Jump to content
thefrozenone

Answering Give Back the Land

Recommended Posts

You could also say it's racist because slaves were forced to come here from Africa and if we were to kick them out where would they go? Oh I remember my days of running give back the land... the look on the other team's face is always priceless...

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Western Imperialism Good

 

Seriously though, you should answer with Framework. Also on sheer policy you should say that that level of backtracking just isn't practically possible; our entire infrastructure would be destroyed and we would be screwing over people that live on that land now when they didn't really do anything wrong. We would be disadvantaging more people than we benefit.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Western Imperialism Good

 

Seriously though, you should answer with Framework. Also on sheer policy you should say that that level of backtracking just isn't practically possible; our entire infrastructure would be destroyed and we would be screwing over people that live on that land now when they didn't really do anything wrong. We would be disadvantaging more people than we benefit.

It's not really "giving back the land". It's impossible realism.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's not really "giving back the land". It's impossible realism.

Could you explain more what is meant by "impossible realism" though? I assume it's something like making impossible political demands on the State, but I don't know about the literature or how the argument interacts with what I'd imagine to be typical aff responses ("It's impossible to do" or perhaps better, "Everyone ignores your demand / thinks you're crazy").

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have only heard a few direct responses to giving back the land. Usually they are "give back a third of the land" or "Churchill is a liar" or "their focus on one instance of colonialism dooms them to failure" or "the alternative opens up a way for more genocide to be committed." Impossible realism is the idea that we must first address and "demand of the deconstruction of the nation state." I had it explained by a judge once that when we do these audacious calls for dismemberment of the United States, it is not a radical call but a reactionary call. My partner and I run a piece of Harzenski evidence that talks about self reflection and how it is the only way to produce change, because other methods dominate others. That goes along with the Schwabb 06 evidence I talked about. Refusing to address the first "sin" only ensures that every action the state does will be colonialist- perpetuating genocide. 

Instead of attempting to come to grips with this most fundamental of¶ all issues the more sophisticated among them seek to divert discussions into “higher priority†or “more¶ important†topics like “issues of class and gender equality†in which “justice†becomes synonymous with a¶ redistribution of power and loot deriving from the occupation of Native North America even while¶ occupation continues

 

The alternative is essentially this---

in order to begin their struggles at all, anti-colonial fighters around the¶ world have had to abandon orthodox realism in favor of what they knew to be right. To paraphrase Bendit,¶ they accepted as their agenda, a redefinition of reality in terms deemed quite impossible within the¶ conventional wisdom of their oppressors. And in each case, they succeeded in their immediate quest for¶ liberation.

This evidence is from the Churchill's book. It is saying that when we advocate this literally impossible action, we come to grips with what happened in the first place. That realization of our original "sin" helps us solve/end our bad actions which again will only result in more colonialism and genocide.

If you are considering reading Churchill, my team usually runs it as a discursive level criticism (we read Bleiker and Doty evidence). This would help answer things like "it's only two debaters making this claim, that doesn't matter" type responses. 

Also another big argument is that case is a DA to the alternative because the affirmative will claim that "you can't just ignore nuclear war, otherwise everyone will be dead." Usually we handle this by framing the kritik as a pre-fiat issue and do some in-round role-of-the-ballot stuff (a common role of the ballot is red pedagogy, which I am not very familiar with). Also I like the idea of doing mini k's against their arguments. Kato is a really good one because he talks about "nuclear war" being a mask for the "war waged against the sovereign nations of the fourth world and indigenous populations." Also generic security k offense is good. 

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oops, I left out this part which is pretty important to the alternative debate

The tangible¶ diminishment of US material power which is integral to our victories in this sphere stands to pave the way for¶ realization of most other agendas from anti-imperialism to environmentalism, from African American¶ liberation to feminism, from gay rights to the ending of class privilege – pursued by progressive on this¶ continent

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i think some clarification is needed here folks - this K doesn't literally give back the land.

 

The alt is an imagination exercise that says we have to imagine a world without the US because the government is a symbolic construct and once we imagine it as not true it will become vulnerable to actual revolution. Ideology functions by suppressing other forms of knowledge; imaging something new begins to break down ideology opening up new space for ideas and alternative strategies for opposition.

