Hamilton: Native Women Block the Highway 403!

Anonymous submission to North Shore

Video from SubMedia: https://sub.media/video/hwy-403-blocked-in-solidarity-with-the-wetsuweten/

On Thursday morning, I got up to the news that the RCMP had begun to move in on the Morice Service Rd heading eventually to Gitdum’ten and Unist’ot’en camps. There were pictures that showed them in full tactical gear, with semi-automatic rifles and attack dogs. This wasn’t a surprise to me, but I was very angry. How many more years will native people have to live at the barrel of a gun? How many more years will Canada force us off our lands because they need to build a pipeline or a railroad? I watched a video put out by Sleydo that called for Indigenous people to rise up and I knew I had to meet the call. It is clear to me that reconciliation is a total lie. I think that this is making it clear to everyone.

So when I got invited to an action to shut down the Highway 403 with some other native women, I was all in. A group of us (some Haudenosaunee, Anishinaabe, and Métis) women and two-spirited people plus a bunch of supporters (anarchists mostly) met up around 5pm near Hamilton. We used our cars to slow traffic, like the Mohawks been doing with those rolling blockades, but this time we stopped right at the Highway 6 S overpass on the way to Brantford. We jumped out and took out all our banners and our drums and started singing. We picked that spot so we could let through one car every couple minutes on the overpass to keep us a bit safer from angry commuters. There were a lot of angry commuters! but we held our spot strong for over an hour. Not everyone was against us, though, some people really understood. There was even this one really cool lady driving a semi truck that refused to go through our blockade and used her truck as a buffer. She was even ready to jump out and help everytime an angry man came up to get in our faces. Apparently a police car got damaged trying to come up the shoulder to find us which was a huge bonus.

There wasn’t that many of us (only maybe 20 people) but we managed to shut down one of the busiest highways in Ontario. It reminded me that we don’t need everyone to join us to fight, and we don’t need money to organize big fancy rallies. We just need a small group of brave people to take a chance and stick together and we can do real big things. It is up to us to stand up and use our voice because our “leadership” is busy signing contracts with big oil and gas in exchange for industry jobs. I say fuck your industry job. I have everything I need already, everyone just needs to open their eyes and see it. I want to say thanks / Niá:wen / Miigwetch / Maarsii to all the people who came out to block the highway that night and all the people fighting for the land and water everywhere. We are fighting to see again the time where the forests bloom and our animal relations return and people take their right place amongst them. This is a world the future generations deserve.

My heart is with the Wet’suwet’en people way out on the other side of the land. My heart is also here and I want to tell people to remember that we need to bring the fight home too, because the water needs us here and everywhere.