Monday, 5 March 2012

Questioning Land Ownership

No one can really "own" land. We inhabit the earth, we like to think we dominate it... but one earthquake reminds us that, no, we do not control the land.

Economically we have developed a system of land ownership.

In Canada, land ownership is frequently made possible because of the unethical treatment of aboriginal peoples.

Although we may now be in heading into a time of (hopefully) reconciliation between Canadians and aboriginals, the re-imagining of our concept of land ownership is never considered or addressed.

What if, instead of land being sold to a person or group for development, land was granted to parties to develop by an agreement of neighbouring communities? What if this agreement depended on the developer proving that this development would be good for all Canadians, not just their own profit? What if land use required a certain responsibility to people, animals, and the earth? What if we thought of land as a wonderful gift there for us to use and benefit from, but not to destroy?