 

The other part of the K is the ontology argument which says that that state gained its legitimacy by killing a bunch of people and because of that, it is by nature a killing machine. It is profoundly unethical to preserve a killing machine so the aff must be rejected. Also the aff creates a "kill to save" ontology in that it makes it so we have to kill some people (natives) to save others.

 

Given those two points, the best answers to this K are always alt fails arguments and answers to the ontology framing. Talk about why political action is key and the state is necessary to reverse existing unethical policies. Also win your framework!

 

Hope that was helpful! :)

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Even though the alternative doesn't literally give back the land it's still arguably the burden of the negative to defend the alternative as though that's literally occurring. The affirmative doesn't literally cause the USFG to pass legislation, but they defend the hypothetical effects of the plan anyway, and I see this situation as analogous. It doesn't seem like you're really engaging in impossible realism as Churchhill describes it if you refuse to argue that the destruction of the USFG would be a net good. You're not truly prioritizing natives if you're reluctant to say that they justify a literal dismantling of the state. Impossible realism seems like an answer to attacks on the alternative's solvency, not a way to dodge all the other team's offense.

  • Upvote 1
  • Downvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Even though the alternative doesn't literally give back the land it's still arguably the burden of the negative to defend the alternative as though that's literally occurring. The affirmative doesn't literally cause the USFG to pass legislation, but they defend the hypothetical effects of the plan anyway, and I see this situation as analogous. It doesn't seem like you're really engaging in impossible realism as Churchhill describes it if you refuse to argue that the destruction of the USFG would be a net good. You're not truly prioritizing natives if you're reluctant to say that they justify a literal dismantling of the state. Impossible realism seems like an answer to attacks on the alternative's solvency, not a way to dodge all the other team's offense.

 

Can you explain this more, particularly this part---"You're not truly prioritizing natives if you're reluctant to say that they justify a literal dismantling of the state"? I think it will be useful to know. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is an impossible realism card. I think reading the actual text might make my meaning clearer to you. The spacing on this card is messed up but I don't care to fix it.

 

