Resolution in support of Amah Mutsun Tribal Band
by Elder Activists for Social Justice
of the Conscious Elders Network
We, Elder Activists for Social Justice of the Conscious Elders Network, stand with the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band of Costanoan Ohlone Indians in their efforts to protect their sovereignty, culture, lifeways, and sacred sites as well as the living Earth upon which we all depend.
As Elders, we respect and care for the interconnected, interrelated and interdependent community of Life. We advocate for ecological integrity, social, racial and economic justice and peaceful coexistence for all people, for all species, for all time. We raise our voices to protect our beautiful Mother Earth for the sake of our children, grandchildren, and future generations. We feel our moral responsibility to leave a thriving and healthy environment for our descendants. We stand in solidarity with all those on the frontline in the struggle for justice and Earth care.
As Elders, we recognize the escalating planetary crisis threatening our ecological and cultural well being as an inevitable consequence of humanity's lost reverence for life. We choose to reimagine the future, by merging the “told” history of the United States with the untold legacy of our indigenous ancestors, insights from all wisdom traditions, and the discoveries of modern science. In this way, we will revive our sense of kinship with life and Earth, inspiring us toward compassionate life-affirming activism. We honor the wisdom and spirituality of Original Peoples, committed to effective care for the Earth and its inhabitants.
In particular, we support the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band, whose stated vision is:
- To provide a hopeful and healthful future for our children
- To protect our sacred sites, our places of power, the resting places of our ancestors
- To secure access, to manage and to harvest the bounty of these lands that sustain our people spiritually and materially
- To regain our sovereignty and to exercise the right to not only be heard, but to affect decisions that affect our lands, our beliefs, our way of life—and to determine our own destiny as a community and culture
- To reunite our people with their land
Our tribe, which now owns no land within our traditional territory, draws a clear connection between today’s threats to sacred sites and the legacy of colonial violence our people have endured. “The destruction and domination of Amah Mutsun culture, spirituality, environment and people never ended,” Chairman Val Lopez states. “It just evolved to the destructive and dominating projects that we see today.”
Within our focus on social justice, we Elder Activists for Social Justice of the Conscious Elders Network, encourage each other to deepen our understanding of the sources of today's challenges, to shed our complicity, to ally with those who have suffered, and to do our part to change ourselves and the culture, so that Mother Earth and all her children of all her species can thrive again. We are examining how we have participated in the silences of our national narrative and exploring the various systems of domination and destruction that have persisted in our country and in our historical narratives.
In particular, we are committed to the telling of the true history of the California Missions and their effects on the California Native Peoples. When we look unflinchingly at the history of California, we learn that our early colonizers terrorized the ancestors of California's Original Nations and Peoples, which included the violent capture, enslavement, torture, rape as well as unhealthy diet and squalid living quarters that resulted in the death of an estimated 150,000 California Indians at the missions. This number includes thousands of women and children who died from syphilis and gonorrhea as a result of their sexual abuse. There was an unconscionable disregard of the humanity of Indigenous peoples, which sadly persists today.
Humbly, we elders are working to emerge from under the historical and current domination and extraction mindset, in order to bring about deep awareness, reconciliation, healing, and transformative change. We seek to stand in solidarity with the most impacted, their descendants and those on the frontlines and listen to their stories of suffering and endurance. We know that much is demanded of us at this time of ecological and human crisis. And we will use our moral voice to speak up and stand up for justice for our relatives and fellow kin.
Therefore, we offer this Resolution, on February 12, 2018, to stand with the Amah Mutsun Tribal Band in support of their children, their tribal sovereignty, natural resources, cultural heritage and sacred places.
One Earth. One Humanity. One Future.