This reading analyzes the relationship between black people and native Canadians. It portrays both groups as having an everyday historical injustices towards them thus eliminating any animosity that may cause oppression against each other (Amadahy & Lawrence, 2009, p. 105). For instance, Amadahy and Lawrence (2009), state that the indigenous people and the blacks have been devastated globally as races (p 106, on the last para. of p. 105). They give examples of the American genocide and the triangular slave trade in Africa. Such experiences form the basis of the relationship between the natives and the black.
Apart from the historical injustices meted on these two Canadian races, they still experience some form of destruction culturally and physically today. According to Amadahy and Lawrence (2009), there is a general assumption from the other races in Canada that the native culture no longer exists (p. 106). Besides, the lands that were initially owned by the natives are grabbed for development of rental houses for wealthy immigrants and sourcing of resources, which, in turn, do not benefit the indigenous people (Amadahy & Lawrence, 2009, p. 106). Similarly, the authors argue that black people are being racialized through standardization of beauty and assumptions about criminality (Amadahy & Lawrence, 2009, p. 106, para. 1). Besides, they state that slavery of Blacks and the ruling of Africa for five centuries disenfranchised them, making them the most impoverished states to date (p. 106, para. 1).
The native or indigenous people who have intermarried with whites and blacks are facing an identity crisis, where they are struggling to be recognized but no authority seems to care. According to Amadahy and Lawrence (2009, p. 112), various native groups are striving to be identified as Indians by federal authorities. For example, the black Indians who are a result of intermarriage between natives and blacks. Amadahy and Lawrence (2009), argue that recognition of the Black natives as aboriginal have adverse effects of the native culture, which is already facing extinction. According to the author’s, black Indians have less significant knowledge about indigenous culture and language. Consequently, acknowledging them as the indigenous group may lead to native culture dilution (p. 113). It is evident from the text that the relation between the natives and the blacks is very complicated. Even though there is no significant conflict between the two groups of people, it evident that non-black natives may blame the blacks for their cultural dilution woes.
Another complexity in identity and belongingness arises from the federal policies regulating Indians, known as the Indian Act in Canada and the US blood quantum. These policies had been enacted to control the number of natives and property ownership abilities. Besides, they aim to divide the Black Indians from the native. According to Amadahy and Lawrence (2009), the Indian Act in Canada promoted land theft such that the land reserved for natives could encroach until the indigenous people remain with insignificant pieces. In this way, the natives, could not exercise control or ask for recognition by federal authorities because they lack governing power (p. 113). Consequently, the Black Indians are viewed as competitors for land and state funding by the indigenous Indians (p. 114, para. 1). According to the authors, the Indian Act dictates that only individuals with an Indian male ancestor can gain native Indian status. This means that those of Indian origin from female ancestors cannot be recognized as natives. In this way, the Act blocks both black and non-black Indians from gaining Indian status.
The relationship between blacks and natives in Canada is complex even though they experienced similar historical injustices. Canadian policies regulating indigenous belongingness is meant to divide the natives and the Blacks Indians, such that the native see the black Indians as competitors with no right to claim nativity. The divide and rule policies were successful in ensuring that Indian origin did not have a governing power for proper federal recognition.