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Pope Francis Apologizes for ‘Grave Sins’ of Colonialism and the Church in America.

In the weeks following “The Canadian Truths and Reconciliation Commission” released on June 2nd, 2015 which reviewed “Indian Boarding School” and calling them “cultural genocide” and beseeching Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper to formally ask the pope for an apology.

The report found, “The Catholic Church was one of many Christian denominations that ran boarding schools in Canada and the U.S. designed to specifically “kill the Indian in the child” by taking kids from their families, cutting them off from their culture and educating them in the ways of the European-minded settlers. ”

Though Harper met with Pope Francis and mentioned the report, he did not specifically request the apology, and the Pontiff’s words in Bolivia did not reference the TRC document. An apology was none the less officially offered by the pope.

This recognition by the pope and Canadian government is the first real official governmental and religious move toward admitting the wrongs of the past. Both now seem to be ahead of the United States by leaps and bounds in this regard. So hats off to Canada and the Catholic Church for this first real and genuine step.

Next step pope Francis is to outright rescind the Doctrine of Discovery, which is what paved the way for centuries of oppression against Indigenous Peoples of America. You will note the Doctrine of discovery ignores the land rights of “non-Christians” for the purpose of expanding Christianity. This doctrine needs to see genocide used against it and it’s death made public. That is your second step kind pope.

Here in the US we are still clinging to racism and hate. We haven’t even embraced step one as the Canadians and Catholic church officially have now.

Here is some of what te pope had to say.

“Some may rightly say, ‘When the pope speaks of colonialism, he overlooks certain actions of the church,’ ” the Pope said, according to The New York Times. “I say this to you with regret: Many grave sins were committed against the Native people of America in the name of God.”

And he certainly didn’t stop there and continued to say.

“I humbly ask forgiveness, not only for the offense of the church herself, but also for crimes committed against the native peoples during the so-called conquest of America,”

On behalf of myself I say to the church apology tentatively accepted. I will wait and watch to see if your words are true by your next actions. Many actions might tell me you are serious. Among those are killing the Doctrine of Discovery, maybe opening new school on Indian reservations meant to teach our ways of life, maybe funding a larger initiative to teach the real history that was buried, or perhaps apply pressure to the US to forget it’s own hateful ways.

Dear pope, this is my sincerest wish. I wish the church will now stand up and use it’s voice to change the current positions of hate and injustice to bring about honor, peace and justice here in the Americas. Don’t stop with an apology, no make it the first of many steps and then sir I will know your heart speaks what your words have proclaimed. I will see and know your truth by what you do next.

Why is it the Canadians, the Catholic church and so many more so far ahead of the United States? Here in the USA we believe the name Redskin on our Capitols team is perfectly ok and right, we’ve made zero attempt to right the wrongs or even make a genuine apology. It’s sad the supposed “Greatest Nation on Earth” is so far behind the eight ball on this issue.

Though on that note the Washington football team has suffered another blow as Judge Upholds Trademark Cancellation. If this were a sport it would be the unnamed underdog sprinting ahead of the champion, it would be that solid punch landed right on the chin of the champion sending him reeling and the world would see the unknown better not be taken lightly.

On Wednesday last week, a federal judge in Northern Virginia ordered the cancellation of six of the Washington football team’s seven trademark registrations. The decision comes more than a year after the U.S. Trademark Trial and Appeal Board found the name of the team to be “disparaging to Native Americans.” Federal law – specifically the Lanham Act – prohibits trademarks that denigrate people or bring them into “contempt or disrepute.”

Wednesday’s decision does not require that Washington football team owner Dan Snyder change the name of his team, which is defined in the dictionary as a “contemptuous term used to refer to a North American Indian.” Instead, it simply would allow for copycats to produce and profit from the team’s current logo and name.

National Congress of American Indians and the Oneida Indian Nation, admonished NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell about Dan Snyder, saying he is “out of control.”

“We congratulate Amanda Blackhorse and all of those who have worked tirelessly to achieve today’s historic victory,” a press release by the organization reads. “Today’s ruling further highlights how the Washington NFL team’s insistence on ignoring the will of an increasingly diverse country has become a crisis for the NFL – and the league’s refusal to use its power to change this offensive name turns its silence into active complicity, associating itself with those who believe people of color deserve to be slurred. The owners and Commissioner Goodell have a clear problem on their hands: one of their fellow owners is out of control – creating a national spectacle by defending racial slurs at a moment when the country is clearly demanding an end to the bigotry of yore.”

The Redskins and the non-native nation (In general based on polling showing 80% of whites and 65% of blacks find the Redskin name not offensive, despite dictionary and historical definition to the contrary) defend the name as free speech.

Perhaps in time even the mighty Champion the USA will get a blow from which it can not recover. At this point it looks as though the Washington haters based on skin color have received just such a blow. May this spell the beginning of the end to their hateful ways.

So to Canada whom did treat my Lakota brothers and sisters north of the boarder poorly, thank you and apology accepted. I wait to see just what you do next to prove your words but you seem to be on a mending track. Peace and love to the Canadian government and all her people fighting to right the wrongs of the past. We all know they can never be fully righted, but with time and honestly the Canadians are demonstrating they light the path for the rest.

Today I find some hope from our neighbor to the north and the catholic church prompted by that same neighbor.

To Canada, today God shows you the favor He’s never shown America because God loves those who love the oppressed. He favors the type of honesty and desire for justice you’re demonstrating to the world. May he bless you and all your people with true blessing and peace.

Today I see some hope on the horizon to the north and it certainly is the “true beacon” to the world. The beacon the United States falsely professes to be because it’s actions don’t support it’s words. In time Canada will show America the way.

~Kuwa Sumanitu Taka (pursuing wolf) aka Michelle Styles