Thursday, 12 June 2014

Six Nations Perspective on the Citizen's Arrest at Douglas Creek Estates (Kanonhstaton)

As predicted in the previous posting, both newspapers on the Six Nations Reserve carried articles on the citizen's arrest of "a Six Nations land protector" by Gary McHale.  As expected, at least by myself, the descriptions provided bear little resemblance to the reality shown in graphic detail in the various U-Tube videos of the entire scenario (see here).  I will discuss the content of each of the two newspapers in turn.  Selected key expressions will be bold printed and examined as to what it may mean to one or more communities.

1)  Two Row Times, Wednesday June 11th, 2014, McHale protest opens old wounds at Kanohstaton (as spelled here) pp. 1-2:

On the front page we see a picture taking up fully half of the page space, showing a photograph and caption - A Six Nations land protector was the subject of a "citizen's arrest" by Binbrook resident Gary McHale.  Fearing that McHale and his group of half a dozen supporters were going to enter his home Kawaowene stood in front of McHale as he approached.  In a bizarre twist of events when the OPP arrived they arrested Kawaowene injuring him in the process.

Here the term "land protector" probably refers to the self proclaimed role as a custodian of Six Nations land, and is linked to Kanonhstaton ("Protected Place") the name Six Nations use when referring to the former Douglas Creek Estates (presently land owned directly by the Province of Ontario).  Many residents of Caledonia would tend to use the term "occupier", or a more pejorative term, in reference to the individuals who are roosting illegally at the one remaining house on the former development site.

The picture does show what appear to be cuts and abrasions on the left side of the "land protector's" face.  The U-Tube videos noted in the previous posting do show a take down by the OPP where the use of force was minimal, and absolutely necessary as the perpetrator was resisting arrest.  One can only surmise whether the scrapes occurred as a result of the take down.

Page 2 of the article shows another picture of the face of the above individual situated immediately under the words "opens old wounds".  Again what appear to be facial abrasions are evident here.  The caption reads, "Land defender John Garlow".  The text terms Gary McHale as a "well known agitator", who arrived at Kanonhstaton, "to continue his agenda of keeping the wounds of the 2006 land reclamation open".  Actually for many residents of Caledonia the wounds will always be present, and most particularly since no one at Six Nations has ever apologized for the violence and degradation foisted upon those residing most closely to this site.  Also most know that the land was taken illegally, and that while many at Six Nations may claim the land as theirs, the facts are crystal clear that this was land properly surrendered by 67 Chiefs in Council in December of 1844 - and that be demanding to have it back is behavior that conforms to the old stereotype of "Indian giver" (something is legally sold to everyone's satisfaction, buyer's remourse sets in, and the party or those who follow want the item back).

It is probably true that Gary McHale is an "agitator" meaning that he has seen a gross injustice, and has been unrelenting in his stance about one law for all, all treated equally before the law.  To impute the motive of a nefarious plan to keep the wounds between Caledonia and Six Nations alive and "fresh" does seem to be a stretch.  Since 2006 the "peacekeeper" role of the OPP has made this concept, taken for granted in most of Canada, a joke in the Caledonia area since Natives and non-Natives have been treated differently by the OPP with the latter being carted away in paddy wagons while the Natives who had committed actual illegal acts such as assault being allowed to remain - and may or may not be arrested at some later date.  A two tiered system of justice - anathema to most Canadians.

Continuing with the text, it says that "53-year-old Kawaowene (English name John Garlow), was roughed up and arrested by the OPP". 

The video clips clearly show that on the contrary, Mr. Garlow was not "roughed up" and it was his own choices that led to the manner in which he was arrested (the police had no choice but to enact a take down due to non compliance of Garlow). 

The article goes on to say that, "In 2007, to put an end to the roadblocks, and potential violence, Ontario purchased the land" from the developers.  In other words the Liberal Government of Ontario caved in and negotiated with terrorists - never a good idea as history shows.

Certain creative liberties with the facts are evident in the statement that McHale and his "followers", walked, "right up to the front of the house".  What the videos show is Mr. McHale walking on the public road, and at no time being on the land surrounding the house.  Also the statement that the bodies of McHale and Garlow "collided.  Garlow shoved McHale away from him".  Hence the citizen's arrest for the illegal act of assault.  After 911 was dialed and the OPP officers showed up, "talked to McHale, but rather than arrest him for instigation, they came to Garlow and placed him under arrest for assault".  It would make no sense for the OPP to arrest someone who is merely walking along a public road for "instigation" (which would never stick in Court), but rather the perpetrator of the act of assault - a serious crime.

