Originally posted on Míle Gaiscíoch:
The lands and waters of the Northeast Pacific Rim are a colony. This was not always so. Colonization began in the late 18th century and has continued unabated to the present day, as the centralization of power continues to be concentrated into a disembodied abstraction called Capital. Prior to colonization, power was balanced throughout the many Nations here, each with their own decentralized network of autonomous clans, bands, villages, and families. At that time, the epistemological separation between the Land and the People was contradictory to the cultures here, and it was exactly this division that the colonizers came here to enact in order to replace laws of relationship and reciprocity with resource extraction to feed the growth of Capital. This process has turned living communities into dead commodities through the imposition of a culture of occupation1, and despite the many successful acts of defense and restoration within these watersheds, this ongoing destruction is, overall, in a process of intensification, both locally and globally.
That being said, the realization of the unsustainability of this dominant culture of occupation has occurred to many of us by now, and the hope and fear of systems collapse is beginning to be felt deeply in our hearts and in our bones. In this context, it is good that so many of us are ready and eager to actualize the process of decolonization. But what does that mean for each of us as individuals and communities, and what does this mean for the Land?