Thursday, November 27, 2008


Been busy lately, but I wanted to point Canadian readers to this post at Somena Media.

It's a posting of Bruce Clark's "A Critique of the Indian Residential Schools Truth and Reconciliation Commission" with a reference that Mr Clark was the lawyer for the Gufstason Lake defendants.

Read the whole thing, but the short version is that because of the limitations/terms of the Commission, "the commission can not expose wrongdoings of the government." Mr Clark further states "The commission will look at symptoms but neither the cause nor the liability of the causer. It can not and will not investigate crimes by the government."

I'm not sure I entirely agree with Mr Clark's conclusions, and I did some investigating that led me to believe that the Commission may actually discover/expose any such facts it finds, only leaving any consequent civil or criminal legal adjudication to actual trials regarding the specific incidents, for example.

That would mean that the Commission itself is to be only an impartial fact-finding agency, and not--instead--a civil or criminal trial court apportioning blame, reparations, liability etc.

However, what I don't know is if I am correct. I could be very wrong, and the Commission could be hamstrung exactly to the degree Mr Clark says it is.

I hope not, and I'll be paying attention, because, if there is one thing I *am* very, very sure of, it's that Mr Clark (in fact, every First Nations citizen) has every good reason to distrust the Canadian federal government given past actions. I don't blame Mr Clark one bit for being suspicious.

And I hope First Nations people aren't betrayed again.

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