My great grandfather was murdered in front of his son because he told a big successful company in San Diego they couldn’t have his land. It was rightfully his land, he lived on it, he built a house for his family on it, he grew crops, he raised animals; he was a successful Kumeyaay man.
His children were then split apart and put into the boarding schools, his wife was sent to Mexico and all record of her disappears. The youngest child was adopted into a white family, further erasing my culture and language, and the son that watched the men from the Edison company stab his father to death was sent to a reform school up in Northern California where he was killed by the kids within 6 months of his arrival. His remains are still at the school and will never be returned home for proper burial. The other remaining kids were split among the reservations, which has caused some of my cousins to not learn my language, while some have learned the northern dialect and further causes a contradiction within our oral history and makes communication harder.
Further more 1 in 3 Native women will be sexually assaulted in her life. I’d like to point out (since you’re so upset by my white guilt) that most sexual assaults on Native women are performed by non-Natives. We also have a high rate of domestic violence, which is a direct result from the boarding school system in which the founding motto was “Kill the Indian, save the Man”, and was to reform all Native children in the system to act and behave like whites. Prior to the boarding schools there was no form of physical punishment within my tribe.
Did your great grandfather deal with this kind of racism? Did he deal with colonialism that ripped his land away from him, literally beat his native tongue out of him, took his culture, and forced his tribe into slavery to build a Mission? Did he have his stories passed down from many, many generations by skilled story tellers only to be replaced by Catholicism or Christianity? Were his children taken from him and put into schools to be beaten until civilized? Does your family now live on left over land that is virtually impossible to live on, while white people still squat on portions of it?
Does your ethnicity get misrepresented by media causing your own country to only believe racist caricatures of your people? Is your collective culture still disrespected after 500 years of survival by bratty little teenagers who think “Native culture” is beautiful? And when you speak up about it do white people tell you to stop complaining?
Do you have representation in government? (We hardly do) Does your country recognize your rights and that your people still exist? Is your history in your textbooks?
My life could definitely be worse, and I’m fortunate it’s not. Despite being a victim of abuse, seeing my friends kill themselves over racism and apathy, having gone to multiple funerals before I was 15, get picked on all throughout school because of how poor I was or how dirty I sometimes showed up, have children call my family lazy drunks, go to a now-reformed boarding school where I got to see headstones of my family, I have a good life.
But don’t you ever compare your great grandfather’s racism to my family’s. Because chances are your great grandfather was never murdered because society thought he was less than human.
I’m not here to push white guilt on people, and I do my best not to put blame on the entire world’s population of white people or say I hate them. My reasons for posting videos and photos and articles of the racism and ignorance we deal with to this day is to open at least someone’s eyes that we still exist and the cultural genocide is still not over. If you feel like I’m pushing white guilt on you, then take a moment to think about why you feel guilty.