November 2022: What is #LANDBACK and How Can I Support It?

First, we want to say thank you to everyone who was able to join us in October. Our prompt inspired some great talk about the ways we - and other white folks - deal with conversations about race, racism and white supremacy. We looked at times we have stayed quiet for the comfort of other white folks who didn’t want to “go there.” Other CWC attendees reflected on times they had used politeness or decorum to silence BIPOC and/or other white folks raising these same issues.

One of the things we believe is important in unpacking and healing from white racial conditioning is to develop a willingness to venture into the unfamiliar. We see CWC as a place to strengthen our ability to realize the truths about racism and white supremacy so that we can transform ourselves and find our sense of purpose in dismantling systems of oppression.

Following Indigenous Peoples Day in October, November marks Native American Heritage month. Our prompt for the November gatherings is centered on the #LANDBACK campaign. As described on NDN Collective’s website:

"LANDBACK is a movement that has existed for generations with a long legacy of organizing and sacrifice to get Indigenous Lands back into Indigenous hands. Currently, there are LANDBACK battles being fought all across Turtle Island*, to the north and the south."

To inspire our conversations, we will watch this short opening clip from an episode of Reservation Dogs, an FX show in its second season, that shows how a new truth initially lands and can often get derailed among white folks.

Here are some prompts to help focus our thoughts for processing and dialogue:

  • What feelings come up for you when you hear/learn about #LANDBACK?

  • How does this video relate to October’s - “If not now, when?” question about “right” times to talk about race, racism and white supremacy?

  • What do you know about the original, Indigenous peoples of the land where you live?

  • How could you learn more?

  • How does the #LANDBACK campaign relate to previous CWC conversations about environmental justice?

We look forward to being in conversation with you this month and hope you'll invite a friend or family member to join us!

“It is important to understand the long-standing history that has brought you to reside on the land, and to seek to understand your place within that history.” - Dr. Debbie Reese, founder of AICL - American Indians in Children’s Literature

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