(Photo by duckrabbit)
My childhood and youth was fraught with abuse, violence and adversity. For the last fifteen years, I have worked hard and have completed 2 degrees, including a BA in First Nations Studies and Masters in Social Work. I am now near completed a Law Degree.
One of the tools for my survival and recovery include creative expression through the writing. This book is a collection of autobiographic poetic narratives.
This manuscript was put together under the guidance and mentoring offered to me, by indigenous writer Garry Gottfriedson.
Here is the first review of my book.
You can purchase my first title, Bruise Faced Child, from:
(Photo by Brent Braaten – Prince George Citizen)
As many of you know, my childhood and youth were fraught with abuse, violence and adversity. For the last fifteen years, I have worked my ass off and completed 2 degrees, including a Masters in Social Work; now near complete a Law Degree.
Recently I published my first book: Bruise Faced Child (Click on link to purchase a copy in USA).
This is a paper I wrote in my first semester of second year law (2L). It has gained quite some traction on academia.edu
First I reached the top 5% of reads within 48 hours.
Then a few days later it reached the top 4%
Then the top 3% (I will add updates as they come)
I was quite pleasantly surprised at the amount of reads, so now I thought I would make this paper more accessible by providing it on my blog as well. This paper is the second piece I posted on the academia site, the first was my thesis.
The law school paper was written as a response to the environment I am studying in and my experiences, which I will be publishing about soon.
I will soon be publishing a small series of blog articles about my experience in law school, including the discrimination that I have witnessed and read about. It will also include some updates on the status of my legal actions I started against the law school.
For now, here is my preliminary offering to law students, especially law students who have experienced bullying from faculty and administration for speaking out and going against the grain, and for anyone else who is interested.
Click on the following to access the paper:
Supreme Court of Canada decision Monsanto Canada Inc. v. Schmeiser, 2004, was a patent challenge revolving around canola seed. Monsanto did alter the genetic make up of canola and subsequently patented the altered genetic make up.
The wind picked up the seeds and blew them around the area beyond the boundaries of the property of neighboring field.
A farmer had collected the seeds from neighboring canola field that had be strewn upon the road and stuck on power poles.
When Monsanto discovered that the farmer was growing and then selling the patented canola crop, litigation followed.
While sitting in my property law class I was reminded of the smell of the yellow fields in northern Alberta. Some days we would ride our bicycles down the dirt road out to the Rape Seed fields. We were told Rape Seed was another name for canola.
In fact, canola and Rape Seed are not the same. However, the memories triggered from my youth and the sea of yellow along the highway on our way to Grande Prairie or Edmonton. We would travel these roads often after the onslaught of domestic abuse that often occurred within the four thin walls of our mobile home (aka trailer park).
pollen rays’ heat
fields prairie’d canola
line after line
seeded affects transform
seasoned processes copulate
birth sprouts erupt seeds sown
blossomed rape spurts into fields
waves and swells roll out
nasal pollenated rape
annual swells roll
through rolling ocean’s
rape pollenates children’s lungs
Daniel Gallant’s Masters Thesis: A “Former” Perspective: An Exploration of the Disengagement Process from Violent Right Wing Extremism
*At the bottom of this post you can download the pdf document of Thesis.
A “Former” Perspective:
An Exploration of the Disengagement Process from Violent Right Wing Extremism
Daniel Clayton Gallant
B.A. (First Nations Studies), UNBC, 2011
M.S.W., UNBC, 2014
In today’s society the rise of extremist/terrorist violence is an increasing threat. As a researcher, and a former violent right wing extremist, with experiential knowledge of the realistic threats posed by violent right wing extremists in Northern BC, Western Canada, and abroad; this study contributes insights into developing effective counter-extremist messaging. This autoethnographic study aligns the researcher’s personal, professional, and academic experience into a theoretical interpretive analysis that explores and identifies thematic categories within the disengagement process, found within the published stories of four separate violent right wing extremists. These identified themes reflect that there are a number of common experiences amongst the dataset, former violent white supremacists. This study also details aspects of the author’s disengagement process, which includes post-secondary education as healing, First Nations cultural influence, and the concept of decolonization. This study is a seminal induction for the concept of decolonization into counter-extremist studies.
Here is the link to my new website for public speaking, advocacy, consulting, research and educational resource development.
Today, and for the last few weeks, I have been very discouraged and frustrated with the university I attend. I am a graduate student at the end of my program and have completed my research and thesis writing. I still need to defend. It will happen…in time, I hope.
I have learned one thing in my masters program. The academy is filled with to many archaic thinking mofos, but there are also great thinkers who push boundaries and create social change.
I went to school to learn and challenge myself as a former right wing extremist, as suggested by an effective counsellor. The counsellor suggested women’s studies or social work. Now at the end of my degree I find a lot of resistance to my theoretical lens that is based within the very curriculum I was taught, in my program. It is ironic that the information I was taught is considered by a couple of men as not being sound due to the fact it implicates them as complicit in hegemony and schismatic socio-political function(s). I must shake my head and ask “why are you teaching a curriculum in a program that includes anti-oppression if you want to be such an ol’ boy in an elitest club.”
Perhaps the words I heard Cindy Blackstock speak at my university are becoming true . She said something to the effect that if I hear these social workers at this university speak of anti-oppressive practice again I think I am going to puke in my mouth.
I am currently reading Bell Hooks’ Teaching Community. What a beautiful and timely read. The gears of an archaic machine turn as it produces pre-ordained factory aligned marching bots. Hooks discusses the mechanical nature of most teachers in these contemporary and historical teaching institutions and blatantly calls them white supremacists. Although their actions can be overtly white supremacist, often their actions consist of complicit subtly. She left the academy because it was filled with individuals who are unwilling to self reflect on their contribution to maintain a privileged hegemonic schismatically designed institution that all to often intentionally harms students who dare to speak their minds and challenge the false authoritative system.
