Canadian University launching law program that draws from Indigenous culture

Originally published at:


If something like this had been an option when I was in school, I’d have considered law school much more seriously. This is truly a game changer.


Yeah, it’s always fascinating learning about Legal Systems Very Different from Ours.

I like the fact that in the future, we might have two forms of law in Canada, one based on skin pigmentation and accident of birth. Hopefully we will move past the point of looking at the crime the person is accused of and instead focus on their ancestry and racial characteristics. One person equal under the law is an antiquated idea anyway.

Question from someone south of the wall. Will they actually be able to use these lessons to better represent Inuit and First Nations clients?

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I don’t like that your country gets to have different laws than mine. I like the idea of conquering you and placing you under colonial rule of my country. Still think imperialism is so hot? /s


One person equal under the law is an antiquated idea anyway

I think Godel’s Theorem applies to human law as well as math: you can have a law that applies equally to all people, or you can have a law that promotes fairness, but a law can’t do both.

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Speaking of tribal law, there was a recent incident in Florida where an indigenous grandmother had the tribal court issue an order - carried out by tribal police, to remove her newborn grandchild from the custody of her parents and be sequestered on the reservation because the grandmother didn’t want the child being raised in a home with her non-indigenous father.

The child was eventually returned to her parents but there was much freaking out for awhile,especially because the hospital staff and Miami-Dade police helped remove the child in the first place without questioning the order.

I don’t know if this story was covered by Boing Boing when it happened.

Well aren’t you just a special little guy.


I have the same question, and I’m from the North. If all your studying does not help you pass the bar exam, this does not seem particularly helpful if you really want to become a lawyer. Of course, the next stage would be to change the exam to accommodate both tribal and common law.

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I’m not sure it isn’t helpful, but it does seem like it needs stage two and stage three (recognizing tribal jurisdictions) to be more than just symbolic The main reason I’m curious is because here in the States there are lawyers do specialize in tribal law.

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That was obviously a miscarriage of justice, but miscarriages of justice occur in US State and Federal courts as well. It’s no more an argument against allowing reservations to exercise their tribal jurisdictions than a miscarriage of justice in a State court is an argument against allowing State courts to have jurisdiction separate from Federal courts.

Nor was it intended to be. The situation was corrected in a matter of a few days, as the article that I linked stated. But it is definitely what reporters call a human interest story.

I just thought that it was an interesting example from very recent headlines that discussed tribal jurisprudence and law enforcement. It’s rare to find much discussion of indigenous current events unless you’re a reader of sites like

I’ve had an interest in Native people, history, and culture since I was a kid, and still spend time reading about them - though I don’t have any Native friends or acquaintances in the state where I’m currently living. I actually think that the Canadian program discussed in this thread shows a lot of wisdom. People have been dealing with basically the same interpersonal and social conflicts and codifying law for thousands of years.




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