At MMIW report’s heart, a contradiction that’s impossible to ignore – by John Ivison (National Post – June 5, 2019)

After $92 million spent, the commissioners don’t know who is committing violence against women — mainly because they didn’t try to find out

The reception afforded the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s report into the residential school system four years ago was very different to that which this week greeted the final report of the National Inquiry Into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.

There was widespread recognition across Canadian society that the residential schools were a dark stain on the nation’s history. Even when TRC chair Justice Murray Sinclair said Canada had perpetuated a “cultural genocide,” on the grounds families were disrupted to prevent the transmission of cultural values, there was comparatively little fuss.

The mood was one of reconciliation — Sinclair called on the country to unite in an effort to build better relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people.

Wab Kinew, now the provincial NDP leader in Manitoba, summed up the ethos: “Let’s learn about Aboriginal peoples and cultures so we can get on with the business of living together.”

But the spirit of compromise and mutual accommodation was entirely absent from the MMIW report. “We are investigating a past wrong but one that is ongoing and getting worse,” the report said, as it lamented acts of violence stemming from “colonialism and coupled with racism, sexism, homophobia and transphobia.”

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