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Steven Newcomb: Our indigenous nations were never conquered

Filed Under: Opinion
More on: religion, sovereignty, steven newcomb
     
   

A still image from The Doctrine of Discovery Unmasking: The Domination Code, a documentary co-produced by Steven Newcomb.

Steven Newcomb (Shawnee / Lenape) of the Indigenous Law Institute explains why federal Indian law is built on a faulty premise that goes all the way back to the arrival of Europeans on Turtle Island:
Tens of millions of our ancestors were existing throughout this hemisphere west of Europe prior to the Christian invasion. When the invaders from Christendom sailed to our part of the planet, they immediately assumed that our ancestors and our nations were subject to their Christian European ideas.

Were our ancestors required by the invaders’ ideas to obey the invaders’ ideas? Based on what standard of judgment might we answer? On the basis of the invaders’ standards? Or shall we answer on the basis of our own standards? Given that our ancestors and our nations were living beyond the jurisdiction of Christendom prior to Christian invasion, it follows that our ancestors and our nations were also living rightfully free of the invaders’ jurisdiction, standards, ideas, and arguments.

Because our ancestors were living beyond the jurisdiction of Christendom, they were not subject to the ideas and arguments of the Christian invaders. Yet the original free status of our nations is not typically brought into focus because most of us have spent a lifetime internalizing the invaders’ ideas, perspective, and arguments without a desire to launch a direct challenge.

Read More on the Story:
Steven Newcomb: On Challenging the Ideas and Arguments of the Invaders (Indian Country Today 1/11)


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