Anishinabek Nation Self-Government - YouTube
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00:00:41 00:00:47 >> They have to understand our language or identity.
00:00:49 00:00:55 They have to understand the many ceremonies that we do have.
00:00:55 00:00:58 I know that they are youth council,
00:00:58 00:01:00 they're leaders right now.
00:01:00 00:01:03 Into the future,
00:01:03 00:01:06 we have to be proud of who we are.
00:01:07 00:01:10 We have to be proud of
00:01:10 00:01:16 our identity because that's how we want to survive again.
00:01:25 00:01:29 >> My elder in training over here,
00:01:29 00:01:32 I tell him he's not in training no more.
00:01:32 00:01:36 But he heard me talk a few times
00:01:36 00:01:40 already about a governance structure that we do
00:01:40 00:01:43 have and why are we trying to
00:01:43 00:01:47 still adapt to or structure that doesn't belong to us.
00:01:47 00:01:50 These foreigners that came here just
00:01:50 00:01:53 500 years ago was
00:01:53 00:01:58 still trying to adapt to their system and we can't.
00:01:58 00:02:02 Maybe we should turn the tables around.
00:02:02 00:02:07 Maybe we should get them to adapt to our structure of governance.
00:02:08 00:02:11 We want to be talking about that governance structure
00:02:11 00:02:15 tonight that has been
00:02:15 00:02:18 around for years and years and years and years.
00:02:19 00:02:25 >> Ngo Dwe Waangizid Anishinaabe was a process that came after
00:02:25 00:02:28 the development of the Chi Naaknigewin which
00:02:28 00:02:31 is the constitution of the Anishinaabe nation.
00:02:31 00:02:33 What that meant was that we now had
00:02:33 00:02:35 a document in front of us that was
00:02:35 00:02:38 essentially very good to start
00:02:38 00:02:40 to looking at our lawmaking authority.
00:02:40 00:02:43 But at that time there was still something missing.
00:02:43 00:02:48 And what was missing was this notion of the spirit of the people.
00:02:48 00:02:51 The elders went and they did
00:02:51 00:02:55 everything in the Anishinaabian language and what came out of that
00:02:55 00:02:58 was Ngo Dwe Waangizid Anishinaabe and it's now
00:02:58 00:02:59 a very important part of
00:02:59 00:03:02 our restoration of jurisdiction process going forward.
00:03:02 00:03:05 >> Once people begin to understand
00:03:05 00:03:08 what's in the Ngo Dwe Waangizid Anishinaabe,
00:03:08 00:03:11 they begin to understand how
00:03:11 00:03:15 the constitution of the Anishinaabe is formed.
00:03:15 00:03:19 The earth, the air, the water,
00:03:19 00:03:21 and the fire are
00:03:21 00:03:25 the primary gifts of the creator to the Anishinaabe people.
00:03:25 00:03:28 The Anishinaabe believe that these are
00:03:28 00:03:31 primary gifts that must be protected.
00:03:31 00:03:37 The seven gifts of the grandfathers describe the ways or
00:03:37 00:03:40 the laws that the Anishinaabe people
00:03:40 00:03:44 have to live in order to live a good life.
00:03:44 00:03:45 But not only that,
00:03:45 00:03:47 but for community and
00:03:47 00:03:52 family order so that they can live in a good way.
00:03:52 00:03:57 The creator also gave the Anishinaabe the right to exist in
00:03:57 00:04:01 this land as a nation of people and it's
00:04:01 00:04:07 important for people to understand that that means sovereignty.
00:04:07 00:04:11 Currently, we have First Nations who are directed
00:04:11 00:04:13 by Indian affairs on how
00:04:13 00:04:16 they should run their governments in their communities.
00:04:16 00:04:19 Under the Anishinaabe nation government,
00:04:19 00:04:21 we'll do things our own way.
00:04:21 00:04:25 In other words, we won't have to follow the Indian Act process.
00:04:25 00:04:29 >> We're in a very critical time and we know that the Indian Act
00:04:29 00:04:31 does nothing but create problems
00:04:31 00:04:33 and challenges for our communities.
