Proliferation of self-identified Indigenous people represents "new wave of colonialism" - APTN NewsAPTN News

Proliferation of self-identified Indigenous people represents “new wave of colonialism”

Justin Brake
A growing number of people in the Mi’kmaq and Métis nations are speaking out about what they say is a growing threat to their rights, resources, and sovereignty due to the proliferation of self-identified Acadian-Métis in Nova Scotia.

Allison Bernard of Eskasoni First Nation hunts and fishes in Cape Breton and is a fisheries coordinator for Nova Scotia-based Mi’kmaq Rights Initiative.

He says in recent years a growing number of people have been hunting on Mi’kmaq land, both in and out of season.

“Since time immemorial we’ve been here. We’ve had to adjust to very troubling times. Which leads us to this point, where we have to protect what is ours, and our resources,” he says.

Bernard believes many of those new hunters are associated with recently established self-identified Acadian-Métis groups in the area.

In December 2015 Parks Canada invited Mi’kmaw hunters from the region to participate in a cull to control the moose population in Cape Breton Highlands National Park.

Non-Indigenous hunters confront Mi'kmaw hunters in December 2015 in Cape Breton Highlands National Park. Photo: APTN

Non-Indigenous hunters confront Mi’kmaw hunters in December 2015 in Cape Breton Highlands National Park. Photo: APTN

Non-Indigenous hunters protested the planned cull, arguing the Mi’kmaq should be given no special privilege.

The Mi’kmaq maintain they have never ceded or surrendered any part of Mi’kma’ki and point to the historic Peace and Friendship Treaties as evidence they have sovereignty over their lands and resources.

One of the hunters who protested the moose cull in 2015 is Arnold Ditherbide, who months later became a founding member of the newly formed Highlands Métis Nation Association, and the group’s “second chief”.

APTN visited Ditherbide’s house in Cape Breton to request an on-camera interview but he wasn’t home.

“White settler revisionism”

St. Mary’s University Professor Darryl Leroux has been researching the growing number of self-identified Métis in Quebec and the Maritimes and says he’s not surprised to hear one of the groups’ leaders has actively opposed Aboriginal rights in the past.

Leroux says the proliferation of self-identified Métis in Nova Scotia and other provinces is a phenomenon he calls “white settler revisionism.”

“The evidence that I’ve uncovered suggests that this is primarily a genealogical movement, linked to a political movement that often is organized around what one could call white supremacist ideas that are openly anti-Indigenous,” he said. “Not white supremacist in the hate-filled sense of the term, but rather white settlers advocating for white rights and in this case opposing Indigenous rights to achieve that end.”

St. Mary’s University Professor Darryl Leroux

St. Mary’s University Professor Darryl Leroux.

He argues in academic papers and on social media that settlers—in Nova Scotia’s case mostly those who have historically identified as Acadian—often locate long ago Indigenous ancestors to claim Indigeneity in order to access Indigenous rights.

Leroux says he found that some ancestors used by self-identified Métis to claim Indigenous identity were, in fact, French women.

Most trace their roots back to between only five and 10 Mi’kmaw women who married French men in the 1600s.

He estimates upward of 10 million people today share those women as ancestors.

But not all Acadians and Nova Scotians with Indigenous ancestry claim an Indigenous identity, says Daphne Williamson, a Halifax-based lawyer and member of the Sou’West Nova Métis Council who traces her Indigenous ancestry back to the Wampanoag in what is now Massachusetts.

Speaking on behalf of seven of Nova Scotia’s eight Métis leaders, Williamson says self-identified Métis in Nova Scotia claim an Indigenous identity based not only on their ancestral connections but also on the basis that they developed distinct cultures and identities.

“Each community is distinct in and of itself because of the way it historically evolved: the circumstances, the mix of ethnicities that were comprised at the time,” she says.

But members of the Mi’kmaw community in Nova Scotia say this is news to them.