Ward Churchill 19 96 (Professor of Ethnic Studies at University of Colorado, Boulder, BA and MA inCommunications from Sangamon State, From A Native Son pgs 85-90) The question which inevitably arises with regard to indigenous land claims, especiallyin the United States, is whether they are “realistic.†The answer, of course is , “No,they aren’t.†Further, no form of decolonization has ever been realistic when viewedwithin the construct of a colonialist paradigm. It wasn’t realistic at the time to expect George Washington’s rag-tag militia to defeat the Britishmilitary during the American Revolution. Just ask the British. It wasn’t realistic, as the French could tell you, that the Vietnamese should be able to defeat U.S.-backed France in 1954, or that the Algerians wouldshortly be able to follow in their footsteps. Surely, it wasn’t reasonable to predict that Fidel Castro’s pitiful handful of guerillas would overcome Batista’s regime in Cuba, another U.S. client, after only a few years inthe mountains. And the Sandinistas, to be sure, had no prayer of attaining victory over Somoza 20 years later. Henry Kissinger, among others, knew that for a fact. The point is that in each case, in orderto begin their struggles at all, anti-colonial fighters around the world have had toabandon orthodox realism in favor of what they knew to be right . To paraphrase Bendit, theyaccepted as their agenda, a redefinition of reality in terms deemed quite impossiblewithin the conventional wisdom of their oppressors. And in each case, they succeededin their immediate quest for liberation. The fact that all but one (Cuba) of the examples used subsequently turned out to hold colonizing pretensions of itsown does not alter the truth of this—or alter the appropriateness of their efforts to decolonize themselves—in the least. It simply means that decolonization has yet to run its course, that much remains to be done. The battles waged by native nations in North America to free themselves, and the lands upon which they depend for ongoing existence as discernible peoples, from the grip of U.S. (and Canadian) internalcolonialism are plainly part of this process of liberation. Given that their very survival depends upon their perseverancein the face of all apparent odds , American Indians have no real alternative but to carryon. They must struggle, and where there is struggle here is always hope. Moreover,the unrealistic or “romantic†dimensions of our aspiration to quite literally dismantlethe territorial corpus of the U.S. state begin to erode when one considers that federaldomination of Native North America is utterly contingent upon maintenance of aperceived confluence of interests between prevailing governmental/corporate elitesand common non-Indian citizens . Herein lies the prospect of long-term success. It is entirely possibly that the consensus of opinion concerning non-Indian “rights†toexploit the land and resources of indigenous nations can be eroded, and that large numbers of non-Indians will join in the struggle to decolonize Native North America. Few non-Indians wish to identify with or defendthe naziesque characteristics of US history. To the contrary most seek to deny it in rather vociferous fashion. All things being equal, they are uncomfortable with many of the resulting attributes of federal posturesand actively oppose one or more of these, so long as such politics do not intrude into a certain range of closely guarded self-interests. This is where the crunch comes in the realm of Indian rights issues. Most non-Indians (of all races and ethnicities, and both genders) have been indoctrinated to believe the officially contrived notion that, in the event “the Indians get their land back,†or even if the extent of present federaldomination is relaxed, native people will do unto their occupiers exactly as has been done to them; mass dispossession and eviction of non-Indians, especially Euro-Americans is expected to ensue. Henceeven progressives who are most eloquently inclined to condemn US imperialismabroad and/or the functions of racism and sexism at home tend to deliver a blank stare or profess open “disinterest†when indigenous land rights are mentioned.Instead of attempting to come to grips with this most fundamental of all issues themore sophisticated among them seek to divert discussions into “higher priority†or“more important†topics like “issues of class and gender equality†in which “justiceâ€becomes synonymous with a redistribution of power and loot deriving from theoccupation of Native North America even while occupation continues . Sometimes, Indians are even slated toreceive “their fair share†in the division of spoils accruing from expropriation of their resources. Always, such things are couched in terms of some “greater good†than decolonizing the .6 percent of the U.S.population which is indigenous. Some Marxist and environmentalist groups have taken the argument so far as to deny that Indians possess any rights distinguishable from those of their conquerors. AIM leaderRussell Means snapped the picture into sharp focus when he observed n 1987 that: so-called progressives in the United States claiming that Indians are obligated to give up their rights because a much larger groupof non-Indians “need†their resources is exactly the same as Ronald Reagan and Elliot Abrams asserting that the rights of 250 million North Americans outweigh the rights of a couple million Nicaraguans(continues). 1NC Leaving aside the pronounced and pervasive hypocrisy permeating these positions, which add up to a phenomenon elsewhere described as “settler state colonialism,†the fact is that the specter driving even mostradical non-Indians into lockstep with the federal government on questions of native land rights is largely illusory. The alternative reality posed by native liberation struggles is actually much different: Whilegovernment propagandists are wont to trumpet—as they did during the Maine and Black Hills land disputes of the 1970s—that an Indian win would mean individual non-Indian property owners losing everything, thenative position has always been the exact opposite. Overwhelmingly, the lands sought for actual recovery have been governmentally and corporately held. Eviction of small land owners has been pursued only ininstances where they have banded together—as they have during certain of the Iroquois claims cases—to prevent Indians from recovering any land at all, and to otherwise deny native rights. Official sourcescontend this is inconsistent with the fact that all non-Indian title to any portion of North America could be called into question. Once “the dike is breached,†they argue, it’s just a matter of time before “everybodyhas to start swimming back to Europe, or Africa or wherever.†Although there is considerable technical accuracy to admissions that all non-Indian title to North America is illegitimate, Indians have by and largeindicated they would be content to honor the cession agreements entered into by their ancestors, even though the United States has long since defaulted. This would leave somewhere close to two-thirds of thecontinental United States in non-Indian hands, with the real rather than pretended consent of native people. The remaining one-third, the areas delineated in Map II to which the United States never acquired title atall would be recovered by its rightful owners. The government holds that even at that there is no longer sufficient land available for unceded lands, or their equivalent, to be returned. In fact, the government itself still directly controls more than one-third of the total U.S. land area, about 770 million acres. Each of the states also “owns†large tracts, totaling about 78 million acres. It is thus quite possible—and always has been—for all native claims to be met in full without the loss to non-Indians of a single acre of privately held land. When it is considered that 250 million-odd acres of the “privately†held total are now in the hands of major corporate entities, the real dimension of the “threat†to small land holders (or more accurately, lack of it) stands revealed. Government spokespersons have pointed out that the disposition of public landsdoes not always conform to treaty areas. While this is true, it in no way precludes some process of negotiated land exchange wherein the boundaries of indigenous nations are redrawn by mutual consent to anexact, or at least a much closer conformity. All that is needed is an honest, open, and binding forum—such as a new bilateral treaty process—with which to proceed. In fact, numerous native peoples have, for a longtime, repeatedly and in a variety of ways, expressed a desire to participate in just such a process. Nonetheless, it is argued, there will still be at least some non-Indians “trapped†within such restored areas. Actually, they would not be trapped atall. The federally imposed genetic criteria of “Indian –ness†discussed elsewhere inthis book notwithstanding, indigenous nations have the same rights as any other todefine citizenry by allegiance (naturalization) rather than by race . Non-Indians could apply for citizenship, or forsome form of landed alien status which would allow them to retain their property until they die. In the event they could not reconcile themselves to living under any jurisdiction other than that of the United States,they would obviously have the right to leace, and they should have the right to compensation from their own government (which got them into the mess in the first place). Finally, and one suspects this is the realcrux of things from the government/corporate perspective, any such restoration of land and attendant sovereign prerogatives to native nations would result in a truly massive loss of “domestic†resources to theUnited States, thereby impairing the country’s economic and military capacities (see “Radioactive Colonialism†essay for details). For everyone who queued up to wave flags and tie on yellow ribbons during theUnited States’ recent imperial adventure in the Persian Gulf, this prospect may induce a certain psychic trauma. But, for progressives at least, it should be precisely the point. When you think about these issues inthis way, the great mass of non-Indians in North America really have much to gain andalmost nothing to lose, from the success of native people in struggles to reclaim theland which is rightfully ours. The tangible diminishment of US material power which isintegral to our victories in this sphere stands to pave the way for realization of mostother agendas from anti-imperialism to environmentalism, from African Americanliberation to feminism , from gay rights to the ending of class privilege – pursued byprogressive on this continent. Conversely, succeeding with any or even all of theseother agendas would still represent an inherently oppressive situation in theirrealization is contingent upon an ongoing occupation of Native North America withoutthe consent of Indian people. Any North American revolution which failed to freeindigenous territory from non-Indian domination would be simply a continuation of colonialism in another form . Regardless of the angle from which you view the matter, the liberation of Native NorthAmerica, liberation of the land first and foremost, is the key to fundamental andpositive social changes of many other sorts . One thing they say, leads to another. Thequestion has always been, of course, which “thing†is to the first in the sequence . Apreliminary formulation for those serious about achieving radical change in the UnitedStates might be “First Priority to First Americans†Put another way this would mean,“US out of Indian Country.†Inevitably, the logic leads to what we’ve all been sodesperately seeking: The United States – at least what we’ve come to know it – out of North America altogether. From there it can be permanently banished from theplanet. In its stead, surely we can join hands to create something new and infinitelybetter. That’s our vision of “impossible realism.†Isn’t it time we all worked onattaining it?

