Unsettling Truths

with our guest: Mark Charles
Overview

Mark Charles, the author of Unsettling Truths: The Ongoing, Dehumanizing Legacy of the Doctrine of Discovery, is a dual citizen of the United States and the Navajo Nation running as an Independent candidate for the U.S. presidency. Mark is a thought-provoking writer and public speaker whose mission is to create a country where the words “We the People” means “all the people.” Together with his family and supporters, Mark advocates for a path of common memory and healing for the nation through a Truth + Conciliation Commission.

Mark joins me today to share his experience living in the Navajo Nation and what he realized about the marginalized and disenfranchised. He explores how the enduring social issues of today are institutionalized and deeply rooted in history. He explains what the Doctrine of Discovery is and how it perpetuates white supremacy. He also reveals how trauma and the lack of knowledge on American history hinders racial dialogue and emphasizes the importance of agreeing as a nation on the meaning of life.

 

“The way we live and who we are has to reflect our value for life. We have to agree that ‘we the people’ means ‘all the people.’” – Mark Charles

Show Notes

This week on The School for Good Living Podcast: 

  • Mark’s background, ancestry, and what life is about for him
  • What it means to ‘walk in duty’ for the Navajo people
  • The practice of walking and praying with the sun and its benefits
  • How Mark maintains his connection with Creation and the world despite living in urban cities
  • Growing up disconnected from his ancestry and the reason Mark decided to move from Denver, CO to live in the Navajo Nation
  • The need to create a common memory and to look at issues from an intersectional perspective
  • How ‘We the People’ are the most misunderstood words in American history
  • What the ‘Doctrine of Discovery’ is, its institutionalization, and how it perpetuates social issues and racial injustice
  • The different levels of trauma and how they make it difficult to have conversations about social issues
  • Perpetrator-induced trauma and why people disrupt the racial dialogue
  • Exposing an “apology” buried in the 2010 Defense Appropriations Act
  • Mark’s First 100 Day Plans and his proposed amendments to the U.S. Constitution
  • The importance of writing a collective value for life in the Constitution
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