Indigenous Unity Knows No Colonial Border
Turtle Island is a vast land comprised of rich nations steeped in culture, language and tradition. No this is not Canada or the United States of America or even Mexico, this is a time of new recognition of the way of old perspectives. In these perspectives there is a lot of "Naive Pride" which is rising up all over the world in a show of solidarity for the truth of our existence to be showcased at a time of desperate worldwide need for Indigenous knowledge.
In this pride we need to remember the teachings of our ancestors, know what to share and show to share it because we should always hold onto what is most sacred. In that sacredness does lay the bond between us as Nations of Turtle Island, and when sought out for help or to be helped it should not be turned away in the name of something you can swallow easy enough if it is to benefit the next seven generations.
As numbers of Indigenous Corona-virus cases have grown, especially under the fascist regimes of Donald Trump and Justin Trudeau, the original peoples of the land have begun to once again gather together in a united front to not battle something, but to deal with what creation has given us. The front has a much different look than it did during the last pandemic our peoples have faced and now we have better means to assist each other in times of crisis.
In speaking with Ian Stewart from Protect Native Elders an intake was done for the community of Kenhteke (Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory) outside of the colonial governance structure that is the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte Elected Band Council to ensure that all of the people are taken care of. This is being done in accordance with Kayanere'kowa (Great Law of Peace) and has everything to do with the people and nothing to do with the hierarchy set in place by the Crown and subordinate government entities.
The people of the longhouse include us all under those six directions when we look above and below us as well and work to give thanks and preserve the integrity of the people, this is why as individuals we need to take action and reach out to our brothers and sisters to make things work. When I approached one of my brothers within the community Josh Brookes, he was able to give me the right questions to ask which ultimately led to over 5,000 surgical masks going to front line workers; by taking action he has directly impacted thousands of people on front line service for the better which in turn benefits their families and the ones they help for the next seven generations to come.
Trust is something that is hard for Indigenous peoples everywhere to accept when it comes to people helping out, as for so long we have been pushed to the side and told to fend for ourselves and to make it on our own. This was never the way of our people, and in reality we heavily relied on each other to make the circle of life ever lasting and whole.
In the email exchange with Ian, the plans for the Kenhteke shipment were make right and all those from the community or are members close by will have access to these for free. There are plans being made now on how to safely distribute the Personal Protective Equipment, which will be ongoing and include sanitiser for all as well.
They are 100% cotton, double layer, AB pattern with t-shirt fabric ties. The first several hundred are being shipped today and tomorrow. They'll just keep shipping until we hit 5,000.
It is truly thrilling to be part of such an alliance that is not only Indigenous in it's essence and foundation but working outside of the colonial clusterfuck we have all been enduring for so long is reassuring and promising for the future of Nation to Nation relations between Indigenous Peoples everywhere. With this strong sense of unity and health within us held sacred in our interactions and even gestures, we are connected and always will be as long as we ensure we build upon the foundations of peace, power, and righteousness in continuity of the stewardship of Mother Earth and everything that she entails spiritually, mentally, physically, and emotionally.
Protect Native Elders is operating in consultation with tribal command centres, the rapid response model enables them to deliver directly to facilities and first respondents in emerging COVID-19 hotspots. In the two months since the grassroots beginning, they’ve delivered over $300,000 worth of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and other critical supplies to over 60 sites.
They work with suppliers, manufacturers, and DIY maker collaboratives to ship masks, face-shields, hand sanitiser, food, water and other essential elements directly to distribution hubs throughout Indian Country. Here are some of the organisations that they work with depicted.
"While data on coronavirus in indigenous communities is inaccurate, Native Americans are disproportionately affected. In New Mexico, for example, Native Americans make up less than 10% of the population but over one-third of coronavirus cases.
Protect Native Elders’ distribution began in the Southwestern nations of Navajo, Zuni, and Apache, and we have since expanded our reach to Pacific Northwest groups like the Spokane Tribe of Indians, the Sioux nations in the Dakotas, and Ramapough Lenape in New York and New Jersey." ~Protect Native Elders Website
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