 

I think there are two things within that card that support my interpretation. The first is straightforward and the second is a more general theme underlying the message Churchill delivers.

1. Churchill uses the word "impossible" in a metaphorical sense. The historical examples make this clear. It was "impossible" for the British to lose to the Americans or the Vietnamese to resist the French/Americans, yet both actually occurred. The word is used to highlight the lack of imagination within imperial paradigms, not to describe the actual boundary conditions of reality.

2. This is more complicated to explain, but the overall point of impossible realism is that it only makes sense to one who's fully committed to Native Americans, which is why it's considered "impossible" to most progressives. You're not really engaged in indigenous land disputes if you're only prepared to accept land transfers in a metaphorical sense. You don't really believe that indigenous land rights are the most important if you're not willing to defend them literally. In other words, even if imagining an alternate reality was sufficient to solve problems, you're not really imagining that reality if you refuse to defend its implications. Impossible realism doesn't seem like just wishful thinking, the way I read Churchill. Even if you don't buy my interpretation specifically, there's still nothing in the Churchill card that makes the "metaphor" interpretation any more credible than what I came up with.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's important to note, first and foremost, that the card you posted is not the card that makes the "imagine a world without the USfg" argument, just that we should pursue indigenous land return as a first priority as an act of impossible realism. Within that context, you are mostly correct. However, fiating to get the land back (and thus having to defend that the land actually gets returned) is the wrong way to read this alternative. All it says is that the left should choose to abandon whatever struggle they seem to like this week, and instead focus all efforts on getting the US out of Indian country. The ballot in this instance serves as an endorsement of that methodology. Obviously the ballot isn't going to return land to Native Americans, but it's important to orient ourselves around that method first, because it's the best way to solve [impacts of the aff].

