Canada's Walk of Kindness



This holiday season, besieged by so much hurt and wrongness in the world, you might catch yourself wondering: Why must there be so much suffering? Why must we be made complicit in the wars, poverty, and simple cruelty perpetrated by our governments? Why can't we get along with our own families? Why can't we all be more peaceful, gentle, benevolent? Why can't we be more like the Canadians, that gentle simple folk infamous for their politeness, for being so nice, who would sooner apologize for nothing in particular than look you in the eye. Wouldn't it be lovely if we could follow their kind example? Join me, friend, on this Walk of Kindness brought to you by Londonderry Mall: we will take a winter wonderland stroll through the soul of the humble Canadian and your holidays will be filled with the friendly benevolence of the frozen north.



Like any self respecting British colony, Canada is haunted by a history of ruthless genocide and exploitation of its indigenous peoples, which not only catalyzed the country's foundation in the distant past but continues to hound Canada's first people into the present. The Residential Schools system aimed to solve the "indian problem" by stealing children from their homes and placing them into mandatory boarding school, in which they would be "civilized." Speaking their own tongue and practicing their own religion was forbidden, and children would not be free to visit their own families again until they reached the age of majority, if they could even remember how to find them. In addition to the explicit goals of eradicating an entire culture and sundering multiple generations from the support of their families, the schools were rampant with horrific physical and sexual abuse. The last residential school closed in 1996. But it's not all gloom and doom! The kindhearted Canadians, after taking many years to studiously examine the problem with the Truth and Reconciliation Committee, has determined that Canada is very, very sorry. Our bad! Have a little money! That'll fix it right up.



Today the status of indigenous peoples in Canada has certainly improved, apart of course from the ongoing crisis in which reserves have a suicide rate 6 to 7 times higher than the rest of the country and the ongoing mystery of all those missing indigenous women whose disappearances haven't been investigated. It's mysterious! Anyways, those who have signed treaties to integrate into our great society are granted the opportunity for productive employment from the oil pipeline projects and tar sands extraction tailing ponds that are going through their land whether they like it or not.



And how could they not like these job-creating megaprojects? According to the most recent Statistics Canada figures from 2009, only 57% of work capable indigenous people are employed. Clearly these jobs destroying their own land and poisoning their own water are an offer they can't refuse! More recent and up to date stats are not forthcoming as Statistics Canada has had its capacity to gather information dramatically reduced in order to cut costs and save the Canadian taxpayer money. Think of it as a perennial Christmas gift from the Canadian government: a tighter budget, and no more gloomy information!



Unfortunately some communities, such as the Lubicon Cree, have for some strange reason refused to sign treaties and join this great land of ours. This has clearly cost them dearly, according to the United Nations Human Rights Committee "the basic health and resistance to infection of community members has deteriorated dramatically. The lack of running water and sanitary facilities in the community, needed to replace the traditional systems of water and sanitary management... is leading to the development of diseases associated with poverty and poor sanitary and health conditions." But we can hardly blame the timid, polite Canadian for not providing basic humanitarian needs to a people who refuse to be called Canadian, now can we? They haven't asked! Ok they have asked, but they haven't asked properly by signing away their people's independence, and that's just rude! Don't they know that conditions on most treaty reserves are marginally better some of the time?



It's hard to imagine why these communities would not want to join Canadian society, especially when we're always ready to devote so much special attention just to them. For example, major prairie cities such as Saskatoon had public transportation initiatives known as "Starlight Tours," in which police officers would pick up vagrants they found alone on the city streets during the harsh winters, and drop them off well outside the city limits to take a lovely dead of night stroll across the icy prairie wastelands. The fact that all these involuntary participants froze to death, stranded on the empty range roads desperate for shelter, can hardly be held against these fine officers of the law. I'm sure they had the best of intentions!



So this season, when all the bad news, worldly disorder, and holiday stresses crowd in on you, remember that there's a better way. A polite, kind way. We don't need to be like the Americans starting all those disastrous endless wars, we join in on most of them but that's just because we're always eager to help out a friend in need. We don't need to be like the Australians with their ugly eyesore internment camps: these days we use the more civilized hands-off method of crushing bleak despair that drives people to voluntarily take their own lives. We're all about the volunteer spirit, here in Canada! We don't need to be like the British with their inbred aristocratic dynasties of dusty old vampires: our corrupt political scions are handsome, hip, and fun.


I had all the characteristics of a human being—flesh, blood, skin, hair—but my depersonalization was so intense, had gone so deep, that my normal ability to feel compassion had been eradicated, the victim of a slow, purposeful erasure. I was simply imitating reality, a rough resemblance of a human being, with only a dim corner of my mind functioning.

Thanks for coming along with me on the Walk of Kindness brought to you by the generous ad budget of Londonderry Mall. I hope a little of that good ole Canadian spirit has found its way into your heart, and if your heart experiences any complications I'm sorry in advance. Happy Holidays, from your friend in Canada.

