Decolonize Everything with Christine Nobiss

Indigenous communities face all kinds of injustice—from violence to poverty to climate change. Yet their voices are often absent from policy discussions. We talk with Seeding Sovereignty’s Christine Nobiss about what it would look like to follow the lead of Indigenous people, and why violence against Indigenous women needs much more of our attention.

(This episode discusses sexual and domestic violence—please take care of yourself while listening.)

Christine is a Plains Cree-Saulteaux writer, artist, and organizer based in Iowa. She leads several projects with Seeding Sovereignty, an organization empowering the political voice of Indigenous peoples.

Indigenous women have managed to tenaciously keep our culture together, and keep our children healthy, and our communities going. We are the walking embodiments of a social impact strategy.

—Christine Nobiss, Decolonizer, Seeding Sovereignty

We talk about:

  • How Seeding Sovereignty empowers Indigenous peoples’ political voice
  • How Christine got her start as an activist and organizer
  • What it means to be a decolonizer, plus what she’s working on now
  • The power of tapping into younger—and older—generations to build an activist movement

Links

Plus

Sponsors

This episode of Strong Feelings is brought to you by:

Harvest logo

Harvest, makers of awesome software to help you track your time, manage your projects, and get paid. Go to getharvest.com/strongfeelings to get 50% off your first month.

Transcript

Sara Wachter-Boettcher Harvest makes awesome web software anyone can use to track time, plan projects, and get paid. I’ve used it for my own business for years, and I love how many integrations they’ve added. So, you can make Harvest work with Basecamp, Slack, Trello, and tons of other systems. Go to GetHarvest.com/StrongFeelings to sign up for a free trial, and when you’re ready to upgrade, you’ll get 50% off your first month. That’s GetHarvest.com/StrongFeelings. [theme music plays for 11 seconds and then fades out] Hey, everyone, I’m Sara!

Katel LeDû And I’m Katel.

SWB And this is Strong Feelings! A podcast about work, friendship, and feminism—and what happens when you bring them all together.

KL We are recording today’s episode on the traditional land of the Lenape people, which is where Philadelphia was built. So, this is always important to know, but today we wanted to take a moment, in particular, to pause on that history because we’re talking with Christine Nobiss from Seeding Sovereignty, an organization focused on amplifying the voices of Indigenous people and ending violence against women and the environment.

SWB We especially wanted to talk with Christine because, we realized that we—me and Katel—don’t hear enough or know enough about native and indigenous issues. And we thought that might be true for many of you listening too. And right now, there are a couple of things happening in the news that are particularly relevant to this conversation. One of them is the renewal of the Violence Against Women Act—VAWA—which has been delayed.

KL [sighs] Can we start with a little background on that?

SWB Yeah! So, VAWA was first enacted in 1994, and what it did was create an Office on Violence Against Women in the DOJ—that’s the Department of Justice, of course. And it had a bunch of different specific protections and programs associated with it. So, things like legal aid for people who’ve been victims of domestic violence or stalking, rape shield laws, which do things like bar courts from using someone’s past sexual history as evidence in a case—like saying, “oh, well she was such a slut, so obviously, this couldn’t have been rape this time.” Also things like funding for victim services like rape crisis centers. So, in 1994, VAWA passed for the first time, but then it has to be renewed every few years. So, it’s renewed in 2000—no problem. It’s renewed again in 2005—no problem. But then in 2012, there’s this huge battle. And the battle is over adding clauses to expand VAWA coverage to same sex couples, and doing things like providing services to undocumented women. So, eventually, in 2013, they finally decide to renew VAWA. So, now here we are… [KL laughs] at the end of 2018, and it needs to be reauthorized again. But if you remember what else happened at the end of 2018…

KL [laughing] Uh huh…

SWB We had a government shutdown!

KL Right…

SWB So, VAWA also was not reinstated then. So, it was temporarily reinstated in January when the government opened back up, but then that expired in February. And now, here we are. It’s currently April 2019 as we’re recording this, and VAWA is still not renewed. Which is bad!

