Friday, February 06, 2009

Happy Waitangi Day, Kiwis

The Treaty of Waitangi is the document by which in 1840, the British Crown and the leaders of the Maori reached agreement on establishing British sovereignty over New Zealand and guaranteeing Maori rights. Or not, depending on how you interpret the whole thing.

Anyway, it's a public holiday in New Zealand, and the Wikipedia entry on the treaty gives what seems a pretty decent summary of the thing and its complications.

You start out wondering, gee, how would things be different if Canada and the First Nations had one big treaty like this? Then you realize: not much, not much.
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