Aboriginal Persons Over the Last Article Critique

Excerpt from Article Critique :

The nature of the Indians' interest is therefore best characterized by its general inalienability, coupled with the fact that the Crown is under an obligation to deal with the land on the Indians' behalf when the interest is surrendered. Any description of Indian title which goes beyond these two features is both unnecessary and potentially misleading." This is significant, because it is showing how Indians have a certain amount of protected rights based upon these two decisions. As a result, the government has to negotiate with them in good faith. (Dupuis 114 -- 128)

At the same time, the Canadian Constitution was amended in 1982 to specifically protect the rights of aborigines. Under these new provisions, their rights to land would be dealt with based upon two different practices these include: ancestral and treaty precedent. This meant that when the government was dealing with these various groups, they had to respect their rights to ownership of the land. As a result, this makes any kind of future negotiations more difficult. As the government, must include tribal officials during the process of utilizing aboriginal lands for commercial or industrial purposes. (Dupuis 114 -- 128)

These different elements are important, because they are showing how Indians were discriminated against throughout the 19th and 20th century. As, they were: separated from everyone else in society, provided with less resources and considered to be second class citizens. This caused the underlying views between these groups and the general public to be based on negative stereotypes. Over the course of time, this would lead vast disparities within society as aboriginals had no rights to their land other than to live there. However, when the government decided to remove them is when this changed. The two Supreme Court decisions from the 1970's and the 1980's are confirming the basic rights that these groups have under the law. This means that there are legal protections for these individuals under the Canadian Constitution and the case precedent affirming them. (Dupuis 114 -- 128)


When you critique the literature, it is clear that Dupuis is offering a number of specific insights about: how the basic rights of Indians have traditionally not been respected. This is because of the negative perceptions associated with being isolated from the rest of society. As a result, this group of people were often ignored and considered to be second class citizens. To deal with these issues, the courts and the government have affirmed aboriginal rights and included them inside the Canadian Constitution. This has provided some basic protections for Indians and tribal leaders who are dealing with government officials.

However, there are still tremendous amounts of corruption and the misallocation of resources. This is problematic, as one could argue that this is depriving these people of their basic constitutional rights. Although that this may not always apply to land disputes, it is illustrating how there is still a concerted approach by some government officials to ignore these various provisions.

In this aspect, Dupuis is showing the overall scope of the problems that still exist under the status quo. As, there are still select amounts of discrimination based upon the historical views of these individuals in comparison with the rest of society. However, despite some the challenges there are basic protections inside the Constitution and based upon previous case precedent. This means that when the government is dealing with these groups they will always have to follow the various provisions of the law.

As a result, this is illustrating how there are basic legal protections which are beyond the Charter of Human Rights. Where, the Constitution and Supreme Court have accreted that these groups must be provided with the same protections as other Canadians. This means that a host of aboriginal groups are given greater amounts of local autonomy for what is happening on their lands.

For women, this new form of self-government is helping to inspire many to play a more active role in their communities. Over the course of time, these kinds of changes are beginning to mirror the rest of Canadian society. Once this occurs, is when these groups are no longer excluded. Instead, they are considered to be a part of nation itself and they are going through similar changes as the rest of the country.


Clearly, there are both opportunities and challenges that are available for Canada's aboriginal groups. This is because they are at the crossroads for a series of different changes that are taking place. What is happening is that enough time has elapsed since: the Supreme Court cases and their inclusion in the Constitution that these groups have become a part of Canadian society. This means that when the government is dealing with them, they must ensure that they are in compliance with various provisions of the law. Over the course of time, this has empowered Indian organizations by giving them more control over how various natural resources are utilized on a local level. At the same time, they have greater autonomy over how they are utilizing their land. These elements are important, because they are illustrating how these groups have more opportunities because of these basic protections are in place. For women, this means that they are taking a more active role in self-government (which is a reflection of what is happening in Canada itself).

However, there are still instances of when government officials will misallocate resources for these groups. This is because some people are still holding onto the beliefs of the past that are based upon: segregation and treating these groups as second class citizens. Once this occurs, it means that the government could be in violation of the Constitution. As a result, there must be some kind of approach in: improving accountability and transparency in some federal programs. If this can take place, it will ensure that these groups receive the resources they need. This is the point that they will become even more integrated into Canadian society. Once this occurs, is when the stereotypes of the past will disappear.

As a result, the book that was written by Dupuis is illustrating how there are both opportunities and challenges for aborigines. As their inclusion in the Constitution, is making certain that their rights are always respected. Yet, there are still instances when abuses inside the system could take place. Therefore, some kind of approach must be utilized that will take these issues into account by increasing transparency and accountability. If this can take place, it will help…

Cite This Article Critique:

"Aboriginal Persons Over The Last" (2011, October 20) Retrieved January 22, 2018, from

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"Aboriginal Persons Over The Last", 20 October 2011, Accessed.22 January. 2018,