Mario and Buzzy Baptiste: rights, responsibilities, and knowing who you are
TYENDINAGA MOHAWK TERRITORY – Mario and Buzzy Baptiste are two Kanienkehaka (Mohawk) men who have long been involved in the cannabis industry. They were both in attendance at the January 28th meeting of the Indigenous Medical Cannabis Association in Tyendinaga where this interview was recorded.
Mario Baptiste provides his understanding of the rights and responsibilities of Onkwehon:we people and the distinction between “Indians” and “natives”. Mario cautions people to know who they really are and to act accordingly.
Buzzy and his brother are opening up a new medical cannabis dispensary called Peacemaker 420. Buzzy explains a bit of the background to Peacemaker 420 and explains why he does not consider himself “Canadian”.
I’m from Tyendinaga and in less then a 1 mile trip I pass 3 “Pot” stores why? Apparently pot is the new cigarettes. The people that are selling are the same people that haven’t made an honest living or uf they have they haven’t done it long enough to be “tired.” I understand the rights we have as Onkewhone people and I get the fact that our people want to be self sufficient but there’s a difference between being self sufficient and turning a huge profit so you and your family can constantly change out your cars or toys like a regular person changes their underwear. Self suffiency on a First Nation is about the people not the person if we want to talk about “Native Pride” and the Native Way of life.
Sorry but it makes me so angry that these people use their ancestory as a reason for their present but if you’re not going to live your life fully as a First Nations person living on reserve rather than picking and chosing what you feel is yours to hide behind.
These 2 men have not done anything positive for the community as a whole and Buzzy is a “Canadian,” and not just Native because his mother is not native and again should be proud of both histories from which he came not just the “Indian,” side. Again we can’t pick and chose to who we are and what we represent if we’re derived from 2 different backgrounds and chose the one that we feel is going to benefit us the most, because traditionally we were to take pride in who we are as a person and where we come from as no one background is better than the other.
You better get educated lady. Then leave your opinon. Sincerely, Buzzy Baptiste