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Idle No More: Saskatoon Flash Demo

by Rob Brown

photo credit: Johnny Marceland
photo credit: Johnny Marceland

Roughly 500 people took part in an Idle No More flash demonstration in Saskatoon this evening. The rally included drumming and dancing in both ends of The Centre mall in east Saskatoon.  While most of the people were Aboriginal, a significant number of non-Aboriginal people also took part.

Between the drumming and dancing circles, people held an orderly procession from one end of the all to the other. Along the route, only one shop closed its doors. In many others, employees stood in the entrances, taking pictures, waving, and shouting greetings.

With the round dances, with the rings of dancers were five deep in spots. But they were often caught in a tight squeeze; the mall space was not big enough to accommodate them.

The Idle No More movement has been holding similar gatherings across Canada for about a month. These come primarily in response to federal Bill C-45, passed just before Christmas. Many of the 550 changes in Bill C-45 are seen as having a negative impact on First Nations people, particularly their bands and communities, along with more plans to assimilate and impoverish First Nations people. Beyond that, there are many changes related to the environment, including the air people breathe, the water they drink, and the land on which they live.

The Saskatoon event followed one this afternoon in Prince Albert. A group of about 40 appeared at the office of M.P. Randy Hoback, sharing the same concerns as other Idle No More participants. There are reports that a number of people skipped work for part of the day to attend that event.

Meanwhile, Idle No More activity will continue in Saskatoon. Two other gatherings are scheduled in the next five days. On Saturday, there will be a rally at the White Buffalo Youth Lodge. On Tuesday, a rally will be held at the University of Saskatchewan. 



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celtic-rob (Rob Brown)
Saskatoon, SK
Member since Janvier 2011


Rob is a retired career journalist, who has worked in both electronic and print news. He is also so a Minister of the United Church of Canada, and has post-graduate University training in ethics.

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