Indians counter ‘Occupy Wall Street’ with decolonize Wall Street

The stories keep coming out of New York City this week as Occupy Wall Street protesters continue to fill the famous street, crying out again economic inequality. The protesters have been standing on the street that they’re convinced have made billionaires out of a greedy few at the expense of many.
But did they all know they’re actually standing on land that actually belongs to the a host of First Nations peoples?
Here’s a very interesting take on occupation from ICTMN:
    The Occupy Wall Street movement has taken root across the nation. Organizers say protestors are drawing attention to the 1% of the population who have destroyed the country and its values through greed.While many people in Indian Country can sympathize with the protestors’ claims, there is also some growing criticism for the idea behind its name, which overlooks the first occupants of the Wall Street area. This has given rise to the response from Native bloggers and activists to not Occupy Wall Street but Decolonize Wall Street. “The ‘OCCUPY WALL STREET’ slogan has gone viral and international now. From the protests on the streets of WALL STREET in the name of ‘ending capitalism’—organizers, protestors, and activists have been encouraged to ‘occupy’ different places that symbolize greed and power. There’s just one problem: THE UNITED STATES IS ALREADY BEING OCCUPIED. THIS IS INDIGENOUS LAND. And it’s been occupied for quite some time now,” stated Jessica Yee (Mohawk), the executive director for The Native Youth Sexual Health Network, in a blog post originally posted on Racialicious. “I also need to mention that New York City is Haudenosaunee territory and home to many other First Nations, ” Yee wrote. Still, Yee clarifies that she supports the mission and integrity of Occupy Wall Street. “I’m not against ending capitalism and I’m not against people organizing to hold big corporations accountable for the extreme damage they are causing,” Yee wrote. “Yes, we need to end globalization. What I am saying is that I have all kinds of problems when to get to ‘ending capitalism’ we step on other people’s rights—and in this case erode Indigenous rights—to make the point.” Yee goes on to excerpt a blog post from “An Open Letter to the Occupy Wall Street Activist” published by JohnPaul Montano in Unsettling America: Decolonization in Theory & Practice. Montano describes himself on his Twitter account as a “Nishnaabe-language acquirer naïvely believing that multilingualism, JavaScript and respect for indigenous sovereignty lead to less crabbiness and more peace.” I hope you would make mention of the fact that the very land upon which you are protesting does not belong to you – that you are guests upon that stolen indigenous land. I had hoped mention would be made of the indigenous nation whose land that is. I had hoped that you would address the centuries-long history that we indigenous peoples of this continent have endured being subject to the countless ‘-isms’ of do-gooders claiming to be building a “more just society,” a “better world,” a “land of freedom” on top of our indigenous societies, on our indigenous lands, while destroying and/or ignoring our ways of life. I had hoped that you would acknowledge that, since you are settlers on indigenous land, you need and want our indigenous consent to your building anything on our land—never mind an entire society. The blog People of Color details the history of the occupation of Wall Street, in which enslaved African peoples constructed the wall “that barricaded the land white men had seized from native peoples.”
     from http://buffalopost.net/?p=16058

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