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“I am a Canadian, free to speak without fear, free to worship in my own way, free to stand for what I think right, free to oppose what I believe wrong, or free to choose those who shall govern my country. This heritage of freedom I pledge to uphold for myself and all mankind.” ~~ John G. Diefenbaker

FELDSTED -- We are currently funding the legal costs of reconciliation, but in an atmosphere of distrust and suspicion that cannot be allowed to continue


The current state of federal government reconciliation efforts makes two things abundantly clear:

  1. The federal government has a serious and unavoidable conflict of interest.  Indigenous Affairs departments spend over $14 billion annual including operating costs. That is a lot of government infrastructure and jobs to protect.
  2. There is no respect or trust on either side in the reconciliation process. Indigenous people are done talking. They want to see the action promised by this government and it is not taking place.
The government (of Justin Trudeau) has squandered its credibility and cannot recover.

The only rational way forward for this government is to create a neutral third-party Reconciliation Panel to oversee reconciliation efforts. A panel of six provincial appellate court judges, presided over by a federal appellate court judge, might be able to do the job required.

The Reconciliation Panel must have the power to fund legal assistance to indigenous representatives to ensure a level playing field in reconciliation negotiations.

Funding the legal representation for indigenous groups to create a lasting peace and a way forward for all people is a small price to pay.

We are currently funding those legal costs, but in an atmosphere of distrust and suspicion that cannot be allowed to continue. Indigenous and non-indigenous people have lost faith in the ability of this government to deal with reconciliation.


Cancelling his trip to the Caribbean now, to come home to call a meeting on how to deal with indigenous protests, is too little and too late for anyone to believe that he is committed to action on reconciliation


Mishandling of the indigenous file warrants a non-confidence vote in Parliament. We can force an election and starting a healing process.


The road and rail blockades were important enough to warrant the return of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and a clear plan to deal with social anarchy. Sending Cabinet Ministers off to parlay with indigenous radicals, instead of taking action to restore order, is a signal that this government does not take maintaining order and peace seriously.

We do.

This Prime Minister and government can be replaced with representatives who care more about our future than virtue signalling and preening on the international stage. The PM’s quest for international recognition has gone too far.

Cancelling his trip to the Caribbean now, to come home to call a meeting on how to deal with indigenous protests, is too little and too late for anyone to believe that he is committed to action on reconciliation.

Indigenous activists have called out the Prime Minister. Perhaps he will not fold up like a cardboard suitcase in a rainstorm but early indications are that he will.

John Feldsted
Political Commentator, Consultant & Strategist
Winnipeg, Manitoba

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