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Open Letter

From: Thohahente Kim Weaver

Date: Sat, 20 May 2017 23:22:26 -0400

To: Premier Kathleen Wynne

Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport Eleanor McMahon
Federal Minister of Canadian Heritage Melani Joly

Subject: Vandalism of Ancient Anishinaabe Pictographs

Thohahente yontiats. Kanyen'keh:ka n:'i nok wakenthen. Tsi Kenhtke

I write to you from the traditional territories of the Haudenosaunee, Wendat, and

Attached to this email is a FaceBook live feed posted by Isaac Murdoch, an

Anishinaabe artist from Serpent River First Nation. In this live feed video, Isaac
provides a report on finding ancient pictographs made by his ancestors on the
shores of Lake Superior, spray painted over by vandals. He proceeded to the local
OPP detachment to report the vandalism. He was basically told to get lost in
police speak and was informed vandalism of unique sacred Anishinaabe artifacts
is not an OPP problem.

As the provincial and federal officials responsible for culture within the
boundaries of the province called Ontario within the boundaries of Canada, I call
your attention to this matter so you can retain the best expertise in the world to
restore the original pictographs.

Great and highly specialized skill will be required. This is not some restoration
good neighbour activity for the local high school.

The pictographs were likely defaced by local cottagers. We have seen anti-
Indigenous acts of violence like this from cottagers exercising their white
privilege both here and elsewhere in the province like Pigeon Lake where they
willfully dig up the wild rice that is an Anishinaabe food source. Such behaviour
must stop and punishment must be laid down for these hate crimes.
The damage done to the pictographs is equal to someone defacing hieroglyphics
on Egyptian historic sites or someone blowing up the Parthenon. These are
artifacts of the highest value.
Now that you are aware, what are you going to do about it?

:nen ki' whi

Thohahente Kim Weaver

Turtle Clan

"you have to quit crying on the shoulder of the guy that stole your land" - Art