We are not, regrettably, uncontacted tribes, we are a people who have lost wars, suffered the horrors of governmental genocidal policies, and ultimately been held captive in our own country.
Treaties were signed in an effort to insure survival, the faces of slain, wounded, maimed, and starving children were an impetus to that end _ not because so much as a single nation held the upper hand, had we of they would remain in effect as written.
We do not and cannot live in a bubble, in a personal Eden of our own creation or that our mother the earth provided for us- we are compelled to adapt, and in that adaptation do our best to remain true to who we are, to once again insure survival.
If we are as we say, a vibrant and strong warrior people, then we need to be strong and vibrant enough to set aside the cliches and live strong.
We can tattoo native pride or warrior across our foreheads and it doesn’t mean a thing if we don’t live it in a meaningful way, a constructive way.
We can attend rallies given by cultural genocidists or wave the rag banner of AIM while the very ground of our traditions and culture erodes beneath our feet and that too means nothing.
We can go on about respecting our women while we turn a blind eye to the abuses they endure around us and it means nothing. A profanity no different than religious doctrines that subjugate women or say a man should beat his woman.
We can do the internet thing about our great love and respect for the land even while the rez becomes a dumping ground for beer cans, wine bottles, syringes, and disposal diapers, and again it means nothing.
We can post manipulated videos with raptors soaring overhead, dub in a little audio, add some lightning and thunder for effect and if we’ve forgotten the kinship, our relationship with these things, our responsibility to them and one another, it means nothing.
Cliches don’t put food on the table, they don’t heal wounds, they are not a force that overcomes inequities or inertia. Granted they might line the pockets of a few but the vast majority are left behind.
We need to live our lives as though it isn’t a casting call, free of the expectations of those who are not of our own, and no amount of “we are all related” qualifies a single thing that is contrary to who we are, what we have believed, or where we come from.
This planet moves and we move with it in a fixed orbit around a star that in time will burn itself out – there is a constant in this, something humans, all living things, have come to rely on.
The seasons come and go in a predictable pattern, something else we have come to rely on.
There was a time when our traditions, ceremonies, and communities were a star, the center of our universe that as a people we revolved around, we were in tune with them and as much a part of the natural order as all things that surrounded us.
This star, our star, is in in danger of burning out due to the corruption and marketing taking place, if it does we will have no one to blame but ourselves.
The Catholic church sells ceremonies and has pedophiles in it’s ranks, the new Church of Indigenous Beliefs for Sale does as well, in view of our history with the Catholic “church” one would think we should know better.
The Catholic church wielded immense power at one time in Europe, enough power to manipulate thrones, raise armies to wage wars, and direct the course of nations while enriching itself – the CIBS has basically attempted to do the same thing and with the same results.
Dennis Banks stands up at the “Peltier conference” pontificating about the evils of the world at the same time he attempts to bestow a special dispensation, a get out of Purgatory pass for the believers – Peltier is a victim, AIM is a victim, and it isn’t AIM’s or the CIBS’s position to delve into who killed who during what he would have all believe was a holy war….didn’t work when he said it and doesn’t work now inspite of that Stole he wears draped around his shoulder or the Mitre sitting upon his head.