Public Opinion Stands Against Chief Theresa Spence, Idle No More Protestors

Andy Radia, Yahoo! News, January 16, 2013

In the battle for public opinion, Canada’s First Nations’ have a long way to go.

An Ipsos Reid poll released on Tuesday claims that while most Canadians believe the government must act to improve on-reserve quality of life, they have serious concerns about reserve financial accountability.

Here are some top-line results from the survey:

– 64 per cent agree that Canada’s aboriginal peoples receive too much support from Canadian taxpayers

– Only 31 per cent agree that First Nation’s protesters are conducting justified and legitimate protests by shutting down roads and rail lines going through their communities

– 81 per cent agree that no additional taxpayers money should go to any Reserve until external auditors can be put in place to ensure financial accountability

– 60 per cent agree that most of the problems of native people are brought on by themselves

“Taken together, these data suggest that last week’s protests have done little to build sympathy for First Nations issues, and have instead created a new issue for First Nation leaders to struggle with—financial accountability,” notes the survey report.


If you’ve listened to the call-in radio shows in recent days, these numbers won’t surprise you.

Stories about financial mismanagement, divisions among different First Nations groups and threats of major road and border blockades have all culminated into a collective frustration and in some cases anger.

Earlier this week, an Idle No More co-founder even distanced herself from Spence reiterating that INM was a grassroots movement and claiming that they barely had any “communications with her.”

It was a wise move because Spence, along with some of the more militant chiefs, pose a serious public relations problem for the whole First Nations population: Spence has lost much her credibilitybecause of her unclear demands and because of the damning KPMG audit which suggested a lack of financial checks and balances in her community of Attawapiskat.

Ultimately, First Nations’ goals for meaningful resource sharing, treaty recognition and more funding for on-reserve education and health care are more easily achieved if they have public support.


Topics: , ,

Share This

We welcome comments that add information or perspective, and we encourage polite debate. If you log in with a social media account, your comment should appear immediately. If you prefer to remain anonymous, you may comment as a guest, using a name and an e-mail address of convenience. Your comment will be moderated.
  • jay11

    I don’t understand what the indians of Canada want. They control huge swaths of land (like Nunavut) and have free reign to do what they want on their reserved lands. They can leave their reserved lands and live in the modern world if they want to also, and am ajority of indians have chosen to live in cities and other more civilized settings.
    Those on the tribal territories are free to live as their ancestors did – hunting, fishing, sleeping in tents and wigmams and igloos, and also to wear loin clothes and hunt with bows. What are they asking for? Freebies and modern goodies? The rest of us have to go to school, go to work and work all our lives for those things. Why do others think they should be just given so many things without planning and working for them?

    • Triarius

      What they want? More.

      • What do we want? FREE STUFF! When do we want it? NOW!

  • Triarius

    They shouldn’t get anything extra or free. Same goes for the Mongolians in the US that crossed the land bridge and slaughtered the Solutrians.

    Only white people would coddle the descendents of those that tried to exterminate them.

  • Oil Can Harry

    It’s gratifying to see most Canucks still have common sense but I have to shake my head reading that 31% support these welfare bums putting up illegal roadblocks.

    The 31% must be a combination of white leftards and non-whites. In the US we call them Obama Voters.

  • IKantunderstand

    I am so tired of all the complainers. Please, White people, let’s go on strike, let’s march on Washington, let us be silent no more. Let’s face it, none of this crap could go on without our largesse, and reluctance to fight back! All these whiny so- called indigenous peoples of the Americas, had their chance. It is not the fault of the Europeans that they had superior weapons. Hell, the Chinese might have invented gunpowder, but it took Europeans to figure out how to put it to good use. Hey Indians, you LOST! TOUGH! To the victor goes the spoils. Oh, and White people, remember that. Because we are in the midst of inviting and welcoming our victors. At least the majority of Indian tribes didn’t do that.

  • bigone4u

    If I were their PR guy, I would put in front of the cameras a lovely young First American princess in her early 20s, hair in long braids, wearing a beautiful white leather beaded, fringed dress straight from a Hollywood costume shop, a bit low cut with cleavage showing. If I had to, I would even hire a faux Indian maiden from Hollywood. Then, I would have her plead her case for the starving children while smiling prettily and sexily for the cameras. White guys are suckers for pretty faces and boobs and butts. Public opinion would turn on a dime.

  • As far as these Indians are concerned, poverty is considered good pr for them. After all that means they need more money from the government.

  • Ulick

    “60 per cent agree that most of the problems of native people are brought on by themselves.”

    Just the other day there was an article on Amren where a Canadian lady who worked with Canada’s native people said that she believed that they brought their problems on themselves. The condescending, PC author derided that lady as a racist. Oh well, I guess that 60 percent of Canadians are racists. Might as well stop being afraid of being called that word because you’re in the majority.

  • odious liberal

    Give them nothing and force them to go to work, enough of their whining and sniveling.

    • Michael_C_Scott

      A better idea would be to have these lazy, whining boozehounds walk back to Siberia.

  • Anyone notice the pictures of this woman? I have seen a few and she sure looks like a fake indian to me!

  • LastBastionOfHope

    This sounds eerily familiar…illegal hispanics…blacks anyone? Why don’t the eskimos, blacks, and hispanics all form their own nation? I’m sure it would go smoothly, because I mean when is diversity ever a problem?

  • mike5586

    “Attawapiskat Chief” Theresa Spence looks about as ‘native’ as the head (former?) of the Cherokee nation in America.

    That is to say, she looks fully European.