The Canary Effect

The Canary Effect

2006, History  -   136 Comments
8.52
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Ratings: 8.52/10 from 230 users.

The Canary Effect is a documentary that looks into the effects of that the United States and its policies have on the Indigenous peoples (Native Americans) who are residents.

It premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and won the Stanley Kubrick Award at the 2006 Traverse City Film Festival (Michael Moore hosts).

The movie was directed by Robin Davey and Yellow Thunder Woman, who are both members of LA Based alternative pop group The Bastard Fairies.

Delving deeply into the often misunderstood and frequently over looked historic realities of the American Indian, The Canary Effect follows the terrifying and horrific abuses instilled upon the Indigenous people of North America, and details the genocidal practices of the US government and its continuing affects on present day Indian country.

Featuring interviews with the leading scholars and experts on Indian issues including controversial author Ward Churchill, the film brings together the past and present in a way never before captured so eloquently and boldly on film.

Directed by: Robin Davey, Yellow Thunder Woman

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Beverly Jackson
Beverly Jackson
9 months ago

What have we done to an old and noble People and their culture? Destroyed, humiliated, subjugated and blamed them for the destruction. I'm ashamed of our leaders. I'm ashamed and embarrassed that at 69 years of age I knew practically nothing about this part of American history. I thank you for enlightening me. I pray that we as Americans can and will make restitution to these People.

Little Bear
Little Bear
4 years ago

Very emotional and disturbing at the same time. Did my best to share it so more people can discover , like I did, that what I learned in school in history text books was far from this.

Constance
Constance
5 years ago

Amazing documentary. I am wondering if there is or will be a current follow-up? I live in a small town in Oklahoma. Have native American friends and never once passed up the opportunity to hire them. But unfortunately, I do have white friends as well where I do see that reserve that they hold the Indian Nation. I have never understood their mentality. And I hope with the passing of more years that the bigotry will die away. It is a great shame for me to see it. And this should make every American cringe with their self-pride...

Elise Williamson
Elise Williamson
5 years ago

Can someone give me the publishing information for this film?

Laura Borst
Laura Borst
5 years ago

Governments have often committed atrocities, and because governments have people in them who are greedy for even more power, they have the tendency to spread like cancers. Europe, which was a state-dominated region, went on a spree of conquest and colonization. Many of the worst atrocities that people perpetrated on each other were coordinated by governments.

Joe Wong
Joe Wong
5 years ago

After the first Opium War (1839) , the westerners from the USA and Europe carried out culture genocide similar to what they did to the native Americans as described in this documentary in China, the western christian missionaries and xtians(christian zealots, disciples and sheeples) lured, kidnapped and adopted Chinese kids, women and youths to achieve their mission of “killed the Chinese, saved the man”. In order to break down the Chinese determination to protect their identity and dignity. The western Christians used their extraterritorial power to shield Chinese criminals from prosecutions, stole lands and properties, destroyed Chinese culture and artifacts, etc.

The incompetent and corrupted Qing court refused to step in to protect the Chinese from the reckless westerner’s culture genocide, it forced the ordinary Chinese to organize themselves to protect their land, families, and culture against the westerners’ ruthless criminal assault, it was called Boxer Movement, but the westerners labelled it Boxer Rebellion, a terrorist movement that threatened the safety of their people in China, and crushed it with an Eight-Nation Alliance armed invasion.

The Eight-Nation Alliance troops overrun Qing’s capital Peking, uncontrolled plunder, burning and killing of the capital and surrounding countryside followed. The Eight-Nation Alliance (the American as a member) forced Boxer Protocol on China, the indemnity alone was 450 million taels of silver ($10 billion today’s money) which was more than Qing’s annual tax revenue. Subsequently China went from crippled by Opium to a totally broken and wrecked semi-colony ridden with poverty, deceases and wars, it was a hundred years long humiliation, and human right hell.

Have the Americans (the non-natives) changed from the savages described in the film “The Canary Effect”? Not a bit, the Americans have been wrecking havoc around the world the same way they have wrecked havoc to the native Americans ever since. Insane, mad, crazy, psychopathic, double think, morally defunct, blood thirsty, savage... are not bad enough to describe the true nature of the Americans.

