An interesting even t in the chain of the IAW hate fest took place at Ryerson University in Toronto on March 9. Named Education not Occupation: Indigenous struggles for the Right to Educationand sponsored by the Ryerson Students’ Union. It promised to deliver an uncompromising and militant message: “…From Canada, to Sri Lanka, to Palestine, racism, war and occupation continue to obstruct the development of racialized and indigenous communities. In Canada, Students continue to be taught Eurocentric curriculums that ignore the colonial history of the Canadian state and its role in oppressing marginalized communities, government underfunding continues to undermine the possibility of equitable and culturally based first Nations Education, and globally, occupation and systematic obstruction of Palestinian education in the West Bank and Gaza Strip hinders any progress towards peace and justice.”
And the participants didn’t fail to deliver. There were two student panellists with very entertaining presentations: Rachel talked about the Palestinian education in Israel and Cassandra – on the Native educational issues in Canada.
Rachel, who said she was involved for years in researching the issues, attacked Israel right away, starting with an interesting presentation showing three maps of Israel.
Sorry for the bad quality, but taking pictures was discouraged. As you can see, before 1948 that was a big, happy Palestinian area (no indication that many Jews and Christians lived there as well). After 1948 Israel did “ethnic cleansing” to remove all Arabs, but was unsuccessful – no word about who tried to “ethnically cleanse” the Jews the next day after the independence was proclaimed.
Then, by 1967, the only Palestinian lands remaining were the “occupied territories”. The third map depicts Israel after the wall building has started. The wall miraculously deprived the Palestinians of about 40% of their territory. The funny thing is that you can see those white stripes of “confiscated” land even in Gaza, which is 100% under Hamas control. That map totally blew her credibility, but there was more to come.
It turns out that under Israeli control, the education of the so-called Israeli Arabs has deteriorated significantly. She didn’t elaborate on how the level of education in the small Arab villages preceding the establishment of Israel could get any worse.
Then she lamented that the Palestinian students were not allowed to study in Arabic and they were forced to follow a European and Zionist curriculum. I suppose we have to invent Palestinian physics and chemistry to accommodate them. The purpose of education is to make you a productive member of society. I wonder if that could be achieved if you ignore the language, which most people in Israel speak. How are you going to get a decent job without knowing it? Even the most militant defenders of the French rights in Ontario don’t insist that they must use only French language.
Then Rachel showed a short documentary shot in East Jerusalem to re-emphasize her points. It started with an Arab teenager, who complained (without many details) that he couldn’t study engineering in Arabic in Israel. Then they showed his “family” in a nicely decorated apartment with Persian carpets covering the floor.
The father complained that he wasn’t able to send his children to proper schools, still with not much of an explanation. The odd thing was that the whole “family” were wearing shoes inside and the father’s shoes were not that clean (to say the least). Now, I have been in many Muslim homes and I have always been asked to remove my shoes before entering and the hosts never wore shoes either. So it’s up to you to decide what was going on.
Then the camera showed a very young man, supposedly from the Jerusalem housing authority, who stated that there were not enough rooms for Palestinian schools. In support of that, the crew moved to actual Palestinian classrooms. The teachers were all women, covered head to toe by their garments, with only the face revealed. The floors were dirty and the walls had stains. There was nothing that could not be fixed with a broom or paintbrush in under an hour (I suppose they don’t have to wait for public school unions to fix all that). However, if they fix the problems, how are they going to feed the anti-Israeli propaganda?
There was an Israeli Jewish student in the audience, who passionately objected to that picture. He said that when registering for an Israeli university nobody asks you about your nationality or religion. Rachel responded with the quiet determination of a Soviet commissar that he was wrong, she researched the subject, beside that the Arabs had to file the application in Hebrew, which was discriminatory.
The poor guy had the delusion he was at a discussion panel, not a hate fest. It was good they didn’t kick him out.
The next speaker was a Native girl named Cassandra. The admirable thing about her was that she was the first university graduate in her family. She started with the usual laundry list of Canada’s past transgressions against the Native education (residential schools, etc.).
Now the situation is not much better – the funding is not enough and it doesn’t reflect the traditions of the “First Nations”. It turns out that in the Native culture learning is a life-long process, which should be supported by the government.
The Canadian government doesn’t provide a Native-based curriculum (I wonder what it would look like). There are no modern schooling facilities in the remote areas. She gave as an example her community in Northern Saskatchewan, which is 8 to 10 hours’ drive (depending on the weather) from the province’s major cities. The school is located in temporary buildings.
With all due respect, why should the taxpayers pay millions of dollars to artificially support a community with no future? The Natives always claim that they are “sovereign nations”, yet none of them had developed any agriculture or industry in their vast lands (and they want even more lands). Any other group of people would have left Northern Saskatchewan long time ago, instead of collecting welfare.
She also complained about the funding cut off for the First Nations University of Canada. In her words, only 5% of the people there were misappropriating funds, the other 95% sincerely tried to save the university. That was an interesting argument – it doesn’t matter what the majority wants, if they can’t stop the minority from destroying the institution.
A lefty from the audience asked if the Natives consider “boycott and divestment” resistance against those “atrocities”. Cassandra replied that many of them do, because their patience is at its end. I still can’t figure out how you can boycott a government, from which you get everything for free. Maybe they will follow the Caledonia example…
I should admit that the event didn’t disappoint – craziness is alive and well at Ryerson University.
But there is more! While I was doing research on the event, I found a petition on the Ryerson Students’ Union webpage, which calls for a fight against the burka ban in Quebec:
Bill 94 is legislation that has been proposed by Quebec Premier Jean Charest that calls on the ban of the niqab (face veil) in Quebec. If approved by the National Assembly of Quebec, this bill would essentially deny women who wear the niqab (face veil) access to public services
This bill acts in direct conflict with the international covenant of international human rights, the Quebec human rights code, the victim’s bill of rights, and sections 2, 15, and 28 of the Canadian charter of rights and freedom. While supporters of the bill make arguments about government’s role in protecting secularism and gender equality, this bill actually denies Canadian Muslim Women their rights.
Women’s rights and women’s empowerment is directly linked to having proper access to social services. Despite being touted as a step toward gender equality, if approved, Bill 94 will actually work to further marginalize women belonging to Muslim communities in Canada.
That’s the real low of the left – in the name of opposing capitalism they would support even the most disgusting and humiliating customs.
Of course, there is not a single word in the petition against the Muslim barbarians, who force their wives, sisters, and daughters to walk around caged in those ridiculous clothes.
But what else do you expect? The Canadian universities are getting more and more pathetic…