Kevin Annett: Unlearning Ourselves, from Cape Town to Vancouver



Unlearning ourselves, from Cape Town to Vancouver

by Kevin Annett, Eagle Strong Voice

Harriet Nahanee is led away from the Eagleridge bluff protest in May/07 photo Mike Wakefield North Shore News

Canadians never cared when their government and churches wiped us out. They never protested when they killed our children and shoved needles in our arms and locked us in jail if they caught us off the reservation. But now with COVID, the whites are upset that all that shit is happening to them. Well, I’m not upset. I call it blowback and payback. I call it justice. – Frank Ermineskin, Cree elder, Vancouver, May 6, 2021

For the judgement of God is upon you: as you have done to others, so it shall be done unto you. – Obadiah 1:15

You may or may not have noticed the absence of many indigenous people in any of the anti-COVID lockdown protests. An organizer of such a demonstration recently asked me why that is, and how she might “involve” aboriginals in their actions.

“Why should they back you, when you’ve never backed them?” I replied. “Why should they risk being killed by the State when you won’t be?”

The woman quickly changed the subject.

Having been through many such encounters, I’ve become more than annoyed when, before the start of any of their cozy meetings or protests, ‘progressive’ white Canadians will compulsively emit a token, verbal solidarity-from-a-distance with those imagined indigenous people “on whose lands we gather”.




The absurdity of such a gesture is best illustrated with an example that could be describing Canada, from that society that so mirrored our own since we helped to create it: apartheid South Africa, and one of its Boer sons, Rian Malan.

In his book, “My Traitor’s Heart” (1990), Malan writes,

“I tried protesting in Cape Town a few times, but it didn’t make sense to me. The black protests against apartheid always turned into bloody street battles with the army, but the white demonstrators were barely scratched. A few thousand of us indecisive and scared whites would gather on a campus to hear speeches and the usual brave rhetoric, and then start to march. But when a senior policeman and a handful of constables would show up and warn us not to make trouble, we always complied and went home in a ritualized pas de deux, sometimes after a few token arrests were made.

“The South African police never killed and only occasionally harmed white protesters. We were free to peek from safety in the direction of the black townships in search of the teargas and bullets we would never experience. On the other side of the color bar, it was a different matter. When the boot came down on the black protesters and the killings and massacres started, there were no whites on the black side of the barricades. None. Ever.”

None of today’s white Canadian activists who so easily invoke the now-acceptable term “genocide” were starved, sterilized at a young age, or saw their mother raped and pistol whipped to death in front of them by a Mountie. So naturally, genocide is just a word to them; a mantra, really, whose blithe repetition somehow equips them with the correct political credentials. But that’s as far as white Canadians will go.

Ask even the most “Indian loving” Canadian to confront the churches that massacred over 60,000 ‘residential school’ children or to resist the Chinese-backed death squads that are killing off aboriginal families to get their oil and gas-rich lands, and you’ll quickly find that you’re talking to yourself. For as Rian Malan says elsewhere in his book,

“Under apartheid, there are no political distinctions. Left, Right, and Center are all variations on the same note emitted by the State. One is either inside or outside their system. And not even the most strident white radical will ever dare to step over that line.”




Like Rian Malan and white South Africans, Canadians don’t have to tread into those forbidden reservations and mass grave sites and bear the burden of those slated for death. There are never any consequences for people like us who have won our home-grown war of extermination, provided that we stay blind and deaf and dumb to what we’re part of.

Rian Malan and I are blood brothers, and our cultures and lives are remarkably similar. Like him, my Annett ancestors were originally French Huguenot Protestants who fled to England and Holland in the sixteenth century to escape Vatican-led massacres and religious genocide. And from those sanctuaries we eventually emigrated to Canada and South Africa.

In both of our new homes, we forgot what it was like to be targeted by Church and State for extermination. We allowed ourselves and our Christian faith to be hijacked by Empire as its accomplice in crime against the original peoples of our new land. And like all Canadians, we continue to prosper from the avails of their extermination. As the beneficiaries of apartheid and genocide, we have stood by unprotesting as it destroyed the lives of many others. So how can we pretend to oppose it now?

The accusatory finger that we point so self-righteously at Justin Trudeau and Bill Gates is in truth aimed squarely at ourselves.

And so, dear friends, the next time you begin a meeting or rally, give us all a break. Don’t mention indigenous people … at least, not until you know what one is, and what we are. And not until you cross over the barricades.


Listen to Kevin and the Voice of the Republic live every Sunday at 6 pm eastern at . The website of the Republic is . See the evidence of genocide in Canada and globally at and  and

Some of Kevin’s books can be ordered here:




Murder by Decree – The Crime of Genocide in Canada:

Unrelenting: Between Sodom and Zion:

Establishing the Reign of Natural Liberty: A Common Law Training Manual

At the Mouth of a Cannon: Conquest and Cupidity on Canada’s West Coast ,  

Truth Teller’s Shield: A Manual for Whistle Blowers & Hell Raisers:

Establishing Liberty: The Case for the Republic of Kanata

Here We Stand: The Call of the New Protestant Reformation

Fallen – The Story of the Vancouver Four:

The Sacrifice – Of Family and Empire:

1497 and so on: A History of White People in Canada or, The Caucasian Healing Fund :

The Border: A Post-Canadian Anthology




Kevin’s award winning documentary film Unrepentant can be viewed at

See also an insightful personal interview “Who is Kevin Annett?” (2013) at: and also: and


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