[2:56]

KL <sighs> So what’s the hang up on it this time?

SWB Okay. So, it finally passed the House just this month, which is great, but it’s not clear when it’s going to come to a vote in the Senate. And there have been a few sticking points on this renewal. So, the big one you might have heard about is closing the “boyfriend loophole.” Basically, VAWA would expand some existing gun ownership restrictions for people convicted of abuse or stalking to include current and former dating partners. So, not just spouses, but also boyfriends. And not just boyfriends, but any kind of dating partner. So, that’s the shorthand of the “boyfriend loophole.”

KL Right.

SWB So, the NRA, as you might guess, opposes that. But one of the other sticking points is what brings us back to our guest, Christine. So, there’s this new version of VAWA that has a provision that would allow non-native people who commit domestic or dating violence on native lands to be tried in tribal courts. So, currently, you can’t do that. And a lot of Republicans oppose this. But what this protection would do is really, really important, because as Christine is going to touch on in her interview, we are facing an epidemic of missing and murdered indigenous women in the United States and in Canada, and this would be one piece of the puzzle to stopping that.

KL So, yeah. This is something I learned a lot about last year by listening to a podcast actually called Missing & Murdered from the CBC. So, Cree investigative journalist, Connie Walker, hosts and produces it, and she shares stories of indigenous women who have disappeared or been murdered in Canada from the perspective of being an indigenous woman herself, which I think is really incredibly important. And hearing these stories made me want to learn more about why so many indigenous women and girls’ lives have been ignored and really erased for so long.

SWB Yeah. So, how big is this problem, and what’s actually happening?

KL So, in 2016 alone, the National Crime Information Center recorded 5,712 cases of murdered and missing indigenous women or girls in America, which is really high. Back in 2008, the Department of Justice found that in many places in the US, Native American women are murdered at more than 10x the national average rate.

SWB Wow.

KL Yeah. But one of the big issues here is that data specifically on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Woman and Girls is really, really bad. So last year, the Urban Indian Health Institute released a pretty groundbreaking report showing that only 116 of those over 5,000 cases were logged in the US DOJ’s Federal Missing Persons Database, which is NamUs for short. So, not only is it a crisis, there is also a huge lack of good data about the crisis.

SWB And these are only US numbers, but the problem is really similar in Canada, right?

[5:27]

KL Yeah. And one thing that Connie’s show sheds a lot of light on is the history of basically non-existent and often destructive relationships between police and indigenous people. One story Connie tells about a woman named Alberta Williams, who was murdered in 1989, centered around many breakdowns in the police investigation, which led to the case remaining unsolved for 28 years. [sighs] And so though this happened in Canada, it’s not surprising when you hear that according to a 2017 report published by the DOJ, US attorneys’ offices declined to proceed with 37% of all criminal cases from Indian Country. Most of these—70%—were declined due to lack of evidence. But if police aren’t building relationships with indigenous people, and if they’re not out there collecting evidence, then that’s why there’s not enough evidence!

SWB To make it really simple, they’re just not trying very hard.

KL Yeah.

SWB The system just isn’t willing to work as hard for indigenous people as it is for other groups.

KL Yeah, exactly.

SWB So, there’s some stuff happening legislatively around this now, too, right?

KL Yeah. So, also this month, 3 senators—Republican Lisa Murkowski from Alaska and Democrats, Catherine Cortez Masto from Nevada and Jon Tester of Montana—introduced the Not Invisible Act, which would help establish an overarching federal strategy for addressing this massive crisis. So, they want to create an advisory committee of local, tribal, and federal leaders who will make recommendations to the Justice Department and Interior Department about how to better direct their resources in order to end violent crime against and trafficking of Native American women. And actually, going back to the thousands of cases that never got logged, Senators Murkowski and Masto also worked together in January to reintroduce Savanna’s Act. And that’s a bill that was first introduced by Heidi Keitkamp, who lost her seat. So, this story is actually sort of fucked up. Savanna’s Act is named after Savanna Greywind, who was a pregnant 22-year-old member of the Spirit Lake Nation in North Dakota. And she was murdered in 2017. So, it would finally create a nationwide database of missing and murdered Indigenous women at the Department of Justice. So, the bill passed the Senate unanimously last year, and was sent to the House, where Bob Goodlatte, a Virginia Republican who was retiring at the end of the session, decided to sit on it.

