Sidney Harring's 'There Seemed To Be No Recognized Law'

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The indigenous population in the geographical location of western Canada had their land officially taken over in 1869. (Daschuk 79) From then on, even with multiple treaties signed, the aboriginal people in this area and on the plains were ravaged with disease, fighting, famine and theft of land from the Canadian government. In this paper, I will first present a summary of James Daschuk’s two chapters outlining the issues stated above, and then an internal critique of the chapters, and, finally, an external critique of the chapters, comparing and contrasting it to Sidney Harring’s ““There Seemed to Be No Recognized Law”: Canadian Law and the Prairie First Nations’. The purpose of this paper is to provide insight and analysis on the aboriginal issues raised by Daschuk.…show more content…
He present this by discussing the illegality of the treaties pertaining to the Indian Act being passed, the government not fulfilling their treaty promises, the government starving the aboriginals, and by oppressing them and stealing their land. The interpretation of the situation by Harring does differ James Daschuk’s. Harring explicitly states that the aboriginals were starved on purpose “local Indian Affairs authorities were given direct orders to starve able-bodied Indian men and issued inadequate rations for Indian women and children” (Harring 120), when Daschuk only provides information pertaining to the famine, and not that it was done on purpose. Harring was the most convincing as he blatantly blames the government for the harm caused on the aboriginals and sets the stage for how maltreated the aboriginals were by the government. Conclusively, James Daschuk provides two fairly convincing chapters, pertaining to the aboriginal people in Western Canada and on the plains, who were ravaged with disease, fighting, famine and an immense loss of land. Comparing his chapters with Sidney Harring’s, Harring is more convincing and provides greater insight into how the government is to blame for the problems faced by the aboriginals. Personally, I agree with Harring, as measures were not handled as they should’ve been and the aboriginals should’ve had greater priority and treatment in the creation of
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