Darryl
Darryl
7 years ago

My problem with this entire narrative is that;
a) aboriginal people get grouped into one entity, which ignores the fact that some tribes attacked, invaded, exploited, forcibly assimilated, and stole the land of others. Europeans come and do the same thing (which has been going on for all of human history) and suddenly history stops.
b) this documentary presented practically no evidence for how aboriginal people are discriminated against today, and in fact highlighted more cases where they get special treatment (eg. subsidies, expecting to be taken care of by the government, getting to retain ancestral culture,etc.)
c) It shift responsibility for all native problems, to the whiteman. This is not true, but also explains why they are still struggling to solve their problems.

Khamprasong
Khamprasong
7 years ago

They were from ancient ancestors afro asian...there is more too the people of melanin colored skin in the Old Testament

PI
PI
8 years ago

They will NEVER break our spirit.

Cric
Cric
9 years ago

There are an embarrassing amount of typos in the supers that appear throughout this movie.

hivemine
hivemine
9 years ago

The problem this film explores is the psychopathic id of modern culture. Politics, finance, education, inherent racism, ecological failure, they all are at their root part of the mass suicide we call globalization. Native American cultures had a vast amount of knowledge both spiritual and ecological that the "civilization", whether eastern or western, has never possessed. We all need to contemplate how we can reinstate stewardship of the earth to the only true protectors of her; Native inhabitants and cultures.

coryn
coryn
9 years ago

The American people have been systematically and repeatedly lied to and denied knowledge of the genocide within this country. You, too, will play the game, or pay the price. We've been offered the good life, and good jobs, but only if you don't see and talk about what is taking place within our borders. Where have our teachers been, why have they not told us? Because their jobs depend upon them NOT telling children the truth, and textbooks are used only if they have been censored and rewritten to reflect our 'Official History of the U.S.'. Our military destroyed civilizations that had evolved within North America for thousands of years prior to their 'discovery' by the english. How bizarre, the country was completely occupied when it was discovered by the English, and some of the people are those you've likely never heard of, such as the Melungeons, families of sailors from the Mediterranean area, and Indian women from the southeastern coastal areas of the U.S. The dark skinned Melungeons were pushed up into the hills of Tennessee by the English and Irish, and denied civil rights such as voting and holding office. Only the Seminoles in Florida could avoid confrontation, by slipping back into the everglades.
So where does this desire to eliminate another race of people come from, since it seems so universal? Lately I've been watching U.S.helicopter crews gleefully killing men, women and children in Iraq using powerful canons mounted on their gunships, and the sounds of their laughter still rings in my ears. What will it take for humans to live together?

Myths
Myths
9 years ago

This documentary should be part of every history curriculum in our public schools. There should be accountability Finally for the genocide of the Indigenous Tribes which should include reparations directly from the Corporate Colonial Military Industrial Complex as it exists today.

Rory Morris
Rory Morris
9 years ago

that was shocking ... sickening

PaulBraveheart
PaulBraveheart
9 years ago

America is the new reservation, What was done to the native American is being perpetrated on the average American. The government of the world new they had to destroy the native culture because it was the opposite of the European societies which are top down pyramid schemes that need to conquer, steal and exploit to survive and prosper. We as Americans are reaping what our ancestor sowed. What was done to the Native American will now be down to the average American so the elites can continue their pyramid scheme.

coryn
coryn
9 years ago

So many Americans consider themselves religious, and righteous, yet those who manage our governments, our federal and state governments, cannot bring themselves to treat the Amerindians as human beings. It is said the U.S. Government has never honored a treaty with an Indian Nation. I was completely brainwashed, lied to as a child growing up, beginning with the Columbus myths, until today 70 years later I have no trust in any United States leader or institution. If I had the courage I would give up my American citizenship in protest..... but to what end? I know eventually this country will go the way of those others just like us, eaten up by debt and greed and inhumanity. What will it take for the US Government to be kind, to be honest ........ to be human, with other humans?

