Tomorrow, Friday, November 7th, Claremont Climate Justice will be hosting T.R. McKenzie as a guest speaker. He will be talking about indigenous rights, indigenous organizers, capitalism, climate and social justice. His talk relates to a lot of group projects and things we’ve discussed in class such as Idle No More.

Here’s T.R.’s bio: T.R McKenzie is a queer Xican@ warrior and land defender who grew up on the west side of Sioux City, occupied Dakota territories and is currently based out of occupied Lakota territories, in so-called South Dakota. He is a fierce defender of life, land, and justice. T.R. co-founded Deep Roots United Front (DRUF), an all POC and Indigenous led grassroots organization whose work centers – and provides direct support for – Indigenous communities and communities of color in active resistance to environmental and social ecocide and genocide. His work has placed him alongside the frontlines of resistance movements and focuses on the intersections of settler colonialism, white supremacy, climate change, environmental destruction and genocide, and homophobia. T.R is an organizer and educator who has facilitated and participated in workshops, trainings, and speaking engagements. A main tenet of his work involves moving people currently involved in the mainstream “environmental movement” to a more strategic place in which they would provide active support to – and respect the self determination of – marginalized communities on the frontlines of struggles who are most heavily impacted by social and environmental ills.



4 responses »

  1. revandrewwright says:

    Strangely, the only thing I’ve heard about this talk since is that McKenzie was “kinda weird, and a little intimidating.” This critique came from someone involved in the ‘environmental movement’ you wrote of. Reading your post has made me stop and wonder: Is Pitzer ready for someone this radical? What does it mean if we’re not?

    • rbhalla2018 says:

      That’s really interesting considering many of the things T.R. talked about were directly from the class. Topics such as the Native American genocide, Native American tribes appreciation for their land, police brutality, Zapatista Movement, and the school to prison pipeline.

      On the topic of whether or not Pitzer is ready for “radical” – I’m not exactly sure. As a freshman, I don’t feel like I can answer that question accurately. However, sometimes I feel like we are ready and other times not at all. I don’t think there’s a monoculture at Pitzer and so it’s hard to make that distinction?

  2. I’m so curious to hear about this talk. Did anyone else in the class go to it?

    I also think that’s an interesting question that you were lead to…. is any college community ever collectively ready for radicallity? Or rather, (And also, I don’t think it should necessarily conflate to intimidating)

  3. rbhalla2018 says:

    Here’s a link of the talk if anyone is interesting in watching it:

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