Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Residential Schools: The Forgotten Children Part 2

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Duncan Campbell Scott, Head of Indian Affairs takes a romantic interest in Native traditions, but disdains ‘living’ Natives. In 1920 he said, "I want to get rid of the Indian problem. Our object is to continue until there is not a single Indian in Canada that has not been absorbed. They are a weird and waning race...ready to break out at any moment in savage dances."
This post is dedicated to the forgotten children: the chlidren that died while attending a native residential school and never returned home. If we go by the numbers in my previous post which is 100,000 or so children attended these schools from 1930 until the last one closed in 1996, and its estimated that 25 - 50% of them died while attending these schools: then a total of 25,000 - 50,000 native children did not return home.
The reason I refer them as the forgotten children is because the federal government in its negotiation with survivors of residential schools often mention physical and sexual abuse in relation to compensation, but i have yet to ever hear them mention the children that did not return or compensation for their families.
The reason these children did not return was because they often died as a reseult of disease or from severe physical abuse. I realize that no amount of money can compensate for the loss of a child; however, these children endured the ultimate form of abuse, they died. They deserve to be more than mentioned and their families deserve more too, these children may have lived long and happy lives if they were not forced to attend these institutions.
It saddens me to think that the goverment could be that callous to forget 25,000 - 50,000 native children died as a result of their need to rid Canada of its Indian problem.
Remember the Children that Never Came Home!

2 Comments:

Blogger kitchenette soul said...

My God! I never knew this could be one of the disasters of colonization. The culture of the East did recuperate from the colonization. Every culture has a beautiful philosophy a thinking to share, but this is gross. To kill childhood of these children was to strike at the very root of the culture of their tribes.

12:37 AM  
Blogger Shelley Brant said...

Thank You very much for your commnent and yes this was a very sad part of native history and one definitely that I felt people needed to be educated on.

7:36 PM  

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