Adam Centurione
Adam Centurione
9 years ago

Too much talking and writing treaties and laws. Talking and written laws is what has gotten the WHOLE WORLD into this. Humanity needs to appreciate its own capabilities as a species, and allow communication on such passionate matters through ancient methods like dance and music.
That being said, Canary effect is a great title. The whole world, all beings inclusive, has suffered more than it has gained from the establishment of the 'New World.'

disqus_PxMGbpLOCq
disqus_PxMGbpLOCq
9 years ago

I appreciated this film. Our country's history with the Native American is shameful, and an important revelation of human ignorance, willful or otherwise, that we hope we learn from. The challenge for the Native Americans will be to overcome the pain, choose to heal, move on and build a future with pride and dignity. A future that celebrates and honors what is worthy in its communal traditions, yet rises above the dependencies that cripple it and leave it in poverty, addiction, poor mental and physical health.

nativebeauty
nativebeauty
10 years ago

being a full blooded first nations person from Canada this was heartbreaking & horrible to watch, its not only the US its here in Canada and around the world that this had happen & continues to happen. I stand with IDLENOMORE and believe that we will rise again as prophesied by our ancestors years ago before the white man had even stepped foot on land. they may break our bones but will never break our spirit <3

nzkiwi
nzkiwi
10 years ago

Seriously!!...American Indians weren't even classified as American citizens?even by presidents...Thats so not right..

maben
maben
10 years ago

open for discussion on the facebook group "Brainstorming to Make the World Better". please join.

Jora
Jora
10 years ago

Best documentary ever. Until I drove through a reservation one time I never knew how bad they were. I seldom to never see anything about this in mainstream news. America hiding its shameful history like a dysfunctional family; if we never speak about it, it didn't happen, doesn't exist.

Nicolette Torres
Nicolette Torres
11 years ago

can anyone tell me the name of the artist of the song that begins at 0:12:01 ??

gee426
gee426
11 years ago

I am and is still saddened by the way the Native were treated.How horrible and to honor Columbus as an hero when he was nothing but an true mass murder is sickening.They made up all of these lies on the natives,even taught in school lies about them.When I found out the truth about what evil,savage,barbaric acts were done to them-I decided that I would tell as many people as possible the truth.I sign petitions for them every chance I get.They are over in the amazon doing the same things all over again.It is wrong and they need to stop.The Natives deserve an Holiday,an monument,statue,etc in their name and I pray to God that they get it.I am going to fight for their rights as long as I have too.It is truly heartbreaking and horrible that an mass murder have an Holiday named after him.

Rebekah Musk
Rebekah Musk
11 years ago

Instead of arguing about past morals etc we should be asking what we can do to help the situation. We need to be aware of the past and what happened, but the more pressing matter is what do we do now? Does anyone know if there's any way of funding mental healthcare or counselling or something on the reservations? We need to help prevent alcoholism and suicide as is a matter of urgency... Also the fact that the US government refuses to acknowledge the suffering of the American Indian community is appalling.

Bhophopkins
Bhophopkins
11 years ago

I'm white boy and I know my ancestors did take over North America's lands. I was never taught or told the factual stories behind the white man's triumph over the new lands.Now that this information has been given to me I feel terrible. I always thought that it was great that we celebrate Columbus Day and we as Americans should honor our flag. Now I think it's all a big joke. I wish things were different but I can't change the past.

the555hit
the555hit
11 years ago

Quite right. My comments re the technical aspects of the doc and regarding the origins of pre-Columbian populations i see in retrospect as being well out of place. Thanks for taking the trouble to point out my error.

fewoptions
fewoptions
11 years ago

i kinda knew that these ppl had been treated bad but never realised the genocide movement usa used on these poor ppl. just shows where the roots of usa sick, violent and inhuman policies come from. a very well made doc with lots of info.(in reply to 555hit) i think 555hit needs to go make a doc before you disrespect somes hard work.the info in the doc over ways any complaints regarding editing. i enjoy docs that help you relate to the victims and this does, some very sad stories. ie: i never heard of the 10 boys who done a hanging pack, shocking, sad and heartbreaking......and the fact that bush never even made a comment on the tragic event just shows that usa hasnt moved outta 1850s with regards to the native neighbours..........still treated 2nd rate.

sborau
sborau
11 years ago

the555hit:

You're a bit misinformed about indigenous peoples in the Americas originally coming from Asia (the Bering Strait Theory). Those indigenous peoples would say they have always been here... and in the last several years, a theory that the migration actually went from the Americas to Asia is gaining more traction. But, we digress.