00:04:33 00:04:35 Let's work together.
00:04:35 00:04:38 Let's prove to our children that we know what's
00:04:38 00:04:41 in their best interests because at the end of the day,
00:04:41 00:04:45 the experts are here in this room.
00:04:45 00:04:48 The experts are back in our communities.
00:04:48 00:04:50 >> Every aspect of our lives
00:04:50 00:04:52 is impacted by his outside jurisdiction,
00:04:52 00:04:55 is trying to occupy the field and take
00:04:55 00:04:58 over the running of how things should happen in our communities.
00:04:58 00:05:02 Bureaucrats in Ottawa, bureaucrats at Queen's Park,
00:05:02 00:05:04 or the politicians at Queen's Park and
00:05:04 00:05:08 the politicians in Ottawa do not know our communities.
00:05:08 00:05:10 They do not know our people.
00:05:10 00:05:13 We can't rely on somebody else's so-called solutions
00:05:13 00:05:14 when we have the answers.
00:05:14 00:05:18 >> If we continue doing the circle here,
00:05:18 00:05:21 continue talking about our clan structure
00:05:21 00:05:25 or clans and what their functions are,
00:05:25 00:05:30 the better we will be to understand our trail in life.
00:05:30 00:05:33 >> We start to see the clan system take up
00:05:33 00:05:36 formal place in our government process.
00:05:36 00:05:38 We start to see that the various roles and
00:05:38 00:05:41 responsibilities of administration and we start
00:05:41 00:05:43 to see the role of the judiciary and
00:05:43 00:05:46 what clan may be responsible for those duties.
00:05:46 00:05:49 But the key element here is that they're all
00:05:49 00:05:52 based on some very ancient laws
00:05:52 00:05:55 and some very inherent responsibilities
00:05:55 00:05:58 that we all have as Anishinaabe people.
00:05:58 00:06:01 When we're able to take those things and forward them into
00:06:01 00:06:06 the modern elements of who we are as a government today,
00:06:06 00:06:08 then we can actually say,
00:06:08 00:06:10 we are a nation based on
00:06:10 00:06:13 the sovereignty that we went to the treaty table with.
00:06:13 00:06:15 >> Under this new arrangement we
00:06:15 00:06:17 have with the government of Canada,
00:06:17 00:06:19 we will no longer elect
00:06:19 00:06:21 our chief and councils under the Indian Act.
00:06:21 00:06:24 Our communities will have the option of enacting
00:06:24 00:06:27 our own election laws and be able to determine things for self,
00:06:27 00:06:32 such as, what will the qualifications before to serve as a chief?
00:06:32 00:06:34 What are the qualifications that we'll set
00:06:34 00:06:36 for ourselves to serve as a counselor?
00:06:36 00:06:39 How long will those councils serve?
00:06:39 00:06:43 >> All those things that right now are settled in the Indian Act.
00:06:43 00:06:45 But there are other powers that are going to
00:06:45 00:06:46 be recognized in the agreement
00:06:46 00:06:49 with Canada such as language and culture.
00:06:49 00:06:53 It's important to us to be able to think about
00:06:53 00:06:58 and institute ways to use more of our own language,
00:06:58 00:07:02 to practice more of our own culture and spirituality, for example,
00:07:02 00:07:04 in the way we conduct meetings such
00:07:04 00:07:08 as opening our meetings with prayer,
00:07:08 00:07:12 having our spiritual ceremonies be part of our meetings.
00:07:12 00:07:14 We'll have the language and culture
00:07:14 00:07:16 law making power recognizing the agreement,
00:07:16 00:07:20 as well as powers that we need to and that most governments need,
00:07:20 00:07:24 such as the power to implement a law,
00:07:24 00:07:27 such as a Financial Administration Act and some of
00:07:27 00:07:30 the other law making powers that are recognized in the agreement,
00:07:30 00:07:34 our citizenship, so our first nations can
00:07:34 00:07:38 determine who the citizens will be of the first station.
