I am white. I also have long & strong ties to Natives, including my time with a Rosebud resident & I don't believe any are "living the past" so much as educating not only other Natives but also other cultures as to some truths about American history that have never been told. I am Scot-Irish. I am proud of my heritage, was not given the choice of where I was born and, along with my cousins, have been involved in years of family research. You made an excellent point about the groups who remember, document & honor their own oppression & genocide. The Scots & Irish are no different. My ancestors were proud warriors, fought battles which they could not possibly win; they were robbed of their meager food resources to feed a nation already fat with their own stores; property was awarded & taken away at the whim of monarchs & when starvation drove us onto "coffin ships", we were greeted on these shores by being pelted, refused housing & work & were no better than the land we fled. Prior to that, our spiritual practices & our languages were forbidden. We, too,practiced drumming; had symbols, colors & meanings for the directions and honored earth & spirits. All forbidden & all punished by torture & death. Sound familiar? It's not about "getting over it", it;s about exposing truths; the desecration & holocausts of more than a few cultures and learning the lessons of the many. You were no more educated about your culture by the dominant culture's schools than I was about mine..except for slanderous sterotypes. Were we educated about slavery? Hitler? Who wasn't? My ancestral homelands have just reclaimed their native language & made English second...now it must be taught to the locals, very few of whom know any. I have adopted my own belliefs, identify as Scot-Irish when asked. I cannot change the past but I can tell the truth. Those who ask why not "get over it" don't want to hear the answer because the truthh is ugly & shameful.
Tuesday, April 24, 2012 - 00:49