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Open Letter From An Ally

I've been following the drama ensuing around you (Janice Switlo), your comments and posts for quite a while. As allies we need to keep our own in check.

Many allies have been watching very closely, and we are not a fan of what you say, do or portray. I am about the only one who will speak out about it simply because it needs to be said to a white person from another white person; ally to ally.

You're white as they come and so are most of us. You need to realise as allies we are to sit on the sidelines and help when needed. NOT intervene or suggest we know best for Onkwehonwe. Hence the premise behind the Two Row Wampum. We stay in our boat, they stay in their canoe and we only help each other when needed. Nothing else. How do you not understand that?

We do not tell them what to do, how to live their life or anything regarding their affairs. We are there for support and nothing more. We do not know what is best for them as a group and certainly not as a singular, like you have been doing and claiming to know.

We are accepted as allies and only allies. Never anything more; stop trying for more you're causing problems.

Your actions, comments and demeanour are beginning to give allies a bad name and we do not like or appreciate that stain on us because of your singular actions. You are alone in what you do and do not have the support you think you do. As far as most of us are concerned you are NOT an ally but rather an appropriator of their culture.

Seeing the comments from Indigenous and allies alike you are losing an uphill battle in which you keep digging your hole deeper every time you open your mouth.I know you're going to publicly blast me for this, and I don't care. Really, I don't. Your true colours shine when you do that it just shows everyone who you really are.You need learn your place among the allies. You are not a leader, facilitator, or a consultant. You are a white girl unknowing of her own cultural heritage and ancestry and are clueless as to where you should stand according to Indigenous affairs. Stand on the sidelines like the rest of us do and help when needed or asked.

Your actions have potential to cause serious damage to any ally working with Onkwehonwe and that is dangerous for Indigenous and allies. If you can't see it, then you are not pure in heart. A suggestion, from one white ally to another: Sit down and shut up. You're white and are making us all look bad and that isn't how to operate as an ally. You should know better but clearly you do not.

You're clearly a VERY long way from having your heart in the right place, and it will be amazing when you're called out and not welcome on any reserve or around any Indigenous people for it. You have done good, and have amazing credentials but you appear to have forgotten who you are and your actions behind that are causing problems.

If you can't see it because of anger your heart is not in the right place to help people and you should help and heal yourself before continuing on.

~Nick LaMarsh


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