I would like to share with you this wonderful poem created by Chad Charlie of the Ahousaht Nation. ?úl-nú-msh-chálap Chad, I raise my hands to you!
I am indigenous.
I am the first people you see when you discover a new land.
I am the squatter who lived here before any of these new plans.
I am the savage who fought for the sake of my family.
I am the beast that you patriotically killed randomly.
I am the disease infested Injin that accepted your sickness filled blankets.
I am the unreligious devil who worshipped my god but represented satan.
I am the drunk laying on the corner, but yet I don’t drink.
I am the university studying lawyer, but yet I don’t think.
I am the worthless orphan left in foster care away from my culture.
Many of my people wanted to adopt me but I was fed to the vultures.
I am the residential school survivor that was stripped of my bogus traditions.
I am the chief of my people but yet, I belong in prison.
I am the mascot of your sports teams, And the names of your cities.
I am the non-existing parasite that you apologize to out of pity.
I am the one who taught you to harvest and to use natures medicine.
But I am also the one who has yet to come up with an invention.
My intentions were to kill you, rape your wives and enslave your children.
Only to assimilate you so you can become regular civilians.
I speak in my language that you recognize as dumb.
I am the crazy person because I don’t speak in tongue.
I am your spirit guide, I am open for prayer. But I am also available when you want to speak to a bear.
I am the old Indian ghost on whose grave you live.
I am the cartoon character that you portray to little kids.
I am your Apache helicopter and your Jeep Grand Cherokee.
And apparently I’m a float in your parade when you feel like staring at me.
I am an Indian giver, I take things back when I like.
I am your ironically cold-blooded indigenous stereotype.