T. Lulani Arquette: UNDRIP should renounce Doctrine of Discovery
Posted: Friday, September 7, 2012
"The United Nations adopted the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) in September 2007. There is an effort to include language in the UNDRIP repudiating the Doctrine of Discovery (DOD). There were only four countries that refused to adopt the declaration: The United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
The Episcopal Church courageously led the way as the first Christian denomination to pass a resolution in 2009 denouncing the DOD and urging the U.S. to adopt the UNDRIP. Excerpts of language include “(we)…denounce the Doctrine of Discovery as fundamentally opposed to the gospel of Jesus Christ and as a violation of the inherent human rights that all individuals and peoples have received from God.” Other churches followed in 2011 including the Unitarian Universalist and Quaker faiths. Just this year, in May 2012, the World Council of Churches renounced the DOD.
After a series of tribal and NGO consultations, and after the other three hold-out countries adopted the DRIP, at the end of 2010 President Obama did finally sign the UNDRIP. This is very encouraging and a step in the right direction; however, there still needs to be greater support for including language in the UNDRIP that renounces the Doctrine of Discovery."
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