Native American Heritage Month: 'To Those Who Carry the Blood,' a Poem by Richard Walker - ICTMN.com
Richard Walker, Mexican/Yaqui, is a newspaper editor in Kitsap County, Washington, as well as a correspondent for Indian Country Today Media Network. In honor of Native American Heritage Month, ICTMN is reprinting selected poems from his chapbook, The Journey Home (Red Bird Chapbooks, 2012, www.redbirdchapbooks.com).
To Those Who Carry the Blood
Let us lift our hands to all those who carry the blood …
The fair-skinned woman with light-brown hair
who wears the paint
and dances the dances
her great-grandmother danced.
The woman of 1/16th blood who
lives the teachings
Many members of the general public sometimes question why Indians receive services free of charge from the federal government, including certain medical and education benefits. The doctrine of trust responsibility demonstrates however, that Indians are not receiving “free” services. Rather, these services were PREPAID. Tribes relinquished their homelands and agreed to move peacefully to much smaller territories in exchange for these services. Therefore, as Senator Byron Dorgan stated in 2007 regarding the importance of funding Indian health-care programs: “This is not an option; it’s a trust responsibility [and] we need to own up to our responsibility.
~Stephen L. Pevar, The Rights of Indians and Tribes, Fourth Edition (via A Daily Riot)
The problem with cultural appropriation is that it replaces the original with a copy created by the dominant culture. It dilutes the original, removes all symbolic value from it and replaces it with a ready to consume product devoid of context and meaning.
Below is an excerpt from Chantal Rondeau's tumblr.
It’s Louis Riel Day!
Who was Louis Riel?
He “was a Canadian politician, a founder of the province of Manitoba, and a political and spiritual leader of the Métis people of the Canadian prairies. He led two resistance movements against the Canadian government and its first post-Confederation Prime Minister, Sir John A. Macdonald. Riel sought to preserve Métis rights and culture as their homelands in the Northwest came progressively under the Canadian sphere of influence.”
My father has always felt connected to Louis Riel, we were always taught about him. (My dad wanted to name one of my brother Louis Riel, but settled on Lionel Riel) I have always regarded him as a hero. Though I am not technically Metis (I am Full status) I am Native and French which makes me feel connected to the Metis.
I have always always felt connected to this quote that LR said on July 4th 1885
“My people will sleep for one hundred years, but when they awake, it will be the artists who give them their spirit back.”
And from what I see in my community is is the artist who are coming out in the forefront.
Singers, writers, actors, carvers, painters, dancers, storytellers..
And there are the educated artists
Lawyers, doctors, journalists, politicians, CEOs, Entrepreneurs.
It’s our time!
We did not rebel, we defended and maintained rights which we enjoyed and had neither forfeited nor sold.
Louis Riel was hanged in Regina on November 16th, 1885.
Click this link for a photo album:
More West Village findings. These are from earlier this summer.
Juicy displayed these West Village-style headdresses. I have yet to see anyone walking the streets with one of these. My guess is Juicy Couture did not have these for sale. Which makes me wonder, why are they on the mannequins then?
Blush is a clothing store that sometimes has cool stuff. Unfortunately I bought my Dead Kennedys dress there a season before I saw this shirt.
LTJ Arthur is a children’s clothing store. It’s like they were all competing with each other to keep up with the Native Appropriation trend—they are between one or two blocks of each other.