“I’ve never heard of any kind of collective Métis identity, culture, language or heritage in this region,” says Jarvis Googoo of We’koqma’q First Nation. “It only started to pop up out of the blue in the early 2000s, after Marshall.”

Métisness and the courts

Leroux points to Statistics Canada numbers that reveal 860 individuals in Nova Scotia identified as Métis in the 1996 census. By 2016 the number of self-identified Métis in the province had grown to more than 23,000.

He estimates that around 200,000 people presently identify as Métis in Quebec and the Atlantic provinces and that the proliferation coincides with court decisions that affirm Aboriginal rights and address the debate over who is Métis and who’s not.

“There are these moments where court decisions lead people to identify with a particular juridical or legal identity,” he explains.

Watch Part 1 of Justin’s story.


The 1999 Supreme Court of Canada Marshall decision affirmed Mi’kmaq treaty rights to fish for a moderate livelihood.

In 2003 the Powley decision described a Métis person as one who self-identifies, has an ancestral connection to a historic Métis community, and is accepted by that community.

And the 2016 Daniels decision ruled that Métis and non-status Indians are now the responsibility of the federal government, and are classified as “Indians” under Section 91(24) of the constitution.

Jennifer Adese, a Métis scholar and Associate Professor of Indigenous Studies Studies at Carleton University, says the phenomenon of self-identified Métis in Eastern Canada must be understood in the context of the “constitutional moment” in which it’s happening.

As part of the Métis Nation Accord, the Métis National Council developed its own definition of who is Métis. The Accord was embedded in the 1992 Charlottetown Accord and would have been entrenched in the constitution had the proposed constitutional amendments not failed.

The Métis National Council’s definition of a Métis person required that an individual be a “descendant of those Métis who received or were entitled to receive land grants and/or scrip under the provisions of the Manitoba Act, 1870 or the Dominion Lands Act.”

“I think that we’d be having a different conversation if in fact the Métis Nation Accord had been passed and entrenched the definition of who is Métis from the outset,” says Adese.

“It’s not until after that that you start to see the emergence of all of these different organizations claiming Métisness, and it’s enabled really by that lack of clarity around Métisness in that moment.”

Watch Part 2 of Justin’s story. 


Adese believes if the Métis Nation Accord passed, “Powley would have looked completely different [and] these precedent-setting cases would have looked very very different.”

She and others argue that while some in Eastern Canada may have legitimate claims of Indigeneity, they are not Métis and not part of the Métis Nation.

The Powley decision’s description of a Métis person is “rooted in race-based logic,” Adese says, and re-entrenches a notion of “mixedness” that “implies Métis are somehow more mixed than any other human beings.”

She argues maternal origins matter and were crucial in the formation of the Métis Nation.

“When we say that Métis were born on the Prairies, it’s because we’re also recognizing the rootedness of First Nations women who give rise to a distinct Métis language called Michif, and a distinct Métis culture that connects us to the lands we come from.”

By contrast, Leroux questions the contemporary narratives or understandings around the nature of the relationships between the French and Acadian men and Mi’kmaw women who those self-identifying as Acadian-Métis today say gave rise to distinct peoples and cultures.

“We can literally count six or seven [Mi’kmaw women] who marry French men before 1665,” he says, describing the interpretations of those relationships as “romanticized”.

“Besides the fact that we don’t question what coercion, sexualized violence, et cetera, occur in those spaces, we’re really romanticizing a past where the…French descendants somehow have this natural alliance with Indigenous peoples.”

Racism on the water and underground

Leroux says the anti-Indigenous racism and white supremacy he argues are embedded in the movement of self-identified Métis in the Maritimes were evident during the anti-Mi’kmaq fisheries protests in 2000, following the Marshall decision.

“If we talk to people on the ground, particularly Mi’kmaw people, what we see is following the Marshall decision in 1999, and the pitched battles on the water and also off the water around lobster fishing in Esgenoôpetitj, Burnt Church—and also down in the Yarmouth area off the southern shore of Nova Scotia—many of the people who were leading the movement, violently, against Mi’kmaq fishing rights turn to a Métis identity to access Aboriginal rights. In this case Marshall rights.”