The film is not professionally made to hollywood standards, but that is who the creators of this documentary are -- they are not professional film makers, they are storytellers (usually they tell stories through their music) and more importantly, activists. The tools are in the hands of the people -- we don't need experts in order to communicate with each other.

sborau
sborau
11 years ago

the555hit:

You're a bit misinformed about indigenous peoples in the Americas originally coming from Asia (the Bering Strait Theory). Those indigenous peoples would say they have always been here... and in the last several years, a theory that the migration actually went from the Americas to Asia is gaining more traction. But, we digress.

The film is not professionally made to hollywood standards, but that is who the creators of this documentary are -- they are not professional film makers, they are storytellers (usually they tell stories through their music) and more importantly, activists. The tools are in the hands of the people -- we don't need experts in order to communicate with each other.

the555hit
the555hit
11 years ago

Another worthwhile doc with great subject matter but totally ruined by an amateur's failure to understand the use of the technology, subjecting us to mindless visual gimmicks, absurd and irritating choices of muzak played at intrusive volumes over spoken passages. Hello internet DIY. Why would someone go invest time and effort on something just to fk it all up in the final edit? Good content though. It does go mainly neglected that the 'native' north American populations were immigrants themselves from Asia, but that's just the general incapacity for rational thought endemic to the human race. It must be hard for many white American bloodlines to live down the shame of their obscene history, infanticide, undreamable cruelties. Perhaps a peace and reconciliation process where the immigrant European families concerned could ask the pardon of the descendents of the blacks and native peoples so inhumanly abused could do something to temper the bloody kharmic fee that undoubtedly awaits the US somewhere probably quite soon down the line of its destiny.

noconman
noconman
11 years ago

I am of mixed blood. I cannot blame one race for the atrocities that have been done in our past, and will be done in our future.
I do however, blame the flag waving, manifest destiny spouting, greedy, selfish and inhumane leaders who have brainwashed an entire nation to look away from the truth. And I also blame all who defend any such actions for any reasons.
Evil does exist, whether you can wake up from your trance and see it or not. It still remains.
Our country was founded on blood, and it's thirst has never been quinched. The same agenda is still being played out today, here and in countless countries around the world in order to liberate them... of their homes, land, spiritualism and identities. All so that they will learn to be loyal subjects to the masters of money, lies and deception. Led by corporate world bankers and puppet politicians who know that capitalism will always end in the same way as a childs monopoly game.
The rich will always win, and they will always be supported by followers of that great american dream who believe that the game is fair and who want to get rich too, at any cost.
Nothing in any of mans leadership past, has shown an ability to be loving, fair, kind, fatherly or God like in any manor. Except the way they want us to fear them, support them, finance their riches, and kill for them.
I am truly ashamed of our world. I understand there is no way to fight the powers that have controlled us for thousands of years.
If you speak of peace, love, fairness or logic and reason, you may end up dead and surely will be slandered and critisized for your ingnorance of Darwins theory that only the strong survive. That strength being, in the numbers, of golds followers.
I hope you can fit through the eye of a needle.

Margi Wombok
Margi Wombok
11 years ago

wow. what a brilliant documentary.......

RedInsurgent1862
RedInsurgent1862
12 years ago

if its one thing i've learned about the establishment of Anglo Commonwealth Nations is that the Indigenious people always lose when the borders are drawn and that the governments policies to fix the problem ironically only make it worse. alot of sheeple don't even know were still on the frontiers of colonization they think it was all n the past and we should move on. I wanna go to school to study Epigenetics and research the traumatic impacts of colonization and the similarities between all the disorders and illness seen in Indian country

marcosanthonytoledo
marcosanthonytoledo
12 years ago

Your are right adilrye the Mongols your could say were unlike the Huns they were exception to the rule but their ideology was crude like the Greeks and Romans and they like the aforementioned they new their limits and they new when to fall back when they were over extended.

