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Harold Cardinal vs. P.E.Trudeau: "The Unjust Society"

STORY BY: Jim Tanner
YEAR: 1971
LOCATION: Edmonton, AB

Jim noticed that in BOOM X there was a scrolling title in 1970 that read "Indigenous leaders reject Trudeau government’s 'White Paper'" on what was then called "Indian Policy". Jim wants people to know that the real guy who opposed it was a man named Harold Cardinal, a Cree writer, political leader, teacher, negotiator and lawyer who lived in a First Nation near Edmonton, AB. Cardinal had written a book called "The Unjust Society", which was a parody of Trudeau's philosophy of a "Just Society", and very critical of the government's handling of First Nations affairs. Jim then later adds, by email:
"At 23 years old in 1968/69, Harold Cardinal, supported by Aboriginal People across Canada, changes the course of Canadian and Indigenous history by challenging the "White Paper" which was proposing assimilation. Harold stands up to the Trudeau momentum and calls for the recognition of Aboriginal rights and culture. He is a Canadian Aboriginal hero! And Trudeau was a statesman to have listened to Harold and included Aboriginal Rights in the constitution." Thanks for sharing, Jim!

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