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Racist Secession?

I think not. Those on this site who accuse the secessionist on this site of being racist aren't giving us due credit...
OK, so an interesting point is brought up. The land isn't ours. It belongs to the native people. Seceeding and creating a land that strives to treat every human being as what they are, inherantly equal, isn't doing a lot for the native people. But it must also be admitted that staying part of the united states is doing nothing for the native people. Obviously we would contact native people of this land and ask for their permission and hopefully support on this, and I can't begin to see why they would say no. There's plenty of land, plenty of resources for coexistance. Beyond that, no longer being given land and given rights would be a step in the right direction.

The rights are theirs, the land is theirs. That has always been true. But now the inhabitants of the land are about sharing and coexistance instead of theft and genocide.

True we have no plans to come through and heroicly save the natives of this land, but wouldn't it be racist to take it upon ourselves that they need some mostly (though not entirely) white heroes to rescue them from their problems.
Own the land... 22.Nov.2004 23:36

anonymous

Which natives own the land? In many areas, one group of 'natives' killed another group of 'natives' and resettled their lands. Should we make anthropological audits, and take land back from the Sioux because they annihilated the other natives who lived there before? If you look at the history of North America, it tells you that, just as in all the rest of the world, whoever is mightier tends to kill those who are not, and take their land. If whites are to give land to native folks that they displaced, the native folks should give that land to whomever they displaced!

The whole idea of owning land is artificial anyway.

White man's burden 23.Nov.2004 00:31

Not interested

Some of the assumptions made by the original poster reveal either a profound ignorance of the recent past or show up that a pretty skewed history is taught in middle and high schools (yet another reason for secession, I guess).

Let's see:

When native peoples in Washington and Oregon asked for support in their claims to salmon fishing rights - the very rights that were negotiated in treaties when their land was stripped from them - against commercial and 'sport' fishermen, how many white folks/secessionists showed up to support them? That was in the 1970's and 1980's and continues today.

When native peoples pressed their claims for the sacred rock that was being held at the Museum of Natural History in New York City - the one called by scientists one of the largest meteorites ever found whole - how many white folks/secessionists wrote letters or showed support? That was in the 1990's.

When the Makah people in Washington decided to begin whale hunting again as a way of re-building their tribal sovereignty how many white folks/secessionists supported them or told the animal rights folks to stop harassing their hunt? That was in the 1990's.

When the native peoples of Oregon and Washington asked the scientists not to tamper with the human remains commonly called "Kennewick man" how many white folks/secessionists joined with them? That was last month.

When the native peoples of Montana, Oregon, Idaho and Washington resisted the re-enactment of the Lewis and Clark invasion, excuse me, expedition, how many secessionists joined with them? That was last week.

I always get a little interested when people who claim to be anarchists start talking about 'secession', especially when other folks have prior claims to the land. Dismissing those claims or treaty rights because "nobody can own the land, dude" is just a New Age version of imperialism. Thanksgiving - that's the anniversary of the massacre of a native tribe by the Pilgrims - is just coming a little early this year on Indy media.

The poster who says that this stuff will all be worked out since Native peoples are all about sharing should understand that potlatch is a tradition in what is now called the Northwest. But it is time for you secessionists to do a little sharing first. Share some of the struggle, then maybe you can talk about sharing the land. Oh, I forgot about the casinos. You're going to nationalize those, right, 'cause we're going to share stuff.

If I am being more than a little acerbic, and I am, it's because those of you who are posting this secession malarkey are not being honest in acknowledging that you have no social base of any sort. Talk of "Cascadia" is your way of dealing with your dashed hopes after the election. Find me one queer person with any relationship to a larger community who thinks that the answer to the success of Measure 36 is 'secession'. Find me any contingent of people of color who want to join up with you. Especially tell me when you are done talking with the tribal peoples about your secession plans. Then I would be interested in reading your plans.

