Stuff Still Happens IV, the Reckoning, Week 23: Genocide? Not in my country

The final report of the national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls (shorted to the ungainly MMIWG) was released this week. The final report was about 1,200 pages and cost about $90 million. This is an important report, but much of its value was wiped away by the commission’s finding of a ‘Canadian genocide’.

There are few more loaded words in the language than genocide, which is the deliberate killing of a specific group of people, usually by the government. The report said Canada has pursued “a continuous policy, with shifting expressed motives but an ultimately steady intention, to destroy Indigenous peoples physically, biologically, and as social units.” Romeo Dallaire, the Canadian general who was in charge of UN forces in Rwanda during a real genocide there, told the CBC: “My definition of genocide, I read it very deliberately at the start of the Rwandan genocide. And it was a deliberate act of a government to exterminate, deliberately and by force and directly, an ethnicity or a group of human beings. And that meant actually going and slaughtering people.”

To say that Canada as a nation – that’s you and me, by the way – participated in an intentional attempt to destroy Indigenous people is simply so outrageous, such a headline grabbing stunt, that it basically invalidates the rest of the report. I’m sure there are some worthwhile recommendations in the report (there are 230 or so), but once you drop the genocide bomb, nobody hears a word. It’s insulting to every Canadian.

(By the way, one of the recommendations says everything you need to know about the extreme political correctness of this kind of report: “Launch health and wellness services aimed at Indigenous women, girls and 2SLGBTQQIA people …” 2SLGBTQQIA? That, in case you don’t know – and why would you? – is two-spirited, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex and asexual. )

Thirty years ago this past week marked the 30th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre, where Chinese troops opened fire on protesting students in Beijing. To the world, it is a shameful blot on the history of China. In China, it’s like it never happened. So controlling is the Chinese Communist Party that the event has been effectively scrubbed from the history books. A CBS correspondent went on the streets of Beijing and asked students if they knew about the 30th anniversary of the massacre, and she couldn’t find anyone who knew of it. This is a country that won’t face up to its own history. Are we at all surprised when it consistently plays dirty pool on the economic scene?

James Holzhaur, the seemingly unbeatable Jeoparty! champ, finally lost, after accumulating a staggering $2.5 million on the game show. He fell short of the cash record of Ken Jennings, but it took Jennings 74 games to set the record, compared to Holzhaur’s 33 games. Otherwise, the Jeopardy! record books is all Holzhaur’s. During his streak he won an average of $77,000 per game, more than double Jennings’s rate. When he buzzed in, he got the right answer 97 percent of the time. He almost always entered Final Jeopardy so far ahead that no one could catch him. He holds the top 16 biggest single game paydays in the show’s history. Eleven times during his streak he went the entire show without one wrong answer. He so dominated his opposition, I was glad to see him go.

And now, this week’s baffling Donald Trump tweet. On Friday, Trump tweeted the following: “For all of the money we are spending, NASA should NOT be talking about going to the Moon – We did that 50 years ago. They should be focused on the much bigger things we are doing, including Mars (of which the Moon is a part), Defense and Science!’

Where to begin with this? First, back in May Trump boasted that NASA was going back to the moon with this tweet: “Under my Administration, we are restoring @NASA to greatness and we are going back to the Moon, then Mars.” Apparently, he forgot his previous tweet. Then there was the question about why Trump would randomly tweet about NASA and going to the moon. Turns out that on Fox News at 12:26 pm, commentator Neil Cavuto said NASA is “refocusing on the moon, the next sort of quest, if you will, but didn’t we do this moon thing quite a few decades ago?” Trump sent out his tweet about an hour later.

And as for the “Mars (of which the Moon is a part)” … there is no explaining that one.

RIP

Dr. John, 77, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member and six time Grammy Winner. He had one hit song called Right Place, Wrong Time.