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Proposed renaming of Dundas Street

UrbanFervour

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IF the City plans to rename major elements of the the local geography it only makes sense that the Mississaugas of the Credit and the other local First Nations should be given the opportunity to do the renaming. We say this has been their land for thousands of years and we are living on it - so let them name things rather than projecting & celebrating whatever the current colonialist narrative is on their ancestral lands (whether it be 19th century British Imperialism or 21st century Mulit-culti Woke-ism).

In many cases this will simply mean giving the Toronto area back its original place-names. The Humber and Don Rivers, for example, were called the Cobechenonk and the Wonscotonach respectively. I would argue these are good candidates for renaming.
 

Admiral Beez

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IF the City plans to rename major elements of the the local geography it only makes sense that the Mississaugas of the Credit and the other local First Nations should be given the opportunity to do the renaming. We say this has been their land for thousands of years and we are living on it - so let them name things rather than projecting & celebrating whatever the current colonialist narrative is on their ancestral lands (whether it be 19th century British Imperialism or 21st century Mulit-culti Woke-ism).

In many cases this will simply mean giving the Toronto area back its original place-names. The Humber and Don Rivers, for example, were called the Cobechenonk and the Wonscotonach respectively. I would argue these are good candidates for renaming.
That's why I think the land acknowledgment mantra we all have to recite before public matters or events are frivolous. If we say the land is theirs then we must also recognize that we're keeping it.
 

zang

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That's why I think the land acknowledgment mantra we all have to recite before public matters or events are frivolous. If we say the land is theirs then we must also recognize that we're keeping it.
Except that in indigenous cultures, the concept of land ownership is much different and doesn't really concur with our own. Aside from that, it's giving due respect to the fact that we *did* "take" it from them.
 

Northern Light

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Except that in indigenous cultures, the concept of land ownership is much different and doesn't really concur with our own. Aside from that, it's giving due respect to the fact that we *did* "take" it from them.

I would beg to differ.

Many indigenous people would as well, and I'm sure I can find some public quotes.

Its empty symbolism in lieu of substance.

Anything by the way, repeated ad nauseum, without a compelling reason is the same.

Its why the national anthem should not be played before professional sports events, or a City Council meeting.

There's no logical connection.

I would argue for getting rid of the latter at the start of school as well.

Can you imagine if everyone, at every job had to begin their day by standing at attention for the national anthem? It would be ridiculous and a nuisance; its no less so in other places.

The anthem should be saved for an official government of Canada event or ceremony where there's a compelling logic to it.

Likewise, land acknowledgements make sense in niche circumstances, where a new treaty is being signed, an old one celebrated, or there is some particular or specific reason (such as where a park contains a traditional First Nations burial ground.)

Otherwise its at best meaningless and a throw-away line; at worst its insulting to just about everyone.

Any acknowledgement of anyone automatically omits everyone else who would arguably merit such; any acknowledgement without substance is condescending to those being referenced, (ie. yup, it used to be your land, now we're going to do what we were going to do anyway, and you have no say); it also induces eyerolls all around.

Symbolism of all sorts should be minimized.

When deployed, it should be supported by substance and imbued with meaning (other than condescension)
 

Admiral Beez

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Aside from that, it's giving due respect to the fact that we *did* "take" it from them.
No doubt about that. Of course all nations rise and fall by seizing or losing land. One of my in-laws is from Poland in a region where the indigenous Germans were violently forced out over a hundred years ago. I wonder if the Poles have a similar land declaration, I think not. I consider myself an indigenous and ethnic English, with my family going back at least a thousand years, but my tribe had to have defeated and displaced the Celtic Britons that were there before - I don’t think anyone makes much of this today. Do the Zulu people of KwaZulu-Natal regularly declare that their country is located on the traditional land of the Xhosa people they defeated in battle? Likely not.

It seems the land acknowledgment is mostly an expression of white guilt towards the indigenous peoples they displaced in North America and ANZ. I don’t think many other countries have so institutionalized and normalized the land acknowledgement mantra before school and government business. But the land acknowledgment is empty, if we took their land, and we believe they’re entited to it, then we must give it back or offer compensation in kind. That’s what land acknowledgment should be about, making financial and physical amends.

If I stole your car, and then said, I acknowledge that I stole your car, but I’m keeping anyway, isn’t that just more of an insult than a sincere attempt at reconciliation?
 
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zang

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It seems the land acknowledgment is mostly an expression of white guilt towards the indigenous peoples they displaced in North America and ANZ.
Land acknowledgements are an indigenous tradition, not a settler one. Humility and respect are dependent on one another. You may call it "white guilt", but again, the indigenous views about land ownership are different, and taking on one of their traditions means incorporating them into governance and not pushing them to the side. The acknowledgement isn't about settlers, it's about those indigenous folks still around.

You may not like them, but they are a part of the "reconciliation" part of "truth and reconciliation".
 

zang

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I would beg to differ.

Many indigenous people would as well, and I'm sure I can find some public quotes.

Its empty symbolism in lieu of substance.
Empty to whom?

"However, it's one that many Indigenous people say marks a small but essential step toward reconciliation."

"Karyn Recollet is an urban Cree woman and an associate professor at the University of Toronto's Women and Gender Studies Institute. She says it is important to see the territorial acknowledgement as an activation of Indigenous culture. "



Otherwise its at best meaningless and a throw-away line; at worst its insulting to just about everyone.
Nice.

Stop viewing it as an apology, and view it as a way of bringing back indigenous people into the role of governance, which seems to be what it's intended as.
 

zang

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I just wanted to make note of this bit:
Do the Zulu people of KwaZulu-Natal regularly declare that their country is located on the traditional land of the Xhosa people they defeated in battle? Likely not.
You're posing all of this as "X side lost, so they should suck it up", and ignores that what happened in the first place wasn't right. It's the response of a bully. If giving a few minutes of respect to people, killed, prostrated and marginalized for several centuries is a problem for you, maybe you should rethink your place in society?
 

Northern Light

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Stop viewing it as an apology,

I wasn't.

and view it as a way of bringing back indigenous people into the role of governance, which seems to be what it's intended as.

It doesn't.

****

Here:

1625771318798.png


From: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opi...-a-land-acknowledgment-make-sure-you-mean-it/

And:

1625771591723.png


From: https://vancouversun.com/opinion/co...that-b-c-first-nations-never-signed-away-land

And:

1625771656208.png

 
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zang

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For the most part, the gist of these statements seems to be "if it's the only thing that's being done in regards to Truth and Reconciliation, it's not enough", which I'm pretty much in agreement with.

But Beez's statement was about "land acknowledgements" themselves, and not about the other things that also need to be done. By acknowledging a marginalized group in a government that wouldn't exist without their pain and generational trauma, it's one small piece of a larger puzzle. Much like renaming streets is *one* part of many that need to be done.
 

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