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Indigenous Sovereignty: The Indian Act

"The Indian Act was passed with the intention of implementing the terms of the treaties and of establishing the status of Indians. It was the main body of law from which the legal rights of Indians flow. This was one of the first major steps taken by the government of Canada to weaken the treaties signed with our people, for now it is from the Indian Act that the legal position of the Indian primarily stems, rather than from the treaties themselves. . . . The Indian Act, instead of implementing the treaties and offering much-needed protection to Indian rights, subjugated to colonial rule the very people whose rights it was supposed to protect" (43-44).

Cardinal, Harold. The Unjust Society: The Tragedy of Canada's Indians. M.G. Hurtig, 1969.