It’s time to drop the old rhetoric and engage in truth-telling. To get the ball rolling:
First, “traditional way of life” is a myth. Not just for aboriginal Canadians. But for everyone. We don’t live like we did hundreds of years ago because the world has changed. Full stop.
That’s not some colonialist imposition. It’s just modern society. They do it in China, they do it in India and they should be doing it in aboriginal Canada.
People come to Canada from all across the world and, while they still celebrate their traditions, they participate in the modern global economy during the working day. To enable the First Nations who fancifully believe they should be insulated from modern economics – like how remaining in isolated communities with no job prospects will magically end poverty – is not just belittling, but endangers their prosperity.
Second, First Nations are not a uniform group. Anaya spoke with “Indigenous representatives.” Well who? Just like there is no Official Jew, Official Black Canadian, etc. there is no Official Indian.