How many of us have been pondering dozens of what ifs since Donald Trump won the recent election? What if he continues with his rhetoric regarding climate change and ramps up the production of coal, off-shore oil, and fracking? What impacts will his choice have on the Lakota people and many other First Nations men and communities across the United States and Canada? What if he continues with his trajectory regarding the “wall” that he wants to erect along the USA-Mexico border? What impacts will his choice have on indigenous men who have been crossing that border to work for decades?
In this writer’s opinion, Donald Trump’s bombastic approach to business will need to be dialed down a few notches for him to represent his citizens and the needs of his country in a good way. When I listened to several Mr. Trump’s interviews over the years, what I heard was a man that needs you to lose for him to win. How does this philosophy work in the halls of government where people need to be heard and understood? I think not well at all. I think that if Mr. Trump does not change his approach he will have an enormous impact on indigenous men because this is not the way that Native Americans have been taught to communicate.
This is a good time to remember it was the Iroquois Confederacy that was the foundation for the Constitution of the United States! Why is it important to highlight this historical fact? Because the foundation of the Iroquois Confederacy which is made up of the six nations, made up of the: Mohawk, Oneida, Cayuga, Seneca, Onondaga and Tuscarora tribes, was based on the story of the Peacemaker who came to the people to communicate the important message to them around coexisting in a good way. He came because there was a lot of tension between the tribes. Specifically, he spoke of how important it was for the people to live together in love, peace and harmony; he put this forth in a set of laws for them to follow. A famous quote the comes from the Peacemaker is: “One body, one mind, and one heart”.
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