Source: (2005) In Wanda D. McCaslin, ed., Justice as Healing: Indigenous Ways. Writings on Community Peacemaking and Restorative Justice from the Native Law Centre. St. Paul, MN: Living Justice Press. Pp. 225-230.

"I would like to reflect today on the international recognition of the rights of the world's Indigenous Peoples... "The United Nations was founded on the principle that the interests of the international community would not be bound up in the lowest common denominator of the legal systems of its member states. There would be a higher standard. States would have to acquiesce to the principle that the rights of human beings inhere in themselves and not in the state. "Unfortunately, the international community has not been completely successful in leaving behind the special interests of its members. Diplomats regularly receive instructions to vote in the United Nations so as to preserve the legal status quo of the states they represent. Then they proceed to dress this crude obedience to their ministers in a fabric of fine words expounding rights and precedents in international law..." (excerpt)