Yesterday I wrote about umair haque’s article We’re Losing the Battle for the Future because I believe he accurately lays out where we are at this moment. And, more importantly, has some suggestions about what we can do. As does the excerpt below from the report of the Peace and Social Concerns Committee of Iowa Yearly Meeting (Conservative).
It’s true that the past was backwards. Our civilisation’s was. Slavery, empire, Inquisition. But there is a healthy respect, too, for a deeper past. The way that indigenous peoples have far more sophisticated ethical notions than ours, ones of interdependence with nature. Or the way that their societies were often far more consensual and nonviolent than ours, too.
We need to go back, probably, to go forward. The future isn’t a thing we can make with machines. Our mistake, our undoing. The future needs to carry forward what’s good in the past, what’s true, what’s beautiful, and keep on doing it. We didn’t do that. We gave up the old ways — the really old ones. The ones which would have said that taking a life, even a little one, without thanking it, without grieving for it, brings shame. Or the ones which would have been repelled and sickened in their souls by the idea of ripping down a forest or polluting an ocean.
Our ancestors are ashamed of us, my friends. We are the people who disgraced the past, to create a myth called “the future.” That myth failed because there was no soul in it, no depth, no humanity. It was a vision of power, control, slavery, and violence, if we strip the gloss away. Machines — or subhumans — doing the work we didn’t want to do, so we could gorge ourselves into oblivion, instead of grappling with the big, beautiful, dangerous questions of being alive, existing, feeling, being connected, here, now on a tiny ball of dust, spinning through the darkness. The meaning and purpose and truth and beauty of it all. What kind of creepy way of life is that? Is that even living much at all?We’re Losing the Battle for the Future | by umair haque | Jul, 2021 | Eudaimonia and Co (eand.co)
These injustices are some of the effects of systems of white supremacy. The concept of Mutual Aid is becoming an increasingly used model for communities working for justice. The idea is to have a horizontal hierarchy, where everyone has a voice. And work to ensure a vertical hierarchy does not develop. Without a vertical hierarchy, there can, by definition, be no superiority. Several of our meetings are supporting existing Mutual Aid communities or considering creating their own. These are opportunities to begin to disengage from the colonial capitalist system and white supremacy. Ways we can model justice in our own meetings and communities.
We can show up for Black Lives Matter and other racial justice events. We can support those who meet with local, state, and Federal government officials. We can show up in the streets to support agitation for change, train in nonviolent civil disobedience, or accompany arrested activists through the justice system.
We can show up, when appropriate, at events of Native peoples, such as the Prairie Awakening ceremony. We can share Indigenous news on social media platforms, so others are aware of these things.
Indigenous leaders in the Midwest have asked us to learn about and find ways to engage in the concepts of Land Back. The website LANDBack Friends has been created and will be updated as our work continues. https://landbackfriends.com/Peace and Social Concerns, Iowa Yearly Meeting (Conservative) 2021