White and Privileged Climate Movement

I’ve taken advantage of every opportunity to build relationships with Indigenous Peoples for several reasons. The primary being white supremacist, capitalistic cultures have raped Mother Earth for centuries and brought us to the brink of our own extinction.

Indigenous peoples have, instead, maintain sacred relationships with the earth and each other. Spirituality is embedded in everything they believe and do.

As explained here, this article grew out of another example of the “whiteness” that the attention to the visit of Greta Thunberg represents, while also thankful for value of her work.

As with the difficulty white people have in understanding how engrained white superiority is in our culture regarding racial injustice, that same culture, built on colonization, too often blinds us to how urgently we need the help of Indigenous Peoples.

We are in this climate crisis together….but not all of us will be affected by this change in the same way. It is well known that Indigenous communities and communities of color everywhere are the most immediate recipients of climate change disaster. Greta Thunberg just arrived on the shores of the USA. Though her work and the work of other white environmental activists is incredibly important, this world still applauds, supports, encourages, and emulates ”whiteness” and the culture created out of the doctrine of discovery.

We have to ask these questions. Why is a White Swedish environmental activist receiving the world’s attention on this issue when Indigenous Peoples have been at the forefront of this for hundreds of years? We all know the answer. Even the climate movement is white and privileged. Even the most radical “environmentalists” don’t understand their bias in this whole colonized mess.

Indigenous Peoples have answers; a solution to the climate crisis but the colonizers are still uncomfortable, still racist, still blind to our struggles. Have any Indigenous youth been offered a solar powered yacht to cross the ocean? How many people know about the “first-ever round-the-world voyage by a traditional Polynesian vessel—a predecessor of the modern catamaran?”

Let’s break the money cycle that stays in white circles, Christine Nobiss, Seeding Sovereignty, Sept 2, 2019

One year ago I took the opportunity to walk from Des Moines to Fort Dodge on the First Nation-Farmer Climate Unity March. I’d been looking for some way to develop deep enough relationships with Native peoples that I could learn from them, especially about their spiritual beliefs and agricultural/environmental ways of living. I continue to be so grateful that did indeed happen. That helps me understand what my friend Christine Nobiss is saying.

Let’s not look to them (white people and organizations) only as role models moving forward into this new era of a green economy. Let’s look at the Indigenous Peoples that have survived genocide and continue to carry on their ways—ways which can save the world. Let’s look to our tribal nations for an Indigenous-led regenerative economy created through traditional ecological knowledge. An effective way we can protect, preserve and restore the climate is by seeing and taking the word of people who fight colonial oppression by tenaciously holding onto traditions that tell a different story about this planet.

Let’s get funds to Indigenous Peoples first. We have answers.

Let’s break the money cycle that stays in white circles, Christine Nobiss, Seeding Sovereignty, Sept 2, 2019

I don’t believe I’ve ever asked my readers to financially support an organization. But if you are interested in funding the work of Indigenous Peoples, one organization I’m familiar with and trust is Seeding Sovereignty which Christine Nobiss is a leader of.

Iheedń, kinana’skomitina’wa’w, mvto, wopila tanka, dawaa’e, qe’ci’yew’yew, thank you from the womxn of Seeding Sovereignty, for choosing to invest Indigenous when supporting our organization. We are a multi-generational, youth-led model based on mentoring relationships and principles of unity, solidarity, justice, equity, and respect. Your contributions will be used by our team in service to our earth and all who live here.

Seeding Sovereignty
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