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Wednesday, June 11, 2008 

Government Of Canada Apologizes To First Nations, Innu and Metis People For Racist Policy Of Residential Schools

Marguerite Wabano, 104, from Moosonee, Ontario, a survivor of Canada's racist residential school policy was seated on the floor of the House of Commons as the Prime Minister of Canada apologized on behalf of all Canadians.

-Globe & Mail
-CBC News

Why do I have the distinct impression that it was more a photo-op in preparation for election propaganda than an actual apology?

Why did Harper sound so dull, droning and devoid of emotion?

I truly believe that camera angles were more important than reaching out to people.

Wooly words. Shame. Shame it came to a waste of time and effort.

The only one that was political was the leader of the Bloc party, he was 'proud' rather then 'sorry' and talked about things that had nothing to do with the aboriginal residential school issue. I for one being a First Nations person who lived at a residential school would like the thank Prime Minister Harper for going forward with this. Personally, I've never known Harper to be full of emotion so to belittle him based on his tone is rather uninformed. And as for the your political pestering, we as First Nations hold very little sway in all but a few ridings where we might be considered swing votes. Harper himself has been trying to make the government fall for a while now so there is no reason to believe that this act should be considered, 'a waste of time and effort'. Shame on you David for politicizing every action Harper does.
Our leaders accepted the apology 'as is' maybe you should to.

I was very moved by the apology, both from Harper and from Dion. CPAC has a short clip of a phone in show in which many Aboriginal callers spoke and, for the most part, agreed with "the beast".

I sincerely hope it helps, but only First Nations individuals themselves can decide whether to accept the apology and take the opportunity to move forward. To be sure, some are so embittered that they will refuse to consider that option and also regrettably, some elements in the non-Native community who don't want healing to happen either. For the later group, the Residential school experience has provided and ideological cash cow, so to speak, with which to keep hate alive. Hate corrodes, but forgiveness heals. May God bless those that accept the apology with forgiveness and may their healing be full and complete. The world is waiting for your contribution. Now get out there and shine.

I respect Phil Fontaine's assessment more than David Toronto's, a purely partisan fool.

Harper even gave credit to Layton for bringing the scope of this issue to him.

This was not a political issue. This was the right thing to do.

The Liberals had years more of governance to do the same, but they chose not to. It took Harper and the Conservatives to do the right thing, with Layton's input.

As much as I dislike the NDP and Layton, they did good on this file.

David Toronto can blow his views out his ass.

Mike - your comment is on topic so I will post it ... however, I am going to caution you again about being personally offensive on my blog.

It was the right thing to do, but that's not to say political strategy wasn't relevant; it certainly was.

This entire escapade could have been prevented if one of the federal Liberal governments had given the apology at some point. That they hadn't left it wide open for the Cons to do so. It's perfect for Harper -- it's just an apology so it doesn't cost any money, yet it can appear like he's reaching out to the aboriginal community.

A quick scan through Canada's History will show that the party holding the reins at beginning of the set up of the Residential Schools were in fact conservative Prime Ministers so perhaps, (ignoring for a moment that the current Conservative party isn't the same as the Conservative party of then - it is still the same right wing ideology)it was best that it was the conservatives who apologized, with the liberals (who were then a out shoot reform party) apologizing second. Yes the Liberals had their part and Dion both acknowledged and apologized for their actions. Again, it was a worthy apology. Thank You.

Just watched the video of Harpers' apology again, - just sorry it couldn't have come years sooner.

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