If you are leaving Six Nations on Chiefswood Road and happen to catch a red light at Highway 54 you could end up waiting like ten minutes if the line up is really long. It’s frustrating but the wait does provide plenty of time to think.
I thought that I should be thankful that we have lights at all. I’m not that old but I can remember a time when there were no traffic lights anywhere on the rez.
Many of us still remember when the numbered Lines were the only paved roads on Six Nations and the “national” roads such as Mohawk were mostly gravel. Back in those ancient times (1980s) most intersections were a two-way stop but all that changed after one too many car crashes. The speed limit is 80 kilometres per hour around here.
Now we have paved roads and four way stops at all the intersections even the not so busy ones and I can’t think of anyone who is against that.
There is now lights at Chiefswood and Highway 54, in Ohsweken. The more traffic lights on Six Nations the better, and we can all agree to that.
Now this is what makes the concept of decolonization tricky. If one does not understand what colonization is, it makes decolonization impossible and unfortunately we have been intentionally conditioned to confuse technology with colony and to conflate them as inseparable.
It’s possible to have technology without colony and that idea helped make Marvel’s Black Panther such a success. Everyone wishes they could live in Wakanda – a place of social justice, equality and technology. T’challa is showing America that It’s possible to be woke and not be broke.
Decolonization in Canada may not be as romantic as the Marvel Universe but it doesn’t have to be painful. In South Africa, they decolonized by forcefully removing the colonists but if Canada is wise they will fix the stolen land problem before it reaches that point.