When Europeans first stumbled upon Turtle Island there were 40 Million #Indigenous peoples speaking 1800 different languages. These societies had complex systems of mathematics, science, health & economy, all grounded in an understanding of the interconnectedness of all life.
At its height, the Maya civilization had a metropolitan centre with 60,000 unique structures spanning the area of New York City. They had the world's most advanced system of mathematics, the most accurate calendar, and systems of trade that extended to Ontario in the North.
In what is today Canada, complex Indigenous confederacies maintained huge territories, sustaining healthy and thriving populations with prosperous and sustainable economies and ecologies.
56 million Indigenous people were killed in the first century after contact on North, Central & South America. Death from disease, war, & colonial policies was accompanied by campaigns of cultural genocide grounded in Christianity & capitalism fueled by the Industrial revolution.
In Canada the Northwest Mounted Police were created to forcibly remove Indigenous children into residential schooling & to cull and confine the remainder of vast Indigenous nations onto reserves. A colonial system of band governance was created, and communities were missionized
After Indigenous nations helped England achieved military victory against their colonial counterparts, a promise was made to share territory and co-develop change across what would become Canada. The breaking of this promise has become synonymous with the creation of Canada.
Broken treaty promises, the conversion of residential schooling into mainstream child welfare, police violence, MMIWG, and the insidious domination of the Indian act have worked together to continue to enact the cultural genocide of Indigenous peoples.
Today Indigenous peoples represent the youngest, most diverse, and fastest growing population in Canada. We have not only survived, we are thriving. We are many colours, genders, spiritualities and cultures, all of us carrying our ancestors with us towards our restoration.
To me #CanadaDay2020 is a time to reflect on the collective work ahead of us as Indigenous peoples & allies. We will not be idle. No longer tolerate colonial violence or subjugation. Our intergenerational knowledge is the only path to saving this sacred planet from destruction.
THREAD CORRECTION: Thank you to everyone for the interest in this thread. I have learnt a lot through this engagement: 1) the map I showed is reductive & there are much betters ones shared in the comments; 2) there were 120 Million Indigenous peoples across Turtle Island in 1492.
Comments have been raised about the specifics of Indigenous technology and innovation, the extent of Indigenous warfare, and other matters. I will be responding to these discussions in a series of threads over the coming weeks. I look forward to the discussion with you all.
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