Monday, November 15, 2010


Two Faced

As Canada announces its endorsement of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), the Canadian government is simultaneously working toward the privatization of Indian Reserves, a move that Native legal scholars describe as disastrous for First Nations. Noting that the endorsement of the landmark 2007 human rights instrument is mainly symbolic, the Canadian government expressly denies the application of international law in Canada--a two-faced endorsement at best.

Much like its anti-Indian partner the United States, Canada has belatedly discovered that part of fighting indigenous sovereignty is to appear sympathetic to the native societies while doing everything in its power to undermine aboriginal freedom and unity. But while the United States pretends it needs more time to consider whether Indians are human beings worthy of equal respect, Canada openly states that it doesn't want to close off any avenues for taking more of the remaining Indian land and resources.

At least the Canadian government got one thing right in its press release: UNDRIP is an aspirational document; by paying lip service to it while marshaling corporate and government forces against it is possibly the worst form of hypocrisy.


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