The beautiful bright purples, yellows and reds of the Nez Perce. The yellow, red, black and white of the traditional medicine wheel. The lilac and blue of the camas flowers of Kalispel art. The muted pink, teal and green of the Crow. Whether made on a loom or stitched using the single or two-needle method, Native American traditional beadwork is a sight to behold.
Windspeaker.com recently featured commentary by Drew Hayden Taylor entitled, ‘The Shame of Skirt Shaming,’
In it, readers are forced to endure the bitter tirade of a male author who seeks to shame traditional practitioners of Native ways, including elders and medicine people, for strictly adhering to centuries-old ceremonial protocol that requires women to cover themselves while participating in sacred rites passed down over millennia.
Native students, especially young women, are not going to school – and it’s not for the reasons you think. School administrators who are grappling with this enormous problem of absenteeism should understand two points about why Native girls are missing class.
In 2011, my uncle, aunt and two cousins were disenrolled from the Shoalwater Bay Indian Tribe by an apparent majority vote after a year-and-a-half of politically motivated votes, debates, arguments and Council after Council meeting. It is all on film, one relative after the next defending or objecting to my uncle’s, and by proximity, his children’s tribal membership.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is an increasingly common mental health difficulty that can be faced by soldiers returning from war, battered women and individuals who have experienced mental, physical or verbal assault or abuse as children or adults. An experience of racism like my cousin’s could also cause PTSD.
There is a strong rhetoric, even among communities of color, that women with lighter skin are more conventionally attractive, more low key and easier to be around, while the darker your shade of skin, the more you are perceived as difficult, petty and unattractive.
If we get pulled over, I hope I'm driving.
Erika Wurth is the young Apache writer all the girls want to be, the Indigenous Janis Joplin if Joplin had been a writer instead of an addict, and every bit as cool and buoyant.
Fourth of July...
I almost forgot how sickening it can be when you're on the otherside...
Canoe culture is about honor, dignity, self-respect and family. It hearkens back to ancestral ties. Said Gary Johnson, former chair of the Chinook tribe, “We know when that fog and mist comes in, that our ancestors are traveling in that fog, traveling with us, and all those people who have gone before us and have shown us the way.”
Back in 1927, the Supreme Court ruled that the government had authority to sterilize anyone deemed unfit, including the intellectually disabled “for the protection and health of the state.” Seen as an endorsement of removing defective stock from the human gene pool, health professionals, legal authorities and groups across the country began wiping out the chances for “unseemly” people to procreate behind the shield of the greater good.
Sisters Mindy Gallant-Zwicker and Robyn Hazard from the Mi’kmaw First Nation are opening an Aboriginal crisis counseling service for those living on reserves in mainland Nova Scotia. Because of the significant treatment dropout rates and underutilization of mental health services experienced in Aboriginal communities, they have taken it upon themselves to Indigenize the system.
Earlier this year, the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development named Eunice Tso the 2016 Native Woman Business Owner of the Year. Today Tso, the founder of ETD, Incorporated, is considered one of the premier consulting forces within the Navajo Nation. Her initial vision to form a small, highly specialized environmental consulting business has evolved over the past 20 years to be an agent of both continuity and change for Navajo lands.
The Changing Woman Initiative in the southwest brings Indigenous identity and the values of respect and honoring women at the forefront. In cases of normal, healthy pregnancies, there should only be trust allowing our Native women to birth the way they inherently know how.