Fisherman and Sipekne’katik First Nation Councillor Alex McDonald has been fishing among Acadian fishermen in St. Mary’s Bay for a number of years now.

He says French Acadians in the region “didn’t claim Métis [identity] until after the Marshall decision,” and that “prior to that, they were battling with us all the time.”

“We’ve been fishing here a long time, and we still get the prejudice, we still get the bullshit. And the crazy thing is, the ones that are claiming Métis are the ones that are giving us a hard time.”

McDonald also questions the self-identified Acadian-Métis reliance on race-based understandings of Métisness in defining themselves; he points out the irony in the context of the Mi’kmaq.

“There’s a lot of mixed blood here on our reserves in Nova Scotia, so we could be the Métis,” he says.

Williamson acknowledges there are opportunists who self-identify as Acadian-Métis but says they are not representative of the wider community.

Explaining the exponential population growth of self-identified Métis in Nova Scotia between the mid-90s and 2016, she says people are publicly identifying now because they previously feared facing racism and discrimination for being Indigenous.

Leroux doesn’t buy it.

“I don’t find that particularly convincing, given that Indigenous peoples have been front and centre in Indigenous rights movements since the 1960s, ‘70s, into the ‘80s,” he says.

“To wait until 2015 to form an organization and to call oneself Indigenous is certainly questionable.”

APTN reached out to three Métis leaders in Cape Breton and southwestern Nova Scotia. They all declined our interview requests.

Bras d’Or Lake Métis Nation Chief Shane Savoury directed APTN to a recently authored report by self-identified Acadian-Métis scholar Chris Boudreau, who also declined our interview request.

Boudreau’s research paper, titled “An Ethnographic Report on the Acadian-Métis 2018,” argues that in the early 17th century Europeans “intermarried with the original inhabitants of the area, the Mi’kmaq, and Maliseet, creating a distinct mixed-heritage people…who subsequently endured prejudice and denigration from Acadians and others who considered themselves to be of ‘pure blood’ — a prejudice which continues to the present day.”

Leroux took to Twitter in March to critique the work, arguing the author and his colleagues did not consider “Mi’kmaw perspectives on the existence of another Indigenous people on Mi’kmaw territory.”

He also argues that they “provide no evidence whatsoever that [Acadian-Métis] maintained kinship relations and accompanying forms of responsibility with Mi’kmaw people.

“Being mixed-race is not evidence that somebody is Métis in the sense that the authors develop,” he tweeted.

Many who claim Acadian-Métis identity are not after hunting or fishing rights. But they are taking up precious space created for Indigenous people, says Googoo.

Citing scholarships for Indigenous students and other resources and opportunities set aside to “help ameliorate and remove those historical disadvantages facing Mi’kmaq people,” Googoo says self-identified Métis are increasingly encroaching on those spaces.

“When I hear of Métis people, groups popping up here all of a sudden — and then applying to professional schools, applying for scholarships and jobs, then I ask, OK, can you present to me the historical dispossession, the historically disadvantaged Métis groups and collective communities that have happened here in this region?”

In March the East Coast Music Association [ECMA] revoked the nomination of self-identified Acadian-Métis guitarist Maxim Cormier, who was being considered for the Indigenous Artist of the Year award.

In a statement posted to the organization’s website, ECMA Chair Dean Stairs explained the decision, stating “the law has not recognized Maxim Cormier or the community he is a member of, the Highland Métis, as being recognized as members of the ‘aboriginal peoples of Canada’ under the Constitution.”

Cormier declined an interview request for this story.

Searching for personal Acadian-Métis narratives

To get a better sense of the personal stories behind Acadian-Métis identity APTN travelled to Cape Breton.

While Highlands Métis Nation Association Chief Randy Roach declined our interview request, we caught up with his father, William Roach, a well-known artist in Chéticamp.

