J. Gordon Shillingford Publishing

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Scene One Lights up to reveal Stuart standing on the ice. Charmaine, Mike, and Anoopjeet are on the end boards. Stuart looks at his watch. STUART: Well. Suppose we should just get started then. Quite the turnout. We got black, yellow, brown, white: all's we're missing is the red. Guess we'd better send up a smoke signal. (Silence.) That was a joke. I suppose the Natives wouldn't qualify for this thing anyways. Newcomers only. (Beat.) So, show of hands: who here has curled before? (No hands go up.) None of yas? Ever? CHARMAINE: They tried to have curling back home in Jamaica, but it didn't really take off. STUART: Why was that? Not enough white people to sign up for a bunch of foolishness that's not even a real sport. (Beat.) That was a joke. STUART: Mike, you musta went curling before. MIKE: No. STUART: Down at the university or what? MIKE: No. STUART: Katie never took you out curling? MIKE: No. STUART: Right. Why would she wanna go curl when you two could stay in and have a stimulating conversation like this? And what about you? ANOOPJEET: Anoopjeet. STUART: What was that? ANOOPJEET: Anoopjeet. Anoopjeet Singh. Hello. STUART: Oh. 'Lo. Stuart MacPhail. ANOOPJEET: It is very nice to meet you, Stuart MacPhail. (He steps onto the ice to shake STUART's hand, but immediately slips.) Whoa! (He recovers. Offers his hand.) Hello. (Slips again.) Whoa! (Getting off the ice.) I am just going to go...back...here. STUART: And uhh, where's home for you? ANOOPJEET: The other end of town - around the corner from the Giant Tiger.

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Fierce

Five Plays for High Schools
edition:Paperback
tagged : canadian
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Fall 2007. A public high school in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. BEFORE: A high school band classroom. Four students wait in their own worlds. They have their instruments out. TRUMPET: I joined band to meet girls. PERCUSSION: I joined band to meet girls. KEYS: I joined band because our school doesn't have a drama program. Or a choir. Or a dance team. TROMBONE: I didn't join band. They asked me to join because they didn't have any low brass and I already played for the Cadet Tri-Service Band, so I--THE OTHERS: We know. BARI: I asked to play trumpet but they said they already had one and "I look strong enough" so I should play bari sax. Now I drag this to school using like a luggage cart and a bunch of bungee cords. Guess who didn't get asked to semi? ALL EXCEPT TROMBONE: Me. A shift. TROMBONE: I'm taking this girl to Halifax who goes to different--THE OTHERS: We know. KEYS: Where is he? TRUMPET: Maybe he bailed. PERCUSSION: Maybe he's fallen into one of the parking lot potholes. BARI: They'll never find him. TROMBONE noisily empties the spit valve of his trombone onto some paper towel on the floor. KEYS pretends to throw up. TRUMPET: Where's everybody else? BARI: (Sucking on her reed.) Oh, this is one hundred percent it. TRUMPET: Shit, eh. (TROMBONE plays a wha-whaaa slide. It sounds like disappointment. PERCUSSION tries to spin drumstick.) PERCUSSION: What's the rules, if he's not here by quarter after we can go, right? And not get docked for it? KEYS: Where're you trynna be? PERCUSSION: Anywhere he isn't fucking spraying. (TROMBONE empties more spit.) BARI: Were we supposed to prepare anything? TRUMPET: No. This school's so fucking relieved to have some actual artsy stuff going on, we can't go wrong. We're doing them a favour. I can't even play the trumpet. PERCUSSION: Actually? KEYS: C'mon. BARI: (Still sucking on her reed.) Are you being serious? TRUMPET: It's three buttons. How hard can it be? (Everyone stares at him.) TRUMPET: Oh my GOD, I'm kidding. I play. (TRUMPET plays a few notes. It isn't good.) KEYS: This was a terrible idea.

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Prologue Surtitles: Friday, September 12, 1885. Then: Toronto. (PT Barnum is getting his hair cut. His friend Henrietta Ward is waiting for him. The barber is Shack.) BARNUM: I told them to give me their best barber and they sent me you. SHACK: Yes, Mister Barnum, only the best for you, sir. BARNUM: How does that get proved anyway? SHACK: Oh, I'm visiting from out of town, sir. This way they don't have to argue among themselves. BARNUM: So you're not the best barber then? SHACK: Oh no, I am. You always want a barber who trained aboard ship, they got the steady hand. BARNUM: You trained aboard ship. SHACK: Steward on the Mississippi, Civil War. BARNUM: For the South? HENRIETTA: (Quick loud laugh.) For the North, Phineas. You're such a card. BARNUM: (Laughs then returns to his questioning.) So where'd you come in from then, if you from outta town? SHACK: From London, sir. BARNUM: London. My elephant Jumbo comes from London too, have you seen him? SHACK: I come in from London, Ontario, sir. BARNUM: Oh. Oh. SHACK: Come to Toronto for a few days to mentor the young son of an old friend in the art of barbering. BARNUM: London, Ontario. How do you get here from there? Horseback? SHACK: Well sir, I'm just not sure that's a topic for a gentleman to discuss. BARNUM: What, you mean me? I haven't been a gentleman going on sixty years now. I'm an old humbug. SHACK: Well, if you say so. I'm a dingbat, Mr. Barnum. BARNUM: A whatbat? A whobat? SHACK: A dingbat, sir. I ride the rails. Cheapest way to travel if you don't get caught. BARNUM: Ha! Well I'll be a gaycat. A dingbat? A dingbat. I always wanted to try that.