Otherwise, I am just embarrassed for Portland and Oregon and Cascadia when people in the rest of the world ask what the hell is going on here.

cascadia 23.Nov.2004 00:43

siggy

the best motto I think I have seen is "cascadia: property of no one"

i repeat my statement:

so let me understand this. by not seceeding we will remain in a country that is not racist? look at the "settlement" of the americas, new zealand, australia and control of asia and africa by europeans. that was racism to its core. in the usa it took a civil war to seriously address the view that another human was not property and that was just about one "race". blacks still after a bloody war had to face decades of jim crow laws. ataturk's turkey acknowledged a woman's right to vote before the usa did. so here we are in a new century and at a global crossroad where we could choose to work within a fascist regime or break it into parts with various secessionist groups. and in that reevaluation of who we are we could address social injustices that the american legacy has dumped onto us and from that create a new country with new hopes and new realities. we could address the issues of social injustices that have been used to divide us. we could reexamine the use of poverty that drives with fear the workers to burnout. we could ask why we have divided communities. we can readdress funding of social services and infrastructure that has divided the communities between property owners and service providers. why the hell would we wish to continue being part of an empire that has used us as ponds in their game of greed.


we should not be defending why we should secede. but we should be asking why would we want to remain part of a socio-political and economic system that thrives off the suffering of others? how does cascadia benifit in being in an abusive relationship? cascadians should not be on the defensive. this is a question about the morality of the usa. its is about the erosion of core values of a country that hails itself as the champion of democracy. this is about a country that claims equality for all as long as you are the corporate elite. this is about a country was founded on anti-imperialism that has become an empire. so those who claim we should not form cascadia we ask you this why should cascadia remain part of a hypocritical system that feeds off of global injustices?

Don't take them seriously. 23.Nov.2004 05:04

@

Don't waste any more of your time on the accusation of racism. It's being put forward in order to derail you and consume your time. It's an old ploy. Keep moving forward. There is nothing racist about creating a land without racism.

secession and native sovereignty 23.Nov.2004 10:37

moth

In another post i stated that this isn't our land to claim, the indigenous people of North America need to have the land returned to their care (notice i didn't say ownership, that implies "property" a European concept). This will not happen under imperialist US control, unless someone like Leonard Peltier becomes President, highly unlikely. In other words, i'm pro-secession, though with the condition that Native sovereignty of land is restored 110%..

Cultural Survival site;

 http://www.cs.org/

There is nothing inherently racist about seceding from a racist imperialist nation such as the US. In fact, many people advocating secession are doing so because they are sick to death of living under a police/prison state government that practices racism daily. Like, what percentage people of African ancestry are incarcerated in the US prison system? Using the book "Ecotopia" written decades ago to discredit the current secessionist movement isn't recognizing that people today aren't necessarily going to duplicate something written years ago..

Someone mentioned the queer community and Prop 36 passing justifies continuing to struggle under US imperialism. Do u think that a secessionist movement couldn't offer the GLBT community something better than a silly political proposition that will eventually be overruled by some bigoted hatemonger with federal backing? Using the US political system to solve problems based on fear and ignorance will never work. Native tribes had queer members who were treated with respect by the community, honored for being unique. Homophobia simply didn't exist. Political propositions weren't needed either, there simply wasn't any judgement against people for being different. Here is another instance where Euroamericans can learn from a culture we nearly exterminated..

The oppression of indigenous peoples continues under US colonialist imperialism;

"Suppression of Indigenous Sovereignty in 20th Century US"

by Ward Churchill;

 http://www.zmag.org/zmag/articles/may97churchill.html

The other claim someone made is that no people of color will support the secessionist movement. Well, maybe some people don't want the spotlight on them directly (Homeland Security/Patriot Act/etc.), but support comes in many forms. If secession can offer a non-racist non-classist, non-sexist, etc. community, then we are already ahead of the inherently racist/classist/sexist/etc. USA..

take a breath... 23.Nov.2004 12:52

some respondant to this thread

Hey folks, let's stop, take a big breath, and keep things in perspective here.