Roach says his grandfather was of mixed French and Mi’kmaw ancestry and a known medicine man in the region, but that growing up his family didn’t discuss their Indigenous roots.

He says it was just two or three years ago that his sons began to take an interest in exploring their Indigenous ancestry.

“Some, myself, would ask, what’s a Métis? I didn’t know it was a mixed blood with Natives and French, you know. But now I understand what it means: it’s a bloodline, it’s a special thing to me because you know I’m getting on in age and I’m glad to see that the young people are taking an interest and finally developing that. They’re going to see where they come from.”

Highlands Métis Nation Association Chief Randy Roach.

Artist William Roach, father of Highlands Métis Nation Association Chief Randy Roach.

Roach describes his own understanding of the term Métis as being mixed-race, and a bridge or pathway toward Mi’kmaw identity.

“We would like to be identified as Mi’kmaq because that’s what we are,” he explains. “But the Métis thing, for now, sort of covers it.

“A lot of us are willing to be called Mi’kmaq, or Métis, whichever way — because it is our bloodline. We would like to have a place that we can identify…one way or the other, with Métis or Mi’kmaq, fully — that we would feel at ease.”

Googoo says if Acadians in Nova Scotia who learn they have Mi’kmaq ancestry are genuinely interested in learning about their heritage, they should approach members of the Mi’kmaq community rather than immediately claim Indigeneity.

“If people are finding that they do have Mi’kmaq heritage from way back when I strongly encourage and support them to learn more about that Mi’kmaq heritage.”

Bernard, too, says the Mi’kmaw community has always welcomed outsiders and encouraged those with ancestral ties to their nation to introduce themselves.

He says the Mi’kmaq are fighting for their sovereignty, and that a big part of that battle is maintaining the ability to decide who is a citizen of their nation, and who isn’t.

“If you claim that you’re a Métis, then I would rather tell you, why don’t you claim that you’re Mi’kmaw? And through your blood, and through your connections and your lineage, prove to me that you’re Mi’kmaw — and we’ll decide if you’re Mi’kmaw. The Mi’kmaq will decide that. Not the government. Or your organization,” he says.

Adese says the Métis to have been fighting for years to protect their identity and sovereignty as a distinct Indigenous people and nation too.

She says settlers who discover they have Indigenous ancestry but have no ties to the culture, language, or existing Indigenous communities should feel comfortable with who they are and learn about their Indigenous heritage.

“It’s OK to say that my great, great, great grandmother was Mi’kmaw, and that’s it,” she says. “It doesn’t have to turn into anything else.

“You can be comfortable in that moment. And you can celebrate that [ancestry] and try to learn more what that means. But it doesn’t have to translate into rights-based claims.”

Leroux has traced his own genealogy back to Mohawk and Algonquin ancestors, and even shares some of the same ancestors he says self-identified Acadian-Métis are using to claim Indigeneity today—but says that doesn’t make him Indigenous.

“My family hunts and fishes. We have these stories about having long ago Indigenous ancestors…but my family has no relationship with living Indigenous people.

“As someone who’s a French descendant…I would suggest that Acadians are Acadians. And that Acadian people should be proud to identify as Acadian, to identify with their history, which has often been quite difficult, with their resilience.”

A “new wave of colonialism”

Leroux says the mass self-Indigenization among self-identified Métis in Eastern Canada is “part of a process of colonialism” in which “white French descendant settlers are incorporating themselves as Indigenous…which is part of the story that sort of gives settler colonialism momentum into the future.”

Pam Palmater, a Mi’kmaw lawyer, and Chair of Indigenous Governance at Ryerson University, agrees.

She describes the phenomenon as a “new wave of colonization, where the colonizers, who have already taken just about everything from us, have seen that we’ve received wins in courts over the last few decades.

“So now they’re circling back and the only way to defeat our wins, our claims to our lands and resources, is to now claim Indigenous identity themselves and take it that way.”

