Since the start of the Idle No More movement, our bloggers have been quick to offer their spirited take — on everything from the utility of the grassroots protests of Bill C-45 to Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence's hunger strike.
Questions about Chief Spence's moral authority — and defenses thereof — were heightened when an audit was revealed concluding that the Attawapiskat First Nation lacked sufficient documentation for the majority of the $104 million that was transferred to it from the federal government between 2005 and 2011.
Further debate ensued about who should attend a January 11 meeting between First Nations leaders and Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Chief Spence declined to go when she learned that the Governor General would not be there, but the Assembly of First Nations' National Chief Shawn Atleo took his place at the table. (He also took some heat for agreeing to show up at a meeting in the PM's office, with no representative of the Crown present.) It remains to be seen what the talks will accomplish.
But, as HuffPost bloggers of all political and ideological stripes have pointed out, the troubles in First Nations communities run too deep to be solved with a single gathering, no matter how high-profile.
Does the answer lie in Canada showing greater respect for its indigenous people, or in First Nations communities taking greater initiative to hold to their leaders to account?
Here's what 8 of our top bloggers have had to say about the Idle No More story:
Wab Kinew: Idle No More Is Not Just An Indian Thing
<blockquote>The ideals that are underlying this action are ones to which we all aspire, even if we may disagree on how exactly to pursue them.</blockquote> <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/wab-kinew/idle-no-more-canada_b_2316098.html">READ MORE</a>
Bob Rae: This Land Was Their Land
<blockquote>Prime Minister Harper once said that "we have no history of colonialism." This is simply false.</blockquote> <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/bob-rae/bob-rae-theresa-spence_b_2426382.html">READ MORE</a>
Daniel Alexandre Portoraro: Don't Be Fooled By Chief Spence's Circus
<blockquote>Spence is not a symbol to be admired. She oughtn't be a rallying point for this cause.</blockquote> <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/daniel-alexandre-portoraro/theresa-spence-cancels-meeting_b_2442437.html?utm_hp_ref=idle-no-more">READ MORE</a>
Charlie Angus: Harper, Act Now Before Chief Theresa Spence Dies
<blockquote>A little bit of diplomacy and a little bit of compassion would have gone a long way to resolving the crisis before it became an international embarrassment.</blockquote> <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/charlie-angus/chief-theresa-spence-hunger-strike_b_2346601.html?utm_hp_ref=idle-no-more">READ MORE</a>
<blockquote>I am telling you that Canada continues to focus on stripping away all of our rights and land while at the same time telling the world that it is doing the opposite.</blockquote> <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/chelsea-vowel/idle-no-more-first-nations_b_2279415.html">READ MORE</a>
Doug Thomas: Bicker No More — Let's Talk Solutions
<blockquote>The aboriginal chiefs are no more perfect spokespeople for their constituents than Stephen Harper is for his.</blockquote> <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/doug-thomas/idle-no-more-harper_b_2448799.html?utm_hp_ref=idle-no-more">READ MORE</a>
<blockquote>Our children's curriculum has been twisted so that the most shameful part of our history does not cause our white children to squirm with discomfort in their comfortable classrooms.</blockquote> <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/sandra-charron/racism-against-native-canadians_b_2435711.html?utm_hp_ref=idle-no-more">READ MORE</a>
Yoni Goldstein: Theresa Spence Is More The Problem Than Solution
<blockquote>The media attention, not the martyrdom, is what Chief Spence is after. </blockquote><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/yoni-goldstein/theresa-spence-hunger-strike_b_2406802.html">READ MORE</a>
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