I live in a country where I have to pay for my tuition. That does not mean I am paying to oppressed, repressed, nor abused. It means I am paying for a service. I will do what I can to ensure that I get an appropriate service. I do not want to dictated to by individuals who believe they have reached a high and mighty power-over position, or authority.
My graduate studies are proving to be a long challenging and arduous path riddled with politics within the academy. I have been witnessing subtle in-fighting and apathetic bureaucracy. Meanwhile, wolves step out from behind closed doors with frothing mouths at the opportunity to gorge on a meal of left overs, while leaving the young to fend for themselves. Attempts are made in a figurative lynching, I am supposed to accept the sacrifice of my work as a casualty, as a faculty member is targeted, and they attempt to force me to swallow the crow from other peoples plates. That is not happening.
As I sat to drink a tea and relax, after a day of feet stomping academics who scream “I do not want to hear what you say!!! I want my power! My power-over!!! Where is it!! Give it to me…if not I am leaving. I am not listening to you.”
The door slams as the individuals chose to not engage is transformative learning because I would not accept the deposit being made into my work in order to offer back the same ideological position being imposed upon me. I am unapologetic about my position. I have been experiencing inappropriateness from a faculty that is interpretively breaching their role as an education service provider just because I will not buy into the belief that social work has cured itself from racism. Social work operates in conjunction with apartheid in Canada and is often an extension of a racist colonial arm that literally kills, rapes, beats, and neglects children. There is in fact a Human Rights complaint against the federal government about this very issue. The Supreme Court of Canada has approved the Human Rights complaint against the federal government for the continuation of atrocities against indigenous children in care of child welfare. Social Work is integral within that system. Social Work is complicit in racial policies that segregate the citizenship of First Nations people. Yes there are good Social Work Practitioners out there, and more importantly there are solutions. That is what my thesis is about: social transformation.
I drink my tea. I recall two poems I gave to my thesis supervisor over a year ago. So I thought I would share them now. Both are unpublished.
The first poetic narrative is about in-fighting in our program amongst faculty that I actually wrote about what I had witnessed my supervisor experience over a year ago. I watched her be ripped to shreds by faculty with rolling eyes. It infuriated me. I talked to three separate faculty members about this incident. They stated frustration and low tolerance thresholds with regret that a student was able to identify their physiological responses…now, a year later that dynamic continues.
The latter poetic narrative is about the discipline of social work, in reflection of when I was young and MCFD attempted to apprehend me. You see, when I was twelve and suffering physical and sexual abuse I went to child welfare. They said they would send the police over. The OPP came. They did not do anything but tell me if I was there kid I may get hit even harder. They blamed the child-victim for abuse. Child welfare decidedly took an indifferent response. Over a year after I had been surviving on my own by stealing and selling drugs MCFD attempted to apprehend me. I figured they just wanted to lock me in a foster home with another apathetic and most likely a child raping man. I said no and ran to the city.
I got to social work graduate studies on my own. Here I am twenty four years later. Now I am fighting the same types of people situated in an apathetic system, the only difference is they have more wrinkles and have learned to diplomatically hone their pervasive hegemonic narratives.
One professor who has proven to be a closed minded fella, indicated that a student can write poetry about anything they want to without political backlash because poetry is seen as a frivolous expression. Thus, I this is an ode to he.
People are people. We all make mistakes. If a person is not willing to self reflect and engage in dialogue that is conscious choice. When that choice adversely affects me, or results in an injury, that becomes a problem for me. I can forgive and move on if there is resolve through dialogue and communication. I can learn through dialogue. I am saddened when someone I trust will engage in dialogue and chooses not to. Nonetheless, I digress.
This is what it looks like in the clouds above me, where the faculty of our program linger.
*disclaimer: anyone who wants to get mad at me for this, or come at me politically for speaking my creative expression just remember poetic narratives are frivolous expressions that are easily disregarded.
This poem is currently unpublished.
The morning was as crisp as my sharp tears. I was reminded of haunts from my childhood. The feeling I had when I walked down a dark cold November winter highway at 4 am. Further and further into the the darkness only guided by the glowing ice crystal snow banks on the side of the highway. Always alone, always silent. There was only one thing that had reminded me of these times, that was being in the cold. I overcame the cold by putting myself out in the cold.
My tears bled through my lacerations of hope. My tears cut through my eyelid thin heart, I saw red sadness. I looked to my left. Alone and silent, both of us. I was passing by watchfully. The other, she sat on the bus bench wrapped in a perfect blue wool to match the seasonal despair. She sat alone, as did I.
She sat as she always did, as did I, silent.
This poem was not previously published. This blog article is written intentionally with poor grammar and references.
As I return to the city I was homeless in, where we filmed the documentary piece for Global’s 16×9 Brotherhood of Hate.
I remember the security I felt in a Scarved Embrace when recalling the realities of God is Dead. I recall that my Letter to Matthew was inspired by the same aspect of myself that allowed my Mirrored Child to come forth. As I step forth in this city I am Bleeding Tears Pores Sting thick while battling the truth about how Gossip is Personal. Blue Life brings me to My Daughter Loves to Joke in a way that makes Totalitarians Scurry. I have Prism Tears remembering She Danced with Ancients Fade.
She was As Real As I, but she stays clad in the Iron Forest where she recalls that the Minus the One on a Cryptic Night. I am left fraught with What to do with a small fox who carries an albatross. i hope to tear down Cold Brick Walls, which cannot be achieved without Existential Liberation from Emotional Rape. I feel Stiff as the Beat and Rape and Pound sows Rape’s Seed deep in my work, as Await(s), She…the Bee.
My heart is heavy and my hair is tangled.