Christi Belcourt on why celebrating Canada's 150th is a 'slap in the face' to Indigenous people
The Métis visual artist and writer explains why the birthday celebrations are 'an insult'
"It's just really... It's an insult. And it's sad," Métis visual artist and writer Christi Belcourt said of Canada's 150th celebrations when taking the stage at this past weekend's Creative Minds.
A conversation between 4 artists, Belcourt was joined at Creative Minds by architect Sir David Adjaye, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Junot Díaz and actor/filmmaker Paul Gross. And she took it as an opportunity to make clear why Canada's big birthday party is very problematic.
"We have 15,000 years of ancestry, of our ancestors buried in these lands," she said. "It's insulting. It's like a bunch of jumped in a boat and went over to England and decided that we were going to rename everything. Put our language on everything. Forget about everybody that lived there. Take over the space with our laws. And then make a declaration and then the following year, celebrate the one year anniversary of our declaration of taking over those lands."
Watch Belcourt's clip above, and the conversation in its entirety here.