In Canada, a budget bill (C-45) supported by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and other conservative lawmakers, would unilaterally alter treaties with First Nations people, drastically affect lands and waterways on both sides of the U.S.-Canada border, and reduce jobs for all Canadians. This alarming development has caused unrest across the country. Chief Theresa Spence of the Attawapiskat is in her 18th day of a hunger strike (as of Friday December 28), which she says will last until she can speak with Prime Minister Harper and Canada's Governor General (who represents the English Crown) about the aforementioned treaty violations. She is prepared to die if her demands are not met.
Meanwhile, Indigenous teach-ins and demonstrations--including flash mobs in shopping malls and blocking of highways--have been occurring throughout the nation. Solidarity events and awareness-building have been occurring in the U.S. and in countries further to the south. Australian Aborigines have also expressed solidarity.
In Los Angeles, a weekly rally has been underway outside the Canadian consulate at 550 South Hope Street in downtown. On December 28, approximately 50 people turned out in the middle of a weekday. Natives from several areas were present (or represented), including the Owens Valley, Morongo, and Yangna (Los Angeles). A common sentiment expressed by speakers was, "if we won't do it, who will?"
Full story and photos: Idle No More -- Los Angeles by Ross Plesset