The Canadian Charter Of Rights And Freedoms

1617 Words7 Pages
Since its inception in 1982 the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, very much like its primary architect Pierre Trudeau, has been one of the most celebrated yet controversial elements of Canadian politics and governance. Revealing how this dynamic emerged requires a nuanced understanding of the motivation behind the Charter and the techniques it employed to succeed. The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, like the entire patriation process, was motivated by and mobilized support through, constitutionally enshrining democratic core values, multiculturalism and a sense of nationalism. However, it should not be seen as merely a symbolic gesture on the part of Britain and Canada or merely a strengthening of core values. Instead it was a fundamental reinvention of Canadian federalism that shifted power away from the provinces to the federal government and from the Parliament to the courts. This was accomplished by incentivizing provincial acceptance, developing common interests, and, as a result, formalizing a national identity where the protection and expansion of core values was encouraged as fundamental. This dynamic allowed the reinvention to, by and large, succeed. An understanding of the provisions and effects of the Charter and how it ultimately succeed as a re-invention of the Canadian Government requires knowledge of the patriation process. Before 1982, the formal power to amend the Canadian Constitution was held by the British Parliament. This was seen
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