10 Things Native Americans Can Do Better Than You

Simon Moya-Smith


Native Americans are skilled at various things, but here's a list of 10 things Native Americans can do better than most. (No, seriously. We can.)


10. Play lacrosse

 Illustration by George Catlin. Courtesy Wikipedia/Smithsonian Institution

Because we invented it.


9. Snowshoeing

courtesy Library of Congress.

Because, although Europeans had their own form of snowshoes, Native Americans are lauded for inventing the most efficient and diverse.


8. Run on Indian Time

Because “White Man Time will give you stomach cancer.”


7. Letting you know why this is completely and utterly wrong.

Naturally, a Native American will give you a better run down as to why this is fantastically repugnant.


6. Find unique ways to flirt while remaining traditional.

Facebook/Cumash Pow Wow 2013/AmigoNonProfitFilms.

Let’s face it: the potato dance is an art form and a fine way to hit on someone at a pow wow.


5. Host inipis (sweat lodges).


Listen, just don’t do it if you’re not qualified. It can end seriously bad.


4. Deep fry some dough.

Courtesy Wikipedia

It’s not super healthy, but it’s super nostalgic and pretty delicious with honey and powdered sugar.


3. Not act terribly surprised when celebrities claim to be Native American.

It happens a lot. (Brad Pitt claims to be Seminole and Cherokee.)


2. Honor Mother Earth


It’s kind of been our thing from the beginning.


1. Laugh


Because, well, without humor the past 521 years would’ve been a lot harder.

You need to be logged in in order to post comments
Please use the log in option at the bottom of this page



Neal Kluge's picture
Neal Kluge
Submitted by Neal Kluge on
11. Demand that the Red Skins change their name 12 Reject the people of India demanding that 'Red Indians' change their name ( its a joke)

Norm's picture
Submitted by Norm on
1. Collect welfare. 2. Get drunk. 3. Abuse their women. 4. Abuse their kids. 5. Filthy up their immediate environment until they need to abandon their own hovels to escape the think of their own waste. 6. Waste 10,000 years living like neanderthals on the second most geological rich continent on the face of the earth (the first being Africa) while Europe developed a written language, a monetary system, woven fabric, celestial navigation, ocean going vessels, metallurgy, in short, CIVILIZATION, 7. lose their "native" land to a fairly small number of more advanced people, 8. shoot off their mouthes about their "superior culture" (if it'd been superior, it wouldn't have been defeated) 9. Get drunk. 10. Get drunk. 11. Get thrown in jail. (Bonus answer) Happy trails, Kimosabe

Anonymous's picture
Submitted by Anonymous on
As a Caucasian American, I find this article horribly offensive. It's only okay to claim racial superiority when it's not a white man you're touting huh? Typical hypocrites.

Anonymous's picture
Submitted by Anonymous on
Do most of you people hear yourself? Really what I'm getting out of your whining and complaining about this list and so-called racism is you REALLY want to be great at all these things. Are you so offended that you probably can't play Lacrosse as well, or hey, your Snow shoes weren't up to par. Perhaps it hurt your ability to flirt? Or do you really want to understand "Indian Time" It's the fried dough isn't it? A *cultural* food of the Native Peoples. As for the New Yorker. You claim to be a "Native" because True Natives didn't grow from trees? That's your argument? When you can say who was working the land before Natives "came along" Then you can have the right to call yourself a Native American. Notice how casual the list it? That's what it's supposed to be. -Casual-

luckyace's picture
Submitted by luckyace on
I think it a shame that we belittle the native americans, our ancestors killed and massacered any and all of their people that stood up to, or trusted us. If any of them showed any spunk, we enslaved them and murdered them. So what kind of people are left? It's like what Hitler did to the jews, Americans are good and Nazi's bad ? Some of you are idiots.

sdff's picture
Submitted by sdff on
Why is there so much anger still going around. Those people who came back in the 16th century are long dead and both sides did what they thought was right. It kind of sucks though that one side suffered greater than the other. But we are all humans and we can never know what's right until we are all dead and gone. Even if we know what is right, there is no such thing as a perfect human that does eeverything right. So, why expect a whole race to do right? Then again, humans do things, whether or not we like it, it was all inevitable these things to happen. we're all part of the same planet after all. So war happens.

john c's picture
john c
Submitted by john c on

King of Hate's picture
King of Hate
Submitted by King of Hate on
Yet the white man does everything else better, which I think constitutes more than 10 things. White man: 1 Filthy, backwards savages: 0

Oscar's picture
Submitted by Oscar on
The hispanics laugh better because after 700 years of slavery under the muslims one has to have a sense of humor to survive the oppression under those fanatics of the cult of Islam.

Willymack's picture
Submitted by Willymack on
Be careful if you want to hang out with native Americans. They have the greatest sense of humor in the world and are not above pulling your leg.

unclesmedley's picture
Submitted by unclesmedley on
never ceases to amaze, how a group disparaged or disadvantaged by the drawing of distinctions, combats the abuse by drawing distinctions... good luck with that.

