The family of a murdered Cree man demand justice from the legal system in nîpawistamâsowin: We Will Stand Up. In 2016, Colten Boushie, a young Cree man from Saskatchewan, was killed by a gunshot to the head by a farmer named Gerald Stanley. Arguing that he shot Boushie in self-defense, Stanley ended up being acquitted by an all-white jury when the case went to trial. This outrages Boushie’s family, who continue to fight for justice and an end to the systematic racism against indigenous people in the Canadian racism.
In nîpawistamâsowin: We Will Stand Up, filmmaker Tasha Hubbard (Birth of a Family) uses the miscarriage of justice surrounding the Colten Boushie murder case to comment on the racism against Canada’s First Nations that dates all the back to the late 1800s, when the treaties with the Crown were essentially broken by the introduction of the Indian Act. From the very start, the murder of Colten Boushie is marred by vile prejudice by local farmers and a poor investigation by the RCMP. The non-guilty verdict results in Boushie’s family takes their search for justice to both Canadian Parliament and eventually the United Nations.
I was near tears for much of nîpawistamâsowin: We Will Stand Up, as the film exposed the level of racism that surrounded the murder case of Colten Boushie. For the last number of years Canada was been trying to reconcile with the First Nations, which includes giving an acknowledgement of native territory at events and screenings. However, nîpawistamâsowin: We Will Stand Up reveals that there is a long way to go before the First Nations are treated with equality in the legal system and not as second class citizens. This film is required viewing for anyone who desires Justice for Colten.