Citizen Stephen (Harper) is responsible to the diverse persons and peoples occupying the towns and cities of Canada’s provinces and territories. By his own admission, to the press in Quebec City not so long ago, Mr. Harper exercises this mandate as one open to the scrutiny of his God; which is the God of his principal patrons and benefactors.
We have not forgotten, those of us who stand on guard, the apology pronounced in the House of Commons on June 11, 2008. Speaking as the voice of our common conscience, the prime minister expressed a collective regret and determination.
Apology is true when its form and substance agree. At the outset apology is recognizable contrition. The influence of contrition produces humility.
Where humility matures the offence is fully removed and the relational breech is healed.
All this to ask, what evidence of humility is available in the government’s posture regarding Theresa Spence, made public in a memorandum dated Dec. 20 of the past year? I ask this knowing that memoranda served as a primary management strategy exercised by colonizing power over and against indigenous experience.
What might humility look like?
Perhaps Stephen Harper will decide to take a short walk. In his pocket he can place a pinch of tobacco. Crossing the bridge he can ask the cameras to respect the moment.
He can cross the bridge, extend the gift of tobacco and sit quietly with Theresa Spence. She will discern the humility and extend a gracious hand. They will talk as two persons.
Yes, I do know the odds against such a sequence of events. Those odds are undergirded and buttressed by the bias of money and power.
My question to the prime minister? Easy — what would Jesus do?
REV. GEORGE FEENSTRA