Based on the information in the passage, the author would be most likely to agree with which one of the following sta...

David on January 25, 2016

Please explain why not A

And how E Is the correct answer. Thanks

7 Replies

Mehran on January 31, 2016

The 1984 Ontario case is discussed at length in the last paragraph of the passage. Importantly, however, the author NEVER says that the court which decided this case contravened - contradicted, went against - the constitution, or any of the constitutional reforms institutionalizing certain aboriginal rights. This is why answer choice (A) is incorrect.

Instead, the author of the passage uses the 1984 Ontario case to discuss an instance where the provincial court took a very limited (a very conservative) reading of the constitutional provision in question - here, the right to land "ownership." So although the provincial court understood the constitutional intent - to extend land ownership rights to indigenous peoples - it misapplied pre-constitutional law and ended up with a holding that really didn't further the constitutional intent (that is, robust protection of aboriginal rights). Note especially lines 51-54 ("But the provincial court instead ruled that the law had PREVIOUSLY [that is, before the constitution] recognized only the aboriginal right to use the land and therefore granted property rights so minimal . . ."). This is why answer choice (E) is correct.

Hope this helps! Please let us know if you have any additional questions.

Amanda on November 10, 2017

Thanks for the helpful answer

Serra on March 2, 2019

Where specifically in the passage does it say/imply/illustrate that the intent of the constitution was robust protection?

Also, Where specifically does it say that by "previously" the author meant before the constitution? How do we know that "previously" wasn't yesterday?

I was between (D) and (E), and ultimately chose (D) because I didn't see any specific supporting information for (E).

Could you lay it out for me please? :)

Jacob on March 3, 2019

Hi @msaber

I’m happy to help.

1. What in the passage shows that the intent of the constitution was robust protection of aboriginal rights? We can find evidence of this intent in a few places in the passage.

-In lines 1-8 the passage states that the struggle to obtain legal recognition of aboriginal rights is a difficult one, and that there is no guarantee that those rights won’t be undermined. It was “FOR THIS REASON” that the federal government of Canada extended constitutional protection to aboriginal rights already recognized by law. This implies the government’s intent to robustly protect the struggle for those rights.

- We also learn in lines 60-end that if the 1984 case can be moved to the Supreme Court then the Supreme Court can (hopefully) be “more insistent upon a satisfactory application of the constitutional reforms.” What is this satisfactory application? In the context of the last paragraph, it is a more robust interpretation of “ownership.”

2. Use of “previously” in the final paragraph:

There are a few reasons to think that “previously” in line 53 most likely means pre-Constitutional reforms. First, the dates: this is a 1984 case after a 1982 extension of constitutional protections. It is therefore likely that this was the first case dealing with the issue of what aboriginal “ownership” meant. Further, we can again look at the lines that follow from 60-end, which indicate that the Supreme Court would be “more insistent upon a satisfactory application of the constitutional reforms” — implying that the 1984 Ontario court was not applying the reforms satisfactorily.

Answer D is incorrect because we don’t have any information in the passage about pressure from conservative politicians or other conservative interests.

I hope this helps. Please let us know if you have further questions.

Serra on March 3, 2019

That was helpful, thank you!

Ravi on March 9, 2019

@msaber, let us know if you have any other questions—we're here to help!

Avi on May 1 at 08:23PM

The end of choice E says "because it misconstrued their relation to existing law". What does this mean? I understand why I was incorrect in choosing A because we cannot say that the court actually went against the meaning of the language. Yet how can we say that the courts misconstrued anything here as if they were acting intentionally to misrepresent the meaning? This is unfounded in the passage the same way that D is unfounded. Please explain! Thanks!