Stuffed animals and shoes hang on a fence in Kamloops, British Columbia, in memory of children who attended residential schools.
Indigenous and political leaders have pointed to anger over residential schools to explain the surge in ;charred churches after the Kamloops discoveries.
Destroying the history of others does nothing to build our own, Perry Bellegarde, then chief of the Assembly of First Nations, declared in 2021.
“We must resist the temptation of violence and turn to […] everything that our elders taught us about peaceful coexistence and mutual respect,” he added.
< p class="StyledBodyHtmlParagraph-sc-48221190-4 hnvfyV">At that time, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also commented on this phenomenon: This is not the way to go. The destruction of places of worship is unacceptable and must stop.
Yet the incendiary acts have still not stopped and Paulina Johnson, a researcher of the University of Alberta and a member of the Maskwacis First Nation, says he understands why.
It's on fire because no one is really interested in the truth, she says. This is not to say that these fires are justified, but they symbolize a larger reality.
Paulina Johnson also states that Indigenous people have been silenced for a long time, and that they sometimes find their voice in a destructive way, because for a long time, Canada never really recognized us.