Editorial: Bush administration ignores Native rights

"At the United Nations, the world has solemnly committed itself to better treatment of native populations. Well, most of the world, except for some of those that have the most responsibility for relating to indigenous populations.

Yup. The Bush administration and three other diehard governments -- Canada, New Zealand and Australia -- couldn't bring themselves to support the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Far be it from us to ponder thoughts of any special ethnocentrism in largely English-speaking lands; Britain, Ireland, Jamaica and other countries didn't oppose the statement. Appropriately, the four no voters squirmed, straining to explain concerns about technicalities, language and possible conflicts with their own laws, even though the declaration generally wouldn't be binding.

It took more than 20 years for the declaration to receive Thursday's approval from the U.N. General Assembly. You would think that, even under the Bush administration, this country, with one of the largest native populations, would have found a way to be a part of the progress and celebration."

Get the Story:
United Nations: Native declaration (The Seattle Post-Intelligencer 9/13)

General Assembly (September 13 2007)

Relevant Links:
UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples - http://www.un.org/esa/socdev/unpfii/en/declaration.html

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