Palmater says the Mi’kmaq Nation should pay close attention at the chance a provincial court in Nova Scotia or elsewhere quietly renders a decision recognizing self-identified Métis as having Aboriginal rights under Canadian law.

“I worry that courts are not going to get the full picture,” she says.

“If you have two non-Native lawyers in court trying to make these arguments—say a Crown prosecutor and a non-Native lawyer trying to make all of these Aboriginal rights claims for one of these opportunistic identifiers—that could be a real problem if we get a judgement.”

Ryerson University Professor Pam Palmater.

Ryerson University Chair of Indigenous Governance, Pam Palmater.

Palmater also says decisions by Canadian courts to determine who is Indigenous, and who is not, on unceded Mi’kmaq territory would violate the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

“There is a right for Indigenous Peoples to belong to their Indigenous Nation, but there’s a corresponding right of the Indigenous Nation to decide who belongs and who doesn’t, and to govern those processes.”

Williamson says self-identified Métis in Nova Scotia in pursuit of Aboriginal rights don’t pose a threat to Mi’kmaq rights and sovereignty, but in the same breath revealed she believes they are entitled to treaty rights under the historic Indigenous-Crown Peace and Friendship treaties.

“No one is looking to take anything away from the Mi’kmaq or claim anything that more appropriately belongs to the Mi’kmaq,” she says.

“Now having said that, if you look at the history of the treaties on the eastern seaboard, the Peace and Friendship Treaties were signed among the entire eastern seaboard. So any Nation that was a signatory to that treaty is a treaty beneficiary, including mine.”

Williamson says while the treaties distinguished between Indigenous people and settlers, they “did not delineate by blood quantum, generation, matriarchy, patriarchy, or anything else as to who the heirs of those treaty benefits would be.

“So in other words the Mi’kmaq, the Acadian-Métis, my people—anyone who descends from the Nations that were signatories to those treaties—by rights is a treaty beneficiary. But which benefits they will pursue is entirely their call.”

Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq chiefs did not respond to an interview request from APTN but have been clear in the past that Mi’kmaq are the only rights holders in Mi’kma’ki.


Tags: , , , , , ,

22 Responses to “Proliferation of self-identified Indigenous people represents “new wave of colonialism””

    Daphne Williamson May 14, 2018 at 1:45 pm #

    Interesting to note that not only was the story slanted against those identifying as Metis in the East, but I am told that comments from the pro-Metis camp have been removed. Are you not interested in both sides of the story, or are you only interested in joining Leroux and the others in fear-mongering and discrediting despite that facts? Shameful!

    Gary Henneberry May 12, 2018 at 2:35 pm #

    Equal rights seems to be the word these days unless it comes to immigrants or natives . I’ve contacted the Native council a number of times over the past 20 years about a membership ,even went so far as to get my DNA ,(22%). which is a lot higher then a lot of natives . Our Natives have it all to themselves and their keeping it that way . Our Natives go on about being conservationists ,but I’ve seen anything but . No respect for Mother Nature at all and only out for themselves .

