MediaWatch: Joshua Blakeney, Robyn Heaslip And Patricia Kelly’s Stó:lo Nation Fish Story on PressTV

Robyn Heaslip, drama queen…


The more I dig into Professor Anthony James Hall’s fish story on Iranian PressTV, the more interesting and tangled the web becomes. Today we introduce a new character, Robyn Heaslip- someone who I learned today I have a relationship with (and I didn’t even know it until now!). This story also includes Joshua Blakeney of PressTV/Veterans Today, and Patricia Kelly of the Sto:lo nation.

Let me begin with some background to the story.  I wrote a MediaWatch article a couple of weeks ago about a story on PressTV where Joshua Blakeney interviewed Professor Hall and Patricia Kelly about fishing rights on British Columbia’s Fraser river. In this story, Kelly got all super-dramatic about having received fines for illegal fishing- here’s a clip, as it is relevant to the rest of the story.

If one didn’t understand the background behind this story, they may not realize how over-dramatic Patricia Kelly’s performance is- that said, most people probably will. And, it becomes obvious she is overacting here when you understand what I learned last Thursday- all of this drama is over a $200 fine. And, Patricia Kelly herself admits that she’s not paying the fine on principle. As it seems with many stories on PressTV, this one is dripping with bovine excrement.

I did some more research on this story today and discovered more proof Blakeney’s piece is a fish story. It turns out that the conflict over fishing rights is not really between the government and the Stó:lo Nation- it’s actually between the Stó:lo and the Yale indigenous nations, and it is an age-old dispute between the two. Both nations claim fishing rights over the right to fish in the Fraser Canyon area for many years. So, basically, everything about Blakeney’s story is misstated.

So, let’s jump forward to a story Blakeney published yesterday in Veterans Today- where the plot thickens, and the bovine excrement meter goes off the charts. The story is titled The Brutalization Of An Aboriginal Woman And Her Teenage Son– that’s quite the title, sounds scary!

Last week, Patricia Kelly went to court to defend herself for not paying the $200 fine she was protesting. She walked into the courthouse with a friend who was literally beating a drum as they walked up the stairs. At the top of the second floor, the court’s Sheriff’s asked her friend to stop beating the drum- they explained how it was loud and disruptive to the other people in the courts.

At that moment, Kelly took the drum from her friend’s hands, and began to get belligerent with the Sheriffs- explaining to them how it was “an important part of her cultural protocol and preparations for the hearing.” Things got out of hand, and the Sheriffs threatened to arrest her- ultimately, they did. Kelly’s son then began screaming at the police, and he was also detained.

The story is told to us from the perspective of Robyn Heaslip, a PhD student at the University of Victoria who was with Kelly at the time- she describes herself as a ‘colleague’ of Kelly’s. Heaslip makes some pretty outrageous statements in the story- here’s an example:

“Patricia’s use of a drum in the courthouse, an important cultural protocol and practice, which is both an inherent indigenous right and protected under the Canadian Constitution”

Sorry Robyn, the constitution doesn’t say anything about indigenous people being allowed to interrupt other people’s court proceedings by walking through the courthouse banging a drum in a deliberate provocation- no dice. Ridiculous statements like this are in insult to all sensible indigenous people- and, it cheapens the meaning of indigenous rights. You should be ashamed of yourself for such shamelessness.

I had no idea who Robyn Heaslip was when I began writing this story, so I did a little research through Google. I was totally surprised to find-out there is a connection between us. Robyn, a person I had never met nor heard of before, is a signatory on the website that Harsha Walia’s associates setup slandering me after I tried to call her out on her promotion of Black Bloc violence during Occupy Vancouver!

I believe this tells us a bit about Robyn’s character- for someone to put their name to a slanderous attack of someone who they have never met or talked to before says a lot. It also exposes the connections I mentioned in my first article on this fish story between Rick Quipp and Harsha Walia’s No One Is Illegal. And, as is usual with Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside radicals, the whole story has been overblown and sensationalized.

This leads me to Heaslip’s next statement:

“Patricia has sustained numerous injuries as has her son Kwiis. Both Patricia and Kwiis were unnecessarily hurt, jailed, and subject to demeaning treatment when in custody. My own arm was sore from the rough treatment I received”

If you’ve been reading my stories on the Vancouver Casseroles, the pattern her will remind you of the incident where Lauren Gill was caught lying on CKNW about Sasha Wiley’s arm being broken by the police. This is all part of the pattern of these deliberate provocations- bait the police, get arrested, and cry-out “police brutality!”

So, there you have it, the background behind the latest Stó:lo fish story. I’m left with only one question really. Does PressTV know that Joshua Blakeney is pushing Professor Anthony James Hall’s and No One Is Illegal’s agenda, or are they being used unknowingly? Time will tell I guess, I’ll keep on-top of the story- and, of course, will keep you all updated as time progresses.

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