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Are those new ways of communicating and disseminating information (such as Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, Blogs etc.) a positive or negative influence on the democratic system in either the United State or Canada - Research Paper Example

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The British North American Act of 1867 acknowledged the existence of distinct provinces especially of the Québec and Aboriginals although according to Dahbour the Aborigines were not included in the process (1-18). The Act recognized the role of federal government and…
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Are those new ways of communicating and disseminating information (such as Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, Blogs etc.) a positive or negative influence on the democratic system in either the United State or Canada
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Introduction The British North American Act of 1867 acknowledged the existence of distinct provinces especially of the Québec and Aboriginals although according to Dahbour the Aborigines were not included in the process (1-18). The Act recognized the role of federal government and provincial governments thus leaving no room for any other form of government. In 1982 the federal government with consent of provinces (EXCEPT QUEBEC) allowed the British parliament to amend authority to pass laws affecting Canada. Canada repatriated control over its constitution thus outlining the future development for Aborigines (Russell 5). Aborigines in this case represent four groupings: Inuits, Metis, registered or status Indians and non-status Indians. These groups have been fighting for recognition and respect for many decades. The question that thus begs to be answered is: Is Aboriginal self-government an impractical or unfeasible alternative to Canada? I will argue that it is unfeasible due to various reasons. Firstly, the Canadian constitution and laws do not leave room for a third form of government such as Aborigine self-government (McCormick, n.p). Secondly, the different Aborigine groups have conflicting views on what is meant by self-government thus cannot agree on how well to resolve their problems (Russell 5-6). Thirdly, such efforts have failed in the past. Although constitution guaranteed first ministers conference to address Aboriginal issues, no amendments to the constitution so far have been implemented (Russell 5). Moreover, the perception that Aborigines lack capability to self-govern and that they will eventually be assimilated into Canadian system does not favor such an Endeavour.
Aboriginal self-government is an impractical alternative to Canada as the Canadian constitution does not leave room for such an undertaking. According to McCormick (nap) the British North American Act of 1867 only recognized two forms of government: federal and provincial thus a third order is unwelcome. Even if Aborigines would gain self-governance it would be in the confines of Canadian laws. Aboriginals supported patriation of constitution in 1982 so that in return, their treaty rights would be identified, defined and included in the constitution but due to lack of political power they keep on being marginalized by the federal and provincial laws which favor large voting blocks.
In wanting to self-govern, Aboriginals intend to have their land returned thus seek recognition of land base, Aboriginal title, and treaty enforcement (Russell 6). These pursuits put aboriginal groups against each other as they have competing arguments as to how to achieve them. Furthermore, even if these problems were resolved, most of their problems would remain. Although recognition and rights given, Aborigines do not understand what this legally means and the first ministers chosen to pursue their issues rarely do so. Besides, most of these issues are covered by Aboriginal courts through enactment of laws concerning crime, healthcare, education and commercial transactions (Russell 11). What would be the need for self-government then?
Perceptions by Aborigines and non-Aborigines themselves also make self-government unfeasible. The Aborigines are often regarded as a ‘disappearing race’ as they get assimilated into Canada. It is believed that they would eventually abandon their identity or give up their rights (Russell 12). This was especially during Trudeau government. Even in areas that Aborigines are majority their presence is not felt in pushing their agenda hence are regarded as insignificant minorities (McCormick). Aborigines also are perceived as lacking capability to self-govern due to their primitivism. Some may be enlightened but do not take leading roles in governance. As such, attaining self-government is a very far goal to achieve, it is impractical.
Works Cited
Dahbour, Omar. The Ethics of Self-Determination. In Carol Gould and Pasquale, Paquino(eds). Cultural Identity and the Nation-State. Lanham, Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield, 2001.pp 1-18.
McCormick, Christopher. Self-Government for Aboriginal People. Canadian Parliamentary Review 13.4 (1990). http://www.revparl.ca/english/issue.asp?param=135&art=878
Russell, Dan. A Peoples’ Dream: Aboriginal Self-Government in Canada. Toronto: CBS Press, 2005. Read More
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