same?  Will the system that has resulted in a vast over representation of Indigenous peoples in the justice system ever change?  If the situation was reversed would the verdict be different?  These are the troubling questions that are being asked for which there may be no good answers.

There has been and will be rallies and demonstrations on the issue as a result of widespread disgust of the verdict. However now more than ever First Nations need Canadians to stand with us to combat racism, hatred, and ignorance with love, positivity, and education.  You can’t defeat negativity with more negativity. If there ever was a time for introspection at a national level it’s now.  Canadians need to ask themselves what their values are and what Canada stands for.  Are they okay with institutional discrimination and open racism against indigenous peoples?  Unfortunately for too long the answer has been a resounding yes, but don’t be surprised when First Nations people, especially youth begin to tire of repression and racism.

If reconciliation is to ever succeed systemic change is needed across the spectrum in justice, child welfare, education resources, and other crucial areas. I for one was not surprised by the outcome of the trial but I was and am extremely disappointed that my worst suspicions turned out to be true. If anything positive is to come out of the death of Colten Boushie, it’s going to be the recognition of widespread systemic racism and discrimination in the institutions of Canada, and the necessary changes to fight it.  What better time than now?

 

7 COMMENTS

  1. There was actually a whole article written, with testimonies from all the parties and you’re right….it wasn’t as one-sided as the media and our PM is making it out to be. The young people involved acted in a very unpredictable manner, showed up in a stolen van with a front wheel missing, were wasted and were trying to steal stuff. It’s easy to stand back and say it was excessive force..but try to put yourself in the situation. Proper handling of the situation may not have been so clearly found as we think. Further, one report states that 1/2 of the potential jurors chosen were aboriginal that found all sorts of reason not to perform jury duty. Others were disqualified for spoken bias prior to evidence presented. Basically, none of us…I mean NONE of us knows enough about this case to make any valid conclusions.

    • This is onky a race issue as thats how indigenous folks play the cards. If it was stanley going onto a reserve to do as these kids did and got killed it would be justifiable to all those who live on that or any reserve. So again i ask as a indigenous Canadian. Please stop using the native card to publically try and say that Stanley got off cause he killed an indigenous member. Take ownership of your actions regardless of your race color or creed. If your gonna do the crime you bedt be prepared to do the time. Or worse.

  2. What troubles me most is the idea that race was ever a factor in the outcome. That alone……..is a racist thing to say! I haven’t see any articles listing the evidence or the juries explanations. Obviously what ever charges were laid were not proven without doubt. I suspect when the real details come to light everyone won’t be as outraged.

  3. The law is the law albeit not what the mass majority believe to be fair. I tjink had they not been armed the verdict would habe been very different. I dont condone stankeys actions in any way. Im only stating that in my opinion that law was upheld as it was writen. A young man is dead and for that i am sorry and i feel for his family.

  4. Although there is no express limitation on the amount of force that may be used to defend property from interference, Canadian courts have unambiguously held that it is not reasonable to use deadly force in defence of property alone (i.e. where there is not a simultaneous threat to human life or safety).Nov 25, 2016

  5. Tired of the discrimination and “Poor Me” claims by native people.
    This was an unfortunate accident in the heat of the moment and there is zero proof that it was intentional. The whole thing obviously would have been avoided if this group was not driving around impaired, trespassing, and stealing someone’s property. Of course they will use it for an excuse for further demonstrations and highway blocking to aggravate society as a whole and ultimately to try and get more and more money from the government. How about make things happen on your own instead of continually draining tax dollars and not having to account for where any of it goes. Enough is never enough and society is sick of the whole ongoing issue. I am native and work hard for a living, so you can’t say this is discrimination against my own people, it’s simply the truth.

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