The actions taken at the 3rd Annual Unis’tot’en Action Camp with allies (Indigenous and Non-Indigenous) brought together Indigenous Laws from the Unis’tot’en from the get go. The Free Prior & Informed Consent Protocol outlined how each ally would share in the responsibilities with the Unis’tot’en leading them and showing them Wet’suwet’en Laws. The dialoguing and strategies connected many related efforts that the colonizing invasion of the planet to the issue of how Unis’tot’en seek to stop the genocidal consensus on their homelands. The solidarity was shown from everyone from then on out involving discussions of everyone’s’ experiences with environmental racism and the hope involved in building solidarity and common culture of resistance. The uncompromising stance of the many who attended, along with the warrior spirit, and beginning with the launch of peaceful resistance, while not bending or shying away from direct action brought a camaraderie that will continue to build.
Decolonization in Indigenous Circles, Anarchist Movements, and Uncompromising Grassroots Movements combined ideologies to begin outlining how solidarity can improve, take seriously commitments built at events hosted by these movements, and even seeing the pathways that yield the most impactful solidarity relationships and commitments. The dialogues that took place between groups who hadn’t worked together before, and seeking trust as well as staying power was the best outcome from this camp.
The Unis’tot’en showed by example, what their laws on the land can bring in terms of abundance, but not at the expense of the natural world around them. The greatest law they asserted while present with the campers was their love and respect for each other while on the land. Their ancestors speak through them from the lands and waters. The biodiversity we are all a part of speaks through the elders and chiefs’ actions. Their respectful harvest and hunts of the biodiversity speaks to the future generations, that this is what it means to be Wet’suwet’en, this is what it means to be Unis’tot’en, this is what is expected of all who live here in the territories. There is a law of the land. Toghestiy, Freda Huson, Mel Bazil, Molly Wickham, Cody Merriman, Jennifer Wickham, members from the Ewh Ayowh Hozdli Dance Group Coop, and the Elders present, along with Indigenous Allies from delegations, showed by example what Indigenous allies need in terms of building resistance that can truly benefit all allies from all walks. Toghestiy gave presentations regarding cultural heritage, and warriorism. Allies who represented delegations from other impacted Indigenous Communities also presented on the importance of family, defending land and responsibilities, and the warrior spirit.
The uncompromising allies gave workshops also, from Forest Action Network and WildCoast, Deep Green Resistance, Warrior Societies, and Anarchist Communities. Oil Sands Truth dot Org also worked along with Mel Bazil, in a workshop regarding Offsetting Carbon, Boreal, and Biological Offsetting, and how that all relates to the Pacific Gateway or BC’s Economic Plan. The connections made were presented that the conglomerated attempt of big industry makes for a different need for amped up resistance. The plan was also paralleled with Plan Du Nord in Quebec. Ruckus Society made another supportive presentation and group sessions with the NVDA’s trainings. Not all the available workshops were delivered as the camp took a life of it’s own as usual. This means next chance the camp can happen, or more of them per year, the camp can honour plans from this camp and it can be acknowledged that informal discussions regarding the content of planned workshops were still part of the many good discussions if not formalized in a workshop format that could have been delivered and so the strengths were still offered and received.
The Race Relations workshop was grueling as challenging privilege and yet acknowledging the roles that still need to be fulfilled by allies was a risk everyone needed to be willing to take. The fallout that normally accompanies such a challenge was still worth it, as the allies who understood the challenge, didn’t take it as a personal attack, but shared the common struggle as human beings, and learned that we can conduct critique, challenge or confronting the issues that affect us all, and then follow up with a creative process to continue to build allies. Allies who know themselves are highly valuable as building peace and keeping peace requires relationships. Relationships are longer term and more fulfilling for all when the knowledge of self is stronger. For that matter, hope is stronger also.
Future Generations were present in spirit and physically. The youth and children brought a stronger sense of responsibilities. Not only security wise, but health wise, future living conditions was the key. Our generation is not only leaving behind with them a world they need to be able to operate in with their intact cultures and relationships with the world around them, but also with the struggles and resistance we are building. They are depending on us today to provide them a model to live by for maintaining peace, keeping responsibilities to the world around them so their actions also will not be at the expense of others the world over.
Commitments were dialogued and are too many to example on this blog. You all know who you are and what you spoke clearly of your steps you’ll take next. We also know what we have to do. Building relationships in terms of how our collective ways of living are what’s standing in the path of destructive policy and activities. Ways of living that are truly sustainable for life, not only for sustaining industry and civilization’s growth.
The camp will continue being committed to the healthy biodiversity, cultural diversity, and future generations. All who attended or supported from afar, were part of that and have a lot to be proud of. For those who missed, you will get your chance to support some grassroots initiatives whether here at Unis’tot’en Camp or another initiatives like it somewhere nearby. I ask of you to take that opportunity when you can and make it stronger as we are one of many grassroots Indigenous movements requiring support and solidarity. May all our actions from here on out, continue to speak louder than words.
Sne Kal Yegh all of you…
From the Unis’tot’en Camp and the Lhe Lin Liyin…