I love this article. I have learned so much about organizing from Native American leaders, about honoring the skills and traditions of the community. Even though some of the most brutal colonialism on the planet has been directed at those on Turtle Island who have been here for millennia, they continue to offer love and protection to our planet.
As the brilliant Bill McKibben said in his recent piece, The Axis Of Destruction And Hope:
So in North Dakota, as in the tar sands of Alberta, and at the proposed Cherry point coal port in Washington, and on the pipeline routes in British Columbia, indigenous people are leading the fight against the planet’s destruction. It’s not hyperbole to say that the most important force in the fight for the planet’s survival has been the recognition of native leadership, in North America and elsewhere, in the last five years. The Keystone pipeline would never have been stopped without native organizing, nor plans for the world’s largest coal mine in Australia. The earth’s oldest people are — maybe just in the nick of time — being recognized as its most important protectors. And they need us to stand behind them.
In the NYT article linked below, Sean Sherman’s goals to reclaim First People’s food traditions and share them are outlined:
They were also composed without wheat flour, sugar or dairy — the government-issued commodities that replaced many native foods on reservations more than a century ago. Mr. Sherman avoids them.
This means he does not cook fry bread, the simple deep-fried dough familiar to every tribe in the country. Fry bread was born as a food of survival, developed by ingenious cooks who needed to make the most of flour and lard, and it later became the base of the Indian taco: fry bread under ground beef and toppings like shredded cheese and sour cream….
But Mr. Sherman’s ambitions go beyond dinner service. He hopes his new restaurant can bring jobs into Native American communities, and start careers in the industry. He wants to create a larger demand for Native American-owned food businesses. (He already buys walleye from Red Lake Fishery, and the wild rice he uses is harvested by tribes who live around the lakes of Northern Minnesota.)
In time, Mr. Sherman and Ms. Thompson plan to open a culinary center and school focused on indigenous food systems.