The Harper Government’s Slippery Slope of Canadian Autonomy and National Sovereignty – Cornwall Border Crossing to US Soil

The Harper Government’s Slippery Slope of Canadian Autonomy and National Sovereignty – Cornwall Border Crossing to US Soil

CFN – I’m sure Pierre Trudeau is not happy wherever he is today….   While I didn’t agree with everything he stood for I was always proud of his relationship with the US.  In his memoirs his advice to Brian Mulroney:

” …be friends with the United States– the Canadian people like the Americans –

but don’t be subservient to the American government, because Canadians are a very proud people.” 

Those lines are becoming very fuzzy with the new agreement to allow officers of the law from both countries to traverse the borders.  We could have US law enforcement making arrests and possibly even ending the lives of Canadians on our soil.   There are different laws in each country.   This is murky and dark waters that we are now entering and as seen in the Soft Wood lumber situation when the 800 pound Gorilla that the US is decides something Canada is not in a position to do much if anything.

Our slippery slope started with Brian Mulroney and NAFTA.    Free Trade hasn’t really been free with the US having claims on our resources and potentially its huge Insurance and Drug lobbies ending Medicare as we know it.

Mix in the new Crime bill that the Harper Government has jammed through and it almost makes Alex Jones make sense….

Here in Cornwall Ontario today it hit the media that the new permanent Canadian border crossing; the entrance into our sovereign country will be on US soil.     That’s scary on a lot of levels and precedent that I’m not sure I like.

The back ground and trail of actions (or inaction) is frightening too.   It’s something out of 1984 or a movie.

After generations of essentially peaceful use the Harper government announces that it will arm its border guards who until his regime essentially were tax collectors (that’s what they basically still are) The residents of Akwesasne, already a complicated community clearly stated that they didn’t want guns in their community.

The Canadian border crossing had for years been on the island dividing the US and Canada in between two bridges.  Akwesasne itself consisted (barring land claims) of areas covering NY, Quebec, and Ontario; an unique situation.

The Harper Government pulled their guards from the station and shut traffic for a period of time before creating a temporary border crossing in Cornwall Ontario.

In the meanwhile they forced the residents of Akwesasne returning from the US to have to stand in bridge traffic before returning home; something that literally could take hours extra to daily commutes.

It also caused a huge impact to the area economies of Massena NY, Cornwall Ontario, and Akwesasne itself.

Each step of the way the Harper point man, area MP Guy Lauzon was not present at one point even suggesting that the border crossing be moved to the old US building which had been demolished months before showing his complete disconnect of the situation.

I received this today from Chief Mike Mitchell of the MCA:

“The Mohawk Council of Akwesasne was not invited to participate in discussions last year to relocate Canada Customs alongside the U.S. Port-of-Entry in Rooseveltown, so it will need time to determine any implications that it may have on the Akwesasne community.”

Again, since 2009 when this started the communication between the Representatives of the area communities has been near nil and certainly not in good faith.   It’s been dictatorial.

Bernadette Clement, current Cornwall Ontario City Councilor and former Federal Liberal candidate had the following to say:

It seems an odd way to come by this very important information. It would have been good for us as a community to have been able to hear of this significant development directly from our local MP or from the appropriate Minister.The information that we do have, such as it is, through the government of Canada website, does seem to speak of the placement of border facilities on the U.S. side in Massena, NY. 

This could ease the situation in our traffic circle on Brookdale but the absence of more  detailed information makes it hard to know exactly how this will be implemented and what impact this will have on us all.   

This in the day of diminishing voter turn outs.  Actions are happening that are going to change our country, province, and city for an awfully long time.   We elect officials to represent us, but it seems that there’s a disconnect or simply a lack of accountability or care for what the public expects or wishes.

To the point that here in Canada our Federal government has decided to make decisions like this without consulting or communicating with the citizens it impacts the most.

Does Mr. Harper represent the Canadian people or the US government.  I wonder what Pierre Trudeau’s answer would be to that question?

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Best Western Cornwall

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