Some points:

1. Our history books say that my ancestors came to this land, found that others already lived here, and treated them in a brutal, horrible way. Stole the land, suppressed those people, and established their culture to form this country. Other historical evidence that was NOT in my history books indicates things were even more brutal. Look in those history books and other historical research for the details.

2. It isn't real clear who the first people who settled on this land were, as indicated by a previous poster.

3. That all happend before I was born, and I am sure before you were born. We cannot take responsibility for it. We can only deal with the residue left behind.

4. There is residue left behind, as expressed in the frustrations of others' posts. Quite frankly I am not an expert on Native American peoples and their struggles so let's just refer to those other posters for more details.

5. To approach one group of us, and say "hey, I have learned from our history books that, before either of us were born, your ancestors took this land from my ancestors, and were brutal and my life is difficult because of it; therefore, this land is ours and not yours and you do not belong here" is, quite bluntly, hypocracy. Personally, I was born here (well, Eugene at least) and have every right to live here and call it my home, just as you do, in spite of anything our historical records tell us about what happened before we were born. (I am also of european descent, and have ancestors that activiely participated in that brutality.) To say otherwise is to continue on with the mentality that drove the previous movements of societal destruction.

6. If we are going to point to one subgroup of us and start asking "where were you when we were struggling with this?" etc., we could all point to each other with endless such questions and get nowhere. For example, where were you when the homeless teenager in downtown Portland (who ran away to escape an abusive household) could not find a warm place to sleep last night? (Where was I?) Nobody can address all problems in this world so it is ridiculous to blame someone for not being there for some specific problems.

**** Start of the point I am trying to make:

Instead of focusing on the past, we ought to be focusing on where we are now ("we" includes all of us, whether your are a "native american", "white european descendent", or one of the many other groups), and what we can do to make our lives (all of our lives) better.

Personally I would like to see a lot of those oppressed cultures from our past captured. All of our various past cultures are treasures as we explore and discover who we are and what we are about or what we want to be. I would like to see ALL of use well represented by the type of society we create.

If we start looking for ways to divide ourselves, such as native american verses european descendents, liberal verses conservative, christian verses non-christian, gay/bi verses trans verse straight, etc., then WE ALL LOSE. If we find our common ground, realize our collective society is disfunctional, and band together, hand-in-hand, to create something that better represents us all, then WE ALL WIN.

**** End of the point I am trying to make:

Quite frankly, I am incredibly naive about native american history. If I mis-characterized something here, my apologies. (I do have some resentment when people suggest I do not deserve to live in the land I was born into because of history, or attempt to pass blame upon me of things before I was born.) I know there is a lot of pain there. My point is lets stop looking for ways to divide ourselves and find ways to unite ourselves so we can all build off of each other and create a way of civilization that respects and addresses all of our needs.

I am into the secessionist movement, and think it is very much an opportunity to address a lot of frustrations expressed by others here. I see our existing government structure as broken (and would argue that the federal government has already been overthrown, just too quietly for most people to notice). I have noticed different people have different ideas about it (e.g. violence verses non-violence, "Cascadia" verses something else, etc.). Personally, I prefer to have something that brings government as far down to the local communities as possible; hopefully as a whole bunch of sovereign tiny little nations that work together in some sort of alliance. However I would be happy with a "Cascadia" also, because the visions I have heard generally are in align with providing more local control and respect for our different cultures.

The land isn't ours. It belongs to the native people. 23.Nov.2004 23:59

haha

Define "native". Are we using this term as in 'born and raised', or 'native' as in racially 100% Native American with not even a 64th or 128th part white man or other race?

Considering the ratio of full blooded Native Americans to Native Americans that have intermingled with other races, saying the land belongs to "the native people", is a bit like pooping out of ones mouth. The world isn't black and white and furthermore, lumping all native peoples into one group is also pretty silly, considering how much they differed from each other.

I for one was born and raised in the NW and I've traveled extensively throughout the United States. When I'm outside the NW, I feel like I'm in a foreign country, a very retarded foreign country.

