It isn’t difficult to imagine somewhere a person is or persons are saying the only good Muslim is a dead Muslim.
As Indigenous people we’re familiar with such attitudes having been subjected to them ourselves – “the only good Indian is a dead Indian”, even to the point of targeting our children -“nits become lice”.
And so on the global scale of intolerance and hatred the more some things change the more they stay the same.
Stereotypes are more than a cliche, they are embedded in the psyche of cultures and nationalism, generational in nature inspite of efforts to legislate thoughts and speech.
Stereotypical type casting continues to this day, it never truly went away – among them the nations are generally composed of shiftless layabouts, a bunch of drunk Indians milking the welfare system.
Ignorant, errant children of the great white or black father, wards of the state in need of oversight as though the rez or our communities amount to little more than group homes for the handicapped, dysfunctional, or criminals under house arrest.
I’ll be the first to acknowledge alcohol and substance abuse are problems within our communities, that we have our share of grifters and cons, but also that such things aren’t restricted to our communitites and to be found across the nation in every community and neighborhood that exists whether rich, poor, or middle class.
Is that an excuse or some qualification? No, merely a statement of fact accompanied by a notation that in any impoverished community all issues, all problems, all needs, are amplified.
In the midst of poverty it seems counterintuitive to spend precious monetary resources on anything that produces a negative effect, yet that too often is the way of it.
A mixture that inevitably increases poverty but also crime and communal decline, and so who should become the first responders?
I say it is those within communities themselves – that talk, enduring, or a wringing of the hands is not enough.
Those who may refer to themselves as “Last real Indians” seem to always take the path of least resistance, for them it’s mainly about rhetoric and youtube attention while issuing blank checks along the way excusing behavior in the midst of it’s nobodies fault we’re all just victims and these things symptoms – all that’s missing is a campaign speech and kissing babies.
And going so far as to say no, not a one of our communities or our nations should ban drug dealers, criminals, or sexual and physical abusers …. to that I say set the gee I’m a last real Indian enshrouded in tradition bullshit aside, forget the cultivated internet persona and get real or get the hell out of the way rather than continue embarrassing themselves displaying their complete lack of understanding when it comes to the history of our people.
I read an article a while back posing what I consider to be a rhetorical
question of whether trauma has become a part of indigenous dna – not
a bad article, speculative, and kind of quasi scientific, and maybe it has, but other questions need to be asked if this is so.
Other questions like what of the warrior dna, the pride dna, the self reliance and concern for the communal welfare dna? Which are to be embraced, fed, and nourished? Which serve the greater purpose?
How long are we to embrace this victimization, to the point we victimize others and say it’s just the result of being a victim?
If so I want no part of it as I refuse to be a victim, to live on my knees
and excuse or accept whatever comes along as just being the way of it.
Symptoms or not when they manifest as festering infectious wounds they require a more direct approach, and that begins with people saying enough, that yes maybe the user/abuser is a victim but no excuse exists that allows them the right to abuse others or a community, and that doesn’t have a damn thing to do with ethnicity or “we are all related”.
Now a question seems to me to be if trauma can become a part of DNA has it, will it, also become a part of the DNA of children raised in the midst of the Middle East conflict?
Or is that they are to be viewed as nits that will become lice and therefore dismissed?
I’m not offering any terrorist anywhere in the world a pass or any sort of excuse – I in fact believe they should be wrapped in a shroud of pigskin or whatever else would be equally offensive depending on ethnicity/culture and put in the ground – but all Muslims aren’t terrorists any more than all of the nations people are alcohol and substance abusers, or sexual predators.
Sterotypes may play well to the mentally challenged, but those who can actually think should consider the overall picture and the future.
An equally important question is will it breed generational terrorists and to what degree does greed, foreign adventurism, and policies contribute to that?
A very simple axiom in my opinion is to live peacefully, be equitable in the treatment of others, but if someone starts a fight don’t blink first, be the one that finishes it.
Ask no quarter and give even less.