Comment

by Bill Jackson - The Regional News

March 2, 2011

Even though some of us might disagree with union representatives who came from outside areas to stand with Six Nations in support of land claims and treaties this past weekend, they have the right to pick their own battles. But they should leave our scabs alone.

These parasites attempted to steal the media spotlight they obviously can't get on their own and failed to show the maturity and respectful etiquette that's required to aid people in Haldimand or Six Nations. Instead of debating opinions intelligently, with sound reasoning, they manufacture unfounded personal attacks and create noise to drown people out.

But the most frustrating thing about Sundays; rally in Caledonia was that most people seemed to be arguing about apples and oranges. Again.

As it's been laid out many times before, there are land claims, and there are laws. These are two entirely different subjects and one should not infringe upon, or impede the other.

After all, land claims and treaties aren't violent, people are. Attempting to justify law breaking with unresolved land claims is unreasonable. If indeed there are outstanding land claims - and I am not disputing that there are some - they do not justify the assaults and treachery caused by protesters who may or may not be condoned by the stewards of the elephant graveyard that is Douglas Creek Estates.

Representatives from the Canadian Auto Workers told people that "tensions caused by the land dispute need to be resolved for the benefit of all" which sounds more like a threat than anything else. The CAW locals go on to say that "If the federal government had developed a comprehensive land claims settlement process and had negotiated in good faith with Six Nations from the start, this problem would have never taken the form it did."

So, two wrongs make a right?

The same sort of logic was used by the elementary Teachers Federation last week when it spoke out against the decision to make the TTC an essential service. The union blames the current economy on corporate tax cuts and the global financial sector and argues that the government is turning its back on collective bargaining rights that are one of the few supports protecting workers during these tough economic times.

But what about the financial ramifications to an entire city if transit workers decide to strike in the future?

Such illogical arguments make it impossible to have a real debate and have nothing to do with conflicting arguments, but selfish desires, the means to which can often be equated to social terrorism.

The problem with any type of union is that a few members can give a group a bad name. And they seem to have plenty of time and money to spare.

Instead, they should stick to their core mandates involving their workforce and employees and stop sticking their noses in other unrelated issues that have nothing to do with them.

Members of the Canadian Advocates for Charter Equality have the right to express their feelings about the past five years when it comes to a lack of law enforcement, policing and racist policies that are politically driven.  They have never once sought to infringe upon the rights of anyone, but rather hope to see a day where everyone in Caledonia and Six Nations is treated equally.

Ironically, with the five-year anniversary of Douglas Creek Estates being marked, no one at Sunday's rally spoke much about this ongoing land dispute in isolation. The Plank Road claim has been refuted by the federal government thanks to a mountain of evidence. So the DCE is a symbol of what exactly? Years of frustration?

Perhaps Dalton McGuinty can answer that one. If two wrongs really do make a right, this so-called symbol along with his image as Premier only stand to benefit from more public outpouring.