SWB That’s such a shit move!

KL Yeah! So, now it’s been reintroduced in the Senate, and Goodlatte is no longer in the House to shut it down. So, hopefully, it goes through this time, as it should. It’s a bipartisan issue, and it’s obviously needed.

SWB But this kind of bullshit—where this should be an easy thing to pass, where it gets this close, a unanimous vote in the Senate, it’s right there in the House ready to go, and then it just stops and you have to start over—that is so frustrating. And it really speaks to just how much more attention I think we all need to be paying to indigenous issues because we should have an uproar about this! And that’s one of the reasons I’m so happy that we have Christine on the show because Christine is out there doing this work and really trying to hold candidates accountable leading up to the next election. So, she’s going to talk about that. And I just really love this interview.

[8:22]

KL I know, me too. So, one thing we should mention is that Christine talks about Turtle Island in the interview and we didn’t pause to ask about that in the moment, but we should have. If you, like us, haven’t heard that term before, Turtle Island is how many indigenous people and activists in the US and Canada refer to North America. So, the name actually comes back to oral histories and traditions from a few tribes, including the Lenape from right here in Philly!

SWB That’s so cool.

KL Yeah. [short transition music plays]

Interview: Christine Nobiss

SWB Christine Nobiss is a Plains Cree-Saulteaux speaker, writer, artist, organizer, and decolonizer. She works with Seeding Sovereignty, an organization empowering the political voice of indigenous peoples. And we’re so excited to have her on the show today, so we can learn more about how the voice of indigenous people should be affecting all of us. So, Christine, thank you so much for joining us on Strong Feelings.

Christine Nobiss Thank you very much for having me; it’s an honor.

SWB Well, first up can you tell us a little bit more about who you are and what you do?

CN Well, like you said, I’m Plains Cree-Saulteaux of the George Gordon First Nation in Saskatchewan. I grew up in Winnipeg, Manitoba, and I’ve been living in Iowa for thirteen years now. And I’ve been in the movement field, or an organizer, or an activist for some time, and started my first job actually at the New Brunswick Aboriginal Peoples Council [laughs] working to fight for Native American fisheries rights.

[9:42]

SWB Wow, that’s really interesting. So, you’ve been involved in this work sort of in a hands on way since the beginning of your career. And I’m curious—how did you start doing organizing and activist work? What led you to it?

CN To be honest, when people ask me that question, I have to tell them that I feel like I was born [laughs] to do this. And trying not to be too cheesy about it, but to be honest, as a child I was always that kid that stood up on the playground against bullies. My first science project was on acid rain. [laughs & SWB laughs] And I’ve just always felt really called to help. When I was in high school, I spent a lot of my time doing a lot of volunteer work and working in the community.

SWB And so you mentioned that you’re Canadian, but you’re based in Iowa now. And I’m curious—have you found being involved in conversations about indigenous communities and indigenous issues in both countries, have you found that they are similar? Or are they in kind of different places in their conversations?

CN It’s both. Canada has different policies regarding indigenous people. We have a higher per capita indigenous population. In my opinion, I feel like there’s more blatant racism towards indigenous people in Canada, but you can’t say that there’s not in the United States as well. We have a more forward thinking or, let’s just say, active portion of the government geared towards indigenous empowerment. For instance, we have the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network, which is our own television show in Canada. We have a lot more policy that’s trying to recognize the genocide of the past and there’s recreations going on. At the same time, we still have high, if not higher, rates of missing and murdered indigenous women in Canada. We have in Saskatchewan, for instance, 95% of the girls that are in juvenile detention are indigenous. And that is not a joke, that is a real number. 80% of the children in the foster care system in the province of Manitoba are First Nation. So, we have a crisis going on in Canada that is very large. The same things are going on in the US at a slightly lower scale, but not by much.

