Broken Spirit

Dick, Leonard G.
Publisher:  Highway Book Shop, Cobalt, Canada
Year Published:  1978  
Pages:  65pp  
Resource Type:  Article
Cx Number:  CX1023

Abstract:  The native problem in Canada is not due solely to the presence of the white man. Many native problems, such as employment and alcoholism persist because the Indian is unwilling to take the responsibility for providing solutions. The Indian may not be equipped to take the necessary action, and this is in part the fault of the Indian.

The author takes a long look at natives and specifically at alcohol as one problem that persists among native peoples. The problem is complex. Yet, the inability of Indians to "handle" liquor is partly due to a lack of proper education concerning alcohol. The white man has provided the beverage, but has not given the Indian adequate education concerning its effects. The author notes that the native people have not demanded an education about alcohol and its effects. And now the native people should be seeking detox centres and education, but are failing to ask for these things.

Why cannot the native people solve some of the problems involved in living in Canadian society? One answer recommended is the lack of concern among the native leaders for the native people as a whole. All too often a power struggle is evident in organizations that are proposing solutions. The power struggle takes all the time and energy of the people, and so no positive action is taken.

The author calls for trained native leaders, leaders who are administrators and have the concerns of the native people at heart to lead the people in dealing with such problems as alcoholism.

Note: In the issue of Connexions that followed the one in which the above abstract appeared, the Connexions collective published the following note in French, which has been here translated into English:
ATTENTION DEAR READERS: We apologize for the impression left by CX1023, Broken Spirit in Volume IV, 5. After some reflection and discussion, the collective realizes that what is said and the abstract and the book is an internal matter for Native Peoples, and as such beyond our expertise. We affirm our support of the Native Peoples' struggles to build a better life for themselves, and therefore sincerely regret any offense that has arisen due to this abstract.

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