    Duane Gastant' Aucoin May 11, 2018 at 5:04 pm #

    My father is Acadian from Cape Breton & my mother is Tlingit from the Yukon. I do not call myself Acadian/Metis though as I am a proud Tlingit/Acadian & I honour both my cultures. But being mixed does not make me Metis as I have no connections to the Red River Cree. Nor do I have any Aboriginal Rights in Cape Breton as I am not Mi’kmaq. Though there is a chance that there might be Mi’kmaq in my dad’s family as the Mi’kmaq did much to help the Acadians & did have good relations with each other until recently. But even if I did have some Mi’kmaq ancestry that still would not make me Metis but instead would give me a connection to the Peoples whose land is now called Cape Breton. The Acadians who do have a legitimate connection & heritage to the Mi’kmaq must stop claiming to be Metis & must start learning & honouring the culture they also share with the original owners of the land.
    Here in Teslin Tlingit Council we do not use blood quantum to define who is a Citizen as that is not our way. If someone has Teslin Tlingit blood in their veins then they are accepted as one of us because they come from us. Just because I have white blood in me doesn’t make me any less of a Citizen then my mother who was a full blooded Teslin Tlingit. But my white blood also does not make me Metis here in the Yukon. Thankfully our modern Treaty up here wasn’t restricted to only “status indians” but to anyone with heritage to the Yukon First Nations. We have a very small true Metis population here with no Metis rights or land here because they are not from here. Just as I do not have any Aboriginal Rights or Land in Cape Breton just because I’m Tlingit…as the Tlingit are not from there.
    But that’s the problem with “self-identifying” is that there are many who have no connection to the Red River Cree claiming to be Metis and not only harming the rights of the real Metis but also those of the other First Nations they are infringing upon.
    Those who are claiming to be Metis just because they might have Native blood in them should instead be learning & respecting the culture that flows through their veins & honouring their People instead of claiming they are something they are not.
    gunalcheesh/merci/thank you

    Paul May 11, 2018 at 2:22 pm #

    Mi’kmaq should worry more about their tready rights and less about the Metis. The Metis have been treated as half-breeds long enough, not worthy of being white or red. The courts say Metis are indigneous, let the Metis deal with the Government and their ow Metis treaties.

      Robyn L. May 11, 2018 at 8:48 pm #

      The courts refer to a very specific Metis Nation though. It is not, in any way, about simply having mixed blood.

    Brady May 11, 2018 at 4:43 am #

    The people calling themselves Métis in the east coast are fake and should be ashamed of their scam

    MrsD May 11, 2018 at 4:12 am #

    Metis people are from Manitoba. We have to prove our lineage to be Metis. A mixed blood is not a Metis.

    Robyn L. May 11, 2018 at 1:10 am #

    What nation any where in the world, blandly accepts anyone who would walk up to its borders and declare: I have a grandmother, or great-grandmother or great-great-great-great grandparent from here, there I am a citizen of your nation. True, I’ve had nothing to do with your nation in all my life, nor my parents or their parents, but still, since I’m here, toss me an ID card, please. Then sign me up for citizen rights & benefits. Thank you.

    This is exactly what these usurpers are doing, and when they cannot find an Indigenous nation that will readily accept them, for all the reasons they are already aware, they simply ‘create a new nation’ and call it historic.

    On what planet do these people originally come from? It’s stunning that they feel these self-declarations are as simplistic as they are working to make them be.

      Emile S LeClerc May 11, 2018 at 4:53 pm #

      Not once did I ever say a nation would not accept me. There are plenty of Leclerc/Leclair, Breau, Vautour, Savoie cousins within the 3 lands Burnt Church is under contol of. Its a 46 hour drive or 36 day walk to get to the reserves my family comes out of. When grandpa moved away it was for the work. Nothing more, nothing less. Are we not allowed to have mobility rights in order to feed the kids. Are they still not giving our people top wages in Nojobs New Brunswick? Who wants to work for those corrupt souless Irvings?

    Shannon May 10, 2018 at 10:28 pm #

    I am Treaty Indian and my granddaughter can’t register as treaty so what makes them think that they can claim such rights??? Equality of Treaty Women is more important and needs to be addressed and resolved immediately!

      Jeri Malone May 11, 2018 at 12:57 am #

      Don’t you think you should be like Viola Robinson and stand up for the rights of your granddaughter ? Eventually the gov is going to have everyone assimilated, are you thinking of your cultures survival ?