SWB Yeah. And I think we definitely want to talk about the ways in which issues that are particularly affecting indigenous communities are not understood enough. But I want to first go back to something you mentioned earlier when we introduced you actually. We even introduced you with the word “decolonizer,” and that’s a descriptor that you use in your own work. And I’m curious if you can tell me more about that. So, what does it mean to be a decolonizer, and how does that play into the way that you do the work that you do?

[12:33]

CN Well, the Executive Director of Seeding Sovereignty, Janet MacGillivray, was asking me to come up with a title for the job I do. My job is quite varied and it’s really hard to come up with a title with such a varied job. In the end, I went through all the academic words in my head [laughs] and I just kept coming back to what it is I’m trying to do. What am I trying to do in this world? In the end, I really want to decolonize the mindset of the settler descendent society that genocided my people and that still continue to oppress us on a daily basis. I want to decolonize the governmental institutions that are so entrenched in racism that they can’t see it. I want to decolonize the way that we look at the planet, so that we can at least calm, to some extent, the worst effects of climate change. That takes a different way of looking at the planet, of seeing the planet as our mother, as our relative, as something we want to protect and keep safe, rather than something we continuously extract from.

SWB I love that as sort of a shift in frame of reference. When you start talking about decolonizing things, it really does change the way that you see all of them.

KL Yeah, and I want to go back to Seeding Sovereignty a little bit, the organization that you work with. Can you tell us a little bit more about that collective and the work that you do with them?

CN Yeah! Research has shown that 95% of the sixty billion dollars in annual funding—foundation funding—for all causes goes to organizations led by white people. And then 70-80% goes to those led by men. This is info that the Solutions Project put out. So, that’s one of the reasons why we do this work. It’s about time that indigenous women take the lead in a lot of these cases. Our people have been saying this since the inception of colonization on Turtle Island that people can’t continue with these practices. Our ancestors warned the settlers and indigenous women have managed to tenaciously keep our culture together, and keep our children healthy, and our communities going. We are the walking embodiments of a social impact strategy. So, I think right there is why Seeding Sovereignty exists, because we feel that indigenous women can really make a difference in terms of the social injustice and the climate injustice that is happening right now.

SWB What does your day-to-day work look like? So, in terms of doing decolonization and doing work to elevate indigenous voices, what does that look like?

CN A huge part of my work is focused on the crisis of missing and murdered indigenous people. And so a typical day is a lot of phone calls, and traveling to events, organizing, sometimes I’m drawing, sometimes I’m writing articles. We have a monthly column in Bustle. I’ve written three columns for Bustle now, the last one was on VAWA, the Violence Against Women Act, and how the recent changes made to it are quite concerning for indigenous women.

[15:50]

SWB Yeah, so speaking of that piece in Bustle about the Violence Against Women Act, I’m wondering if we can talk about that a little bit. Because the Violence Against Women Act was left to expire during the government shutdown earlier this year and that was pretty devastating all on its own. But what you point out in that piece is the particular way that that affects indigenous people. And I’m wondering if you can tell our listeners, who maybe don’t know that much about the issues of sexual violence against indigenous women, more about this. What is the problem here and why is this an issue that you think people need to be particularly aware of when it comes to indigenous people?

