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...people should have the right to be who they are and not what others tell them to be. All peoples should have a right to dignity and identity is an important part of this ideal.
Disadvantages faced by indigenous peoples are related to dispossession and exacerbated by powerlessness and poverty.
Fast-tracked development often means that indigenous people and their territories get run over and their rights are not taken into consideration.
I have a real problem when those people preferring to affirm an African or even a Spanish side to their history say that I can't affirm who I am as an indigenous person, as though everybody else is entitled to be who they are on our ancestral homeland, except us.
The traditional homelands of the Taíno extend from the Caribbean islands to southern Florida. My family lineage is from Borikén (Puerto Rico) and I know that the loss of life people on the island suffered from Hurricane Maria was not simply the result of an extreme weather event. The casualties are also the result of the colonial legacy that includes racism and years of neglect.
The tweet by the Washington Redskins rings hollow to me. If the team was really interested in standing in solidarity for racial justice, they would change their name from the dictionary-defined racial slur they continue to use. As an indigenous person, I feel their tweet comes off as tone-deaf, not woke. Violence comes in many forms, some more subtle than others. Indigenous Peoples are not your mascots.
The [Columbus] statue is really a tribute to genocide, colonialism, religious intolerance, racism, gender violence, and white supremacy. There are mixed feelings among locals, but Taíno and other Indigenous peoples of Borikén [an Indigenous name for the island] would like to see it gone, as it is looked upon as an embarrassment.
To remain silent is to be complicit in the face of the increasing injustice, racism, xenophobia, and intolerance we are currently witnessing today.
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