Reserves

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Regarding First Nations peoples of Canada, is it worthwhile to continue to support their desire for a distinct identity and culture yet continue to provide social benefits (free education, social payments, etc), or would it be better to treat them as other Canadians who do not have those benefits and risk the chance of losing that distinct identity and culture? Or is there a way to remove those benefits (in an effort to invoke more independence) yet preserve their distinct identity/culture?

14 thoughts on “Reserves

  1. If I could single-handedly remove all the things the govt. gives the first nations peoples across this country, and somehow integrate them all into society, I would.

    The sad reality is there is a culture of dependence in these communities and many members do not have the life skills to cope outside of these settings.

    Culural identities seem to be alive and well in the other demographic groups which do not receive subsidies from the tax dollars of the country as a direct susidy. Take a look at the indo-canadaian groups, the china towns or the little italy’s across our country.

    The problem is not the diminishment of the first nations abilities to accomplish anything without the help of the Canadian government.

  2. U.S. history is full of unequal treaties in which the U.S. government did not even fulfill its minimal part. I don’t know if Canada has the same legacy. But if it does, you cannot even ask the question “What is best for the first nations?” until treaty obligations are scrupulously fulfilled. If that means free education and social payments, then so be it. Once you are fulfilling treaty obligations, you can enter into a good faith dicussion of what is best for them.

  3. Rick you can’t seriously believe that the First Nations people should have their benefits that they recieve from the government taken away???? After what the government did to them in first place? They will never replace all they took. Go over your history lessons from school and maybe you will understand it again.

    Should they be intergrated better into society rather then put on reservations? Yes I agree with that part of the posting. We are after all, all Canadians and should live as one. But our heritage should NEVER be forced away from our lives.

  4. “Should they be intergrated better into society rather then put on reservations? Yes I agree with that part of the posting.”

    So, we should take away what little land of theirs that remains?

  5. let me rephrase

    They should be able to keep their land but not forced to remain there for their schooling and whole life like a bunch of outcasts. They should be able to attend school with the rest of the world if they choose to. They should be able to get help for dependancies like the rest of the world without fearing being labeled those “drunk Indians”. They should be able to be Canadians and not have to worry that everytime someone does something bad enough to have to get into the 6 oclock news that the news can just say a 30 year old male did this and this instead of a First Nations male did such and such… After all you don’t hear the news caster saying a 30 year old German male did such and such. All that does is reinforce warped beliefs that all First Nations are drunken idiots who can’t hold a job, their alcohols or their families.

  6. Yes Sally, I do seriously believe we should eliminate the benefits given to first nations people.

    I am well aware of the history, and I don’t care. Ever read what the christians did during the crusades? Do you feel like paying blood money to the africans for the rest of time?

    Bad things were done. I did not do them, and I’m pretty sure you didn’t either. I can rest assured in the fact that no first nations individual alive today ever had anything personally done to them.

    My opinion of the situation is that this is old news.

    The best thing we could do for these people is to remove the culture of dependence and entitlement from them and integrate them into the rest of society.

    What entitles a first nations child born in the same year as my son to an immediately better standard of living?

    Are we not all Canadians? Or are some of us more inportant than others?

    1. No we are NOT all Canadians! Maybe a piece of paper says you are, but your blood says otherwise. Europeans invaded the Americas with bloodlust and greedy intentions. With mysterious weapons they came to Canada to kill kind and innocent peoples.
      This land was stolen from the Original Canadians. The Europeans lied, deceived and took advantage of the First People’s kindness to get what they wanted. The invaders brought viruses (influenza…) and diseases (smallpox…) with them and used them to decimate the First Nations populations. European Canadians and Asian Canadians have no right to say that this land is their land. They are all visitors and need to show respect, and kindness to the First Nations. Your ancestors destroyed many, happy, healthy and proud Nations!
      Yes, the Original Peoples of Canada ARE more important than you! They were here first, tens of thousands of years ago to today.
      Stop judging, Rick, and get out there and serve the First Nations of Canada with a generous amount humility…

  7. I think it is fairly safe to say that in many cases the benefits that they receive from the government are hurting them more than they are helping them. Though integration would be a long and difficult road, I think it would be for the best in the end.

  8. First Nations peoples of Canada Is this a Politically Correct word like Native American? In the States, we have generations of Blacks and Indians who live off the Government under the guise of their ancestors were mistreated. The question becomes how many generations does it? The second question is Why do anything for them? The have all the same rights and privileges as anyone else.

    I forgot – Government can solve all of the social ills. RIGHT!!!!

  9. I personally don’t refer to First Nations as Indians, since they are not from India (although for years it has been in use, etc etc).

    I agree with Mike that it isn’t helping them, although what to do is the problem. Reparation? Yes. However, it’s the Residential Schools that were atrocious and created the need that many First Nations people feel need to be taken care of. Residential Schools were awful and should never have happened.

    I wish there was an asnwer of what to do.

  10. “Native Americans” may be more politically correct than “Indian”, but is no more accurate. After all, anyone born in the United States is a Native American.

  11. I’m actually rather stubborn about continuing to use the term “Indians” for several reasons. One is that most of the members of indigenous tribes I know, or have heard speak, use the term “Indian” and are not particularly fond of “Native American.” Another is that, as Kim said, “Native American” is no more precise or less misleading. A third is that whether they come from the valley of the Indos river has nothing to do with whether the term “Indian” is correct. Like virtually every word in the English language, “Indian” means more than one thing. One of the long-accepted meanings of the word is, a member or descendant of peoples indigenous to the American continents before the arrival of Europeans.

    I can’t quite buy into the idea of paying reparations. If my great, great grandfather committed a crime, shall I go to prison for it? Then why should I pay for the sins of my ancestors (and my nonancestors)? The idea of reparations towards descendants of slaves has been promoted in the U.S. I’ve never practiced slavery, and fail to see why I should pay a fine for doing so.

  12. ltbugaf

    Well, where I was born and raised, there were many immigrants from India. This is why I personally can’t refer to First Nations as “Indians”. Many do, themselves. But for me, when I think of Indians, the first thought that comes to my mind is people from India. I went to school with many people from the mid-east, several from India, and some First Nations people. Since they came from completely different countries, I still see them as seperate nationalities, since they are. I am not saying it is *bad* to call First Nations people *Indians*, I just personally don’t see them as being Indians (especially since it started out as a case of mistaken identity).

    I agree with your second point, however, what I am referring to is people who are direct products of Residential Schools (still alive, still suffering the after effects of this). AS far as ancient history…well, yes, that is ancient history. Unfortunately the government keeps the history alive and so it continues.

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