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Schmale talks Conservative leadership race, COVID-19, indigenous blockades, and CBC

in Federal by
Anti-energy activists are creating a situation “where no one has permission to start anything" says Schmale.

Jamie Schmale, the Conservative member of parliament for Haliburton – Kawartha Lakes – Brock, spent 90 minutes with the Advocate, via telephone, to share what he has been doing, his views on the Conservative leadership race, the COVID-19 pandemic, funding for the CBC, and his role in the Conservative shadow cabinet.

Jamie Schmale has been back in his local riding since March 13. While parliament has re-opened in a limited way – one in-person sitting per week, augmented by two Zoom sittings – there is only a skeleton crew of parliamentarians needed who are selected by their individual parties.

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Burial customs, past and present: ‘How they so softly rest’

in Just in Time by
'How They So Softly Rest:' Burial customs, past and present
Riverside Cemetery, Lindsay. Photo: Ian McKechnie.

In 1991, the remains of an Indigenous man which had been unearthed in a Peterborough parking lot some three decades earlier were re-interred in the Curve Lake Cemetery. The actual interment was preceded by a Feast of the Living, with a sweet grass and sage smudge performed by four pipe carriers, and food prepared to accompany the deceased to the land of spirits. The following day, more smudging, honour songs, and offerings of tobacco accompanied the reburial of these 2,000 year-old remains. For the First Peoples, this Indigenous man was now on his way to meet his ancestors, as per their burial customs.

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Nobody needs my opinion on this

in Opinion by
There has been much discussion on the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls report.

There has been a lot of hand-wringing in some quarters over the release of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG) report, specifically with the report’s use of the word genocide. Here’s my take on it: my opinion isn’t really needed right now.

See, I’m a white dude. A white dude that’s lucky enough to get to share my opinion sometimes. But now is not the time for me to speak. It’s the time for me, and people like me, to listen. And hopefully learn.

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Learning from the first ‘farmers’ how to save the earth

in Environment/Opinion by

There is something about a drive through the country that is deeply satisfying. Green fields divided by tree lines or split rail fences. The occasional dry stone wall. Cattle or sheep dotted in the fields and cozy farmhouses flanked by wooden barns. An idyllic picture of a pastoral farming way of life.

When the first settlers came to Canada and encountered the Indigenous people of these lands, they did not realize that the land they were looking at also reflected a pastoral, farming way of life. There was so much lush greenery. The woods seems so thick and the animals so abundant. This was nothing like the farms they had left behind in England and France and Spain. This land didn’t appear to be managed. It didn’t look controlled. And it certainly didn’t look as though anyone was trying to raise crops or breed animals.

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Bards of the Kawarthas: Our poetic past

in Just in Time by
Just as artefacts and artworks function as windows into our collective past, so to do those rhymes of old.

Many years ago, when my father taught school full-time, a highlight of the academic year for his students occurred on or around the 25th of January – the birthday of Robert Burns (1759-1796), the “Bard of Ayrshire,” who is widely regarded as Scotland’s national poet. For over 30 years, students in Mr. McKechnie’s classroom celebrated the legacy of this literary legend by reciting portions of To A Mouse and Auld Lang Syne, among other works; enjoying a cup of tea; and feasting on the Abernethy biscuits and shortbread made by his grandmother and mother, respectively.

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Blue Rodeo’s Jim Cuddy: Canada’s prosperity should mean “a level of decency” for people’s lives

in Around Town/Social Issues/The Arts by
Blue Rodeo’s Jim Cuddy: Canada’s prosperity should mean “a level of decency” for people’s lives

The co-front man for one of Canada’s greatest bands, Jim Cuddy of Blue Rodeo, says people are born into economic and social circumstances that either shows a wide horizon before them, or a small horizon – and when it’s small, it’s “suffocating.”

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