Native American Village @ Blogspot

The blog companion to the Native American Village, the free community and careers site for indigenous peoples, part of the Multicultural Villages network.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A day of thanksgiving?

Though I’ve been holding down the fort (so to speak) of the Native American Village while we reorganize, I’m not of American Indian blood or culture. At the same time, for many years, probably since my college days, I’ve refused to celebrate Thanksgiving Day, creating for myself the illusion perhaps of solidarity with Native Americans. Yearly, I make a big deal over my boycott, protesting that we’ve made a charade and a big lie of the true history of our relations with the people whose land and lives the colonists stole as they usurped east and marauded west. To me, expressing thanks on that post-harvest day for the whole host of things—the bountiful meal, familial ties, material goods, good health—oftentimes a mere litany instead of conscious stock-taking, makes that much more glaring, by its omission, the shameful episode of our history that continues in its present-day guise of the mythologizing, patronizing, and neglect of native peoples. But mine is one wet blanket opinion, that of an admitted outsider with fears, even, of being patronizing herself.
Seeking authenticity, I wrote to the Native American Village’s new contributor, Patty Talahongva—about whom we’re just tickled! (see her first article for us)--and asked what Thanksgiving Day means to her. Here’s some of what she said:

"I'm amused at this time of year because it's when American Indians become 'popular' and 'visible' -it's like non-Indians are given some sort of special permission to consider American Indians. We are taken out of the box and dusted off, given some scant attention before we are put back in the box and stored away for another year. We aren't even special enough to warrant a china cabinet for special storage...just a box. (And of course we don't have a federal holiday either.)…
…do I celebrate Thanksgiving? Yes, but not for the origins of the holiday and not to 'commemorate the first Thanksgiving' but just the overall thankfulness of life's blessings, which for Hopi is everyday. We thank our Creator for waking us up to another day of light and life and ask that we make the most of it and not squander our day/life. So every day truly is Thanksgiving Day. Do I like the turkey, the stuffing, and the pumpkin pie- you bet!"

Here are a couple of links I’ve pointedly selected, perhaps to check out while digesting that turkey that missed the pardon. Food for thought, shall we say?
Native Americans Will Mourn Thanksgiving
Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States

May your day be peaceful and augur prosperity for us all.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Corporate Glass Ceiling for Women and Minorities is yet to be Shattered

It's same old, same old, says as they report on findings by the Calvert Group, a social investment fund, that found little advancement of women and minorities in corporate executive positions. Equally problematical, a second report finds, is that the corporate world is lax--perhaps better said, uncooperative--in disclosing Equal Opportunity information regarding diversity in their workplaces. You'd think they had something to hide, eh?
A possible remedy? Shareholder resolutions forcing the brass to get with it. Here's a perfect pitch for "spreading the wealth," no?

Friday, November 07, 2008

Indian country support aided Obama

Rob Cappriccioso reports for Indian Country Today that, in the final days of the campaign, John McCain's support among a host of traditionally Republican Indian leaders practically vanished, making way for a rush of support for Barack Obama amongst their constituents.