reply to post by Xcouncil=wisdom
I watched the video. And I thought about it a while before I decided to write my response.
First of all, I am pro allowing children express themselves as long as they are truly expressing their points of view. If they are simply parroting
the views of their parents, that feels a wrong to me. However, knowing my children, how intelligent they are, how they think about what goes on in
the world and their opinions on various topics, it does not surprise me that this little girl has an opinion on something she feels hurts her
Now as far as when she asks everyone not to dress up in Native American costumes, this is my thought.
I am part Native American. I know I am Cherokee, Hopi, Hunk Papa Sioux, Shawnee and Chickamagua. I have worked literally for years trying to map my
heritage, and it has been difficult because my family began hiding their heritage around the time of the trail of tears. As did many others. In
fact, because they chose not to live on the reservations, many were not allowed to participate in the programs that were set up for Native Americans.
Others chose to assimilate as white and considered their Native American heritage a shame.
I am proud of my Native American heritage, as I am of all my ancestors. I teach my children from whom and where they come. If my families had
followed different paths, I might be speaking from a reservation, but I am not. I did not live that life. Instead, I have lived one of searching for
my heritage. And grasping for it every way I can, which is reading about it, participating in Pow Wows, appreciating Native American Art and music.
And as my children grew, allowing them, when they chose to express themselves by dressing in Native American themed attire.
I am only about 10% Native American. My children, however are about 60%. Their father is full blooded Alaskan Native. They have not been raised
tribally, but they know their heritage.
I think in asking people not to dress as Native American's, it needs to be explained why. It needs to be made clear that it isn't just the theme of
dress, the buckskin clothing, shoes and belts, or the fake bow and arrow. It is the fact that the feathers and head dresses have spiritual meaning to
the Native Americans. As do the various face paint. If you ever want to know more, go to a local Pow Wow, talk to the people who are dancing there.
There are always two sides to every story. This is one that can be seen with respect from both sides.