PT379 – Intergenerational Trauma, Late-Stage Capitalism, and the Urban Indigenous Collective

December 27, 2022
Featuring: Sutton King, MPH

In this episode, David interviews published researcher, social entrepreneur, and internationally recognized Indigenous rights activist: Sutton King, MPH.

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In this episode, David interviews published researcher, social entrepreneur, and internationally recognized Indigenous rights activist: Sutton King, MPH.

In New York City alone, 180,000 people identify as Indigenous, Native American, or Alaskan Native, and this community is facing a disproportionate prevalence of mental health disparities, poverty, suicide, and PTSD due to intergenerational trauma from attempted genocide, forced relocation, and the erasure of culture and identity via boarding schools. Her purpose has become to bring light to what Indigenous people are facing due to being forced to live under a reductionist, individualistic Western approach that is in direct opposition to their worldview.

She talks about growing up being instilled with the importance of ancestry and tradition; why she moved to New York; how psychedelics helped her move through the trauma she felt in herself and saw so commonly in her family tree; and capitalism: how we need to move away from our private ownership, profit-maximalist, extractive model into a steward mentality inspired by the Indigenous voices and principles that have been silenced for so long.

And she lays out all that she’s doing to push these goals forward and help these communities: her work with the Urban Indigenous Collective, Shock Talk, the Indigenous Medicine Conservation Fund, Journey Colab and their reciprocity trust, and even her time last year at the World Economic Forum in Davos. We’re thrilled that she’ll be speaking at our conference, Convergence, this March 30 – April 2.

Notable Quotes

“One of the principles that I always was taught is that Indigenous peoples were always taught to be humble and not to be proud and not to be loud. But I have always felt like that was a way to keep us stagnant, to keep us complacent. So I would say I’m definitely a disruptor of this generation.”

“We are dealing with a burden of poverty, we’re dealing with so much chronic morbidity and mortality, as well and our chronic health. There is a number of different issues that we’re facing as Indigenous peoples. However, I’d also like to highlight how resilient we are as well. To be able to survive genocide, forced relocation, boarding school, and the poor socioeconomic status that many of us face [and] our families face, but continue to be a voice for our communities; continue to be on the front lines, advocating for missing and murdered, advocating for the protection of our land and demanding land back – I see a resurgence.”

“When you look at that skyline of that concrete jungle in New York City, I love to remind folks that it was the Mohawk ironworkers who risked their lives on that skyline, to be able to create the world we see around us. The paths that we walk today [and] the rivers that flow have always been used by the Indigenous peoples who came before us.”

“When we think about the economy and this market, it’s not capital that creates economic growth; it’s people. And it’s not this reductionist, individualistic behavior that’s centered at the core of economic good; it’s reciprocity, and being able to make sure that we have a market and an economy that’s inclusive; that’s bringing in all voices, that’s also considering all voices, all of the different parts of the ecosystem – not to silo people, but to bring everyone together, I think, will be the opportunity of a lifetime to really be able to really enact change.”

Links Why the “Psychedelic Renaissance” is just Colonialism by Another Name

YouTube: The Jingle Dress Dance

Wikipedia: Carlisle Indian Industrial School

Wikipedia: Ingrid Washinawatok (Flying Eagle Woman) The pope’s apology in Canada was historic, but for some Indigenous people, not enough Senate Bill S6924A (Indian Health Service)

Wikipedia: Potlatch Introducing The Seventh Generation Principle – to Promote True Sustainability

YouTube: TED Talk: The dirty secret of capitalism — and a new way forward (Nick Hanauer) Forget Burning Man — Psychedelic Shamans Now Heading to Davos The Journey Colab Reciprocity Trust

Sutton King

In this Episode

Sutton King, MPH

Sutton King, MPH, Nāēqtaw-Pianakiw (comes first woman), is Afro-Indigenous and a descendent of the Menominee and Oneida Nations of Wisconsin. She is a graduate of NYU School of Global Public Health. She holds a bachelors in Psychology, a minor in Sociology, and a Masters in Public Health. She is an internationally recognized Indigenous rights activist, published researcher, and social entrepreneur dedicated to developing and scaling innovative solutions to improve Indigenous health equity across sectors. Her focus centers access and benefit sharing and culturally appropriate methodologies within technology, healthcare, and business.

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