CeeRiley
CeeRiley
12 years ago

First off the white men stole our nation, then they tell us that we have to become a U.S. citizens. Chief Opechancanough gave up on diplomacy with the English settlers after the Indian massacre in early 1622, so on March 22, 1622 (Good Friday) Chief Opechancanough lead a series of attacks in which approximately a third of the settlers was killed. We want our nation back!!!!!!!!!

marcosanthonytoledo
marcosanthonytoledo
12 years ago

This have standard operation going back to Europe and Western Asia most cultures and civilizations have confined their criminal behavior to themselves and their immediate neighbors. Only the Europeans and Arabs under the banner of religion and so called trade extended their violence world wide and exported on a wide scale their misbehavior to the rest of the world. And this unfortunately they began doing to their own first. The Europeans and Arabs don't seem able to stop this but continue to torture and kill the victims long after they achieve their ends it is like a addiction to them and add on their slave junkies to boot. the only exception to the rule were the Mongols and to a lesser extent the Huns and by in large they were after loot. They didn't have no other driving motive.

Terry Craig
Terry Craig
12 years ago

Mi cante s'ica (my heart is sad). It has been happening for so long. How can we ever think that our present political empowerment system will ever work when it only supports the Rich and Powerful. When our hearts and our heads needs to be aiming our leadership at the wise and compassionate. We instead are only given choices that amount to choosing bad over worse. "What's happening here is coming to the rest of the country soon. It's just a mater of time." Lakota Elder Vincent Black Feather, Pine Ridge Res. 1996.

mac
mac
12 years ago

Those who watch this please watch another documentary by John Trudell.(Trudell)
This is not only in America, widely happening in Australia, native australians lost everything belongs to them. White supremacy, please wipe out all except you people

ojib62
ojib62
12 years ago

where are the native scholars, Ward Churchill is NOT native. This one of those "Native documentaries" that, while meaning well, seems to come from folks who just discovered all these bad things that happened to Native Americans and said to themselves, OMG we have got to tell people about this.

abdulwalee
abdulwalee
12 years ago

that is the way of colonization Terrible what these people have done and get Regan "Our Land"

freedomfighter82nd
freedomfighter82nd
12 years ago

I want to address Kris Smith's commentary about Ward Churchill's statement about spreading small pox. I think you just need to look into parallel historical scenarios to confirm Churchill's statements. For example, Noam Chomsky co-authored a book about Christopher Columbus' diary where he admitted to the fact that they were even privy to spreading some kind of disease or plague to the Native Indians even though humankind was unaware of germ theory until the late 19th century. Moreover, in more contemporary times, it's a fact that the U.S. State Department and War Department illegally inoculated Central Americans with syphilis that was carried in vaccines. Doesn't that sound like biological warfare? I am most certain it is, and it has been used, whether the science confirmed it or not, for hundreds of years, especially in the Americas. I think there is a greater sinister agenda that will possibly reveal itself in our lifetime perhaps. I also think that when someone like Ward Churchill espouses truth the become attacked on all fronts, as Gandhi pointed out, that means your beginning to win.

As A former U.S. Army paratrooper, who served in both Iraq and Afghanistan, I want to apologize for perpetuating the U.S. government's policies that create genocide around the world and within the U.S. It's despicable to me to remain silent as well as attack greater truths that are revealed by our world's most oppressed peoples. The Native American Indian deserves our nation's greatest acknowledgment that their people have had a genocide committed against them in the most profound way. They, the American Indians, deserve recognition as a highly resilient people, but most importantly, they deserve justice and compensation by having their ceded (STOLEN) lands and mineral rights given back to them while also being compensated for having billions, if not trillions, of dollars of revenue stolen from them by the U.S. government and its crony capitalist insiders who do not support a free market what so ever. From the Redwood forest to the Gulf of Mexico, to the Pine Ridge Indian reservation to the Seneca reservation put under water by a dam built by the U.S. government in the early 1960s, to Plymouth Rock to the backwaters of Seminole country down in Florida, may justice and freedom become attained in the hearts and minds of all of the American people, especially the ones who live in the Fourth World, our Native American Indian brothers and sisters who are under economic and political siege. May this scourge against humanity and our Great Spirit stop now!

Bernadette Anderson
Bernadette Anderson
12 years ago

This is stupid, although some of there facts are true, most are just stupid, beside what happened to us native people happened a long time ago, GET THE F*** OVER IT, the long we hold on to crap the longer we will sit in crap, at 1 point or another we have to stop crying and just move on and focus on making ALL NATIVE peoples more educated so we can better our lives, the time to stop pointing our fingers is now!!

