"Tribe" Created to Save Taxes Disrespects Indigenous Struggles | Liam Massaubi
When I read an article in the National Post about the "Mikinak Tribe," I genuinely thought it was an attempt at satire.
It had all the makings of a story fit for The Onion: a self-proclaimed "chief" who sells band memberships at $80 a pop and allows anyone with an aboriginal ancestor somewhere in their lineage to join. She even sports a headband purchased from an Asian craft store and has status cards to make things official. The article states that the Mikinak IDs even declare that the holder is "an aboriginal within the meaning of the article 35 of the Constitution Act of Canada," and as such they are entitled to aboriginal hunting, fishing, trapping and trade rights.
Then there was the part where Costco refused to honour the tax exemption, and Mikinak Chief Lise Brisebois threatened to set up a blockade at Costco with 200 members of her tribe to protest the "injustice," claiming to take a page out of the Mohawk's protest tactics. She insisted: "I just want to be respected. I'm not a savage. I'm an Indian."
By this time I recognized it was not satire. Does this woman not realize that when the Mohawks blocked highways and actually stood up to defend what was rightfully theirs, they were ready to go to war with police and the Canadian military and that they were ready to die? The absolute insult and lack of understanding to compare a Mohawk resistance to Costco not honouring a bull**** card from some people who want to save a couple bucks is probably the best demonstration of what this so-called tribe is about.