CN In general, in the settler-descendent societal landscape, indigenous people are still quite invisible. Our history is very whitewashed still inside of our school systems, in our general day-to-day [laughs] functioning, with our governmental institutions. We still have Columbus statues everywhere, which is… bizarre. The fact remains that because of genocide and the severe colonization that has occurred over the past 500 years, we are suffering from a lot of issues within our communities. We have the highest rates of youth suicide, we have the highest rates of diabetes, and we have very high abuse rates. 90% of us will meet violence at the hands of a non-tribal member in our life. Right now, The Department of Justice has stated that about 56% of indigenous women will be sexually assaulted in their lifetime, but when you talk to grassroots activists and you get to know what goes on in our communities, that number can be as high as 80-90%. And so that leads into the issue of missing and murdered indigenous women and people, and how we are highly targeted by outsiders. And VAWA provided a safeguard in that it was trying to bridge the gap between federal and state and tribal law where there’s this big, black hole that a lot of white men seem to fall into. Because they can come into tribal territories and they can commit a crime, but they will not get persecuted for it because they are not a tribal member. And then nobody wants to touch the case because it’s too complicated in terms of jurisdiction and they get off scot free. And that’s been happening for some time now. So, in terms of our people being abused, murdered, or going missing, this has actually been a really big part of it. So, that’s why VAWA is extremely important for the safety of indigenous people because it allows us now to put these people on trial.

SWB Yeah. So, I really appreciated that article because it helped me understand just how interconnected these issues are. That we can’t just talk about sexual assault without talking about communities that are particularly vulnerable to sexual assault, for example. So, to me, it just really spoke to why we need more indigenous perspectives in activist work across the board. So, I’m curious—are you starting to see more space open up for indigenous voices to be part of activist conversations or are you still finding it challenging to get that space?

[19:08]

CN Yes, I do think there is space opening up. It’s still a challenge, however. I think Standing Rock was really helpful; it put a lot of our issues out on the world stage and opened up a lot of people’s eyes. We don’t just deal with environmental issues, there’s always an added layer of oppression. Pretty much anything we do has a smattering of oppression—an extra layer that we need to deal with. So, I do find that there has been a really great invitation from many organizations and individuals to work with indigenous people. At the very same time, there’s also the exploitation of our work. Because in essence for some of these people, we are “trending,” which is also another form of colonial violence that is perpetuated upon us daily.

SWB What makes you feel like folks are taking indigenous issues more seriously, and really wanting to engage in them, and center indigenous voices versus what makes you feel like it’s being treated as a trend piece? What do you feel like is good, useful progress on this front and what is more temporary, surface-level lip service?

CN So, there’s always this publication I like to point out to people called “Accomplices Not Allies.” It’s written by Klee Benally, who is a longtime, very dedicated organizer down in the Southwest. And it lays out for people basically the different types of white organizers that come into our spaces, what they do that’s problematic, and how it can be harmful. There’s gatekeepers, there’s parachuters, there’s wannabes, there’s saviors—people with the savior complex. There’s a lot of different ways that settler-descendent organizers sometimes come into our spaces and it’s not always with the right intention. The best way to work together is to just… work together—if that makes any sense? [laughs] But sometimes we’re faced with these layers of, for instance, the larger orgs like 350.org or Greenpeace or Sierra Club—they’ve been on our hotlist for many years. Because these organizations make millions of dollars a year and then they have a tendency to parachute into our communities, do an action, and then go off into their fundraising world, take all those pictures, take all the information they got from hanging out with us, and then fundraise off of it. But in the end, our communities are still suffering, still have 80% unemployment rate on some of our reservations. We still have some of the highest rates of kids being kidnapped by the child welfare system. We still have unprecedented rates of so many things going on, and yet we feel like sometimes these organizations almost want to come in and exploit that issue in order to go off and continue to raise money.

KL I want to dig in a little bit to an initiative that you mentioned earlier called Shift. And I would love for you to tell us a little bit more about what it is and what it does.

