SEN. LYNN Beyak has said that although there were abuses at the residential schools, not all people working there were bad and that some students had a positive experience at the schools. This viewpoint was backed up by numerous letters from former students.
For this she has been vilified by Indigenous groups and the media and faces another suspension from the Senate. (Beyak Suspended Again — CJ, Feb. 28). Now the town councils of Fort Francis, Dryden and Sioux Lookout have joined in this witch hunt.
I have a personal friend that “experienced no abuse and heard of no abuse” at the two residential schools she attended. I have good friends in Sioux Lookout that tell me that the Pelican school had the best hockey team in the area.
Yes there were abuses. but there was some good also. This is not an exoneration of the residential school — just a fact.
My point is that freedom of speech means sometimes you will hear things you don’t agree with. It’s not hate speech, it’s just a different point of view.
Our veterans fought for freedom of speech, it’s not for us to sacrifice it on the alter of political correctness.
(Originally published March 5, 2020)