"GOT LAND? THANK AN INDIAN" slogan getting popular support thanks to 13 year old First Nation girl

From Press Release IdleNoMore.ca


Friday, January 17, 2014

Idle No More and Indigenous teen who wore "Got Land? Thank an Indian" shirt call on people everywhere to wear it as act of truth-telling protest

Tenelle Starr will appear as honorary guest at Neil Young concert in Regina on Friday

(Turtle Island/Canada ) - A 13 year old Indigenous teenager, Tenelle Starr, prevented initially from wearing a sweatshirt at her school in Balcarres near Regina that read "Got Land? Thank an Indian" is now calling, along with the Idle No More movement, for people everywhere to don the shirt as an act of truth-telling and protest.

Now and up to a January 28 Day of Action, Tenelle and Idle No More and Defenders of the Land are encouraging people across the country to make the shirt and wear them to their schools, workplaces, or neighbourhoods to spark conversations about Canada's true record on Indigenous rights. They have created a website (http://www.idlenomore.ca/got_land) where people can get stencils to make a shirt, to buy it, and upload photos of themselves wearing it.

"Everyone can wear the shirt. I think of it as a teaching tool that can help bring awareness to our treaty and land rights. The truth about Canada's bad treatment of First Nations may make some people uncomfortable, but understanding it is the only way Canada will change and start respecting First Nations," says Tenelle, an Idle No More supporter who has participated in many Idle No More rallies with her mother.

Tenelle will also be appearing as an honorary guest at the Neil Young Honour The Treaties concert in Regina on Friday night. Chief Allan Adam and the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation have gifted her and her mom with tickets to pay respect to her courage.

Since the media started reporting on Tenelle's acts, she has has been attacked on her facebook page by an online hate group that has threatened her safety, forcing her to disable her facebook account.

The January 28 National Day of Action is also a day of Teach-ins to raise awareness about the federal Harper government's attack on native education through the First Nations Education Act and his continuing agenda to "terminate" or abolish Indigenous peoples rights, sovereignty and status as Nations and dispossess them of their lands and resources.

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Media contacts:

Janice Makokis, Idle No More organizer: 780-915-0310

Email: idlenomoremedia@gmail.com


From CBC.ca

'Thank an Indian' shirt creator says orders flooding in

Winnipegger Jeff Menard says he wants to give his people pride, not cash in

Posted: Jan 16, 2014

Winnipeg's Jeff Menard says orders for his 'Got land? Thank an Indian' shirts have been pouring in after a Saskatchewan girl fought to wear it at her school and made the news across the country.

Winnipeg's Jeff Menard says orders for his 'Got land? Thank an Indian' shirts have been pouring in after a Saskatchewan girl fought to wear it at her school and made the news across the country. (CBC)

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The Winnipeg man behind "Got land? Thank an Indian" shirts says his phone has been ringing off the hook since a Saskatchewan girl helped make the phrase famous.

"Orders are just coming here left, right and centre," Jeff Menard told CBC News. "I'm being flooded with calls."

Tenelle Starr, 13, recently ran into opposition wearing her pink "Got land?" sweatshirt to school in Balcarres, Sask., although people at the school eventually relented.

Since Tuesday, her story has been on headlines and broadcasts across Canada.

Menard, 37, a member of Manitoba's Pine Creek First Nation who's on disability from his regular job as a letter carrier, started selling shirts with the slogan in 2012 after spotting it in the U.S.

skpic tenelle starr

Tenelle Starr says she does not think her 'Got Land?' sweatshirt is offensive. Her efforts to wear it to school got people talking across Canada. (CBC)

"The reason why I started this was to bring awareness to the Canadian natives and to unite our people and make them proud of who we are," he said. "I'm not in it for the money."

The message he wants to get across is that aboriginal people were in North America first, but they shared their land, signed treaties and want everyone to prosper, he said.

Although the term "Indian" is considered out-of-date by some people, Menard said he's fine with it.
"I love the word Indian. I love being called an Indian," he said.

He said about 1,000 t-shirts and hoodies have been sold so far, but with the recent publicity, orders are really starting to pick up.

"It's not bad for sales," he said.

Menard said he's been in contact with Starr's family and let them know he fully supports Tenelle in her effort to express her views.

"What I would say is, 'Stand up, be proud of who you are, keep wearing your t-shirt."

Menard said he is in the process of obtaining a trademark on "Got land? Thank an Indian".