[22:38]

CN It’s basically trying to break through the political glass ceiling that we often hit when it comes to political engagement or recognition during election time—or any time, to be honest—but let’s just talk right now about election time. When these candidates are out there speaking, you will rarely hear them address indigenous people, say the word indigenous or Native American, or speak about the fact that they’re standing on stolen land, or give a land recognition for where it is they are. And yet, the irony for all of that is that this country is built on treaties and that these are also sovereign nations dotted around this entire country. And yet, rarely will a candidate recognize that, including the most progressive of them, unless prompted. That may be because they’re trying to gain the vote and they need to pander to the most middle ground that they possibly can; however, it is time for people to start recognizing where it is they are, the land they stand on, and who is related to that land.

KL Yeah. And you mentioned that one of Shift’s main focuses is The Green New Deal and thinking about that, especially in terms of the upcoming election. And I saw that you just talked with Beto O’Rourke about it when he was in Cedar Rapids in March. And something that I think we all need to hear a lot more of, which you said to Beto, was you can’t see The Green New Deal moving forward without indigenous leadership, not just indigenous people’s consent. And I think that’s so important. Can you talk more about that and what you mean there?

CN Yeah! I mean, The Green New Deal is just an idea, right? And it’s going to put forth all sorts of legislation. But right now, I’ve seen that it does say in one clause somewhere or one little sentence to project indigenous sovereignty somewhere and then it talks about consultation in a few different places, but that’s it. I feel that if this Green New Deal was truly about what it says it’s about, there would be a lot more wording in there speaking about our sovereignty, about the type of involvement indigenous should have. Indigenous people have answers. Drawdown says it, David Suzuki says it, Noam Chomsky says it—a lot of scientists have been saying that traditional, ecological knowledge has answers. And it’s not just about the knowledge, but also about the mindset as well like I was talking about earlier. When you have a different way of relating to this planet, you probably won’t exploit it as much. And so, more importantly than what these white organizations and these descendants have to say is that our ancestors were saying this since the invasion. And not only that. There’s the fact that this land is stolen and that the territories that indigenous people are still on are, quite frankly, highly targeted by the extraction industry. So, that’s why The Green New Deal—if they are at all serious about moving forward in a very legitimate and honest way—has to have more language in there that is very specific about the involvement of indigenous people on this. I mean, I’m not a politician, I’m not a political scientist, but I do imagine hopefully in the future, members of our tribal nations and our organizations at the table in a huge way helping to draft this legislation in some way, shape, or form.

[26:30]

SWB That’s really powerful. One of the things that I loved there that I really appreciate you calling out directly is the idea that indigenous communities have—they’re not just impacted, but also that they have expertise. That there is a tremendous wealth of knowledge in this community that is not being listened to and that is not being taken as seriously as white expertise. And I really appreciate you calling that out.

KL Yeah. And I’ve seen clips of you also talking with Elizabeth Warren—and you’re talking to several politicians right now about what they stand for. Are you getting any promising responses [laughs] from any of them?

CN My favorite response was Warren’s, where it was almost like she was struck by a wonderful idea. Like “woah!” [laughs] She kind of made that kind of… [laughs & KL laughs] And I laugh about that because I feel like she was sort of happy like, “wow, that’s a great idea.” So, I was happy to see that. You know, [laughs] Beto—his reaction was nice to have because it was honest. He blatantly said that he needs to learn more about indigenous people. And what I found so telling about my interview—that very short minute I had with him—was that he is very much a representation of Texas. [laughs] And that it just goes to show you that we have a long way to go, but I do think that some of these candidates truly have climate change in mind. And because they have climate change in mind, they will listen to indigenous people. I hope. I, of course, know that Tulsi Gabbard has these issues on her mind, being indigenous herself—she’s half Samoan. But in the end, it’s about the institution, it’s about the government, and what these people will be able to actually accomplish if they get into office. That’s the scary part. A lot of these people have great ideas and all the initiative in the world to make great change, but the problem comes when they get into office. Can they do it?

KL Right, yeah. And I know you’ve said you’re not a politician, but you’ve also said that the swearing in of folks like Deb Holland of the Pueblo of Laguna and Sharice Davids of the Ho-Chunk Nation to Congress this year is a moral boost for everyone. How has that boosted you and your work?

