decolonizing the mind has been a painful journey. liberating, yes. but painful nonetheless. a type of pain that has been always been there, and is finally getting the time it deserves to be felt. a type of pain that feels like grief; grief for something bigger than myself. and maybe the pain will always be with me, but maybe it will also be the source of my liberation.
"Colonisation didn’t stop when Europeans stopped taking the treasures that didn’t belong to them. It’s so entrenched in the mindset of white supremacy that it continues in the form of cultural appropriation on a daily basis.”
By dissecting the frontiers of Afro and Indigenous histories (past, present and future), the challenge no longer becomes how to reform a system of oppression, designed to work just as it has in keeping marginalized groups of people without power—but instead asks how to shift consciousness to decolonize our own minds and reclaim what it rightfully ours: land, agency, narrative.
There is a responsibility that goes beyond the individual. Retracing Simpson’s words of returning land back to Indigenous people, I think about the ongoing desecration where Mount Rushmore is situated, on the sacred Paha Sapa (Black Hills), a signifier of the constant battle to remove statues and memorial tributes of white historical figures whose very presence exemplifies the eradication of culture, language, existence.