A Reflective Narration on Resistance, Oppression and Pride
May We End The Intrusion of Lesser Advanced Cultures
Resistance is a byproduct of oppression as well as a source of pride for the people of the region and all those seeking freedom and justice from their oppressors. Resistance doesn’t exist without oppression, but pride can exist by itself. Whether a nation has been battered and oppressed or not, it’s people may still have pride.
The history of the Americas, which is filled with open, violent struggle is a good example in which resistance to oppression arose as a source of pride. It didn’t take long for Native American pride to ante up in the Northern Hemisphere. Resistance to colonization began shortly after the arrival of Columbus when the aims of his expedition became clear. The story of the Northern Hemisphere is one of genocide of Indigenous people, from the very northern regions to the most southern, but also of the theft of land, the rape and the enslavement of people. Indigenous people faced continued aggression and attempts to wipe out their population, steal their land and push them off land they had inhabited since long before the first settlers arrived in North America. To put it simply, the U.S. was founded through the most extreme exploitation and trapped within its borders are nations of people, upon whose backs and from whose hard labor, the U.S. built its wealth and laid its foundation.
At first, the natives tried to peacefully resist their unwanted European settler’s ideals by defending based on using Indian identity, and their religion, as a way to resist conformity and spread values that can help reorder their society. Return to Native religion, as opposed to the reinvention of it, holds the key to using spirituality to fight oppression. The fact that traditional religious practices remain is a testament to the strength of the resistance put forth by the Native Americans. But when revolting peacefully and trying to see the dilapidated, tattered photograph of oppression through the coruscating, glistening magnifying glass of good intentions fails, one must resort to other means.
Of course there is no choice for the pride of oppressed people to risen a rage within them in order to defend themselves and their nationalities however they see fit, even if they have to succumb to violence. Violence was needed for the resistance of Native Americans against colonialism and the unjust systems that maintain their oppression. Oppressed people are not bent on bloodthirsty revenge and the movements of workers and the oppressed don’t needlessly resort to violence as a matter of course. Rather, the tactics grow out of a necessity to defend oneself and ultimately one’s pride.
Is there truly a way that an oppressed nation can keep their pride intact without resistance? The oppressed are fighting to avoid the loss of their national identity. Self-determination of oppressed people has to be affirmed by prideful and resistant revolutionaries. Resistance, whether nonviolent or violent, has been effective and it can be said that history shows, that ultimately, the use of violence by the oppressed is more justified. The desire for freedom can never be suppressed, just as national oppression and exploitation in general cannot disappear, as long as a system based on acquiring profit through exploitation exists.