What is the intended purpose of Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission?

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Father Joseph Hugonnard, Principal, with staff and aboriginal students of the Industrial School May 1885 / Fort Qu’Appelle, Sask. O.B. Buell / Library and Archives Canada / PA-118765

Xiaoming Guo

Truth and Reconciliation is a governmental project to follow up on the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement and is mostly to collect and to preserve the facts that indigenous people suffered in the Residential Schools in Canada.

Residential Schools in Canada was a governmental project of cultural genocide aimed to convert all indigenous people into Christians by coercive force. Indigenous people suffered in the process of this colonialism policy. This is a historical fact that produced a prolonged impact on our society, especially our indigenous peoples. However, we want to transform the fact into a narrative of “Truth” so as to avoid the use of the phrases of imperialism and colonialism.

So the fact is constructed into such a “Truth”:1) We are sorry about the surfer of the indigenous people. We understand the residential school was wrong because it wipes out the indigenous culture. 2) Indigenous people should also understand the European colonists considered it was a good thing with good intension. Because according to colonialists, in their racist mentality, we have a good culture and you have a bad cultural so converting your culture into our culture is a good thing.

Now we need to reconcile the good and bad. How does a truth can be good and bad at the same time for such a long time? So the Reconciliation has two levels of meaning: reconcile the indigenous people with the descendants of European colonialists and reconcile the mind-boggling contradiction of the “Truth” is good and bad at the same time.

The reconciliation is going like this: Indigenous people should join us to glorify the imperialism and should love the colonialists even though the colonialists abused their human rights and genocide their culture.

I would say that such reconciliation insults the indigenous people, deprived their basic dignity as a human, and abuses their human rights the second time.

Why all Canadians, including indigenous peoples, should glorify imperialism? Because our allies in international politics are exercised the imperialism. If another country has a different system from ours, then we are right and they are wrong, just as colonialist thought about the indigenous culture. And we are still using our military power to impose our will on other people, just as colonialists imposed their will on indigenous people.

The whole scheme of the Truth and Reconciliation is to softly coerce the indigenous people to glorify imperialism and love colonialists even though they are the victims of imperialism and colonialism. This is a colonialist education process and colonialism is racism in international politics.

When our scholars, our academics, our textbooks, and our schools refuse to condemn imperialism and colonialism and our foreign affairs are still pursuit imperialist policies, the human rights of the indigenous people will get the abused time and again. Without condemning imperialism, the Truth and Reconciliation are doing indigenous people more harm than good.

Our ally, the US, used the excuse of WMD to invade and occupied Iraq in 2003. This is an imperialist international politics. Yet we still glorify the US, saying the US is doing a good thing with good intention even though Iraq people suffered from never-ending chaos and terrorist wars. This is repeating the dark history of Residential Schools in Canada by our ally. Our allies, the NATO, bombed Libya so to turn Libya from the most advanced country by human development index into a country that slave market returned. We still glorify the NATO action as democracy and freedom even though the Libyan people suffered from the consequence of NATO bombing operation. We support our allies to repeat the same dark history of Residential Schools in Canada. China since 1840 had been being a victim for repeated imperialist invasions and colonialists’ control and influence. China has developed since the independence of 1949. Yet we condemn China as communism, totalitarianism, authoritarianism, or dictatorship. We use all excuse to interfere with China’s internal affair, we are trying to repeat the dark history of Residential Schools in Canada in China together with our allies to use gunboat policy to resume the imperialist and colonialist influence in China.

When our scholars, our academics, our textbooks, and our schools refuse to condemn imperialism and colonialism and our foreign affairs are still pursuit imperialist policies, we are denying the wrongdoing of Residential Schools in Canada, enforce a colonialism education, and sustain the systematic racism in our society.

We have had The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms since 1982, yet indigenous people still suffer racist discrimination together with the minority groups who immigrated to our country from countries of the previous victim of imperialism and colonialism. This is because not only we never condemn imperialism and colonialism but even we glorify the imperialism and asking the victims of colonialism to be loyal to colonialists.

Today we are in an era of abundant materials. This is different from a century ago. The rich can get rich without the need to let others suffer. The poor can live a decent life without getting rich. Imperialism and colonialism are to get rich by letting others suffer. Because of advanced technology and production power, our national interest does not necessary to let other countries suffer. The winner-takes-all mentality of the imperialism and colonialism are endangering world peace and divide our society.

Today we are in an era of abundant materials. This is different from a century ago. The rich can get rich without the need to make others suffer. The poor can live a decent life without getting rich. Imperialism and colonialism are to get rich by letting others suffer. Because of advanced technology and production power, our national interest does not necessary to let other countries suffer. The winner-takes-all mentality of the imperialism and colonialism are endangering world peace and divide our society.

On the surface value, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) is to eradicate racist discrimination toward the indigenous people; however, in its hypocritical process, it prolongs the systematic racism in our government because it is part of the colonial education process.