Indigenous Peoples Day – October 11th, 2021
It was just a normal Friday morning.
Drinking coffee, reading through programming articles, and preparing to do homework assignments.
An alert popped up on my phone from one of the Instagram accounts I follow.
I opened the app and then I saw a post about the President of the United States had just made a proclamation. Unsure whether it was true or not, I went to the White House.gov website and there it was.
I started crying, not tears of sadness but tears of joy and happiness.
It was overwhelming.
We have been on this continent for thousands of years. We met the first immigrants to this continent.
Yet, despite all the turmoil within our history with these immigrants, we were never acknowledged as any significant part of this newly formed country.
Hundreds of years, we never existed in anyone’s eyes. We were invisible.
Today, our President openly acknowledged us and proclaimed October 11th as Indigenous People’s Day.
In his proclamation, he acknowledged the past turmoil between our tribal nations and our fight to keep our nations sovereignty intact. The treaties we signed in the past have always been at odds with the ideas of capitalism. He also acknowledged the duty of the United States to uphold them.
Our lands were taken from us forcefully and we were marched to within the confines of these imaginary boundary lines on a map someone came up with at one point. The reservations and territories.
This is my people’s history and were never viewed as equals. They tried to force out our culture, our beliefs, and our language. We survived and continued to thrive, but the hurt was felt for generations.
Growing up as a kid, it was hurtful to be called “Dirty Indian”, to have others stereotype me, or to just be bullied because of the way I looked. I felt insignificant and it stuck with me a long time. It has taken years of therapy to put a damper on those thoughts, but it is still there. I make it a point, now, to acknowledge who I am and where I come from to anyone that asks out of curiosity or that wants to listen.
Seeing this today gives me hope. Not only for myself but my children and the future generations that may come forth from out tribal nations.
It gives me hope for the continuing growth of my own tribe, the Sac and Fox Nation of Oklahoma.
The day just got even better.
Thank you so much for stopping by and supporting this blog.
Have a great week! Stay safe out there.
Peace, love, happiness, and good vibes, always.