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Aboriginal People Analysis

Aboriginal people are the first settlers of Canada, including the first nations, Inuit, and Metis. Upon the arrival of the European settlers of Canada who came with their own civilization, the aboriginal people were considered ignorant and uneducated. These European settlers wanted to increase literacy at the same time making their culture dominant over the aboriginal people leading to the funding for the residential schools. This is where the aboriginal children were taken for education. This became a must.

The aim was to keep the aboriginal children constantly within the circle of the civilized condition. However the main idea was to kill the aboriginal culture and identity. These schools were acting like culture genocide tool. The school system suppressed and replaces aboriginal culture and identity in different aspects a few detailed in this piece of writing. The major aspect used was isolation. The aboriginal children were isolated from their families and community to residential schools. This is where they were taught a new culture.

This was done so that the growing aboriginal population should not learn their culture and traditions from their parents and the community in general. It was a must that every aboriginal child goes to a residential school. This prevented the aboriginal from passing the their culture to the growing generations since they were completely isolated for a long time and by the time they come back to their societies, they were partially aware of their culture and could hardly fit in the community.

Severe punishment was another tool used to kill the aboriginal culture some residential schools survivors says that they were punished for speaking their language or practicing their customs and traditions. The former Musqueam chief George Guerin gives us a good example as he explains how his teacher had a supply of sticks when she heard him speaking his language she’d lift up her hand and brings the stick down on him. He further explains that he still has some bumps on his hands from being beaten for speaking his own language.

From this example, we see how punishable it was for the aboriginal children in the residential schools to use their language. How can culture and heritage stay alive when the major components of culture system were being restricted? Most of the aboriginal children forgot and could barely speak their language upon being discharged from the residential schools. In the same manner, aboriginal people in the residential schools were living in poor environments and being abused. They did not receive the same education as the rest of the students in public schools.

The residential schools were focused on hands-on jobs. Girls were taught domestically chores while boys were taught carpentry, farming, and tinsmithing jobs. Due to the poor living conditions in the residential schools, some of the aboriginal students were dying there and some dying when they get home. Peigan reserve in Alberta recorded approximately 75 percent deaths of the aboriginal children after being discharged from the residential school. This means culture was being killed and at the same time reducing the number of the growing population.

It is still not easy fro the aboriginals to assert their culture and identity today. There are many hinders that first nations face asserting their culture and identity. one of the major problem is oppression. Aboriginal people, being a minority in Canada, they are oppressed a lot. If we observe from all the corners of their situation we find out that they are not having the same opportunities as the entire citizens do, their housing environment in reserves are so poor, the health conditions too, are so poor compared to the rest of Canadian citizens.

Being an isolated population, aboriginal find it difficult to express themselves like others and assert their culture and identity. Taking the aboriginal peoples situation into consideration, shows that Canada has a big race problem. However it is hard too see that there is racism in Canada until one understands the difference between aboriginal people and the rest citizens in terms of equity and allocation of resources. If Canada were a racism-free country, why would the aboriginal people live in poor houses in the reserves?

If aboriginals had the same equal access to resources, why would they be the most unemployed people in Canada? Statistics Canada shows that aboriginals have high unemployment rate, high incarceration rates, low life expectancy and poor health compared to the entire citizen population. Are the aboriginals in the same Canada, which are said to be a racism-free country? Due to the inability for the aboriginals to break the poverty circle, they end up committing suicide or committing crimes ending up in jail.

The wall between the aboriginal people and the rest Canadian citizens would be the best solution to their situation. Equal distribution and allocation of social services to both the aboriginals and the entire citizens would help to reduce their unemployment rates hence reducing crime rate among the aboriginals. In conclusion, the aboriginal peoples culture and identity was being destroyed in residential schools by isolating the children from their families where they could learn their culture, punishing them for speaking their language or practicing their customs.

The residential schools also provided ineffective education to the aboriginal students. This stopped the aboriginal children from learning or practicing their culture. Summing up all the cases of the first nation people in Canada shows that Canada has a big race problem that needs to be revised. The aboriginals are also people like everyone, their rights are to be respected and providing them with the same opportunities as the entire Canadian citizens.

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