Discussion of Canada's Walk of Kindness on tHE r H i z z o n E:

#1
Ffront page
#2
canada is really fucking big. it's an enormous expanse with very little people. i've just driven across half of it, staying in the populated south, and it still had long expanses with absolutely no people. the fact that we put the people who were here first into the worst possible places and kept the best for ourselves is already a travesty. the fact that we're now fucking up those undesirable places even more, for the profit of american petro-companies, is fucking beyond the pale.
i kind of have an unorthodox opinion on the whole pipelines thing, in that i am a 100 percent opposed to how they are built now, by profit-seeking companies with government financial support, through areas that see no true benefit, but if they were being built to benefit the greater population, to strengthen and enrich the poor and needy, and correspondingly not built on a budget or with cost-savings but instead built to the most exacting standards of safety and spill prevention, i would have a different opinion.
i take heart in the good distribution of canadians on this site, and the solidarity we share with all the peoples of the world, that one day things will be different, that through hard work and sacrifice a better world is possible, not just for us but for all the world.
#3
no other country is capable of directing such profuse, weepy lip-service at a minority it continues to impoverish and despise. in this, Canada truly is #1
#4
Interesting that the last Canadian Reformatory school closed in 1996; that was also the year the last Magdalene Laundry closed in Ireland



These were church-state prisons for young women who could be arbitrarily abducted and incarcerated for being unruly on the whims of reactionary child abusing theocrats

http://www.magdalenelaundries.com/

They were run as for profit commercial laundries... In spite of having to compete with this slave system, women laundry workers won annual holidays for all Irish workers thru industrial action in 1945

http://womenworkersunion.ie/?page_id=186

Places like Australia had Magdalenes too but they closed down in the 50s

Ireland also had an Industrial School system where children from poor families could be kidnapped and raped or beaten to death without consequence.
They started to get closed down in the 70s

In the 2000s Ireland's insanely corrupt prime minister/taoiseach (he had previously been the minister of finance who didn't have a bank account, and when asked about huge wads of cash found hidden in his mattress he claimed he won it betting on horses) indemnified the Catholic church from having to pay compensation to victims.

The Irish Catholic church then rationalised all its assets into a trust based on a Canadian model, with the explicit purpose of putting it out of reach of survivors lawsuits
#5

xipe posted:

The Irish Catholic church then rationalised all its assets into a trust based on a Canadian model, with the explicit purpose of putting it out of reach of survivors lawsuits


Yeah the Catholic church in Canada has been extremely vicious about denying survivors any kind of recompense or even apology, even compared to other equally guilty churches. Almost all of the residential schools were run by the church and the Catholics ran the majority of those. While most non-Catholic church organizations have attempted various kinds of reconciliation (which have their own problems,) the Catholics have been quite lockstep in telling their victims they don't give a shit, the most that has been allowed to happen is individual sites giving terse non-apologies in the vein of abuser classics like "mistakes were made" and "I'm sorry you feel that way."

The various methods of blame passing and responsibility evading in Canada about the residential schools is a pretty complex topic (the federal government went to great lengths to offload everything onto church organizations, even though they created and funded the program and oversaw the kidnapping and "processing" of the children) and would take some actual work compared to hammering out a quick angry article so it'll have to wait until I'm back home and not busy with family stuff to do the topic justice. But long story short we are real innovators in the field of pretending to care about abuse while carefully avoiding all consequences.

#6

shriekingviolet posted:


keep klicking on the play b utton but youre videos wont play

#7
we had laundries in canada too. good thhread + psots all
#8

chickeon posted:

we had laundries in canada too. good thhread + psots all


any good material on those? i've vaguely known about it for a while but never really dug in to the subject.

#9
KKKlanada'$ walKKK of KKKindne$$
#10
bump
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/politics/article-missing-and-murdered-indigenous-women-inquiry-lawyer-ouellette-resigns/

Another resignation from the fed's inquiry into missing and murdered indigenous women because it is a superficial non-action performance rigged to fail. So many people have poured their hearts into this and it's heartbreaking to see it all callously wasted
#11
my gut instinct is to approach the issue of decolonization in canada pretty carefully because i see a lot of far-left people sort of jump whole hog into it in a way that seems performative. i got some good books on the topic that i'll work through though. the catholic angle seems like a very obvious political economy thing where they decided that defensive lawyering to the hilt was the game plan. and i think a lot of the reasons for that are not said out loud, stuff like a lot of them believing that a lot of cases are fake and not wanting to open themselves up to specific types of lawsuits.

