Yes, you did read the title correctly.
Located in Winnipeg, this monstrosity is meant to be a celebration of how far humanity has come in terms of the subject of human rights. This explaination direct from the museums website will better explain the museum.
While I am not a big fan of the LOOKS of the place, and I am not a big fan pf the HUGE financial footprint of the place (from construction to operation), I have no real problems with its purpose. Though ascetics do hold much weight for me. To quote my sister, “Apparently Winnipeg likes penis shaped structures” (a reference to the previously constructed Esplanade Riel bridge pictured below).
The bridge was another questionable decision by city planners, as it incorporated a restaurant right in the middle of the separate walking bridge parallel to the vehicle bridge. A good idea on paper, but not so much when things like parking, trash removal and deliveries are factored in. Something that keeps coming up as the place has repeated vacancies by restaurants that do give the location a try.
But that is, a whole other story of fiscal mismanagement.
The thing that inspired this piece, was an article I read recently in a small community newspaper published in my area.
Penned by a fellow named Colin Craig (prairie director for the Canadian Taxpayers Federation), it explored the seemingly inegalitarian policies of the museum which allowed First Nations, Inuit and Metis people in free (with ID). Everyone else is charged a $15 entrance fee.
The museum claims that its reasoning is to help ensure that indigenous people have access to expressions of their culture. I can understand that logic. They don’t want to discriminate based on economic status.
But the problem is, this is still a discriminatory policy!
I have no doubt that many indigenous people would have problems with meeting the entrance fee. The problem is, people of all backgrounds may run into this problem as well. But not even a second thought is given to their exclusion.
As a Metis individual myself, I could technically benefit from this policy. I could benefit from a few different reparations if I went out and got my Metis identification card.
But it is something I have not done, because I fail to see how it “betters” my people, which is humanity as a whole.
Oh yes, there are benefits to the individual and the groups themselves. These are benefits honoured whether they are fiscally necessary or not. But I fail to see how such benefits do anything but create further divisions in humanity.
For example, I know plenty of intelligent individuals who have had to either pay their way (or be helped by parents or others) though post secondary education. And I also know some indigenous people who are not NEARLY as intellectually equal, yet they can still take the same sorts of courses. The bigger issue is the whole overwhelming financial situations in which they lived in. They are not and did not grow up impoverished. They could have been put though school by parents, or other means. But why would they pay, when the government will?
Its this logic that baffles people around me whom encourage me to use my ancestry to further my education, get myself fast tracked exposure in seeking employment an other benefits. Sure, I could give in. But I prefer to stick to my principals. If I am to get selective treatment despite having NOT suffered any mistreatment or otherwise earning said reparations, then so to should everyone else born into the same relatively neutral situations.
Which is why I will be paying the $15 whenever I get around to visiting the MFHR. And why I will be paying my own way though school, whenever I get around to it.