The report then says that "Garlow offered token resistance to police" and that a "very brief scuffle ensued and Garlow was taken to the ground by OPP officers who, according to witness Norm Thomas, mashed Garlow's face into the gravel while subduing him with handcuffs".  What the video shows is Garlow refusing to comply with the requests of the officers, and thus the consequence was inevitable - but compared to any other take down I have witnessed, what is seen in the video is a very gentle approach where the police called him by his first name and requested that Mr. Garlow come with them.  Then apparently, Garlow "was carried away by police officers with his face about two feet from the roadway".  The video shows officers repeatedly requesting that Mr. Garlow stand and walk, but the latter would not comply and so was carried with each officer holding Mr. Garlow under one of his arms on the way to the police cruiser, "causing him shoulder and arm damage".  Mr. Garlow refused to stand up and walk, and ended up being dead weight, so what happened was inevitable.  Then he lay stretched out face down on the back seat of the car, refusing to sit up or in any way comply with the reasonable requests of the officers. 

What is evident is that what information is being given to the reporter does not at all tally with the very clear visual and auditory interaction at the time shown in the various U-Tube videos.  Readers can see the videos and assess the details without myself or the reporter giving very different perspectives on the events.

The scene then shifted to the situation at the end of the ride in the cruiser where, "Garlow's token resistance continued at the police station when he decided not to speak English any more and reverted to his Cayuga tongue, refusing to answer to the name John" - except to one officer who showed him respect by using his Cayuga name.  This behavior is expected of a somewhat younger individual, but a 53 year old man ...............  Then when it came to signing documents (release forms), Garlow said, "I would not sign my slave name".  Instead he used an X to sign the document (a mark, as if illiterate, which may or may not be the case).  He was released "on his own recognizance", with the promise to appear for the Court date of 22 July at the County Courthouse in Cayuga.

So the name he goes by most of the time, John Garlow, is a "slave name"?  I have no idea where this interpretation is coming from.  He is known as John Garlow to most of the Community - but despite his use of the name for everyday purposes, the name .....................  Perhaps a history lesson would be a propos here.  Since there is a "Garlow Line" (road) on the Reserve, and there is a family connection, many years ago I was curious as to the origins of the name and decided to do some research.  A colleague suggested that I check out the source noted below, and I kept a few notes which I have managed to locate.  The Garlow name and the Garlow ancestors did not come to Six Nations until 1822 or 1823 when the White man John Garlow and his part Native wife arrived from New York State and applied to become members.  The records state that there was a difference of opinion within Council as to the eligibility of this family with very little evident Native heritage.  In some manner, reasons unknown, their application was approved and the family were enumerated as either Oneida or Mohawk.  In 1822 there were no Mohawk still residing within the ancestral homeland - except those who chose to integrate with the general population along the Mohawk River.  There were, however, some Oneida residing in the area after the Revolution. The source for this information on the Garlow family can be found in David K. Faux, Iroquoian Occupation of the Mohawk Valley During and After the Revolution, Man in the Northeast, Number 34, Fall 1987, pp. 27-40.  So the original Garlow was White, and never a slave - so the statement of Mr. Garlow is all the more curious.  All Garlows in the Mohawk Valley and Ontario descend from Johann Christian Garlock (Garlick, Gerlach, Garlow) born 2 May 1672, Heidelberg, Baden - Wurttemberg, Germany; died 1764, Stone Arabia, Montgomery County, NY.

Apparently Garlow had attempted to text for "assistance" (for example reinforcements streaming down 6th Line), but everything happened so fast and when the expected "troops" arrived, the OPP and McHale supporters were long gone.  Apparently Mr. Garlow was displeased that he was there all alone and did not receive the expected support.  He stated, "If people are not going to start coming here to protect this land, I am not going to be staying here anymore.  I'll go with another nation and do what I have to do, or just retire from it all".  Clearly he is very discouraged.  Over the years many have stayed in that house, and a lot of bad things have occurred there (e.g., suicide, rape) and the place may have accumulated a lot of bad karma.  Perhaps the ancestors are saying that the land was sold 170 years ago with the express wish, stated in the deeds, that no one in later generations try to second guess them - and that agreement has been violated since 2006.

Mr. Garlow made an interesting statement to the reporter.  He said, "To a warrior, jail is something that a warrior just accepts" and continues with his philosophy of serving time in jail.

