Idle No More movement goes international

About 100 peaceful marchers and drummers from Walpole Island made the First Nations Idle No More movement an international phenomenon.

After holding a demonstration at the Walpole Island border crossing for most of the day on Sunday, the rally went across the border to Algonac, Mich, where demonstrators waved flags, chanted and banged on drums as they marched down the main street in Algonac and then held a ceremony in a nearby plaza parking lot.

While he shied away from calling it a protest, Walpole Island’s George Henry said the rally was to make people aware and educate them about what the Canadian federal government is doing.

“We want to do all of this in a good way,” Henry said.

The grassroots Idle No More movement has held a number of protests across Canada that have targeted the Harper government’s Bill C-45, which the First Nations say runs roughshod over their treaty rights and sovereignty, and threatens the environment.

Sunday’s rally was believed to be the first Idle No More protest held outside of Canada.

“We want all the non-native people to really listen to what the government is trying to do,” Henry said.

“The government has kept things pretty quiet over the years… so we’re going to tell our own story now.”

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