Luv, respect and defiance: A column from prison

I knew this man last year. The inmates called him “Chief” which is a common name for aboriginal inmates. In the shady paranoid world of incarceration nobody uses their real name. Anyways Chief was a really nice gentleman from Tuktoyaktuk. He was Inuit.

As I got to know Chief, I learned he was in for murder. He wore dark glasses so you couldn’t see his eyes and he was shy like a six year old. He got to telling me he was born way up Tuktoyaktuk and was put in residential school for many years and was abused in everyway imaginable. Systemically tortured. Then flung into a hostile racist world. Psychologically damaged to the point of insanity.

So he gets out and comes down Southern Ontario. To get far away from the Arctic as he can. He’s down here for some years. Made friends, met a girl and partied to forget the pain of what happened in the church and government sanctioned torture chambers.

So one night he got partying with a native friend he met and befriended, for he too suffered genocide. So they eased their pain together. He was still laid out the next morning woke up to his friend pulling at him and digging in his pants.
The shy Chief awoke, had a flashback and snapped with the ferocity of a tiger. He beat his friend in a fit of unbridled rage and then picked up a table leg and finished him off dead.

When he realized what he did, he cried and fell into a depression. After sitting in jail for over two years awaiting trial, he languished in jail with no fights, no misconducts, just school and the native circle and smudging.

So he finally comes up for a lengthy trial. The witnesses come forward, victim impact statements were read, and then finally a native Gladue report was submitted to tell of the evil harm perpetrated in the Arctic residential school.

This happened just after the public apology made by Stephen Harper in the House of Commons on national TV. The government appeared to have admitted negligence. But with the legalese Harper spoke, he avoided taking real responsibility for the crimes committed by government and church officials. Needless to say he offered next to nothing for caring for the survivors or addressing the violence perpetuated in ongoing cycles of abuse.

In apologizing what the Harper government really meant is that in this next round of siege they’re gonna be crafty like snakes. They’re using every resource technology has to offer to spy on the red race. Harpers government is tapping our cell phones, creeping our Facebook, and using satellite tracking to finish the job his predecessors failed to accomplish. Especially the independent self sustaining sovereign nations.

Its no joke they’re coming and they’re coming hard for the 99%. They see the masses as a monster that needs to be kept weak and bleeding. And so they use divide and conquer ideologies.

So back to the shameful story of Chief from the Arctic. His Gladue report clearly defined the abuse. When it came down to the verdict, Chief was given 12 years for second degree murder. Now lets ask ourselves if this is justice?

The government run residential school and church was 100% responsible for ruining his life. He wasn’t born a killer. I doubt if he would have snapped with that kind of rage if he wasn’t so abused and frightened by his treatment in residential school.

[tweetable alt=””]So did the Gladue report help? Do they really care or is it merely lip service and a psychological profile to be studied?[/tweetable]

I have grown not to trust too much when it comes to this court system. It seems like the only people that get conditional sentences are full fledged drug addicts that re-offend within a month so that they have to do the whole sentence when they breach a conditional release.

[tweetable alt=””]The court system is hungry for incarcerated natives.[/tweetable]

The crown gets the guilty plea and the native gets bent over again and its happening right here right now everyday under our noses with a smile and a nod. And now they are just beginning to rev up the system and building new prisons to handle more people even as crime rates drop.

Could these new spaces be to accommodate the growing young demographic of the red nations across this land?

Bubzy Martin belongs to the Mohawk Wolf Family. Although he is currently serving time in the colonizer’s prison system, he remains wild and free.

By Bubzy Martin


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