Promised Land

First Contact Reconciliation Collaborative

On Friday, November 2, 2018, members of the First Contact Reconciliation Collaborative (FCRC) attended the screening/ panel discussion of Promised Land, hosted by the National Museum of the American Indians, D.C., and sponsored by the National Congress of American Indians and Alliance of Colonial Era Tribes.

Promised Land “is a social justice documentary that follows two tribes in the Pacific Northwest as they fight for the restoration of treaty rights that have been denied,” as told by members of the Duwamish and Chinook Tribal Nations. Viewers heard stories and saw cultural features of these Peoples, lending to the depth of their indigenous identity, and witnessed the push-back against these indigenous communities, undermining self-determination.

Following the screening, a panel of these tribal members, filmmakers, and sponsors discussed the relevance of the film and entertained questions. We were reminded that the first step in being an “ally” of indigenous peoples is to listen; listen to their leadership.

Pastor JR Norwood (Nanticoke-Lenape, seated with NCAI and ACET) introduced us to the filmmaker team, Vasant and Sarah Salcedo – directors, writers, cinematographers, editor, and producer. We noted, that aside from geographic distance, the story is one that mirrors many tribal nations throughout the country, including those of “early contact” with W. Europeans/ colonization along the east coast, such as Pastor Norwood’s Tribal Nation in southern jersey.

The PhYM FCRC web page “Structural Resources” – https://www.pym.org/first-contact-reconciliation-collaborative/structural-resources/ – contains links to several local tribal nations, where Friends may learn of needs and, with respect, listen to indigenous leadership; listen to tribal nations’ “righteous fight(s).” The FCRC web presence hosts our contact information; we are available to walk-the-walk with Friends at various entry points.