Aboriginal Advocacy Via Web 2.0 and Social Media

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Award winning Canadian Hip Hop Artist, Joey Stylez – Discusses what the impact of the Residential School System

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Canadian Hip Hop Artist - Highway of Tears

Canadian Hip Hop Artist – Highway of Tears

Joey Stylez – is a First Nations Canadian singer-songwriter, rapper, hip-hop artist, First Nations activist, fashion designer.
Birth name: Joseph Dale Marlin Laplante
Born: May 14, 1981 (age 33)
Origin: Saskatchewan, Canada
Genres: Hip hop, Rap, Street Pop
Years active: 2001–present
Labels: Universal, Sony, Stressed Street, Flight Academy Music
Associated acts: Swagg Boss, Ty Dolla Sign, 50 Cent, Snoop Dogg, A Tribe Called Red, Moka Only, Winnipeg’s Most, SDK
Website: joeystylez.com

“Kill the Indian in the Child” (Hanson and Crey, 2009, Residential School Section)  – The Residential School System

One example of Canadian inhumanity, in which the effects are still felt to this very day, was the implementation of the residential school system.  This school system strategically and systematically ravaged First Nations culture and destabilized Aboriginal families for generations. These ‘students’ experienced not only the loss of their ownership of the land, their language and culture but also the loss of a caring and nurturing family structure and therefore grew up without learning how to nurture and care for their own families. “Because the government’s and the churches’ intent was to eradicate all aspects of Aboriginal culture in these young people and interrupt its transmission from one generation to the next, the residential school system is commonly considered a form of cultural genocide” (Hanson and Crey, 2009, Residential School Section).

Thirty four year old Jon-C (Billy Pierson), lead for the ‘Winnipeg’s Most’ famous award winning Aboriginal hip hop band, speaks to this “cultural genocide”  (Hanson and Crey, 2009, Residential School Section) on a CBC documentary shared on YouTube.  Jon-C’s Grandmother and Mother were victims of the residential schools.  He states, “That everything comes back to residential schools.  Current parents do not know how to parent; 3 generations now do not know how to parent” (Kinew, Sept.6,2014,CBC Documentary, “Indigenous in the City”).  This breakdown of generational family structures, as experienced by John-C, perpetuates the detrimental dysfunctional contemporary Aboriginal family structure and thus creates a dystopian culture; a culture typified by human despair and suffering which squeezes the life out of any opportunities of aboriginal youth today and continues to destroy not restore their imaginations and hope for the future.

Lee Maracle, (Nov. 5th, 2014, Talk, Rodman Hall), states: “that colonization always blames the victim and that non-aboriginal’s language and phrases preserve and propagate Aboriginal family structure breakdowns. She continues to state that white people don’t get it and by telling aboriginal people to “get over it!” is impossible as one cannot ‘get over’ something that continues to impact, influence, inhibit, censor and inflict violence against aboriginal people and the environment to this very day, every day.


Listen to Joey’s – “Highway of Tears” in an effort to create awareness of Canadian Aboriginal missing or murdered women along a 800 kilometer stretch of Canadian Highway 16, known as the ‘Highway of Tears’


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