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Beatrice Hunter : A Labradorian Inuk woman’s perspective on Muskrat Falls

Beatrice Hunter
Beatrice Hunter

You have your view of Muskrat Falls, now I’d like to tell you my point of view as a Labrador Inuk woman, and a stakeholder who lives below this hydrodam.

As you go about your day in Newfoundland and Labrador, I ask you one question: do you think about Muskrat Falls? Well, I can tell you it is constantly a grey rainy cloud over my head.

I miss the peace I took for granted before Muskrat Falls. I miss just worrying about the day-to-day things that everyday life brought me, like what to cook for supper, how to pay the bills, and like when my hair wasn’t just right. Now it’s, like, never mind the hair, I got bigger problems, baby!

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First, trying to hold Nalcor and the provincial government accountable (in my opinion, the two are synonymous). Secondly, the threat of the North Spur and methylmercury poisoning. Oh yeah, lastly, don’t forget the hydro bills tripling in 2019!

I can say now, processing the thought of having been in prison is the least of my problems. Continuing to fight a government and its corporation takes its toll. I am tired, as I’m sure the Mud Lake flood victims are.

What can I say to you about Muskrat Falls that’s not already been said? What would inspire you to fight against this powerful corporation called Nalcor?

So many live in fear, not only of the hydrodam, but also in fear of speaking out, because I believe there is a fear of getting reprimanded for it, like many have before.

I do not want to live in fear, but at the same time I do not want to go through that Muskrat Falls gate alone. Why should I, when no one else seems to care or lives in fear? God knows, I’ve tried my best. Can you say that? I am not trying to make you feel guilty, I am just battling with my own demons.

I’ve never had a constant uneasiness before Muskrat. I wonder and hope the North Spur keeps hold.

I wish my parents were still alive, for some advice. How I need to hear it.

What happened to honour, integrity and keeping your word? I guess they were traded in for a few measly bucks, that will cost lives or perhaps babies with deformities. Are there only a few of us left with those values that brought us here today? I know of 50 of those individuals who broke into the Muskrat Falls gate in 2016.

The news has a funny way of reporting Muskrat Falls, like it’s just an everyday occurrance with no real impact, so that people are kept at arm’s length and don’t know the real story of such pain and sorrow.

Premier Dwight Ball seemed to try to influence the flow of information about his daughter’s innocent role after her former boyfriend was charged and convicted in a murder case. When I heard this, I was not surprised, but I asked myself this question: why hasn’t he tried to use his influence to assist the Labrador Land Protectors and I in this fight against Nalcor?

I will leave you with this question: do you want corporations running government? News flash — it’s already happening.

Beatrice Hunter is an activist who lives in Happy Valley-Goose Bay.

Read the entire series here

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