It's amazing the way colonization plays out in our communities even still today. Looking back into history at the origins of the problem it has been stated: "To prevent Africans and Native Americans from uniting, Europeans played skillfully on racial differences and ethnic rivalries. They kept the pot of animosity boiling. Whites turned Indians into slavehunters and slave owners, and Africans into “Indian-fighters”. Light-skinned Africans were pitted against dark-skinned, free against enslaved, Black Indians against “pure” Africans or “pure” Indians. Those who have put history into books have emphasized differences between Africans and Native Americans. For example, they have stressed that Europeans encountered Indians as distinct individuals and members of proud nations, and Africans as nameless slaves. Little mention is made of the enslavement of Native Americans and nothing is said about the cultural similarities between the two dark peoples. In 1984, scholar Theda Perdue said: “By emphasizing the actual, exaggerated and imagined differences between Africans and Indians, whites successfully masked the cultural similarities of the two races as well as their mutual exploitation by whites." -William Loren Katz, Black Indian: A Hidden Heritage While this quote, of coarse, speaks about what happened during the initial colonization, I believe it's important to look and see where the root of the problem arose to be able to see how it has grown and changed or even stayed the same. Though solving the issue of bigotry in our communities will of coarse be a long and complex journey, looking at the root may make it easier to do. I am thankful that dialogue around this issue is increasingly coming up more and more, and being talked about both here on ICTMN and on blogging platforms like tumblr in the Native, First Nations, Inuit, and Metis community of bloggers. I hope to see more articles and dialogue surrounding this topic here on ICTMN. Thank you Julianne for writing this.
Wednesday, December 28, 2011 - 00:25