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How Canada set up Aboriginal treaties to keep First Nations down | TVO.org

28.4.17

How Canada set up Aboriginal treaties to keep First Nations down | TVO.org: There are many stories about how Canada was formed. One of those stories focuses on the dispossession and displacement of the land’s first inhabitants through force. Doctrines of discovery, adverse possession, and conquest figure prominently in these accounts. These doctrines imply that Canada was legally empty when Europeans arrived. “Discovering” nations claimed Indigenous peoples’ lands by the sheer power of their words; through the force of “law” alone. As the Supreme Court of Canada wrote in its seminal Aboriginal rights case, “from the outset never any doubt that sovereignty and legislative power, and indeed the underlying title, to such lands vested in the Crown." The Court concluded that the Crown had sovereignty and underlying titled in Canada because Indigenous peoples have inferior legal status.


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