 

Honestly, I'm not the biggest fan of this alt card. I usually find it more strategic to read the "decolonize the mind" alt. The argument being, we have to imagine a world (as a thought experiment) without the USfg. This is key to "throw off the colonial yoke" and allow for emancipatory movements to coalesce; the reason they aren't in the status quo is because they are locked into traditional forms of realism. That's why impossible realism is key- of course a world without the USfg seems impossible, but that's why it's done as a thought experiment.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm confused by your response in several ways.

You say that I'm correct within the context of the card but then you seemingly disagree with what I said, could you clarify further in what sense you thought I was correct?

Why do you interpret the card as only defending a thought experiment when it talks about an "aspiration to quite literally dismantle the territorial corpus of the U.S. state"? I know that people traditionally use the card as a means of getting out of DAs to literally giving back the land. But I don't think that they're using the card in a way that makes sense based on its text. Was your post only discussing the other card you mentioned, and not the above one, and this is why I'm confused?

I think you ignore one issue raised in my post. How are you able to engage in a thought experiment if you refuse to think about the implications of giving back the land? What's your distinction between "fiat" and "thought experiment"? It doesn't seem like the thought experiment could solve if the conclusion of the thought experiment is that we need the USFG in order to avoid catastrophe, so it seems to me like the idea of a thought experiment is just a trick run by K teams to confuse their opponents and/or the judge.

Last, could you post the other card that you mention (not the one about decolonizing the mind)?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm confused by your response in several ways.

 

You say that I'm correct within the context of the card but then you seemingly disagree with what I said, could you clarify further in what sense you thought I was correct?

 

Why do you interpret the card as only defending a thought experiment when it talks about an "aspiration to quite literally dismantle the territorial corpus of the U.S. state"? I know that people traditionally use the card as a means of getting out of DAs to literally giving back the land. But I don't think that they're using the card in a way that makes sense based on its text. Was your post only discussing the other card you mentioned, and not the above one, and this is why I'm confused?

 

I think you ignore one issue raised in my post. How are you able to engage in a thought experiment if you refuse to think about the implications of giving back the land? What's your distinction between "fiat" and "thought experiment"? It doesn't seem like the thought experiment could solve if the conclusion of the thought experiment is that we need the USFG in order to avoid catastrophe, so it seems to me like the idea of a thought experiment is just a trick run by K teams to confuse their opponents and/or the judge.

 

I'm not saying the card you posted is talking about a thought experiment. That's where I agree with your characterization. Where I disagree is how you seem to be framing the alt/the ballot. The alternative nor the ballot actually give back the land. It's not a question of which particular action you take, but which pedagogy you endorse. Any pedagogy not focused on Indian land return always fails because it's the root of colonialism.

 

Nowhere in the card is Churchill talking about the USfg actually giving lands back. He's talking about a reorientation of starting points within the left as a method of challenging colonialism.

 

 

 

Last, could you post the other card that you mention (not the one about decolonizing the mind)?

 

The one I'm referring to is about decolonizing the mind. Unless that's a typo...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The alternative is "try to get the Indians their lands back" not "give the Indians their lands back". Is that what you're saying? That distinction makes sense to me and I think it's justified. (I've got some minor quibbles but want to take this post in a different direction.) But if so, I think you're reading Churchill as saying that we should try to give back the land because that attempt hurts imperialism as a whole, whereas I'm reading him as saying that we should try to give back the land because successfully doing so hurts imperialism as a whole, and I think my reading has more justification. (My understanding of the card has shifted since this discussion began, though. Just to clarify to anyone reading the posts in this thread in order.)

I don't think that it makes sense to say that a failed movement to give back the land will somehow challenge colonialism. I don't see warrants in the card that look like they're making that argument. This seems to be your reading though. Would you point out the parts of the card that led you to this reading? I think my reading makes more sense because of Churchill's use of the word literally and his ununderlined description of the logistics of how territorial exchange might actually occur.

Nevermind the request I made earlier. I misunderstood which card you were referring to.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...