Marc Becker's Home Page


Find on

Continental Summit of Indigenous Peoples 

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Indigenous peoples in America and Nation States

Yesterday afternoon we started with a panel "Indigenous peoples in America and Nation States." Irma Alicia Velásquez Nimatuj from Guatemala pointed to a gap between an Indigenous political understanding and technical skills, especially those in economics and international law, necessary to achieve those visions.

Bolivia's foreign relations minister David Choquehuanca argued that we should not rebuild current states, but dream and create new ones. Our minds are colonized, he stated, but not our hearts. It is time to listen to our hearts, because this is what builds resistance. Development plans look for a better life, but this results in inequality. Indigenous peoples, instead, look to how to live well (vivir bien). We have thought about two lines of those, capitalism with a profit margin vs. socialism with a material focus on man. For Indigenous peoples, man is not the most important, but life. We look for a culture of life.

In the discussion period, of the first 10 speakers only one was a woman who called for parity, noting that men always dominate these conversations. We need equalibrium, the woman from Peru stated, both individually and collectively. Irma added there are no recipes for success; we need to make up our own alternatives.

| Marc Becker's Home Page | |