Before colonizers, Indigenous Peoples had never experienced smallpox, measles or flu. The viruses tore through the continent, killing an estimated 90% of Indigenous Peoples. (Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies)
The slogan “We Are Still Here,” which many Indigenous activists have adopted has always felt incomplete, we are still here because our ancestors resisted, because they fought back and forward. That means we also have a sacred responsibility to uphold those struggles and carry them forward.