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   On Sunday, I took the opportunity to go to Regina and celebrate Canada Day with my oldest son's family. Like thousands of others, we headed down to Wascana Park to take in the plywood boat races and watch some of the other events being put on by various groups. We were joined by thousands of others in what turned into a very beautiful July 1st in Saskatchewan. While down there, we wandered through the tepee village which has been set up by the various First Nations in Saskatchewan. My grandchildren had never been around tepees before and they were excited to take a look at these iconic structures which have been a part of Plains Indigenous culture for many centuries. Unfortunately, there wasn't one made out of animal hides like in the old days but I suppose that would be something very rare and treasured by the various Bands in Saskatchewan. I was very pleased to meet the young lady who many of us have seen on tv acting as a spokesperson for the groups that have been camped out there over the last several months. I was curious to find out exactly what some of the issues are that were being presented to some of Saskatchewan's Cabinet Ministers in a Monday meeting at the Treaty Four Centre in Fort Qu'Appelle. As I have mentioned in previous commentaries, I had the honour and privilege of being Saskatchewan's Minister responsible for negotiating the first Treaty Land Entitlements in Saskatchewan's history. That was the culmination of many years of negotiations and required that all of the various entities concerned had to give a little in order to reach consensus. The results were historic. After walking through the encampment and visiting with the abovementioned Indigenous spokesperson, I really can't see what all the fuss has been about. I have no idea why our Sask Party government has not wanted to meet with these folks sooner rather than later and why people were attempting to have this small protest village removed from the Wascana grounds before Canada Day celebrations took place there. I saw nothing offensive to anyone's sensibilities and certainly the thousands of people milling through the grounds of Wascana which is a provincial entity to be enjoyed by all Saskatchewan citizens didn't find anything offensive with the tepees and the people supporting their various causes. In my view, the provincial Legislative building which was directly across the street should be considered neutral ground for every citizen of this province. It is not the exclusive domain of any political party and should not be a place where politicians hide out from the people who elected them. Unfortunately, this seems to be the case with this particular group who thought they had to go all the way out to Fort Qu'Appelle in order to find neutral ground in which to bring their grievances forward. Our Sask Party government is becoming afraid of its own shadow and seems to be pandering to its base of support in order to survive electorally. This is an extremely dangerous game which does nothing for a province which is beset with challenges from the outside like we have not seen in many, many years. World trade issues which affect our agriculture and resource commodities are extremely troubling. Our inability to get the Federal government focused on the many transportation issues with our exports has the potential to truly land lock us and drive down our standard of living. If we don't talk to all of our own citizens about the challenges within our society and how we meet those challenges in a reasonable and cost-effective way, Saskatchewan will truly become a place where people will choose not to live. We cannot solve all of these issues overnight but we must talk about them. I am glad that I took the time to go with my family and particularly with my grandchildren and experience Canada Day on the grounds of my provincial capital and walk through a part of our cultural heritage and celebrate our diversity. Once again, happy Canada Day to all of you and let's grow this country and this province together. Your feedback is always welcome on anything you read in the Monday Morning Commentary. Please send your comments to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. If you know of anyone that would be interested in receiving this by email, please forward me their email address. These issues must be debated for “The Right Reasons”.