Kris Smith
Kris Smith
12 years ago

This is a good documentary. I studied American Indian history, and I am doing my own independent reading up on it...
My only bone with this documentary is that one of it's "authorities" is Ward Churchil...who has been convicted of "Serious Academic Misconduct." -- Churchill fabricated some of his own "research" about how the U.S. Army supposedly and intentionally spread smallpox to the Mandane Indian nation..
It is true that the U.S. Army has done horrible things to the Native Americans, but that particular episode was Churchill's own fabrication.

Kyle Williams
Kyle Williams
12 years ago

i also know about that apology and it was long overdue but it cheapened the words when i heard that stephen harper also said in a conversation with another world leader that `at least MY country doesnt have a history of colonialism` not being a negative nancy here but... in germany holocaust denial is ILLEGAL!

Kyle Williams
Kyle Williams
12 years ago

if we gave you a$$holes the rest of our land would you finally be happy?

Ray36
Ray36
12 years ago

From the onset I was overwhelmed with emotion, the kind of emotion you feel as you watch your family brutally beaten and killed in front of you...and I am African American!

AnalogousGumdropDecoder
AnalogousGumdropDecoder
12 years ago

Why do we do these things????

AnalogousGumdropDecoder
AnalogousGumdropDecoder
12 years ago

When I got to the school shooting I cried uncontrolably. Why have my people and "my" government done this? Why have we not moved to try and correct the problems we have caused? I know the past can't be erased, but can the present be fixed? How can I help?

Abjective
Abjective
13 years ago

Aboslute tragedy, Genocide at its true essence. Its a amazing how very little the history of native Americans is shown or known about. The American negros suffered dearly but this brutality of suffering by the Indians by the white Eurpean occupiers of this so called new found land is beggars belief. And its happening to this day but now travelling far out to every vulnerable country as possible, using these modern technology, science, machines and and whatever else at their disposals to kill and divide nations for their wealth, raw materials, food etc for their own greed. The list of occupation and interference with other countries is growing. Iraq and Afghanistan is at present demolished. Iran, Pakistan and North Korea are next on the list.

The countless deaths of men woman and children at the hands of the white Americans (obviously a handfull of muppets as well) are in the tens of millions. They have taken genocide to the next level called global genocide. What amazes me is that how the media can easily grip majority of peoples mind and make them believe whatever they want them to believe. 911 was a tragedy but it was an inside job from the Government (Operation False Flag) i recommend do your research. (Youtube is usually good) A couple or so thousand people lost thier lives, but thats nothing comparing to the millions at the hands of the White Eye over the decades.

Objective X Vs The American Government.

The Jury has reached its verdict. Count 1:The Torture and Enslavement of people of African decendants. Guilty.

Count 2: The genocide of a entire nation (Native Indians) Guilty.

Count 3: kidnap,torture and false inprisonment of Muslims under the Geneva Convention and Human Rights Act. (Guantanimo)Guilty.

Count 4: The Income tax on the entire American population. Guilty. (These tax laws and enforcements are illegal and contradicts The Bill of Rights and has put the American Law system on par with Disneyland.

Count 5: Oppression & Racism of all minority groups and inprisonment on a disproportionate scale compared with white counterparts. Guilty

Count 6: Neglect and abandanment of the poor and vulnerable .About 50 million (peolple in poverty, usually minority groups on food stamps) Guilty.

Count 7: The encouragement of promoting violence, drugs, alcohol, sexual deprivaty, corruption and allowing gays, Islamophobia, paranoaia, Greed, lust and the rest of the sins from the Bible. Guilty.

Count 8: Dictatorship and Hypocarcy and occuption of foreign lands. Guilty.

Count 9: Brainwashing and dumming down of own citizens, usually through media. (controlled by Jews) And bringing the country into tens of trillions of dollers into debt (also controlled by the Jews). Guilty.

Count 10: Deaths and muders of millions of peoples globally and indiscriminatley (including woman and children) Also putting millions of people in stavation and and poverty. Guilty.

I have found America GUILTY on all TEN COUNTS. I sentence you to lowest depths of Eternal Hell. GOD BLESS AMERICA. LOL