Jesus fucking christ.
Stay with me folks. This is not pleasant, but you need to bear witness.
When I was young and in high school, I knew that there was a whites-only gang that was proud that their leader had a lamp made with Jewish skin from the Holocaust. The lamp was kept at the guy’s place in Simi Valley (Ventura County, California).
It was right now when I found out about a Methodist Bible with a cover of Lenape skin that held a place of honor in a college in Colorado.
Let me restate that. There is a Bible. Covered in human skin. The skin of a tribal member from a tribe that is still here, still strong. It came across my feed from a Lenape friend of mine. Can you even fucking imagine how that must feel?
And the college? They are still addressing the issue with the first open conference about the book being back in 2019. From the article attached: “In a 1934 story, The Rocky Mountain News called it “a priceless vestment for the teachings of brotherly love.””
Before you ever come at me re: white supremacy (“gee… are you sure you aren’t overstating this”), just remember this. The first conference about how to deal with a skin-covered book took place in 2019. Last year.
I have stories told to me of graves in Los Angeles of the locals dug up deliberately. The bones of grandmothers and great grandmothers crushed so some fuckwad could put up a subdivision. The city of Burbank wouldn’t negotiate with tribes for the longest time because, despite the fact that new sites were being dug up, they claimed “the damage was already done.” Too bad, so sad for the people watching family being desecrated without even a hope of being put peacefully somewhere else.
Sovereignity for the tribes now. The U.S. government needs to validate all of their broken treaties now. The state government needs to validate their broken promises now. The local government needs to return shit it openly stole from the locals now.
“Acknowledging the land” is meaningless if you don’t bring justice by your side.
Or do we want to be the kind of people who look at a skin-covered bible and say “hunh. Too bad this cover belonged to your family.”
Out there, in Simi Valley, is a lamp I heard about in the 1980s that I have no idea, as an adult, if it’s still sitting in someone’s home.
For you who identify as white, it will always be worse than you fucking imagine.