CN It’s been so inspiring. I gave a speech at the Women’s March in Des Moines and I had no idea I was going to do this, but when I mentioned their names, I started to cry. I am so proud of them, I have no words. Because this is unprecedented and it’s a historical moment that indigenous people are actually starting to be part of legislation making. That’s the thing! This is not our system. This government that was basically stamped upon us, these borders that were cut across our territories—they’re not ours. But! We can at least make it ours. So, the more indigenous people, and women, and LGBTQ—I could go on, you know? Black and Muslim. The more we can get involved that will reflect the actual makeup of this country, the better off we will be. And in fact, because indigenous people have sovereignty in this nation, we actually need a larger contingent of representation in Congress. I would think that would be at least somewhat fair.

[30:11]

KL Well, something that I think I really like that you note about the Shift intuitive in particular is that it’s a multigenerational effort. And I’d love for you tell us a little bit about that and why the success of this program and likely a lot of programs like this is really dependent on both folks and elders being a part of it.

CN My goal is to get young people involved because young people are going to be a huge part of the voting contingent in 2020. And they’re going to—I think it’s by 2024, millennials will comprise of 45% of eligible voters. And that’s huge! And so we think it’s important that we get some programming that gets them engaged. And that’s what we hope that we’re doing right now. So, as time goes on over the next couple of years—and this will go on, of course, beyond 2020. But I just mean because I am in Iowa, it’s a really great moment to shine light on the work because Iowa is on the stage when it comes to the presidential election. So, our goal is to get larger indigenous voter turnout, youth organizing, more people running for office, and then of course within all of that, legislation that actually is for our people and helps our people. I want to get away from domestic dependent nations and actually try to get true sovereignty for our people one day. I have no idea! [laughs] That’s such a massive thing. That such a huge sentence to say, but it’s just a dream that a lot of us have.

KL That’s really meaningful. It’s very clear you do so much for your community and you give voice to a lot of people who aren’t usually listened to. And I’m wondering, what do you do to recharge or give back to yourself when you’re maybe running low on energy or motivation?

CN I spend time with my family. My partner, Lakasha, and my two children—we like to go for walks. My kids love to scooter! [laughs] I go to sweat, which is a way to cleanse the soul. And I like to draw and to watch really cheesy TV shows.

KL I think we can get behind that. [laughs & CN laughs] Is there anything on the horizon that you really want to make sure people know more about?

CN I want to empower people to organize and to sow seeds of sovereignty wherever they are or to feel like a citizen of their nation wherever they are. You don’t necessarily have to be on your res to be feeling that way. So, I’m just trying to bring that idea of freedom and this idea that wherever you put your feet, you are a sovereign representative of your nation.

SWB Christine, thank you so much for being on the show. We want to make sure that everybody listening knows exactly how to support you, and your work, and Seeding Sovereignty. So, where can people find more about you and Seeding Sovereignty?

[33:23]

CN They can go to seedingsovereignty.org. And you can find out all about us, who we are, our programs, we have a blog—we have a great blog with so many wonderful articles in it. We have some resources, some zines that I created—one on Big-Ag and one on guns. There’s a newsletter you can sign up for soon. And then you can also donate from the page too.

SWB Great! Everybody check out seedingsovereignty.org and thank you so much for being here, Christine!

CN Thank you. I really appreciate your time. [short transition music plays]

Promo: Millennial Money

[music starts playing with Shannah’s voice coming in over the top]

Shannah Game Hey, Shannah here. I’m the host of the Millennial Money podcast. And before you start thinking, “why do I need to listen to a podcast about money?” Well, Millennial Money is the podcast where it’s just okay to talk about money. I’m a certified financial planner with an MBA, but I promise you I’m way more interesting than my three degrees. In fact, I’m just like you. I’m someone who has made some mistakes along the way, but is determined to live my best life, and so can you. Our episodes go live every Tuesday and Friday, and in each episode, you’re going to uncover ways to reduce financial stress, learn tips to create financial independence, and manage your money better. Be inspired by everyday stories, and leave each episode empowered to go out and crush your goals. Be sure to subscribe to Millennial Money on iTunes, Spotify, Pandora, Google Play, or Stitcher to join in on the fun. Yes, talking about money can actually be fun! [music plays out]

Fuck Yeah of The Week

KL Alright, Sara, it’s one of my favorite parts of the show, and I feel like I might know what your fuck yeah is…but what is it?