00:07:38 00:07:42 >> We have that authority, that right,
00:07:42 00:07:47 that responsibility to say who our memories are, it's up to us.
00:07:47 00:07:50 Even if they've never been recognized legally,
00:07:50 00:07:53 it doesn't matter, we will have that right to say yes.
00:07:53 00:07:56 Its not just for us that we're doing this.
00:07:56 00:07:58 We're here for the young people,
00:07:58 00:08:01 but we're thinking about the future generations,
00:08:01 00:08:03 the generations to come.
00:08:03 00:08:06 >> He finally said it's time for us to take charge
00:08:06 00:08:10 and to reinstate our incurrent rights,
00:08:10 00:08:14 to make laws, to run our own communities in our own way,
00:08:14 00:08:17 that is to restore the jurisdictions.
00:08:17 00:08:20 >> I had no idea about like self governing and how sufficient
00:08:20 00:08:22 that we could potentially be
00:08:22 00:08:24 like first it seemed a little grahamed.
00:08:24 00:08:25 I didn't think that we could actually get our feet off
00:08:25 00:08:28 the ground after everything that happened in history.
00:08:28 00:08:30 Now I have a lot of confidence moving forward
00:08:30 00:08:33 and being one of
00:08:33 00:08:36 the people to initiate self governing in my community.
00:08:36 00:08:38 >> I knew there was a clan system
00:08:38 00:08:41 like a governor of a clan system,
00:08:41 00:08:46 but I never knew the responsibilities of each and every clan.
00:08:47 00:08:55 Now that I know it and we're trying to make that a reality.
00:08:55 00:08:56 Well, it is a reality,
00:08:56 00:09:00 but we are trying to input it in our lives today.
00:09:00 00:09:04 That seems like just an amazing idea,
00:09:04 00:09:08 I think we'll go so much further that way.
00:09:08 00:09:10 >> The government has replace all of
00:09:10 00:09:14 our systems that we already had existing prior to contact.
00:09:14 00:09:16 The amount of friction we're getting in
00:09:16 00:09:18 our fight to restore our jurisdiction,
00:09:18 00:09:21 which is rightfully ours, it's inherent.
00:09:21 00:09:26 We've never given it up that's what aggravates me the most.
00:09:26 00:09:29 >> There's no excuse for us to not know these things.
00:09:29 00:09:31 You can't see where you're going
00:09:31 00:09:33 unless you know where you've been.
00:09:33 00:09:36 For us to know our histories is very important and I'm sure
00:09:36 00:09:39 that it isn't something that's well known around here.
00:09:39 00:09:41 We know that we've come
00:09:41 00:09:43 up against opposition and come out ahead before,
00:09:43 00:09:45 so there's no reason we can't do it again.
00:09:45 00:09:48 >> I'm interested in any knowledge or
00:09:48 00:09:52 information or skills that will give me the ability
00:09:52 00:09:55 to grow as a person and to also then
00:09:55 00:09:57 later on maybe have positive effect
00:09:57 00:09:59 on family, community and nation.
00:09:59 00:10:03 >> Once you inspire someone,
00:10:03 00:10:06 that's when you realize how much you have to offer and
00:10:06 00:10:10 the gifts you have to offer that you were given in them.
00:10:10 00:10:12 I keep hearing about this fire within us.
00:10:12 00:10:13 [MUSIC]
00:10:13 00:10:16 >> The really important reason why I think we're
00:10:16 00:10:19 embarking on Self Government Agreement and enacting
00:10:19 00:10:21 constitutions are ready to take
00:10:21 00:10:24 some steps and measures that are going to help turn things
00:10:24 00:10:26 around for our communities and so having
00:10:26 00:10:30 our own constitutions is our people's way of saying,
00:10:30 00:10:32 here's what our communities are about.
00:10:32 00:10:33 Here's the values and the beliefs
00:10:33 00:10:35 and the principles that are important to us.
00:10:35 00:10:38 Here's the law making powers that we're going to say
00:10:38 00:10:42 council can exercise on behalf of the people.
