The Native American Ten Commandments

1. The Earth is our Mother; care for her.

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2.  Honor all your relations.

3.  Open your heart and soul to the Great Spirit.

4.  All life is sacred; treat all beings with respect.

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Systemic Perpetuation: All Hail Fallacious History

This week’s Smackdown goes out to education systems which continue to teach a false history of the origins of America, thereby instilling in young minds a misplaced sense of pride, unaccountability, and hero-worship of genocidal pioneers.

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Michelle Raheja, whose daughter was a kindergarten student at a California elementary school, expressed it best: “It’s demeaning. I’m sure you can appreciate the inappropriateness of asking children to dress up like slaves (and kind slave masters), or Jews (and friendly Nazis) or members of any other racial minority group who has struggled in our nation’s history… There is nothing to be served by dressing up as a racist stereotype.”

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Bravo! to this parent for speaking out against school systems insistent upon teaching colonial fables, and perpetuating those fables with accompanying activities which imprint racist stereotypes upon impressionable young minds.

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What are your thoughts about this issue?

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Sylver’s Saturday Smackdown

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A Day in the Life: Happy Thanksgiving / Celebrating Genocide

first-thanksgivingAh, Thanksgiving.

Crunchy leaves and colors, slight chill in the air.

First Thanksgiving decorations of happy pilgrims and Indians sharing mounds of food and friendship…creating a wonderful history for a great nation.

Heartfelt prayers of gratitude over turkey with stuffing, cranberry sauce, butter beans, warm apple cider and sweet potato pie…stomach kept empty and ready for it all.

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Spirituality, family fun (and fights), making new memories for the photo album before all stumble from kitchen to living room to pass out like beached whales…bellies just as round.

Contented fatigue, pleasant conversation, crackling fire in the hearth…warm…cozy.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

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Not again.

Thanksgiving.

A chill in the air…just a touch of the terror your ancestors felt as they were poisoned and butchered by God-fearing Pilgrims.

Leaves the color of blood crunching beneath your feet like the bones of your ancestors strewn across the lands of this great nation.

A nation that once belonged to your forefathers, before it was wrenched away and re-fertilized with their blood and bones. A nation that now glorifies this massacre, and those who led it, rewriting genocide into a warm-fuzzy family fable.

A fable you must suffer through, year after year.

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Civilization

“I do not think the measure of a civilization is how tall its buildings of concrete are, but rather how well its people have learned to relate to their environment and fellow man.”

— Sun Bear (Chippewa Tribe)

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Photo: http://www.firstpeople.us/

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Tirawa

“In the beginning of all things, wisdom and knowledge were with the animals, for Tirawa, the One Above, did not speak directly to man. He sent certain animals to tell men that he showed himself through the beast, and that from them, and from the stars and the sun and moon should man learn… all things tell of Tirawa.”

 

— Eagle Chief (Letakos-Lesa), Pawnee

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Misconceived Americans

For a subject worked and reworked so often in novels, motion pictures, and television, American Indians remain probably the least understood and most misunderstood Americans of us all.”

– John F. Kennedy in the introduction to The American Heritage Book of Indians

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Native American Indian News Reel

Indian Country Today explores the Wampanoag side of the First Thanksgiving story of 1621. The Wampanoag and Pilgrims did not sit down for a big turkey dinner. It was an event which the Wampanoag neither knew about nor were invited to in advance.

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PBS History Detectives explores Ince’s Hollywood Indian Payroll: Who were “Two Lance and Wife” and “Luke Big Turnip and Wife?” And why did the New York Motion Picture Company pay them each week? How did these Native Americans earn their pay? Did Hollywood treat them fairly?

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In Indian Country Today, Rob Schmidt expounds upon the light & dark of the 20/20 special entitled “Children of the Plains,” in which correspondent Diane Sawyer visits South Dakota’s Pine Ridge Reservation and makes less-than-revealing observations.

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The Columbus Myth

Excerpt: “A People’s History of the United States

by Howard Zinn

When we read the history books given to children in the United States, it all starts with heroic adventure. There is no bloodshed. Columbus Day is a celebration.

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Past the elementary and high schools, there are only occasional hints of something else…

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Cherokee Morning Song

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Song: Cherokee Morning Song

Artist: Robbie Robertson

Country: Canada

Genre: Native American Music

 

Mood: Drums beat deeply into your soul as voices of angels lift you.

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World Music Monday

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