SWB Ahh! I have a really high note to end on on here. So, that is… that you and me ran a 10k together this weekend!

KL Woohoo!

SWB In the cherry blossoms.

KL <laughs> It was great.

SWB And it was so fun! It was my first big race after ACL surgery—this was something where it felt like a real milestone for me, which was awesome.

KL So exciting.

SWB And it was also awesome to do it with you—

KL Yes.

SWB —and like flowers and shit! [KL laughs] And so even though it was a little bit gray out, it was nice to just be outside. And it reminded me of something! Do you remember in Episode 1 back when we were called No, You Go, when we still had Jenn on the show—

KL Mhmm…

SWB —we talked about the origin story of deciding to do this podcast. And it was actually me and you were out on a run, and I was like, “what if we did a podcast?” So, it just really made me feel good to make me think back on that, and then to think about the fact that for most of last year, we weren’t actually running together anymore because I couldn’t. So, it’s great to be back!

[35:55]

KL I know! I didn’t realize how much I missed you. Like, I knew I missed you, but it was really great to get out there with you again. And another one of my favorite parts is that we not only planned in advance that we were going to get donuts afterwards—

SWB Mhmm!

KL —but then we went [laughs] and got donuts from one of our favorite places here, Federal Donuts, who now also serve breakfast sandwiches. So, we just got everything, it was great!

SWB I mean, a breakfast sandwich and a donut is what you need after a good run to refuel, right?

KL [laughing] Yes! Absolutely.

SWB You need some savory, you need some sweet.

KL Mhmm.

SWB So, speaking of donuts, I was also thinking about something else from that very first episode. So, in that episode, we said something about how we were running to “justify donuts.”

KL Yeah…

SWB And I remember at the time we sent that out to a few people in advance of the show coming out, and a friend of mine actually said that felt a little bit food-shamey that we had to run to “deserve” the donuts. Which I don’t think is really what we intended, but I totally get that, especially now. So, I’ve thought about that all year [KL laughs] and I’m really glad we’re able to come back around not just to running, but also to donuts. And to be able to say…we don’t run to deserve donuts, but we run and then we celebrate with donuts! Which is a way better way to live and a way better way to think about it. [KL laughs] So, fuck yeah to feeling good, and to being together, and of course…to donuts.

KL I love that. Fuck yeah!

SWB Well, that is it for us this week. Strong Feelings is recorded in Philadelphia and produced by Steph Colbourn from Edit Audio. Our theme music is “Deprogrammed” by Blowdryer. Check them out at blowdryer.bandcamp.com. Thanks to Christine Nobiss for being our guest today, and thank you for listening! If you liked our show today, don’t forget to subscribe and rate us wherever it is you listen to your favorite podcasts. And hey—you can get some strong feelings right in your inbox! Sign up for our newsletter at strongfeelings.co. See you again next week!

KL Bye! [theme music plays for 15 seconds and fades out]


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Welcome to Strong Feelings

Best friends and business partners Katel and Sara let it all out in a weekly show about work, friendship, and feminism. Because life’s too short to bottle things up.
Apple Podcasts badgeGooglePodcasts badge Stitcher badgeSpotify badgeBreaker badge Overcast badge RadioPublic badge PocketCasts badge

Get the Newsletter

I Love That newsletter logo

A biweekly email full of personal stories, links we love, and tidbits we couldn’t fit on the show. Comes every other Friday.