Browsing All posts tagged under »Aboriginal rights«

The Treaty of Waitangi, 1840

February 10, 2013


Below is the English text of the Treaty of Waitangi, signed by the Māori and British Crown in New Zealand in 1840.  The Treaty also has a Māori version which was agreed to and signed simultaneously with the agreement below.  The Māori version (available here) is just as definitive as the English version, and is also […]

Thomas Flanagan, Pundit Propagandist

January 31, 2013


Colonial Propaganda and the Law of Aboriginal Title In his book on the creation of Indian reserves in British Columbia, Making Native Space (2002), Cole Harris writes colonialism is increasingly seen as a culture of domination, a set of values that infused European thought and letters; led Europeans confidently out into the world; stereotyped non-Europeans as […]

Snouting Up to the Government Trough

January 9, 2013


You’ve heard it.  If you’ve been following a public comment thread on the Idle No More movement, you may have encountered it already today.  If you think of Stephen Harper and his government as a source of accurate information about Aboriginal people, you might even believe it.  That Aboriginal people allegedly receive more government largess […]

First Nation Draws a Line in the Tarsands

October 3, 2012


Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation Challenges Shell Oil Expansion in Their Traditional Territories Yesterday in Fort McMurray, the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation drew a line in the tarsands and said, “That’s enough!”  Shell Oil expansion of their Jackpine Mine project was threatening yet more of their territories, and they weren’t having any of it. Back in […]

World Council of Churches Renounces Doctrine of Discovery

March 5, 2012


Anybody who has ever done any research into Aboriginal rights will have encountered the doctrine of discovery.  In 1532, Francisco de Vitoria, accepted as one of the fathers of international law, discussed the idea in its then-strictly-legal sense as it was codified in Justinian’s Institutes—i.e. Roman law, church law and the foundation of much European […]

Sublimus Dei, 1537: “that the Indians are truly men”

August 13, 2011


In 1537, Pope Paul III issued the following decree in regard to whether the Aboriginal people in the Americas were entitled to human rights.  He was speaking against a contrary view, advanced by Spanish colonists and others,  that these peoples were mere beasts incapable of being Christianized and suitable only to be enslaved Sublimus Dei […]

History of Aboriginal America 8 – Taking Aboriginal Lands

February 5, 2011


11.  Were the Spanish Entitled to Take Aboriginal Lands? Why, as described in the previous unit, did Francisco de Vitoria feel compelled to uphold the indigenous people of the Americas as property owners? Because if they could not own property, then the Spanish could simply help themselves to what they wanted without resort to conscience, […]

History of Aboriginal America 7: The Birth of Aboriginal Rights

January 20, 2011


Plato, Aristotle & the School of Athens 10. The Father of International Law & the Rights of Indigenous Americans In 1532, forty years after Columbus first voyage, we hear for the first time some philosophic and legal objection to what had being occurring in the Americas.  A cleric and academic by the name of Francisco […]

Francisco de Vitoria & the Rights of the Indians, Pt. II – De Indis, cont.

January 7, 2011


Francisco de Vitoria, having concluded in Part I of De Indis that the indigenous people of the Americas were the true owners of their own land with the right to govern themselves, goes on to discuss some of the justifications the Spanish have used to deprive them of these rights.  De Indis, Part II, represents […]