Manage episode 297702851 series 2438149
Welcome to a special summer bonus episode of YXE Underground. I hope you are having a great summer so far and are managing to stay cool in what has been a sweltering summer here in Saskatoon.
I want to share with you a conversation I had a few weeks ago with a really amazing young man named John Langan.
John is a member of the Canadian Military and the Saskatoon Police Service, and on July 21st, he will make his debut as an author. John has written a memoir entitled Iskoces Tipiskak.
It is a remarkable look at his life, the role indigenous spirituality and culture plays in everything he does, the impact of residential schools on his family and the role indigenous peoples will play in our country’s future.
In the last few months, we have all been reminded of the terrible atrocities committed on Indigenous peoples across Canada. The discoveries of unmarked graves on the grounds of residential schools in Kamloops, BC and Cowessess First Nation in Saskatchewan are a terrible legacy of colonization that will impact Canadian society for generations to come.
It’s something John and I discuss in the episode and how his book can further that conversation.
John is a joy to speak with. He is charismatic, kind, passionate and determined to bring about change in so many different. You will hear him laugh lots in our conversation, but as he explains, don’t let that fool you in thinking he is not serious about his role as a leader in his community. It’s simply a way he manages the trauma and pain he encounters and feels.
John and I met for coffee here in Saskatoon on a Sunday morning and covered a lot of ground in just a half-hour. That's probably because he’s so easy to speak with. We talk about why he wanted to write a memoir now and what he hopes to accomplish with his book. We also discuss how it connects to the tragic news coming out of Kamloops and Cowesssess.
I want to warn you that we bring up some very difficult subjects and John shares some deeply personal and heartbreaking stories.
If any of these stories are triggering for you, please know that supports are available for anyone affected by the lingering effects of residential schools and those are who are triggered by what is happening in Canada right now. The Indian Residential School Survivors Society can be contacted toll free at 1-800-721-0066.
A national Indian Residential School Crisis Line has been set up to provide support for former students and those affected. You can access emotional and crisis referred services by calling the 24-hour national crisis line at 1-866-925-4419.
Finally, I would like to acknowledge that this interview was done on Treaty 6 territory and the traditional homeland of the Metis.
Thank you again to John for sharing his story on the podcast.