Cultural Identity and Cultural Rights
“People need to see that, far from being an obstacle, the world’s diversity of languages, religions and traditions is a great treasure, affording us precious opportunities to recognize ourselves in others,” Youssou N’Dour (Musician). I certainly believe that cultural diversity is one of the most important matters in society and that we should learn to acknowledge it. Unfortunately, we may be culturally diverse but we tend to forget about equality amongst these people, these minority groups. It humors me since equality is a huge fundamental Canadian value. In this essay, I will try to compare the Mohawks of Akwesasne society and Canadian society. First of all, the Mohawks are a very old nation, which I believe, are a national minority, meaning a group that was incorporated involuntarily who want to maintain themselves as a distinct society but still want to be incorporated in the majority culture. These groups usually seek autonomy and self-government rights. Self-government rights “devolve powers to smaller political units, so that a national minority cannot be outvoted or outbid by the majority on decisions that are of particular importance to their culture, such as issues of education, immigration, resource development, language and family law,”(58) (Kymlicka). Akwesasne Mohawks also usually create internal restrictions and very few external protections. On the other hand, Canada is a multicultural country with many different minority groups, such as marginalized groups, national minorities and ethnic groups. Canadians live by a set of fundamental Canadian values which permitted us to live peacefully and respectfully amongst each other. Here are main Fundamental Canadian Values: The freedom of speech, equality between man and woman, importance of culture and education, respect for human rights and respect of the law. Sorry to say that these values aren’t always respected. Secondly, the Mohawks of Akwesasne...
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