Indigenous Peoples Day Reflections

Tiny - Posted on 22 October 2019

On Monday October 14, 2019 it was the annual indegoous peoples day. So Decolonize Academy went to the sunrise ceremony at 5:00 am to be part of the dance. We waited in the cold for about 2 hours until we were able to dance. In the dance there were many chiefs, drummers and dancers. It was cool to see everyone in their trajes and all the different groups. Something I noticed was that there were more tourists than the other times I used to go. 
I never thought that in all my years of going there I would end up being one of the danzantes I would always see. The cold and the tiredness both felt nostalgic. Memories came swimming back into my head and for the two hours wait I was just remembering so many old friends and people I would always see. Once it was time to dance I was reading to go out there and try to do the least mistakes as possible.
- Akil
Being cold was something I vividly remember about this morning, yet there was much more to Alcatraz than that. We left my house at 2:30 in the morning, and me being completely exhausted slept through the entire ride of picking up all of my fellow Deecolonize Academy students up. The day is October 14, 2019, and it is this year's Indigenous Peoples Day. Most of America knows it as Columbus Day, the glorious day that a colonizer "discovered" America, but us indigenous people know it as the day to honor all of our ancestors who were killed by the ones being honored by the rest of America. 
We went to Alcatraz Island in the San Francisco bay as we do every year to honor and also celebrate this day of triumph and survival of our people. We are apart of the aztec dance group Calpulli Coatlicue and we brought prayer in the form of a danza sunrise ceremony. I noticed that there were more people here than last year, and I wondered why but was too tired to inquire further. Almost all of the Park Rangers of Alcatraz looked like Terminators. The sky felt soft to the touch, yet wet somehow, almost as if it was crying for its people.                  
- Tibu

Today me my classmates went to Alcatraz to celebrate Indigenous People's day, not columbus day because he was a lie. Indigenous People's day  was in San Francisco at a prison that is no longer a prison anymore. I woke up at 3;27 because we start when the sun rises.

The whole event was about the people and our danza to bless the day and send our energy to the Indigenous people today all over the earth. Danza is a spiritual dance that calls our ancestors and heals mama earth and that what me and my classmates did today. 

- Amir





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