originally printed in The Phoenix
newsletter of CASNP
Canadian Alliance in Solidarity with the Native Peoples
We the women of the Lubicon Lake Nation are tired. We are frustrated and angry. We feel we cannot wait another minute to have our land claim settled. Fifty years is too long. In those 50 years we have watched our land and lives be destroyed by Canadian governments and corporations. Our children are sick from the drinking water that oil has spilled in. They are sick from breathing the poisoned, polluted air the pulp mill has made. We are sick from eating the animals -- animals that are sick with diseases from the poisoned plants and water. Our children have nothing -- they can't breathe -- even that has been taken.
Their culture, the bush life, has been destroyed by development. When we were young and lived in the bush -- it was a good life. Now, we have no traplines, nothing to hunt. There are no jobs, no money to live a decent life. We see ourselves, our men and children fall into despair, hopelessness, low self-esteem and drinking. Families are broken up like never before. Drinking and violence rise as our spirits fall.
We live our lives in constant danger. Since the blockade we have been afraid to go certain places in town. Our sons have been beaten by white men when they say they are Lubicon. We are even afraid to say that we are who we are! The roads are dusty and dangerous to travel. The logging and oil trucks try to run us off the roads. We †id of the roads. We have lost young ones because of accidents on the horrible roads. We are not even safe in the bush. We are afraid to go in the bush because the white sports hunters shoot at anything that moves.
We ask why? Why us? What have we done to deserve such treatment? Why can't the government settle with the Lubicon? Why have they spent so much time and energy trying to destroy us rather than deal fairly with us? What have we done, our children, our people? What wrong have we done to the outside?
We are not dogs, but we are treated like dogs. We are people just like you. We are equal. We have every right to be here, the Creator put us here in this place. We are important. Our children are important -- our future. We have lost more than your money can ever, ever buy -- more than you can imagine, our way of life that we loved, our culture, our beautiful land, our health, our happiness. What else can we lose?
The Lubicon women demand an end to the physical, emotional, economic, cultural and spiritual destruction. We demand an end to the invasion and devastation to all spheres of our lives. We demand an end to the government and corporation warfare with our lands and lives. We demand an end to the mockery of our Nation! We demand an end to the genocide. We demand control over our lives once again. Hear our voices and our message -- we don't know if we'll be here tomorrow.