Julianne Jennings: Idle No More movement spreads to Europe

Julianne Jennings on the impact of the Idle No More movement in Europe:
Knowledge of other cultures and social norms, opportunities to achieve fluency in a foreign language, art, music, food, insights into the socio-political nature of different governments support future positions of Native youth as cultural and social brokers for their tribes, or for others simply wanting to learn. No longer do we have to remain disgruntled with everything involving the white man. It’s time we move from civilization’s tools of divide and rule to a circle of equals, and seek up-lifting experiences to enrich our lives collectively.

It seems the popular protest movement Idle No More is doing just that. It has led to demonstrations across Canada and parts of the United States, and is now gaining support from grassroots organizations and individuals in Italy and France, and by extension, opportunity to reshape our cultural attitudes.

Spearheading this revolution is the Idle No More French Chapter, initiated by twenty-four year old, Anthony Shwartzmann, living in Dijon (France) with Mohawk grandparents from Louise Ville Canada (Quebec). Anthony has been given the green light and support from the Canadian Chapter. The movement right now has been joined by many French associations, including the French islands of Martinique and Guadeloupe in the Atlantic Ocean, and French Guyana in South America, supporting Native American issues and also providing help with school supplies and clothing to Indian reservations in the U.S. and Canada. Shwartzmann says, “I am happy that Europeans are beginning to take an interest in our culture, and the recent movement led by Chief Theresa Spence.”

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Julianne Jennings: Idle No More Spreads to Europe (Indian Country Today 3/19)

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