Dear Warriors, your women are dying. Men are beating them, kicking them, shoving guns in their mouths, killing them and dumping their bodies on the side of the road.
Dear Warriors, your children are dying. Watching their mothers get beaten and killed and suffering the same abuse themselves is hopeless and they are killing themselves with alcohol and drugs.
Dear Warriors, you are dying, each and every time you ignore this travesty and numb yourself with lies, blaming others and superficial causes.
Dear Warriors, your ancestors died knowing you hold the ability to bring about change.
Dear Warriors, wake up! The women soon will no longer need you and can become their own warriors.
The above from the Justice for Annie Mae Pictou Aquash Warrior Woman fb page as posted by Emma Rosenthal
Species extinction occurs as an independent natural process, but it can also be influenced by a number of circumstances.
It is estimated that 27,000 to 30,000 species go extinct annually, and that by the year 2022 an estimated 22% to of 30% all species will be extinct if something isn’t done to reverse the trend.
When speaking of extinction we tend to think of animals, birds, fish, and insects, but there is another extinction that looms over the nations-that of the loss of tradition and cultural identity.
In the natural non human world extinction is fueled primarily by such things as loss of habitat, predation, and pollution, each in their own way can even lead to genetic mutations. And it’s beginning to appear as though the same could be happening in the nations.
Alcohol, drugs, stress, poverty, and diet can produce not only deformities but over time genetic and behavioral variances.
Assimilation can also rightfully be said to be an engine of extinction, as it too changes habitat on a cultural level and produces a unique pollution of it own, such as those mentioned above.
This loss of cultural resources among the nations in my opinion can be directly linked to the influences cited above, but also to AIM as it exists today as a result of the direction leadership chose to take it.
One of the tools of the reservation system was an attempt to introduce the concept that every man was a chief and to instill the principles of a patriarchal system of male dominance- and as we see chiefs and patriarchy abound.
Despite all the for the net consumption not all the nations have a history of matriarchy, and of those that did many abandoned it.
What we see now in being promoted as tradition is an aberration-an aberration where those who are unqualified proclaim themselves to be chiefs, leaders, and even warriors. And they are a vehicle that are leading us to cultural extinction.
A fellow blogger, once made a statement that a great sadness exists in children thinking the grocery store is the farm, it is where food is produced-but a greater sadness is that even so much as a single child of ours would think what AIM and it’s leadership produce is the wellspring of our culture- or that men who drink and abuse, who father children and leave them and their mothers to fend for themselves, that gangs, rape, and male dominance are the characteristics of warriors.
It may be too late to reverse the global trends of resource and habitat destruction but it isn’t too late to reverse those of a looming cultural extinction the nations face-but it will require something more than talk of native pride, more than talk of loving the land the people compose, of going to ceremony and pow wow, of talk of being a warrior-it will take men and women embracing a standard and adhering to it.
There isn’t a rez or a city near one where you will not find drunken men staggering around, and drunken women offering themselves up-neither can claim any high ground, nor can they make a meaningful claim of cultural identity, each needs to take personal responsibility for their actions.
Government policy, the invasion, Manifest Destiny, the wars, and the reservation system were all predicated on a core principle that sought extinction for warriors- what is happening today is the continuation of that process from within.
I had come to believe that in the passing of the AIM leadership a window of opportunity would open for the nations to reclaim their heritage, and to a degree I still think such an opportunity will present itself.
But with a growing awareness of those grooming themselves to fill the void, and the mutations they have adopted, I think the task will be made more difficult.