The search to discover the truth about Indigenous children who never made it home from Indian Residential Schools in Canada continues. As more unmarked graves of their young relatives are discovered, First Nation communities are at the forefront of pushing for accountability and justice.
If you’re learning about Indian Residential Schools in the U.S. and Canada for the first time; it’s critical you're cognizant of the fact that these systems of colonial violence deliberately inflicted intergenerational trauma on Indigenous communities. Navigating our own lack of knowledge about this type of government-backed, church-led atrocity should not be placed on the shoulders of those who bear its scars.
If we’re committed to being an anti-racist and not just an ally (yes, there is a nuanced difference) then we have to make a conscious effort to unpack our own racism -- which can be really uncomfortable -- and remove the barriers we unconsciously put up when we're made aware that something we've said, done or shared is racist.
Writing prompts can help give us content ideas or alleviate writer’s block when it strikes, but they can also be an opportunity to pause and reflect. We can use them to practice gratitude but also challenge ourselves to examine how we practice our humanity.