Circle of violence
Over recent years I have found myself in a position of seeming to defend Indian boarding schools against assertions that depict them as a combination of reform school, prison, gulag, and Nazi death camp.
I had been visiting a friend that night and lost track of the time. When I realized it was past curfew, I decided to walk home. The path home was well-worn but poorly lit. About halfway there, I heard rustling coming from a nearby bush. Within seconds, he was on top of me, holding me down.
The time has come to make meaningful change. Native women need to be protected from the sexual predators who repeatedly victimize them, without consequence or repercussion.
I have been in the unusual position of treating childhood and family trauma over the last 30 years in our communities. In seeing so much pain among our people, I have found that trauma response can be described as a response to a life-altering wound to the soul or the spirit.
Some fathers don’t realize how important they are to their children. Whether they are involved parents or not, their role is critical. If they aren’t there anymore or were never there at all, children miss their dads even if the child doesn’t know what it is they are missing.
He never saw the blow coming because he was driving at highway speed. She hit him as hard as she could in his right temple and sent his glasses flying onto the dashboard. Out of the corner of his eye he saw another blow coming as he hit the brakes and steered the car toward the shoulder.
A few months ago, former Governator Schwarzenegger’s admission of fathering a child with his maid once again confirmed the reality of males in positions of fame and power.
I recently downloaded a list of Jesuits—priests, brothers and deacons—who have been accused of sexual abuse of children and, presumably, adult parishioners as well.
My mother told me about a presentation she saw that mentioned how one kind person can make all the difference to a victim of sexual assault. This stood out to me—that one act of kindness from one person could have such a profound effect on someone in the midst of trauma.
Somewhere in Indian country tonight there is a little boy huddled with his little sister in a bedroom closet hoping against hope that the man who just came into the house at three a.m. will just quietly go to bed. They know the odds are against it though.
In recent weeks, Indian Country Today Media Network has reported on apparent random acts of violence on Natives and on the unfolding mess of sexual abuse at Catholic schools in the Dakotas.