Ancestral Pride: Funding For Frontlines
by Ancestral Pride, February 2016
THIS IS A FACT and if you feel I’m lacing your shoes about this than so be it and be laced, but do something to change it and please don’t get pissy or defensive or at least not to me, talk to your friends or peers about it and than plan and organize around funding the frontlines and not the (e)NGO’s. We run many different campaigns for funds and so do our very solid resistance Fam, when we say we need help many people cant wait to chime in on social media and say: “how can I support, solidarity, I stand with you, I will help in anyway I can” etc; but when it comes to money it’s crickets time and suddenly no one is loud and proud about helping us. Solidarity in the form of money somehow is seen as us being colonized or asking for hand outs.”Those natives always seem to want something! Doesnt their bands help them? Its not my responsibility to give them money. Don’t they have any gumption to get money themselves?”
Y’all think we don’t know these thoughts and worse run through your minds every time we share a campaign? We do because we think the same things ourselves, we doubt our validity and others perceptions and lateral violence contributes to this unease, like we are not valid and if we really truly loved the Mother Earth we wouldn’t need money we would just do it. BUT we can’t do it both ways and neither can you, you can’t say you support indigenous land defenders and yet not contribute financially to our struggle, it’s either we do this work and be insanely poor and have to overcome so many hurdles to just even be “active” (which is what we do anyways) or we get jobs to survive and be ineffective.
Indigenous resistance and protecting our lands and waters is a full time job, doing it with no compromise and on our terms, and in our ways is beyond activism or protesting it’s literally life. A life of resistance and standing up for and fighting for our rights, this means we need support all the time because we are under assault after assault continuously. There is no break and we always striving to be effective AND feed our families AND decolonize AND maintain our households AND parent AND be in relationships AND better our communities AND campaign AND organize AND attend gatherings AND and and and…
and I see fundraiser pages for high profile murdering racists getting thousands upon thousands of dollars, dogs and cats getting upwards of $20,0000 among the other things people donate to, I am shocked appalled and saddened that we the indigenous people working so hard get so little. So when you see us asking for for funds for our lives in resistance please sign up and donate monthly, many people read my ally zines (which btw are not just for white settlers but poc and other natives too) and yet still don’t grasp this concept. I know not many people just haven’t thought about it that way yet personally (now you have, your welcome) the fact remains yes YOU can do this and make a difference.
Indigenous land defenders need better and more consistent support. (E)NGO’s like Sierra club, Greenpeace, Friends of Clayoquot, Tides, Climate Action Network, David Suzuki foundation, Wilderness Committee, and on and on down to Clayoquot Action get monthly donators in the hundreds and thousands to run and maintain websites and offices and travel and support causes and run their own campaigns. We do not have offices or access and so every zine you read, every time we attend an event, and when we are organizing this is all coming out of our time. We have to ask these orgs to use their offices and paper and networks and other equipment to be effective. We need to get rid of the middle man, and be our own offices and resources. Do you know how humiliating it is to have paid employees dole out money to you like a child? Or to see these organizations in your communities hiring other white people or poc instead of you for small contracts or pay for themselves to travel to gatherings you are invited to attend but cant because you are broke and have no travel support? Especially when your a person from the land and are in desperate need of funds to be a land defender? It is awful and we are all better than that tired old dynamic of white people giving us po’ natives charity in this way.
People happily volunteer their skills and time to this because they believe and they care and they want to help, now what if we decolonize your way of thinking in this manner and you started supporting Ancestral Pride monthly via automatic donation/debit/PayPal to us the grass roots dirt poor land defenders, those of us living on the frontlines and already engaged in doing this work? What if you believed in us and what we do so much you invested in us, so we could live and this work wouldn’t be such a hustle and a drain and a stress on our spirits? The fact of the matter is money is the best solidarity and your physical presences is the second best, and your volunteer time is the third, and way down there somewhere at the bottom is social media shout outs those are nice but ineffective and quite frankly you can do better and with real financial backing so we can we.
If the First Nations are the only way to save Mother Earth and ourselves and the animals and the land and waters from mining, fish farms, logging, LNG, tar sands, pipelines and all other threats than please put your money where your mouth is…
Ancestral Pride Sovereign Housing Project gofundme.com/m3a2w498
Kanahus Land Defender https://fundrazr.com/campaigns/f15sW6/sh/43Kwz5
To everyone who helps consistently you are the real MVP’s Most Valuable Person because without you all we would not have been able to do the work we do for the movement and the resistance!