Many, however, continue to claim that the spirit and intent of the White Paper and the abdication of responsibilities to Aboriginal peoples by Canada continues to be a long-term goal of successive federal governments. Not always, but too often, to be an Indian is to be without - without a job, a good house, or running water; without knowledge, training or technical skill and, above all, without those feelings of dignity and self-confidence that a man must have if he is to walk with his head held high.
Ultimately, the name Indian served to differentiate between Indigenous Peoples and the settlers, who referred to themselves as Europeans, whites, and, finally, Canadians. The government believes that the framework within which individual Indians and bands could achieve full participation requires: that the legislative and constitutional bases of discrimination be removed; that there be positive recognition by everyone of the unique contribution of Indian culture to Canadian life; that services come through the same channels and from the same government agencies for all Canadians; that those who are furthest behind be helped most; that lawful obligations be recognized; 6 that control of Indian lands be transferred to the Indian people. Finally, once Indian lands are securely within Indian control, the anomaly of treaties between groups within society and the government of that society will require that these treaties be reviewed to - how they can be equitably ended. Hawthorn investigated the socio-economic situation of the Aboriginal population.
A plain reading of the words used in the treaties reveals the limited and minimal promises which were included in them. Abolish the Indian Act Convert reserve land to private property that can be sold by the band or its members Transfer responsibility for Indian affairs from the federal government to the province and integrate these services into those provided to other Canadian citizens Provide funding for economic development Appoint a commissioner to address outstanding land claims and gradually terminate existing treaties What led to the white paper? By involving more agencies working at different levels, and by providing those agencies with the means to make them more effective, the Government believes that root problems could be attacked, that solutions could be found that hitherto evaded the best efforts and best-directed of programs.
Special arrangements will have to be made so that they may take the time needed to meet and discuss all aspects of the new policy and its implementation. The Government believes that the needs of Indian communities should be met within this framework. Although the white paper recognized past policy failures by the federal government and the socio-economic situation of Aboriginal peoples, it was seen by many Aboriginal peoples as the latest in a series of attempts at cultural assimilation. The Government is therefore convinced that the traditional method of providing separate services to Indians must be ended. It just wants to preserve them as whooping cranes.
Now wait a damn minute, I actually clicked on the link to the White Paper, and that quote is from the introduction to it! Organization and mobilization of Aboriginal organizations was also influenced by another factor, south of the border, the blacks and America were going through the civil rights movement. It believes that all men and women have equal rights. This Hawthorn Report rejected termination as a policy option but instead suggested "Citizens Plus" status for Indians.
The partners in this search are the Indian people, the governments of the provinces, the Canadian community as a whole and the Government of Canada. I think that people need to take another look at the White Paper and ask themselves whether there has actually been change in the rhetoric being used. In the pages which follow, the Government has outlined a number of measures and a policy which it is convinced will offer another road for Indians, a road that would lead gradually away from different status to full social, economic and political participation in Canadian life. The Government believes that to continue its past course of action would not serve the interests of either the Indian people or their fellow Canadians.
We manifest our pride in many ways, but always it supports and sustains us. The Government believes that the Indian people should have the opportunity to develop the resources of their reserves so they may contribute to their own well-being and the economy of the nation. Ultimately, rising administrative costs were at the heart of the White Paper along with concerns about the American Indian Movement spreading into Canada.
Equitable financial arrangements would be sought to ensure that services could be provided in full measure commensurate with the needs. Further to membership and land management, the Indian Act was explicit to the original government's concept of assimilation, enfranchisement and civilization. Their outrage would eventually force the Trudeau government to abandon the policy. Trudeau did not mention that language and culture must be maintained to be productive in a society, - to clarify, Trudeau mentions language and culture when speaking about Quebec, but not in regards to Indians.