Monday, July 22, 2024

BC First Nations demand apology from William Shatner and Ryan Reynolds for offensive video


Only one day after the Canadian government announced the ban on open net-pen wild Pacific salmon farms, a video was released which has since become controversial. 

William Shatner, famous for his tenure on Star Trek, appeared in a video titled, “Dear Canadian Open Net Salmon Farmers….” in which he sent a crude and expletive message to those working on existing open net-pen salmon farms in BC. 

While Ryan Reynolds doesn’t make an appearance in the video, his production company, Maximum Effort, produced it. 

The video was produced for Pacific Wild, an anti-open net-pen salmon farming organization, and calls on Canadians to get “un-Canadian”. This sentiment is meant to poke fun at the stereotype that all Canadians are polite. 

“Repeat after me, f*** off open net pen salmon farms,” Shatner shouts in the video. 

“Your a**hole salmon farms are f***ing up our wild salmon population. It’s a s*** stain on our nation.”

Following his expletive rant, the video cuts to other Canadians from different backgrounds who repeat the same sentiment. 


After the video was posted and circulated online, the First Nations led organization, First Nations for Finship Stewardship (FNFFS) released a statement in which they demand an apology from Shatner and Reynolds. 

They say that the video attacked the dignity of the Nations and those who host these salmon farms in their territory. Many of these open net-pen salmon farms are on First Nations land, employ Indigenous community members and operate with permissions from the Nations. 

“Sadly, this response from people like Mr. Shatner and Mr. Reynolds is all-to-common [sic] in today’s Canada,” reads a statement from FNFFS.

“This is a classic example of a rich, elite, removed, urban white men overriding the wishes of vulnerable Indigenous communities, a reoccurring theme within the Liberal government and recent decisions made by politicians like [Natural Resources] Minister Wilkinson.”

They add that there are over 700 Indigenous workers who make their living either directly or indirectly from currently operating salmon farms and this sector brings in around $133 million annually for First Nations. 

“To repeatedly say ‘f*** off’ to a sector that is woven into the social and economic fabrics of a dozen First Nations along BC’s coast implies that you do not care about the human well-being of our remote communities that do not have a lot of options to turn to economically,” FNFFS said. 

“These jobs, this sector, cannot be replaced.”

The organization also points to the fact that Shatner’s generation is specifically responsible for causing irreversible harm and damage to the wild Pacific salmon stocks. 

FNFFS has demanded an apology because of this video, and as of this publication, have not received one.  


Curtis Blandy

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