I think that after all the horror that European settlers put the Native Canadians through, it is remarkable that either faction could live with the other. Even only looking at the literal genocide known by the unassuming term of “residential schools”, these are crimes which are commemorated with solemn monuments in other parts of the world, while the facilities built to “kill the Indian inside” are not nearly as recognized. I believe that very little good came of the interactions between Europeans and Aboriginal peoples. If I were living my own life in the lands that my ancestors had lived on for thousands of years, and then suddenly we were invaded by unfamiliar men bearing diseases that both we and our livestock were vulnerable to, alcohol that we were so easily addicted to, and a will to conquer, I would be wondering why my gods had forsaken me.
Even today, Canadian government, full of people of European heritage like myself are still attempting to recover from the great injustices that were committed against aboriginals. Many live in reservations, and most are exempt from some taxes, rules, bylaws and regulations. All of this, in my mind is an apology coming much too late.
I would be interested in learning about more positive interactions between the white people and the natives. It seems so much of their interaction was conflict, when were Europeans ever doing a positive action that wasn’t just remedying their previous actions?
As I look at these questions, I have no doubt that I will be addressing most of the A section of the prescribed learning outcomes. These are the general learning ones, applying critical thinking and displaying adequate research skills, et cetera. Inherently, C3 will also be something I will be addressing. It’s looks into more specific groups and individuals in the native category, like the Métis or of Louis Riel. The B2 section looks into more general and overall perspectives on Native Canadians, while C3 is more specific.
While residential schools are a stain on Canada’s mostly virtuous background, I believe that the best way to overcome the mistakes of the past is to discuss them, to recognize that they happened. So with this it, it’s good that our school curriculum is prescribing us to learn about them.