Advice to FN: “Be the Termite, not the Woodpecker”

Ojibway Gerald McIvor wrote me this sage email yesterday:

In response to your comment of my voice packing a bigger wallop, all I can say to that is I lock onto an issue and will not let go until there is movement and answers….chiefs and governments hate me but I wear that as a badge of honour. I do however have a very good relationship with alot of national and high profile media people who very frequently contact me asking me for my opinion or for contact information. I usually prefer working in the shadows but I do not hesitate to make noise when required.

I sent this to Indigenous Youth to motivate them on indigenous rights: Ozaway Pinesse is my traditional Ojibway name and I use this name on facebook;

Be the Termite, not the Woodpecker.

Woodpeckers hammer away noisily at the colonial structures on the outside where everyone can see them and pick them off one at a time! The termite does its work quietly invisible, in the shadows, steadily with clear results..The efforts of the termite are not seen until the very foundation on which they stand crumbles and the entire structure comes tumbling do…wn! I urge the Indigenous youth to become the termite and do what must be done for the greater good. Concentrate on the cause, not the applause. I have seen many of the Indian Act actors bumping into each other and stumbling to beat others to the microphone and camera so they can repeat the political rhetoric I have been hearing for over 30 years. They then pat each other on the back when they get minute funding increments or longer term contribution funding agreements from the colonial state. they will feed each others egos and call each other great leaders while all they achieved is an extended period of dependency. I strongly urge our youth to concentrate on the cause and do not get distracted. Let the current Indian Act actors have the applause, you stay with the cause. Applause dies, our cause must never die. We must ensure our nations, cultures and traditions survive for as long as the sun shines, the grasses grow and the waters flow.

~ Ozaway Pinesse.

Gerald McIvor

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