Land And Labor Acknowledgement
I live on the ancestral homelands of yak titʸu titʸu yak tiłhini (ytt) or “The People of the Full Moon,” the indigenous tribe of Northern Chumash people who represent a greater than 13,000 year old unbroken chain of lineage, kinship, and culture in a place now known as San Luis Obispo on the Central Coast of California on the western edge of the North American Continent.
I offer gratitude for the courage, determination and resilience of the elders, both past and present who have stewarded this land throughout the generations despite structural attempts of elimination, land theft, enslavement, forced labor and systemic disruption of culture, language and family formation through the California Mission System. I pay my respect by way of monthly land tax payment and encourage direct giving to the ytt as a recognition of access and as a way to contribute to reparations for the theft of this land. I stand with the ytt in their tireless advocacy to achieve designation of the Chumash Heritage National Marine Sanctuary to instill critical protections for both people and the planet.
I acknowledge that much of what we enjoy of this country including the infrastructure, culture, cuisine and economy was build off the stolen lives and legacy of forced labor, chattel slavery and extraction from enslaved Africans and Black people whos bodies were brutally exploited for generations. I recognize this nation continues to profit financially from the exploitation of the descendants of enslaved Africans and egregious extraction from stolen Indigenous homelands. We are indebted to their unwilling suffering and sacrifice and I acknowledge the resulting intergenerational trauma from that violence that still reverberates throughout our nation to this very day.
I also acknowledge the legacy of bound labor of Pacific Islanders and Chinese peoples in the state of California who’s lives this nation owes a debt to, specifically in the building of railroads in this region of California.
Recognizing my responsibility to do more than acknowledge this history, I affirm my commitment to work for justice, examine and interrupt systems of oppression and work for liberation for all.