I don't want to be an American anyway, it's embarrassing.

>>>>response to above points 24.Nov.2004 11:21

moth

1. Our history books say that my ancestors came to this land, found that others already lived here, and treated them in a brutal, horrible way. Stole the land, suppressed those people, and established their culture to form this country. Other historical evidence that was NOT in my history books indicates things were even more brutal. Look in those history books and other historical research for the details.

>>>> Yes. Recommend Ward Churchill's "Little Matter of Genocide" and Jack forbes for accurate detailed info.

2. It isn't real clear who the first people who settled on this land were, as indicated by a previous poster.

>>>>No. Anthropological evidence indicates North America was populated by numerous people from many diverse tribal lineages. The time frame is from 10,000 to 400,000 years ago, possibly longer. These were the first people, not Columbus and the colonialist Europeans. The Vikings may have visited New Foundland earlier, mostly for trade interactions, they didn't stay very long.

3. That all happend before I was born, and I am sure before you were born. We cannot take responsibility for it. We can only deal with the residue left behind.

>>>>No. The benefits you have today as a Euroamerican are a result of the genocide, slavery and forced relocation of these first peoples by European settlers. Even today, Dineh (Navajo) people suffer from cancer as a result of recent uranium mining on their land. Radioactive dust from uranium mining blows into the food needed by Dineh for survival. The nuclaer weapons that kill Iraqis so we Americans can have easy access to petroelum comes from minerals under the feet of Dineh homes..

more info;

 http://arizona.indymedia.org/news/2004/11/23306.php

4. There is residue left behind, as expressed in the frustrations of others' posts. Quite frankly I am not an expert on Native American peoples and their struggles so let's just refer to those other posters for more details.

>>>>No. Pick up a book and read 4 yourself. See above authors for start.

5. To approach one group of us, and say "hey, I have learned from our history books that, before either of us were born, your ancestors took this land from my ancestors, and were brutal and my life is difficult because of it; therefore, this land is ours and not yours and you do not belong here" is, quite bluntly, hypocracy. Personally, I was born here (well, Eugene at least) and have every right to live here and call it my home, just as you do, in spite of anything our historical records tell us about what happened before we were born. (I am also of european descent, and have ancestors that activiely participated in that brutality.) To say otherwise is to continue on with the mentality that drove the previous movements of societal destruction.

>>>>No. You aren't being asked to leave, just show some respect to the people who were here before us and continue to suffer at the hands of the ruling elite corporatists (mostly Euroamericans besides Queen Rice). Sovereignty and returning land (mostly in the hands of corporations) to the first people is the least we can do to show some concern for how they were/are treated by Euroamerican colonialism..

6. If we are going to point to one subgroup of us and start asking "where were you when we were struggling with this?" etc., we could all point to each other with endless such questions and get nowhere. For example, where were you when the homeless teenager in downtown Portland (who ran away to escape an abusive household) could not find a warm place to sleep last night? (Where was I?) Nobody can address all problems in this world so it is ridiculous to blame someone for not being there for some specific problems.

>>>>Nobody blames you for not having solved the world's problems. Do something everyday to educate yourself or others about returning native land or sovereignty. Just by talking about it, u bring it to the public eye/ear that is normally deaf to anything but mindless consumption..

**** Start of the point I am trying to make:

Instead of focusing on the past, we ought to be focusing on where we are now ("we" includes all of us, whether your are a "native american", "white european descendent", or one of the many other groups), and what we can do to make our lives (all of our lives) better.

Personally I would like to see a lot of those oppressed cultures from our past captured.

>>>>Huh? Captured? Put in museums or prisons (too many already are)? There are living people who ask for respect, not capture. Poor choice of words?

All of our various past cultures are treasures as we explore and discover who we are and what we are about or what we want to be. I would like to see ALL of use well represented by the type of society we create.