i mean the public explanation is more that the catholic church doesn't really even exist as a thing, that's it's just individual schools doing negligent things and that you should have to sue those schools, which don't even exist anymore generally. and i think an additional part of the subtext is that they fully believe that the church has already excessively suffered because of the huge decline in membership and people entering the priesthood etc.... like the religious orders involved have collapsed in numbers and are mostly very old people and foreign-born at this point. another issue is that the church does this sort of defensive lawyering internally. like the trusts and such are not just to keep money from lawsuit payouts but also to end any conversations on reconciliation by local actors that aren't just broad apologies etc... it's hard for me to judge as a relative outsider how deep that goes, like what level of consent there is at the level of priests. you do see a few priests here and there doing reconciliation related things. i don't know how to come to grips with that yet though.

i guess one of the main things for me is that i just doubt i'd give money to the church proper if i had a job. you're expected to set up a regular commitment more or less but i can't see doing that. i don't think i should act like that's a big deal in public terms but it is sort of significant to myself personally. i would rather give that share to something like local efforts to move in the opposite direction, like catholic worker stuff or faithful social justice stuff or something. the idea of giving it to the generic charity arm and then it going to a "pregnancy crisis centre" or something makes me pretty grossed out.
#12
that idea of the catholic church as a collection of institutions with no overarching liability is pretty bold but it is so deeply engrained in law and tradition that it is almost breathtaking to me. like the moral guilt is shared on behalf of the church in theory, but so is the guilt of every crime everywhere, so they can't accept the idea that certain moral problems should be abstracted to the church as a whole. but the real threat isn't to the church as a moral concept but rather its institutional basis. like the real problem is that it challenges the routinization of how the church operates, priests performing regularly according to schedules but not actually confronting the problems around them. and it's easy to decry it but individual actions don't actually fix that. like priests do complain and apologize and such but it's an entire culture. and then consider the catholics outside that circle of people who take vows. like imagine how many canadians consider themselves catholics but are just totally wrong on the issue even at the level of lipservice, and who aren't living the relative poverty of a priest, people who are often pretty rich by world standards but are actively harmful in various ways. so it is easy for the church (as institution) to point to the public and be like yeah fix yourselves first here, we're the ones trying to help.
#13
holy fucking god i am beyond disturbed that theres "Londonderry's" in fucking Canada, drop that fucking London
#14
Canada is absolutely covered with shit like that, the worst part is every major city will have a Churchill Square or Street or Plaza, usually a statue of the fucker too, it's disgusting
#15
kingston is probably the city most like that in canada. a lot of statues and strained attempts at attracting bewildered german and chinese tourists for a toilet break on their way to ottawa.
#16
hey canadian rhizzoners, is unifor good?

relative to say other organizations, or entirely independent smaller things.

assume i am dumb about everything and i don't know anything about labour organizing in canada. i haven't even worked in canada much (my whole life has been a series of contracts)
#17
i will never take a toilet break on the way to ottawa
#18
TIL that the RCMP systematically shot around 20,000 sled dogs from the 50s-70s in an effort to move the Inuit from their nomadic way of life into permanent, controllable settlements. Their MO was to show up and shoot the dogs without explanation to their owners, or give notice to an entire community that their dogs had to be mustered for health inspections whereupon they would slaughter them all in a mass canine execution. Leading to the current situation of slow neo-colonial genocide. Apparently this figures really large in the history of trauma and it frequently comes up in conversations that somebody I know who's currently in Nunavik has, but most kanadians (including myself) have probably never heard of it and the RCMP have always hidden behind the disgusting 'hygiene' rationale. An act of soft genocide and a high plateau of police dog-murdering that may never be surpassed.
#19
i will never hide behind the disgusting ‘hygiene’ rationale
#20

drwhat posted:

hey canadian rhizzoners, is unifor good?

relative to say other organizations, or entirely independent smaller things.

assume i am dumb about everything and i don't know anything about labour organizing in canada. i haven't even worked in canada much (my whole life has been a series of contracts)



my wife says all the other unions hate them. maybe this is a good thing, maybe not, i'll get her to write a post

#21
oh yeah this also happened, very fucked
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_Arctic_relocation
#22

cars posted:

i will never take a toilet break on the way to ottawa


cars posted:

i will never hide behind the disgusting ‘hygiene’ rationale


crusty

#23

drwhat posted:

hey canadian rhizzoners, is unifor good?

unifor's leadership does things like have trudeau speak at their convention which annoys left-leaning people, and they are pretty open about defending "jobs" at the expense of other considerations (military contractors, oilpatch stuff). there are also some labour movement internal issues about poaching i guess? i don't know the details. but it is also like... a big union... so it depends what you are doing for them i guess.

#24
Canada's Walk of Kindness continues as JT and the morning zoo crew publicly declaim Saudi Arabia for not releasing an imprisoned female journalist, while still continuing to supply the arms that the Kingdom uses to kill Yemenis.

Cool work bro
#25
the era of the morning zoo crew is coming to a close
#26
i saw a stat yesterday when looking up how popular podcasts are that said 90% of Americans have listened to normal ass radio in the past month. morning zoo crew still has a few years left in em
#27
their time is up, i have seen it
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