The use of the term "warrior" can mean many things, but to successful Chiefs such as Clarence Louie, Chief of the Osoyoos Band in British Columbia for 29 years and responsible for many entrepreneurial projects which have made his Band very wealthy, it first and foremost means one thing - "Has a job".  Chief Louie has no time for Natives who call themselves warriors, but use welfare and other Canadian Government handouts from taxpaying citizens to fund their militancy.  See his inspirational story here.

2)  Turtle Island News, June 11, 2014, Security Kanonhstaton; group descends on property, man charged, p. 7: 

This article includes much of the same material as found in the above version.  A few additional facts do emerge though.  Mr. Garlow described his take down without accepting any part of the blame for forcing the police into this situation, and making it seem that the officers were unnecessarily rough - which is certainly not seen in any of the videos - but perception is reality for some.  He was processed at the Cayuga OPP detachment, and charged with assault.  The Court date given here is 10 July - so someone has their facts wrong.

Apparently the "incident prompted a swift response from the Haudenosaunee Development Institute (HDI), who are working to get a fence set up around the perimeter of Kanonhstaton, creating what the Director calls a "gated community".  This is a bit premature and presumptuous since it is the Province who is the legal owner of the land.  As the Director states, "The HCCC is awaiting return of those lands and others to the HCCC from Ontario".  That might not be all that easy since the HCCC (Hereditary Confederacy Chief's Council) are at loggerheads with SNEC (Six Nations Elected Council), and the Director is upset that in 2010 the latter walked away from the negotiating table leaving things up in the air.  Then there is the ownership question - the Federal Government maintains that this land was surrendered in 1844 and Ontario stands by its land registry system - so this could be a muddled mess for someone who is clear minded to see through and find resolution.

Basically this business reflects the chronic inability of anyone at Six Nations to take personal or collective responsibility for their actions.  The tendency is to point the finger at others, and play the role of victim.  Classic.

Meanwhile, a "stop the violence" march is planned, according to Mr. Garlow, traversing from the church just north of Kanonhstaton, to the OPP satellite station on the south side of Caledonia on Argyll Street.  It is not clear what "stop the violence" means.  Surely not trying to gain support to stop the OPP from doing their duty - something Caledonians have been "begging for" since 2006.  If the White "solidarity" groups are going to be there it will infuriate Caledonians who have seen enough of their Anarchist - Communist antics since 2006.  They have been the true instigators of problems by stirring the pot to meet their political agenda.  Apparently the event will take place in the next week or two.  I will attend and provide my observations in a subsequent posting.  This could get interesting!



  1. "Perception is reality" reminds me of this recent fiasco called an Ontario election which gave a totally corrupt and undeserving party a majority government; "perception" unfortunately would have to include the whole gamut of deliberate distortions, lies and self-serving actions which have no basis in reality or anything resembling the truth and facts; this accurately described the Fiberals in power and now we can look forward to the same failed leadership with even more power; the larger tragedy, as this election clearly exemplifies, is the irrefutable evidence that much of the voting populace would rather "buy into" this fabricated world of lies and deceit rather than face hard truths: this is the lazy, non-thinking mentality and willful ignorance that is at the root of so much lack of conscience and moral bankruptcy we are witnessing at so many levels; of course, this self-delusional thinking and sense of self-entitlement runs across the spectrum of political thought and among those "white solidarity" and pseudo-academic types to which you refer and who continue to act on behalf of their own agendas under the guise of fighting for issues they believe in: perception and deception, today's watchwords for the cowardly and politically correct...which is certainly not the definition of a true "warrior"!

    1. My Orenda: Based on your comments, you might be interested in reading Tom Flanagan’s Persona Non Grata, which was published recently. Flanagan, as you may know, is a University of Calgary political science professor emeritus, and the author of some controversial books on aboriginal issues. I only have peripheral knowledge of Flanagan’s views on native issues, so am not sure if he is on the right track.

      At any rate, Flanagan became embroiled in a “virtual mobbing” over some remarks he made regarding child pornography at the University of Lethbridge on February 27, 2013. He contends that his comments were taken out of context, but he did apologize for making them. I question why he would even think about making such statements, since child pornography is wreaking so much havoc in our society, and since some of the aboriginal audience members and their supporters were hostile to his perspective on native issues. However, he does raise some red flags (Ontario election results, anyone?) about the dangers of political correctness, particularly as it relates to an academic setting.

      My main reason for purchasing the book was that I had problems with an individual indirectly connected to the whole University of Lethbridge “Incident” about 27 years ago. My debacle involved what I considered to be deception in an academic setting.

      I confess I have only skimmed the book (am trying to concentrate on my own writing, rather than other people’s, at the moment), but what I have read makes me think that anyone concerned about political correctness should not only be aware of what happened to him, but also how he faced the matter square on, and then documented his view of what happened in his book.

