T. Lulani Arquette: Indigenous people can't forget their history

"Over the years, when discussing Indigenous history and many of the injustices perpetrated upon the Native peoples who populate what is now Hawai’i, Alaska and the continental U.S., I’ve often heard people say, “That’s history and things are better now” or “What’s [in the] past has passed; its time to move forward.”

I believe Native peoples have moved forward and are thriving in many instances. Cultures and languages are being strengthened, Native businesses and organizations are numerous, and a path has been laid for a whole new generation of tech savvy Indigenous leaders. There are Native lawyers, doctors, Ph.D.s, teachers, athletes, entertainers and artists.

It’s important to remember that our progress as Native peoples has been gradual and each generation is furthering the work of the last. Our progress is the culmination of 50 years of marches, protests and lobbying. My generation experienced the unrest of the late 60s and turbulent 70s. In the 80s and 90s, there were endless nights of deep discussion and debate about self-determination, Native rights, land and resource issues, and subsequent testimony and legislation."

Get the Story:
T. Lulani Arquette: Remembering Indigenous History: The Past Is Never Over (Indian Country Today 8/14)

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