Take this (no name, please)…
See that rock in back there? That’s this (below, centre of image, again no name, please.):
Now, look at the name it is unofficially known by (Sorry. Wikipedia’s robots don’t know any better):
McIntyre Bluff is a large ridge of rock, made of gneiss, located south of Vaseux Lake between Okanagan Falls and Oliver in British Columbia, Canada. The bluff is located beside Highway 97 and is one of the most well known landmarks in the Okanagan Valley. This landmark is named after Peter McIntyre, one of the Overlanders of 1862 who had also been a guard on the Pony Express in the American West.
First Nations in the area tell a story of a battle centuries ago on top of McIntyre Bluff. An enemy war party from the south (now Washington State) was lured to the top and driven over the cliffs.
So, what if Wikipedia was built up not on colonial history…
…but from the land and her people? Might it look something like this?
I mean, sure, I bet there are many errors there, and the whole glacial story is missing, but when this is one of the village sites …
… we might as well try. Actually, it’s important that we do, because the Earth needs us. Consider this article in British Columbia’s post-colonial “alternative” news blog, The Tyee:
It’s sad, you know. A regional news source posts an article by a professor emeritus of a supra-regional university with a generic (and romantic) photograph of distant pollution on a nature-industry model, misquoting a German scientific study that was as much about German politics as German industrial agricultural practices, while an important part of the solution, right here, right now, was left out of the story in favour of a species-wide response. Nature is the problem here, and the host of colonial attitudes that came along with it and replaced, for a time, the stories that bind people to the land and compel them to care for it for their survival on the understanding that humans and land are the same. We can, and should, do better. It’s not as if the replacement of a dehumanized nature with a reinvigorated one is difficult, or that this is the only “Big Head” in the valley. Here’s one near the colonially-named “McLaughlin Canyon” south of the colonially-named Tonasket, Washington.
Here’s one at the foot of Sqexe7 Lake:
Is the story known? Yes, you can bet it is. Is it publicized? Hardly. Has anyone asked? Maybe not. Would anyone answer? Perhaps, but stories like this are also the kind of thing one can find out for oneself, and thereafter earn a chance at joining a story-telling circle. They are rich and combine human, environmental and geological history into sustainable foundations, providing respectful barriers to exploitive activity, for which there is no longer any room. Global problems are local problems. Global solutions also have local solutions. Culture can be asked to stop glorifying invasion and settlement and actually settle down to stay. Humans are as well-situated to do this work as natural processes are.