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Scene 1 Late summer, 1665. Dawn. By the river. Far off in the distance, a bell tolls. JEANBAPTISTE enters, carrying a pile of furs. KATERI follows behind him. KATERI: Raktsi:ah (big brother), let me help you. (LUCK-JI'-AH)She helps him load the canoe. JEANBAPTISTE: Your little arms are strong. KATERI: You'll need help carrying these to the fort. JEANBAPTISTE: You're here to help out in camp. The fort is no place for you. KATERI: I can help you paddle across. And get to see their big canoes. JEANBAPTISTE: It's dangerous. KATERI: Then you shouldn't go alone. JEANBAPTISTE: I've made the trip many times KATERI: With other men, never on your own. JEANBAPTISTE: It's not a safe place for you. There's sickness in the fort. KATERI: There's sickness in our village, too. Iakoianeh (Clan Mother said I need to learn all I could. How could I do that from a camp across the river? I won't go in the fort. I'll watch the canoe and this stuff. JEANBAPTISTE: Careful, that's our best pelt. It'll trade well. (Pause.) It's hard work. If you come, no complaining. KATERI: I never complain.JEANBAPTISTE: And you'll do whatever I say. KATERI: Yeah, except for when you're being a grump. Then you're on your own. JEANBAPTISTE: Eh kati tho. (So be it.) [EH GUDDEE TOE.]

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Let the People Speak

Oppression in a Time of Reconciliation
edition:Paperback
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Most ordinary Canadians (Indigenous and non-Indigenous) have little idea of just how powerful the Indigenous Affairs (IA) departments are within Canada's national government. IA has jurisdictional reach over 90-percent of Canada's landscape, as well as authorities that reach into every single federal department and agency. All of them. Splitting the department into Indigenous Services and Crown-Indigenous Relations does not change this power dynamic because it constitutes little more than putting some new labels on the same authorities. IA's mandate it responsibility under the Indian Act of 1876 for managing the obligations in historic treaties and for negotiating modern treaties. The historic treaties, signed primarily in the 1800s and early 1900s, cover about 50 percent of Canada's land mass. The modern treaties, signed after 1975, cover another 40 percent, primarily in the North. Only southern Quebec, a bit of Labrador and Newfoundland, and most of British Columbia remain outside IA's mandate, with the exception of the portion of the 3-million hectares of reserve lands that lie outside the historic and modern treaty areas. The push by the federal government towards "self-government" agreements between First Nations and the Crown in Canada will have impacts across federal government departments and across the country once they are negotiated and signed. They will affect Canadians just about everywhere. Yet ordinary Canadians--Indigenous and non-Indigenous--are not involved in this process. Since the implementation of the Indian Act in 1876, the federal government has shown little interest in involving Canadian society in working out policies that have legal, social and economic implications for the relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people. And now, self-government/modern treaty issues are going to get even more complicated. The relationship between Canada's Indigenous and non-Indigenous people, according to the Prime Minister's Office in August 2017, is supposed to undergo a dramatic shift as the Trudeau government moves to deliver on its explicit goal of "accelerating a move to self-government and self-determination of Indigenous Peoples". This includes a suite of legislative changes that are intended to "de-colonize" the management of Indigenous issues and prepare the ground to eliminate the Indian Act. The move to "accelerated self-government" could see the potential creation of somewhere between forty and eighty new self-governing nations, all negotiated on behalf of Canada by the staff of the IA governance programs, under the new Crown-Indigenous Relations portfolio. But how much trust should ordinary Canadians--Indigenous and non-Indigenous--have in IA's ability to effectively deliver on such vast and far-reaching negotiations? The lack of transparency around IA negotiations makes them vulnerable to suspicions about whether the people at the negotiating tables are acting in good faith. And it raises some legitimate questions about whose interests are really being served. We simply don't know, and that's a huge problem. In the aftermath of the surprise announcement in August 2017 that the Trudeau government was accelerating the move to self-governance as a means of reconciliation, former prime minister Paul Martin was adamant that whatever form of governance was going to be created, it had to be decided by Indigenous people themselves. "It starts with the inherent right to self-government," Martin told CBC-Radio's The House in September 2017. "Then what you begin to deal with is how are they going to effect it, how are they going to do it? And this has to be their decision. One of the first things FN will have to decide is if it is 614 communities or is it going to be 50 or 60 nations. All the decisions that have to be made in this area are theirs to make." If ordinary Indigenous people have no political power and no political voice at the federal level, it stands to reason that they will most certainly not be the ones deciding anything about reconciliation through self-governance and modern treaties. It will be the federal Indigenous Affairs departments and the AROs and band representatives they fund that will be "negotiating" with each other. In fact, the push for negotiations for self-government will involve only one of the AROs, the Assembly of First Nations. The self-governance negotiations for Inuit people are largely signed off, complete with surrendering their rights to any further claims. And the Métis political leaders are focussing their energy on creating a Métis Nation that they will run. It is the future governance of nearly all the First Nations communities that is taking centre stage at the negotiation table, and there is no place at the table for the voices of ordinary Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians to be heard. We are at a crucial turning point in the evolution of the relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians, and the scope of the self-governance negotiations has the potential to impact the lives of people all across the country. It is not clear how a move towards reconciliation can happen when ordinary Indigenous and non-Indigenous people have no voice in advancing a shared future in Canada.

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