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Indigenous Peoples

Poverty makes indigenous communities all the more vulnerable to COVID-19

By Mark A. Bonta / March 27, 2020 / 0 Comments

Historically, indigenous peoples the world over have been devastated by diseases imported into their communities by outsiders. Today, rampant poverty and lack of investment in public health, housing, food and water services only increases the risks they face from the COVID-19 pandemic. Australia: Overcrowded and at-risk Aboriginal people in Australia’s Northern Territory and elsewhere are […]

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Missionaries and industry bring disease to Brazil’s indigenous communities

By Mark A. Bonta / March 26, 2020 / 0 Comments

Centuries of epidemic disease, from smallpox and malaria to measles and influenza, have been imported into Brazil’s native communities by missionaries, colonists, and the mining, logging and ranching industries. Now, these same invasive forces appear ready to bring the coronavirus pandemic to the deep reaches of the Amazon. The missionaries are coming One religious organization, Ethnos360, […]

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Indigenous peoples want you to stay away

By Mark A. Bonta / March 26, 2020 / 0 Comments

Native people the world over have not forgotten their profound vulnerability to disease brought in by outsiders. In the age of the coronavirus pandemic, they’re taking steps to protect themselves. South America: ‘Keep out!’ As the coronavirus pandemic sweeps the world, indigenous communities across South America — from the Amazon rainforest to the Andes Mountains […]

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What can the U.S. pandemic response learn from Nigeria, and Native Americans?

By Mark A. Bonta / March 20, 2020 / 0 Comments

A recurring theme in the United States is our lack of preparedness, from the disbanding of the federal pandemic response team, which is fraught with controversy, to the lack of safety gear, ventilators and hospital beds around the nation. Elsewhere in the world, and even within the U.S. borders, other governments appear to be more […]

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These forest dwellers are seeing their home and culture turned into charcoal

By Mark A. Bonta / October 17, 2019 / Comments Off on These forest dwellers are seeing their home and culture turned into charcoal

The roughly 1,000 members of the Mikea people are Madagascar’s last hunters and gatherers. Yet the island nation’s dependence on charcoal for cooking may destroy their home, the dry Mikea Forest, much of which is a national park. Their entire culture — including their food sources, medicines and religion — is dependent on their namesake […]

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Will la Tren Maya go off the rails?

By Mark A. Bonta / November 21, 2018 / Comments Off on Will la Tren Maya go off the rails?

he Maya, it appears, want nothing to do with la Tren Maya. Incoming Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s signature campaign promise is a massive infrastructure project to create a rail corridor linking the states of the Yucatan Peninsula. The corridor would theoretically bring huge economic benefits. But a coalition of indigenous Maya organizations of […]

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