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"[Settlers] state that Indigenous people are putting [their] famil[ies'] well-being and safety at… risk. Let’s unpack that."

apihtawikosisan.com/2020/02/an

(more quotes and commentary in replies to this post)

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"Indigenous peoples are engaged in PEACEFUL actions. Where land defenders have stationed themselves outside buildings, providing information and putting pressure on policy-makers, these actions have been compared to labour actions, and in fact have been respected as such. Meaning, a number of unions have come out with statements that they regard these actions the same as they would a strike, and they will not cross that picket line."

Support unions, not land defenders? Anti-indigenous racism.

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"Indigenous peoples have ALWAYS been scapegoated as a danger to settler society. Rooted in racist tropes of our savagery and unsuitability to the modern world, we are often portrayed as threat. And what is the threat we present at this moment? Some folks are refusing to be evicted from their land. In solidarity, other folks are blocking, or camping alongside railway tracks."

Our own existence threatens the settler-state, which needs expansion and resource extraction.

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"No one is quantifying or qualifying what this ACTUALLY means in terms of real impact. In fact, we recently learned that the CN and Canadian Pacific had come together to broker a “work around” to keep essential supplies flowing.

"So at this point of… descent into angry settlerhood, the danger is an amorphous, existential threat. Not directed at [them] and [their] families though. The “threat” people are responding to is mostly… based in the feeling that we threaten Canadian coherence"

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"Indigenous peoples have not harmed anyone. We have not attacked, beaten, or threatened anyone. We have not pointed guns at [settlers or their families]. We have not removed [their] children and forced them into residential schools. We have not criminalized [their families], locked up [their] relatives, administrated [their] poverty, created legislation to specifically discriminate against [them or their family],… …then scold [them] for getting upset."

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"We have not removed generation after generation of [settlers' families], forced them to speak another language, punished them for practicing their culture, physically or sexually abused them, sterilized them, sent them far away to hospitals where some of them simply disappeared."

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This is my commentary: sit with that for a bit. That's what has happened to us, and our "violence" is to not allow our own eviction. Don't accept words like violence when you hear them from the news.

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"[Settlers] merely *imagines* what *might* happen if [their] fantasies about the savagery of the Indian play out. [They] want us punished and harmed because [they] is afraid,… and [their] fears consume [them]. [Settlers] justifies [their] cowardice and racism by invoking the figures of [their spouse] and child.

"Well listen, [settlers]. You and your families are absolutely being harmed. You are at risk. And it has nothing at all, NOTHING, to do with Indigenous people. "

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"Your labour rights are being eroded by neoliberal governments. Your lives are becoming increasingly precarious as the quality of your labour protections are stripped away; you work longer hours for less pay, in more dangerous circumstances, and if you complain you risk losing even the scraps left to you. Your healthcare systems are being systematically stripped to make way for privatized healthcare."

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"Doctors are leaving in droves, maybe you cannot even find a family doctor. Your health coverage means less and less each passing year, and as you age, you need more care, not less.

"Your environment is poisoning you. If you, like most Canadians, are located in an urban centre, environmental pollution is cutting down your life expectancy, and that of your children. It is bestowing upon you disorders, allergies, diseases.

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"Outside the cities, the land and waters are still sickened. The animals are ill. It all affects you too.

"Your education system is being torn apart in the service of neo-liberalism. Your class sizes soar, and your children suffer, directly, in reality, not just in your fears. Housing is becoming a dream, a thing your children may never actually have for their own as they are priced out not just of home ownership, but even rentals.

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"[Settlers], if you aren’t absolutely terrified for the well-being and safety of your family over all this, then you are in deep, deep denial. But I don’t think you are unaware of all this. In fact, I think it leaves you sleepless sometimes.

"I think worrying about all of these realities actively harms your health, because it’s truly awful shit. And the worst part is, I think you feel helpless to keep your family safe, because these threats are hurtling towards you from every side.

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"You don’t have a second to breathe because the hits keep coming.

"Indigenous peoples are not your enemies. Indigenous peoples are not threatening or harming your family. In fact, we are ALL being harmed by the things Indigenous peoples are fighting against. On top of that we are being harmed in ways you are not.

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"When you paint us as a threat to your wife and kids, when you let all your pent up fear and stress and feelings of hopelessness coalesce into a fight response aimed at us, you relieve some deep down need in yourself to DO SOMETHING.

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"But the rational part of you absolutely needs to recognize that you actively make your family more unsafe by doing this, by scapegoating us, and by ignoring the larger picture, the picture where you are only valued slightly higher than Indigenous peoples, because of your skin colour, your support for the settler colonial state, your health, your cishetero presentation, your socioeconomic class

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"And if you slip up, get sick, get too queer, slip down the rungs of prosperity, you’ll only slightly less reviled than we are.

"Ignoring all of this is the real danger to your family. If you love them as much as you almost certainly do, then you need to fight for a better now, and an even better future.

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You aren’t going to accomplish any of that by making us the enemy, “the threat”. Instead you actively shore up the power of the state that DOES. NOT. LOVE. YOU."

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Almost every one of you that reads this - even me - is in many ways the "angry settler," and we need to stop that, right now.

We collaborate with the systems that kill us. What the fuck are we doing?

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re: relieving your need to /do something/

Please introspect on how much your online engagement with social justice is simply to relieve that pressure. Just because it's not actively pushing down doesn't mean it doesn't entrench and legitimize the oppression.

Get out there. Take down bad shit, build up good shit.

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New! Genders for February 2020

- Hologram

- Girl Lite

- Frog Emoji

- The sound of hollering in a sealed room

- Burning Bank

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