    Ishbel Munro May 10, 2018 at 9:56 pm #

    Thank you for this excellent article. It is a deep concern, especially when members of new “Metis” groups were protesting against First Nations rights in 2015 and now want those rights for themselves??? Seriously – how can anyone believe them?
    I also know there are some people who have very little knowledge of the history, the oppression First Nations have gone through. They find out they have a Mi’Kmaq ancestors and they feel proud of that and innocently join a group. The others are more scary to me. They are taking funding for higher education that is marked for Indigenous people, while not having suffered through intergenerational impacts of residential schools and systemic racism. As Indigenous positions open up at Universities, it will not be Mi’Kmaq scholars who get the positions. It will be the people who just “learned” and just started saying they are Indigenous.
    I also feel badly for the true Metis people. They are a distinct society with a strong culture. That did not happen in the east. When people inter-married, from what i have been told by elders, they choose Acadian or Mi’Kmaq. That was their identity.

    To the comment above about, what if we are not welcomed by the Mi’Kmaq. I have always found the Mi’Kmaq to be a very welcoming people.

    I always said I was 100 % Scottish, a Gael. I found out recently I do have a great, great, great, great grandmother on my mother’s side who was Irish. My identity is still as a proud Gael. I know who I am.

    Neilene May 10, 2018 at 9:42 pm #

    If there was metis we would have that connection with them!! our families would not leave another out especially a whole community of relatives!! They would of joined us in our festivities long time ago!! Sooo no they are fakes just looking to con!! They are just another scam artist!! Identity theft at your finest!!

      Emile S LeClerc May 11, 2018 at 1:04 am #

      Just look at the instant rejection. The honour song is my song, as much as it is yours. The lack of trust is what scares people “from joining festivities”. Not easy walking into a room with everyone calling you an intrusion.

      Jeri Malone May 13, 2018 at 3:54 pm # Learn your history ..

    Jeri Malone May 10, 2018 at 9:30 pm #

    There are historical articles in the micmac news that go back to these issues , it is certainly not something new , it is what happens when the government creates division between resources .. I can show you a few of Dan Paul saying the NCNS has no say over hunting rights.. I don’t think you need to try and be more divisive ..

    Alyssia May 10, 2018 at 9:29 pm #

    Fake wanna be Indians! Stop these obviously white people

    Daphne Williamson May 10, 2018 at 8:16 pm #

    Good story Justin, but for the fact that I identify as Aboriginal of Wampanoag descent, not Metis or Acadien Metis even though I also connect to some of the same French/ Mi’kmaw lineage through marriages by ancestors, as well as on my father’s side from Newfoundland near Conne River. I still find it interesting that Leroux continues to proclaim to know so much about communities that he has not studied because none of the community members will talk to him. If he knew as much as he claims to about Indigenous people, then he would know that we are wary of outsiders, especially when they have already shown hostility towards us. As for Pam Palmater (from NB), her father openly identified as and advocated for the Eastern Metis, so how she can now deny their existence is beyond me. Interesting indeed!

      Jeri Malone May 11, 2018 at 12:55 am #

      Exactly .. I would really love for her to explain that !!

      Robyn L. May 11, 2018 at 8:51 pm #

      If these communities have such a strong history, why has no one heard of them until recently? They were in hiding all these years? Please. My Metis ancestors could only hide their spiritual practises & language when necessary for actual life preservation, but they could not hide who they were. They couldn’t hide generations of anything. They were always there in plain sight and documented as much as the First Nations. So, where’s your documentation? One-off notes and partial comments taken out of context is all we’ve seen when it comes to ‘eastern Metis’. You’ve also over-stated the context of Pam Palmater’s father.

    Emile S LeClerc May 10, 2018 at 7:49 pm #

    Does APTN participate in identity policing? Using ad hominem bs to sell a story. Just insert the words “white supremacy” into the arguement, that will sell it even further. Just how does someone who lives over 5000 km away from the reserve join the band? What happens when they say no? Do we still get called the very colonists that made our history hell? What happens if your bloodline is made up of different indigenous peoples/nations of the region? General Wolf can be blamed for a lot of this. I used to think APTN was my network of choice… now it just vomits this crap on our lap. To gain journalistic integrety or to get more info on us, we are very easy to find. FyI You were hung up on based on the unfair and unbalanced treatment.