Asparagus Magazine
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Asparagus Magazine

The Wet’suwet’en Aren’t Just Protecting “the Environment”

The Unist’ot’en and Gidimt’en land defenders aren’t just fighting pipelines, they’re fighting for a way of life.

The Hereditary Chiefs are the voices of their clans, collectively they represent the voices of the Wet’suwet’en people. (All photos by Michael Toledano)

We are enraged, and sad, and not surprised. We have faced this colonial violence before.

“This isn’t over,” Freda tells us, “I’m not defeated. This isn’t over.”

Unist’ot’en Village is not a protest camp. It’s a home, a space of healing and regeneration.

Coastal GasLink is no match for the power of the land, the river, the animals, the ancestors, the people.

We conduct ceremonies on the land and are threatened with arrest.

We are not protecting “the environment.” We are helping our relatives survive, just like they help us to survive.

The land holds the ancestors, the ancestors are present in the struggle

The right of the Unist’ot’en people to control access to and use of their territory is wrested from their grasp by a gas company using Canadian law as a weapon, using police as private security.

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Asparagus tells the large and small stories of how we can live sustainably, from an environmental, social, and cultural perspective.

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Anne Spice

Anne Spice is a Tlingit PhD candidate, anthropological shit-disturber, and sometimes-poet.