      Another book with some insights that I think relate well to your concerns about “moral bankruptcy” is Tsimshian Calvin Helin’s Dances With Spirits, which was also published recently. Once again, I have only skimmed the book, due to wanting to concentrate on my own writing. But Helin does make some very important observations regarding how the “vicious cycle of consumption” is supplanting more productive activities, such as developing meaningful relationships with family and friends.

      It is absolutely true that, as many indigenous people say, we have to think ahead seven generations. However, we—aboriginal and non-aboriginal—have to start, as DeYo observes, with the facts.

    2. Thank you for your comments and references which I am certain to find helpful; my background in philosophy might have something to do with it but I find we live in a very non-existential period in the sense many find convenient excuse to divorce thought and belief from actual action that reflects those beliefs; for one thing there is that lack of rigorous thinking and analysis and evidence-based research that characterizes DeYo's work and for which we must be very grateful; and even those in academe often appear more interested in arguing from predetermined positions rather than in engaging in honest dialogue; DeYo's Blog is a clear example of this as he has often commented on those who strongly disagree but who are reluctant to offer any meaningful challenges or engage in debate (except perhaps in a forum of their own choosing and away from public view); and I believe this lack of intellectual integrity goes much deeper than any specific issue but is related to societal problems as a whole, including the areas you mention such as "meaningful relationships" which require time and room for mutual trust rather than the pursuit of ego-driven personal agendas.

  2. Thanks for your comments MyOrenda and Counterpoise!

    My real concern, perhaps because I know full well how things operate in this neck of the woods, is that there will be an attempt to use the event to once again illustrate how Six Nations are always the victims. It is very fortunate that in this instance there are multiple video tapes of what occurred. Had this not been the case, the world at large would probably have bought into the statements of the perpetrator, especially when he is shown in half page pictures sporting what appear to be cuts and abrasions - allegedly caused by unwarranted police brutality. In objective fact nothing could be further from the truth - but without the video to display events sans any subjective interpretations, I could see how Six Nations would be able to use the events to portray the world as they want the public to see it. It seems evident that some at Six Nations are more than willing to lie, to reinforce in the minds of Canadians how horribly Natives are treated. Here we have an opportunity to learn about the difference between perception and spin, juxtaposed against reality. Next time a Six Nations activist claims this or that against legitimate authority in Canada, we need to be aware of this tendency to blow things out of proportion or out and out lie. It is only objective facts that can sort things out. After all the lies about rights and entitlements, it is high time to question even "sacred cows" such as the Two Row Wampum supposed agreement, and the fraudulent "Nanfan Treaty, as well as land claims that were fully and satisfactorily settled 170 to 180 years ago - despite what Six Nations claim today. Mercifully, in general, the evidence is very clear cut such that anyone willing to do their own research will see the holes in the Six Nations spin on these subjects. I am hoping that the present event will cause people to realize that while it is important to listen to the Six Nations version of things, it is only by checking out the facts can the truth emerge. Alas, this is a very time intensive but necessary undertaking, and so people might have a tendency to accept Six Nations statements, supposedly rooted in a long tradition, as sufficient. Once again, beliefs versus facts - the theme of this blog. DeYo.

    1. I am in the middle of reading Gary McHale's book about Caledonia and many of its revelations are quite frightening but not really surprising in light of Canadian politics and in particular the Ontario political climate; in fact the recent election was a case study of extreme partisanship,especially in areas such as the Toronto ridings which became even more RED than they were; not that the Tories offered a better choice with its right wing extremism(not really a conservative party anymore); but my point is that there was no middle road of moderation, common sense or intelligence (except perhaps for the NDP which simply miscalculated and thought the electorate were smarter than they really were and that this was their opportunity); as I commented above, people voted on the basis of delusional and wishful thinking or past party affiliation rather than on evidence-based facts such as the Liberals still being investigated by the OPP(any bets where that will go now!?) or the experience of living through 11 years of waste and corruption; so even post election it is still all about perception and spin and deception because the mentally lazy and uncritical are just fine with that; and here we have to include the media, as usual, who have long forgotten what journalistic truth might be and even the failure of the religious or church groups(as Gary reveals) whose ministers and pastors failed to stand up for their own parishoners or residents in time of need; so it always seems to come down to single individuals or a few at most who are willing to make the necessary sacrifices and act with character and integrity rather than personal agendas; in my animal advocacy work this is often a very familiar scenario where I have seen those who seem the most dedicated ready to "bail out" when challenges and pressures become too great ; fortunately some of us here know that a LEGAL OPTION or ROUTE may be the strategy that is necessary and I have used the aid of a lawyer very effectively in the past and will probably do so again; but unfortunately we also know that we will still face resistance(including legal) from the other side which desperately wants to retain the status-quo (read Ontario election results as one example of this) but we have the advantage of believing in the rightness and justice of our cause as opposed to the latest propaganda being dished out for public consumption.

