The myth of sovereignty

The idea of sovereignty underpins all our laws and institutions, and has been used to impose Crown authority over Māori. That’s despite the fact no one knows how it was legally acquired, as Claire Charters explains here.

Something we don’t talk about much in mainstream public law circles is the basis of the Crown’s claim to sovereignty in this country.

Perhaps it’s perceived to be irrelevant, because we have a “political reality” which simply operates as if there is full and indivisable sovereignty over these islands that we now all call home.

But it’s a reality that is built on myth and assumption, not on the rule of law. And it demands our critical attention if we are to create just foundations for our future society.

In 1840, when Te Tiriti o Waitangi was signed, sovereignty could be legally acquired by cession, by conquest, or by discovery.

Read the full article here: Claire Charters: The myth of sovereignty