Diablo135's picture
Submitted by Diablo135 on
I'm sure the Native Americans are proud of this article. Especially the part that shows they can fry dough.

mtnman's picture
Submitted by mtnman on
I've been reading about "Native Americans". It seems that it is becoming apparent that your ancestors came here about 3500 years ago, crossing the Bering Strait from Asia. It's also suggested that your ancestors killed the people they found already living here, taking their lands. What say you?

clevis's picture
Submitted by clevis on
Better at all that but not at the one all-important important thing: winning the war against the invaders. Most cultures/peoples have faced that task. Some have won and some have lost. Native Americans lost.

Wherethefigari's picture
Submitted by Wherethefigari on
You force us all to only see you as victims. I cannot tell my children about the wonderful nature skills, warrior spirit and spiritual insights your many tribes possess without being accused of "over-romanticizing" American Indian life. My ancestors may have attacked your flesh, but you eat at your own bones. I am so sad for those of you who live as undead in a collectivist world of bitterness. Step outside that world and you will find warm embrace, respect and room to be yourselves; stay in that world and you will remain cold and brittle as winter twigs. Let us love you freely and individually as each of us sees and wishes, not as you demand.

Nicole 's picture
Submitted by Nicole on
My man is from South Dakota and is souix Indian. He's fun to be with, has a sence of humor, loves the great outdoors and is well travled. I love my Native American Indian. He's my soulmate. I just thought I speak on him and what a wonderful man he is. That's all thanks for letting me voice my thoughts. Nicole

Watchesyoupee's picture
Submitted by Watchesyoupee on
10 more things Natives do better 1. Drink 2.Smoke 3. Collect a welfare check 4. Ability to make love all night....because they dont have to get up for work the next day 5.Complain about the government. 6. Fight/take a beating 7. Huff Gasoline 8. Not pay child support 9.Gamble Poorly 10. Not get an education LOL to easy, but serious natives are a proud culturally rich peoples, who deserve as much respect as any other group.

Alastair McTavish's picture
Alastair McTavish
Submitted by Alastair McTavish on
respecting nature starts at home... don't litter, stop buying so much waste. unfortunately when I look at the sides of Winnipeg mostly populated by aboriginal people there is a sad lack of respect for nature... trash litters the streets everywhere, especially public parks in the North downtown that become hotbeds for drunks (white and native alike) to get wasted and leave garbage lying everywhere. we gotta work together to fix this problem - but KUDOS to standing up against Fracking in the Maritimes, someone had to be the voice and i'm glad it was the FN people

Wachakosh Awashish's picture
Wachakosh Awashish
Submitted by Wachakosh Awashish on
If I claim to have some white in my genes, but I look Cree...what are you going to do about it, eh? People who are non-native may have had some idea of their roots, however, inter-relationships happen cross-culturally since time immemorial...even inter-tribal unions. If Brad Pitt, Johnny Depp say they have native blood, who are we to say otherwise? Just saying.

Wachakosh Awashish's picture
Wachakosh Awashish
Submitted by Wachakosh Awashish on
If I claim to have some white in my genes, but I look Cree...what are you going to do about it, eh? People who are non-native may have had some idea of their roots, however, inter-relationships happen cross-culturally since time immemorial...even inter-tribal unions. If Brad Pitt, Johnny Depp say they have native blood, who are we to say otherwise? Just saying.

Povi Romero's picture
Povi Romero
Submitted by Povi Romero on
I'm happy to see the one who posted this is so happy a boasting about her kids and grandkids . All along I sit here and miss mine everyday.

granitefallscc's picture
Submitted by granitefallscc on
recommend "1491" by Charles C. Mann to begin to understand how much knowledge was lost (and is being lost) by the devouring of so many cultures by the Mono-culture.

Muggs Quincy Spongedice's picture
Muggs Quincy Sp...
Submitted by Muggs Quincy Sp... on
I saw the picture of the inipi. I was privileged to be allowed in several by a Lakota 'medicine man' wacasa-wanka (phonetically) -- what I saw very few non-Lakotas will ever see. What I experienced when my mind was in that perfect spiritual place was to get your mind strong. To be warriors. To see the dimensions of life. Inipis is the beginning. I believe the Bible is either the longest selling Sci-Fi in the world or it is real. I think to call on God and Jesus to ask if they are real is a grand experiment and then to ask no matter what show me the truth. This is the path I was on. I believe the Father Creator or Grandfather wanted me to experience these things. And I am eternally grateful while in this flesh. After it probably won't make a difference because I will be there in the total presence.

me's picture
Submitted by me on
Not to mention sit on welfare the most,only want the land where there is money involved, etc etc......

SPK67's picture
Submitted by SPK67 on