Occupy Wall Street: The Game of Colonialism and further nationalism to be decolonized from the “Left”
By Jessica Yee
I also need to mention that New York City is Haudenosaunee territory and home to many other First Nations. Waiting to see if that’s been mentioned anywhere. (Author’s note: Manhattan “proper” is home to to the Lenape who were defrauded of the island by the Dutch in 1626–see more from Tequila Sovereign).
Not that I’m surprised that this was a misstep in organizing against Wall Street or really any organizing that happens when the “left” decides that it’s going to “take back America for the people” (which people?!). This is part of a much larger issue, and in fact there is so much nationalistic, patriotic language of imperialism wrapped up in these types of campaigns that it’s no wonder people can’t see the erasure of existence of the First Peoples of THIS territory that happens when we get all high and mighty with the pro-America agendas, and forget our OWN complicity and accountability to the way things are today–not just the corporations and the state.
But it would be good if the protesters acknowledged Native issues somehow. All non-Indians, both liberals and conservatives, have benefited from the Euro-American occupation of the continent. If the protesters truly believe in justice, they should be talking about giving back the land. Or at least placing Native issues high on their agenda.
That would mean questioning their own white power and privilege. Not to mention giving some of it up. That's not something a lot of people are prepared to do.
For more on colonization, see Two Kinds of Colonizers and Three Words in Declaration of Independence.
P.S. Now would be a good time for Native activists to (re)occupy Mt. Rushmore, Alcatraz, or another prominent landmark.