>>>>Yes. We can all learn from one another, but showing some respect to the indigenous people is a priority. Euroamericans are already overrespresented in this society, while Native Americans are marginalized..

If we start looking for ways to divide ourselves, such as native american verses european descendents, liberal verses conservative, christian verses non-christian, gay/bi verses trans verse straight, etc., then WE ALL LOSE. If we find our common ground, realize our collective society is disfunctional, and band together, hand-in-hand, to create something that better represents us all, then WE ALL WIN.

>>>>Yes. Polarization is a big problem, and to touch on the other poster, many people are of mixed heritage (Native and European/African/Asian/etc.). This doesn't change the fact that many people of mostly indigenous bloodlines still are mistreated by the colonialist mindset, and people of mostly European bloodlines still benefit from the colonialist mindset. To address this without polarizing the issue is like walking a tightrope, but we need to address the imbalance before we can achieve the balance you desire for common ground..

a break 24.Nov.2004 22:44

-_o

It is time for a break from the crimes that have led to the social injustices on this contintent. It is time to recognize the Amerikan history is a list of hate crimes in the name of religion, race, gender, economic philosophy and many other systems of power. Cascadia can be that break! We all must see to that. A brave new time in a land of great new possiblities. A world where our ancestory is not determined by our lineage, but by honoring of all those of the past. A land where forgetting or hiding of the past is as much a crime as those acts perpetrated. Cascadia can not be the dream of one people, but must be the working vision of all people. Cascadia must be the synthesis of all worlds and yet something new and ancient at the same time. We talk of the injustices of the past in this forum blaming every group for the past. And it is true there was great injustices that must be addressed. Where in these posts do I see comments that Tom DeLay and his friends right now rob Native People in Texas within this Amerikan Empire? Today the Indiginous People, African Americans, Euro-Americans, Asian Americans and all people marginalized suffer from this Amerikan Empire. And those are just he people on this land mass. The Amerikan Empire along with the other nation states has become as one of the great dangers to the planet as a living organism. A Cascadia with the other blue states partitioned from a global power would break that empire. The secession of California or the East Coast alone would break the Amerikan Empire. Secession might not stop the cancer of human aggression on itself and the planet as a whole, but it might be an announcement to all humans that we must change the way we think and the way we act. That we must break down the systems that have supported the social injustices. A global empire dismantled by its own people would give the world population notice that it is time to reevaluate who we are and where we are going as a species on a dying planet.





that Tom DeLay story
Congressman Ney is at center of influence peddling scandal
Friday, November 19, 2004
 http://www.cleveland.com/news/plaindealer/index.ssf?/base/news/110086059240890.xml

Those who do not learn from history will be enchaned by it 14.Dec.2004 13:54

xenopatriot

There has always been injustice in the world. Some have benefited from the suffering, death, and impovrishment of others. So be it. It happened. It is past. What matters is changing the world AS IT IS TODAY, making a better tomorrow. To focus on the injustices of the past diverts our attention from what we can and should improve TODAY. Oppression is color blind, no one race can claim to be entirely innocent. To focus on the past and quarrel about retroöactive justice is just what those who profit from fascism want us to do. In-fighting and self-castrating (or is that too sexist a term) are the most potent weapons in thier arsenal, when we argue these unanswerable questions instead of striking out into the world and making a change, no matter how small or seemingly ineffectual, we play into the hands of those who oppose us and make mockery of our own principles. Racism is a problem created less by history than by a sad, misquided veiw of humanity, the ever-present urge to divide and conquer. A Cascadia truly free would be free of rascism, just as it would be free of religious and political intolerance. Otherwise we just recreate the same problems we are trying to solve. We must see beyond the political, racial, and assorted other "issues" that divide us and realise that it is the system in which we live that breeds oppression, not just simple sloganeering and villiany on the part of people who espouse different than our own. Freedom is either universal or nonöexistant. Either we let the "other" believe as he, she, or it will, and hence make our freedom universal, or we deny the other his freedom of thought and conscience and make vile hypocrasy of our own.