“Much can be understood about a people by understanding the condition of the land on which they live. Here in the West, the United States specifically, much of the land is occupied with city-scapes, factory farms brutalizing livestock, monoculture farms impoverishing the soil, fast food complexes leaving populations malnourished, malls carrying clothing made by exploited factory workers overseas, department and grocery stores housing our food and living supplies, pharmacies and hospitals handling our medicines and employing our healers, these systems and industries, almost always showing as unsustainable. One may look at our particular landscape and understand just how estranged we are from it, having replaced a meaningful, reciprocal relationship to the ground, with a system of convenience, all made possible at the expense of an oppressed and impoverished “other”. It feels safe to say that the convenience of it all, of being a people that are fed, medicated and otherwise provided for by post-colonial, systematic and institutionalized means, has left us, if we consider it honestly, without dignity and otherwise disabled—having no knowledge of how to teach, nourish, heal or clothe ourselves without the aid of such a system.
Winona LaDuke, Native activist, writer, environmentalist and economist, quotes her father in many of her lectures as saying, “Winona, I don’t want to hear your philosophy if you can’t grow corn.” In one of her talks, she goes on to say, “Isn’t that an interesting thing to say? But he’s right. You can talk about talking about it. But let us hope that we can do something good.” It is easy for me to sit here and talk about decolonizing myself, yet what is more difficult is putting it into action and still, it is my hope...”
One of our favourite human beings is moving to Tanzania to live in community with us and to join our work with After Trade. The above excerpt is lifted from her GoFundMe page (you’ll want to visit her page to read it in its entirety). We are grateful to have Taylor be part of this and fortunate to have her wisdom as we move forward in our work here. With just Steven and myself, there is a good chance we’ll do what we’ve set out to do, and it will be meaningful. But having another like-minded, but different person join the mix will take this work further than we could on our own.
Her GoFundMe goal is quite small as she is only attempting to raise the funds needed for her plane tickets. Obviously, the sooner she can get these purchased, the better. We would be so grateful if you’d consider giving.