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Racism: Allowed to flourish on YouTube
[August 22, 2009]

Racism: Allowed to flourish on YouTube

LONDON, ON, Aug. 22, 2009 (Canada NewsWire via COMTEX) -- Association of Iroquois and Allied Indians - In light of the growing attention to a recently posted video on "YouTube", that promotes racism and is insulting to First Nation people and persons with special needs, the Grand Chief of the Association of Iroquois and Allied Indians has condemned both the maker of the video and YouTube.

Grand Chief Phillips stated, "The enhanced video of the Muncey Delaware Nation Pow Wow is a clear example that racist attitudes and discrimination still exist in Canada and that YouTube provides a forum to allow those attitudes to flourish." The video in question promotes racist and discriminatory attitudes towards not only First Nation persons but also towards individuals with special needs. The video also portrays Native women as sexual objects, an issue that we all know can lead to more serious crimes, such as the Robert Pickton case in B.C., and does nothing for the plight of the 500 missing or murdered Native women in Canada.

The most disturbing part of the video is the fact that whomever made this video chose to target the most vulnerable segment of our population, our children. It would indeed take a very sick individual with no moral compass to produce a video such as this.

The video is shot at a Pow Wow, which is a celebration of culture and diversity, and promotes unity not only amongst First Nations but all races. It seems obvious that this individual had one purpose in mind for his or her attendance at the Muncey Pow Wow, and that was to promote hate and discrimination.

The Grand Chief further stated, "To take a celebration such as the Pow Wow and turn it into a script of insults and racism is disrespectful and certainly not humorous." The Grand Chief also says, "We certainly cannot and should not censor individual thought or expression, but when thought turns into a video such as this, then that is racism and is against the law." The Grand Chief also suggested that there should be serious consideration given by the authorities to have the video investigated and possible charges laid under Canada's hate crimes laws.

Grand Chief Phillips feels that the monitoring and the regulatory controls over companies such as YouTube need to be examined when it continues to allow discriminatory and racist videos such as this one to remain posted on their site, especially when they are generating profits for the number of people visiting their site and viewing the videos. For this reason YouTube needs to take some of the responsibility for promoting racism and hate.

SOURCE: Association of Iroquois & Allied Indians Grand Chief Randall Phillips, or Geoff Stonefish at the Association of Iroquois and Allied Indians, (519) 434-2761

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