There have been several recent deaths on my reservation, and others, of young people in their teens and 20s. The tragedy at Tulalip got me thinking about solutions or, at least, attempts at solutions.
My alcohol and drug counselor asked me one simple question upon our first meeting. The answer would be the turning point in my life. I had become addicted to alcohol. I had just hit rock bottom. I was unsure, scared and lost.
The facts are there. We know them. We live them, every day. We see them in our children’s lives, especially now. According to Aspen Institute, 75 percent of all Native youth deaths between 12 and 20 are directly attributable to violence.
Those of us who carry indigenous genetic material today descend from the survivors of biological warfare on a cataclysmic scale, principally smallpox and measles, both diseases caused by viruses that require no direct contact to spread and can survive on dry surfaces.
Sometimes bravery is the smallest of things, a grain of sand lying under a mountain of regret. This, I felt as I watched my mother die. Exactly two years before the moment she left this world, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. It started with a pain in her breast that wouldn’t go away.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and this was written to honor my mother and every life touched by this devastating disease.
Diabetes is a terrible disease, and one that has afflicted American Indian and Alaska Native communities since the disruption of their traditional cultures centuries ago.
Our histories are bursting with examples of how tribal nations have fought and sacrificed for continued existence in the face of powerful forces that sought to eliminate and assimilate American Indians.
While a patchwork of state laws have given marijuana quasi-legal status in 24 states, status on many tribal lands remains prohibited, or at best uncertain.
I can close my eyes and remember the day my friend died. I was sitting in the kitchen on the stairs that led to the second floor. It was on the fourth step, where I always sat because it had a large window to my left.
It was a hot summer day. August 16, 1977.
I wake up panting and sweating from every pore. My body is a twitching mass of pain, as usual, and today is a 7 out of 10 day. My normal level is a 4 or 5, just a dull whole body ache that I can work through.
As someone who has had the unique experience of witnessing America’s drug war from both the front lines and the prison camps, and as someone who is an Ivy League graduate who has spent the last decade advocating for the legalization of marijuana, I found a recent column printed by the Indian Coun
I have a message for all of you “stoners” in our Native community; there is nothing “traditional” about using a natural herb found in our environment if your method of using it is smoking the herb for recreational purposes.
This is the working mantra of the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA). After reading the latest report from the Office of the Inspector General, this is made blatantly clear.