Mondageesokwe ndizhnikaaz, Makwa ndodem, Odawa miinawa Ojibwe miinawa Bodewaadamie Anishinaabekwe miinawa Irish ndaw. Michiganing ndojeba.
I would like to make a heartfelt call out to my brothers and sisters here on Turtle Island, to wake up and rub the colonization from their eyes, to see past their nation-states they live under, to look past their ministries and BIAs and their Tribal Memberships. I would like to make a proposal to look past our borders, to do something, we as Anishinaabeg should have done back in the 1300s, before the newcomers came here... TO UNIFY. TO UNIFY ... TO UNIFY. TO UNIFY OUR FAMILIES, OUR BANDS, OUR CLAN SYSTEM ACROSS ANISHINABE AKIING TO RE LIGHT THE FIRE OF THE ANISHINABEG CONFEDERACY. TO RULE OURSELVES BY OURSELVES -- NOT THROUGH TRIBAL COUNCILS, BUT THROUGH TRADITIONAL CLAN CHIEFS --- TO GOVERN OURSELVES THROUGH OUR CLAN SYSTEM, TO WORK TOGETHER PAST THE STATE AND CANADIAN BORDERS TO WORK AS ONE NATION THE ANISHINABEG NATION- THE SOVEREIGN ANISHINABEG NATION.
I am not just speaking about a few tribes or bands, I am speaking of all of the Anishinaabeg peoples everywhere on Turtle Island, those in the United States on or off the reservations and all of the Canadian provinces. I am not calling for a dismantling of the system in place currently because lets face it, it would be a legal mess. However, unification of all the Anishinabeg peoples with a 2- part clan system council with 2 reps from each area one being a honorable man for men's council one being an honorable women for women's council, would be a place to start to make broad changes in both countries for the betterment of our people as a whole. Changes such as fights for Mother Earth - clean water/land/air, no fracking, treaty rights in both countries... a place to share tactical information, a place to learn from one another instead of recreating the wheel. We could band together for saving our language and sharing of resources for language renewal/revitalization and share the information with our people --- keep an open dialog always so all of our people have a say, and can share ideas and help shape the future for our grandchildren.
I realize there are several councils, committees and groups in place that deal with specific issues such as violence against women, gaming, care of the great lakes and fisheries, the one language conference... but the information from these groups does not always get shared across borders, to all of our communities on and off the reservations. A governing traditional clan council could better consolidate information and make it more available to all our families and communities. We could waste less time reinventing strategies, re - hashing issues and resolutions... we could resolve issues better this way.
We live in a global society, we cannot fight alone, we cannot fight nation -states nor mining nor corporate interests alone, we have to, we must band together to help one another, more than a few protests and teach ins, we should form the Anishinaabeg Confederacy with a council based on our clan system with representatives from each Anishinaabeg community on both sides of the American - Canadian border. We need to keep it traditional, we need to keep our leaders walking their talk, no politics here, no nepotism... this must be biimaadiziwin miikana. it must be and stay traditional.