00:10:42 00:10:46 When we build those things like the constitutions and
00:10:46 00:10:49 we build our appeal and redress our mechanisms,
00:10:49 00:10:51 we build them in a way that match
00:10:51 00:10:54 our own unique Anishinaabe culture.
00:10:54 00:10:57 There are a reflection of our values,
00:10:57 00:11:00 our way of doing things and when we do that,
00:11:00 00:11:02 they have more legitimacy in the eyes
00:11:02 00:11:04 of our people that they were designed to
00:11:04 00:11:06 serve because they were built
00:11:06 00:11:09 by our people and build for our people.
00:11:09 00:11:13 It's important to have a cultural match when you reflect back on
00:11:13 00:11:17 the look and the content of the Anishinaabe nation Niisaachewan.
00:11:17 00:11:19 When you'll see the first thing you're going to see,
00:11:19 00:11:23 there's the reciting of the goody on because it Anishinaabe a,
00:11:23 00:11:25 which is what I spoke of earlier,
00:11:25 00:11:28 the reflection of our traditional values,
00:11:28 00:11:30 our beliefs, our seven Grandfather Teachings.
00:11:30 00:11:34 That's an example of the cultural match I was talking about,
00:11:34 00:11:36 whereby we built a constitution,
00:11:36 00:11:39 we built a Anishinaabe nation Niisaachewan and we,
00:11:39 00:11:41 it's completely reflective of
00:11:41 00:11:43 who we are as an Niisaachewan people.
00:11:43 00:11:46 Having our own jurisdiction is really
00:11:46 00:11:48 important and that's why we're engaged in
00:11:48 00:11:52 negotiations with Canada to get
00:11:52 00:11:54 Canada's recognition for our law
00:11:54 00:11:57 making powers in the area of governance and education.
00:11:57 00:12:00 It really is no more complicated than that.
00:12:00 00:12:03 Its taking control of our destiny.
00:12:03 00:12:05 It's about enacting our own laws and
00:12:05 00:12:06 really putting in place
00:12:06 00:12:09 the things that have been shown to work through the research.
00:12:09 00:12:12 It's no more complicated than that.
00:12:12 00:12:15 >> When is this going to happen?
00:12:15 00:12:17 We're doing it today.
00:12:17 00:12:19 We're actually asserting,
00:12:19 00:12:22 we're exercising those rights and we're
00:12:22 00:12:25 now putting pieces in place that demonstrate,
00:12:25 00:12:30 we have been taking our responsibility despite the Indian Act,
00:12:30 00:12:33 despite other policies that are being imposed on our people,
00:12:33 00:12:36 we are still seeking direction from our elders.
00:12:36 00:12:38 We still have our ceremonies intact,
00:12:38 00:12:41 that the language, even though it's an a meager state right now,
00:12:41 00:12:45 we're reclaiming that language and those very things give
00:12:45 00:12:49 us the assurance that we have always practice our jurisdiction,
00:12:49 00:12:51 that we have always upheld
00:12:51 00:12:54 the principle of who we are as sovereign people.
00:12:54 00:12:57 Its now just having governments recognize that.
00:12:57 00:12:58 It's now just having industry
00:12:58 00:13:01 recognize that when they want to develop on our lands.
00:13:01 00:13:04 I think what's happening is as governments are
00:13:04 00:13:06 now being forced to look at
00:13:06 00:13:10 the option and to look at the processes that we're putting place
00:13:10 00:13:14 in our negotiations for education, for self government.
00:13:14 00:13:15 What people are clearly
00:13:15 00:13:18 recognizing is that those laws have already existed.
00:13:18 00:13:20 We don't have to make these laws up.
00:13:20 00:13:24 We don't have to try to grasp at straws.
00:13:24 00:13:27 We go through our protocols, our ceremonies,
00:13:27 00:13:28 we speak to our elders,
00:13:28 00:13:29 we talked to our knowledge keepers.
00:13:29 00:13:32 We get that direction and we will find
00:13:32 00:13:36 that our jurisdiction has always been there in our communities.
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