    2. Yes, I too am still in a state of shock, numbed really, thinking that these Liberal crooks have 4 more years to ensure that we rival Greece, mired in debt we will never be able to pay - maybe our great grandchildren will ........ It also means that the number of useless non Green wind turbines will destroy vastly more farmland; that Caledonia can expect the OPP to be given orders to return to their "assigned" peacekeeper role in Haldimand and Brantl Counties; and that the Province will cave into Six Nations and give them Douglas Creek Estates, the former Burtch Correctional facility in Brant County, and the lands that were expropriated from farmers in South Cayuga for some hair brained scheme many years ago. All this will ensure that the demands for more and more will increase as will the boldness that Six Nations goes about "extracting" land from Ontario - with no legitimate rationale what so ever - but it doesn't matter - they have learned that pressure at key sore spots can work magic when dealing with those with no guts or morals. DeYo.

  3. skeno first off there is no way possible to even buy land from any person claiming to be six nations..our law clearly states we cannot own the land and there is no word or phrase to own land?? the land belongs to the coming faces(unborn children) so how can anyone get a signature from someone who is not even born????this is our hunting grounds lands long before any squatters came and started to steal land!! i have not seen a honest Canadian yet or american you all knownly and willingly live on stolen land!! some of you even encourage violence to steal land from native people accross turtle island as seen in the video ..any police must by law approach the confederacy council not band council why you ponder band council is outside of the laws of six nations therefore are not six nations and has no treaties so therefore has no legal rights to allow any foreign people on our lands.. opp willy committed act of terrorism like what took place on kanonhstaton( former attempt to build Douglas estates) so what was seen in the video was a act of terrorism against the six nations which people like Gary mchale encourages gary also encourages theft maybe people are awakening to these crimes and why he can only get haters to follow him!!! but niawen to gary it has help us out because only a retard can not understand you can not get a signature from a person whom is not even born so how can you buy land from six nations when the legal signatures are not even born ??? remember the land belongs to the coming faces?? we are allowed to accept trade for use of the land which in this case is money to use the land not own... it so is time for Canada to pay what you all owe or every time you look in the mirror you see a illegal squatter....kawaowene{ Big wind) of the great kayohkono nation of the grand river territory..onakiyahe danutuh...

  4. kawaowene is my real name as a free person to whom i was born a kayohkono male of the turtle clan family so john garlow is what a foreign people imposes to try an beat the indian out of me and in the video shows a true warrior resisting a violent people trying to assimulate or force him into be canadian...therefore a slave in the modern alot of people call me by sewatis or kawaowene sometimes i will not answer to john...this slave to canada system want to be free hear what i say ma`sta i is not a god ni@@er or good indian.... kawaowene kayohkono turtle clan. ona.

  5. warriorblood bloodz, thanks for your comments. We will have to agree to disagree on much of what you say. First, I have deeds signed by for example Lower Cayuga band members who needed the cash and wanted to move to a new location. They took cash for land. I have copies of deeds from Mohawks, Lower Cayugas - just about every tribe among Six Nations. I have a deed from the Chief of the Lower Cayuga who sold his own personal improvements and the land on which they stood to his neighbor, my ancestor, for cash such that a patent could be issued to "one of our people". The matter was discussed in Council and all 36 Chiefs in attendance that day signed the deed of sale.

    Secondly, I get the concept of 7 generations, but to look backwards to a far gone time is not doing these generations justice. If your great grandson would have made a four star neurosurgeon that will never happen if brought up with a school system that fails to emphasize the sciences. The welfare of your descendants depends on accepting that we are in the 21st Century and need the skills to allow us to cope and thrive. Reaching back to some supposed romantic time does not cut it. To my way of thinking, by not creating a level playing field it ensures that generations of Six Nations people will fail to achieve to the level of their ability and denying them the opportunity to make a valuable contribution to the wider society. Supporting the Hereditary Council as it now stands virtually ensures that this will happen. It seems that you must ask yourself, "what is it that I want for my grandchildren?" I have already asked this question and the answer is, "the best education that I can help provide" - then they have a fighting chance at success in the modern world. DeYo.