Democratic Treaty Against Native Peoples
cdbrady at attglobal.net
Mon Apr 8 21:24:53 MDT 2002
The following is a whole quote of the actual ballot that is being
sent to everyone on the provincial voter's list in British Columbia,
Canada. A friend sent me a gif of the original, which I transposed
word for word below. The referendum, which according to all polls no
one really wants, is expected to cost $8 million, at a time of
continued radical B.C. Liberal government cutbacks. (The latest
was an almost complete gutting of legal aid.) While reading, keep
in mind the great benefit that treaties have played in the history
of Native Peoples in North America (i.e., none, really, rather the
opposite, in which context this one fits perfectly). This particular
ballot is another example of how skewed and sanctimoniously
manipulative has become the phrase direct democracy which its
sponsors have labeled the essence of this device:
Whereas the Government of British Columbia is committed
to negotiating workable, affordable treaty settlements that
will provide certainty, finality and equality;
Do you agree that the Provincial Government should adopt
The following principles to guide its participation in treaty
[a YES and a NO box may be checked at the end of each proposition]
Private property should not be expropriated for treaty settlements.
The terms and conditions of leases and licenses should be
respected; fair compensation for unavoidable disruption of
commercial interests should be ensured.
Hunting, fishing and recreational opportunities on Crown land
should be ensured for all British Columbians.
Parks and protected areas should be maintained for the use and
benefit of all British Columbians.
Province-wide standards of resource management and
environmental protection should continue to apply.
Aboriginal self-government should have the characteristics of
local government, with powers delegated from Canada and
Treaties should include mechanisms for harmonizing land use
planning between Aboriginal governments and neighbouring
The existing tax exemptions for Aboriginal people
should be phased out.
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