Monday, July 29, 2013

Tlahtolli Tonatierra: The American Dream and the Roots of Ancestral Reality

Phoenix, Aztlán (where the spirit of truth lives)

I have heard comments about the young "dreamers" who gave themselves up at the Nogales Arizona border. They left Mexico to ask for humanitarian aid after having lived in Mexico. In Mexico they were treated like bastards by a system that knows how to eject, but does not know how to integrate its population. One of the commentators called them, “twice illegal by their own choice.”

Historical ignorance is surprising on both sides of the border. On the one hand the "dreamer’s" movement insists on calling themselves, "undocumented and unafraid," and on the other hand many accept the designation of 'illegal,' even if they claim not to be afraid. We tried to teach them with adobes dating around 800 to 900 years; that our documents are in those bricks, in the cave paintings, in our own DNA, testifying that our ancestors were here before national borders were imposed by sick minds contaminated by the search for power and possession.

However, the historical truth does not fit into the "talking points" of a political campaign whose sole aim is reform, not correcting historical atrocities. Dreamers want to be accepted within the same system that spits them out, criminalizes them, and denigrates them. Some will say that what matters is that the system accepts them so they may be able to work and be useful to society for their own good, their families, and the same system that refuses to accept them. It is the same argument used by the Spaniards to force us to accept the Encomienda system and the psychological control instruments it developed. One of the most famous instruments was the  “Right of First Night,” (Derecho de Pernada). For those who don't know, the right of Pernada is the right of the landowner to enjoy the first night with the peon’s bride, the second day she was given back to the boyfriend. The reasoning was the divine right of kings and to  improve the blood quantum of the peon class.  The main reason was to exercise absolute dominion over their peons who at that time were 100% indigenous to these lands.

Today, disguised with laws, the right of the Pernada continues. Sheriff Arpaio continues symbolically exercising the right of Pernada by arresting the husband or the wife at will. But even worse, unconsciously dreamers for the most part want to be accepted by Uncle Sam, the stepfather of the American plantation which continues to reject his stepchildren, calling them illegal. In the confused politics of the modern Pernada, Uncle Sam keeps using indigenous labor but is willing to recognize only those who abhor their indigenous past and beg for citizenship as legitimate sons of Uncle Sam. But those who refuse to call themselves "illegal,"  those who reclaim their ancestral rights to the land, air, water, fire, and  right to travel freely like it was done prior to the invasion of our lands, will be rejected. The sad thing is that the rejection is not only by Uncle Sam, but also by dreamers who prefer to play along calling themselves illegal immigrants. Even if they aren't afraid to be illegal, they are still afraid of their own identity. They are afraid of their indigenous brothers who tell them. "We are not immigrants, we are not illegal, we are not criminals, we are original peoples, and we are indigenous workers."
The "dreamers" assimilationist strategy may be successful. Possibly it could take them to “The White House" the same way as Barack Obama became president. Perhaps, even brown skin color will become acceptable in the United States and around the world. But the cultural, spiritual, genocide by the plantation slave owners that changed us, our identity, will steal from us our freedom forever. We, the original peoples of Abya Yala, have the ancestral right to travel and to live throughout the continent. We do not have an obligation to accept foreign identities that identify us as 'illegal,' "undocumented", or even "immigrants." We did not come from other lands. We did not cross the ocean. We have lived, traveled and practiced our spiritual rites throughout the continent since time immemorial. In my humble opinion, the dreamers movement needs to awake from the  illegal and undocumented nightmare to return to the ancestral roots that have nourished us over time to survive from the Encomienda until the national borders imposed by the invader.

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