Thought provoking article, Steven, and great comment dhowe52. The issue is how to overcome the colonization, reaffirm traditions, and challenge the modern by-products of colonialism, i.e. federal Indian Law and American education. First, Indian country needs to get an Indian perspective education on what these concepts are in the first place and how they apply to our lives today. We have to do this ourselves - the Federal government and corporate world have no incentive to change, the status quo of uneducated Indians works just fine for them... The huge problem for Indian Country is that we live in a murky gray area politically, psychologically, and culturally, where we don't fit neatly into the boxes created for us by outsiders, AND because most of us aren't educated about the core concepts of colonialism - past and present - the vast majority of us remain clueless. Education about this history and how it impacts us today needs to be THE PRIORITY of every tribal government, every American Indian educational enterprise. We don't need to teach our kids to make tee-pees and dream catchers for Thanksgiving day, we need to teach them the history behind such stereotypes applied to us, to teach them and parents to question history textbooks, and to provide them with factual information to refute the textbooks with facts. The way history has played out to this point, the burden is on us. A HUGE effort for certain, but unless Indian Country INVESTS in TRULY educating our people, it's unrealistic to expect anything to change.
Tuesday, February 1, 2011 - 23:30