Dear white chick in the hipster headdress

Posted by admin on August 02, 2012
Uncategorized / No Comments

Be warned this is about to be a BRICK OF TRUTHINESS.
The war bonnet is a loaded symbol. It carries many layers of meaning, some more obvious to certain audiences, than others.
The war bonnet is part of the Great Plains peoples (such as the Sioux, Crow, Blackfeet, Cheyenne, and Plains Cree) traditions. It was given to a member of their society as recognition for a great accomplishment. This could be in battle, diplomacy, or leadership. This was formal headwear, used in ceremony and in formal nation to nation meetings. While I will not say that no woman was ever presented with one, it is extremely unlikely that a woman would ever wear one. This is due to different roles that men and women had in their society at the time.

By the middle to late 1800, with the expansion of the United States westward the US government had enacted a series of laws, policies and methods of dealing with the “Indian Problem.” Formalization in Western thought of specifically the United States Indian Problem is encountered when Tocqueville and Beaumont first encountered Native Americans in the city of Utica, New York. Both authors seem equally struck that they were witnessing a passing tradition, doomed to extinction. This is the modern american origin of the Vanishing Native. The people that they encountered where Iroquois (who don’t wear war bonnets), a confederacy of nations that Benjamin Franklin spent over a year with and to whom credits his ideas of democracy. But 100 years later, the Iroquois where already forced on to reservations by gunpoint. It should also be noted that the Iroquois where instrumental in the French and Indian war, but that is a story for another time.

During this same time, Native Americans that the Federal Government was currently “dealing” with, were more western Native American Nations. It was Abraham Lincon, freer of the slaves, that ordered the execution of “Indian Rebels” otherwise known as Souix or Dakota. The Dakota plunged simultaneously to their deaths on one giant gallows before thousands of spectators. It remains the largest mass execution in American history. This can be pointed to as the beginnings of the Modern American publics imagination of what an Indian looks like.
(side bar: “Indian Problem” being solved by rounding them up and killing them this ethnic minority “Problem” Predated WW2…. where did you think he got his ideas)

After the American civil war, there was a great call for wild west shows, and dime novels. Both of which condensed the Modern American image of what an Indian looks like to the Peoples of the Great Plains. The focal point of and defining characteristic in both Wild West Shows and dime novels to distinguish Native Americans was the War Bonnet. It was the War Bonnet that was the tip of the spear in the media blast in defining to Post civil war and Modern Americas vision of the Indian. This tradition of visual short hand of defining Indians was carried into Movies and Television. Like it or not, 566 unique and wildly different cultures are from that point forward defined by a war bonnet. It was in the wild west shows that there was a dual narrative of who the Indian was: Noble Savage, and Frightening Boogy man who will kill you just like a wild animal would. Women where almost completely defined by the wild west shows, dime novels, movies and television as property, wild creatures that just need to be tamed by any means necessary.

In American Policy at the time, it was often said the only good Indian was a dead Indian, and to kill the Indian but save the man. Boarding schools, where children were removed from their home and beaten starved killed for not becoming “American”. It was for their own good, decreed the American Government. Forced onto reservations, treaties were long since ignored, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs was created by the WAR DEPARTMENT to deal with the Indian problem.
The Trail of tears, the long Walk, force relocation by gunpoint… to solve an ethnic “problem”

After the Indian wars officially ended and open hostiles declined (not disappeared) It became the BIA’s task to assimilate the Indian. Policy after policy was enacted. Most notably were : the Dawes Act, American Indians get the vote in the US 1924 (after women), Indian Reorganization Act Indian 1930s, Relocation Act of 1956.

Until 1978 it was illegal for Native people to practice their religion. Native people could be, and often were, imprisoned for using these same items in ceremonies. Ironically, while nonnative people were using sacred objects in mimicking the Indians at sports events, Native people had to stand by and watch their culture mocked while they themselves could not participate in the same activities in a religious way. Meaning it was legal for a white person to wear a war bonnet, but not a person who was from a Plains Native Nation.

Then Wounded Knee 2 happened in 1973, once again Native Americans where in the media, coincidently, it was taking place on a Dakota reservation. War Bonnets where seen. Once again, the war bonnet is the Modern American Image of the Native American.

Current stats on Native Americans:
Life expectancy for a Native American Male in the US is 56
The overall violent crime rate among American Indians and Alaska Natives is 150 per 1,000 persons, meaning one out of 7 American Indians or Alaskan Natives has been a victim of violence. That rate is three times as high as the rate for blacks, three and a half times higher than whites, and four and a half times higher than Asians.
90 percent of perpetrators where not American Indian. This makes American Indians and Alaskan Natives the largest target of hate crimes per capita.
Sexual violence against women on reservations is 12 times the national rate. 1 in 2 Native American women are sexually assaulted or raped.
90% of rapists are white.
99% of rapes reported to authorities do not even get investigated. Access to plan b for women on the reservation … well there isnt any.
Abortions for pregnancies that are a result of rape, totally unavailable on reservations.
Native Americans both on and off the reservation, live in the highest rate of poverty of ANYONE, both in Canada and the US.
Suicide is 4 times the national rate in both Canada and the US.
I won’t even get started on drug and alcohol use.
Native Americans per capita are the largest group of people in Prison.
75% of these violent crimes don’t get investigated.
Of the 25% that do, only 10% are brought to court.
Out of the 10 % that get brought to court only 2% are prosecuted.
I will do the math for you 0.05% of these violent crimes ever go before a judge.

Native Americans per capita are the largest group of people in the Armed Services, this can be directly tied to both poverty and a sense of responsibility when it comes to protecting their home. A few of these service members have earned the right to wear the war bonnet. All of them are honored by all Native Nations.

As Margo Thunderbird, an activist of the Shinnecock Nation, has put it: “They came for our land, for what grew or could be grown on it, for the resources in it, and for our clean air and pure water. They stole these things from us, and in the taking they also stole our free ways and the best of our leaders, killed in battle or assassinated. And now, after all that, they’ve come for the very last of our possessions; now they want our pride, our history, our spiritual traditions. They want to rewrite and remake these things, to claim them for themselves. The lies and thefts just never end.”

So, now that you know that very summarized chunk of history, do you see why its insulting for a white woman, to wear a war bonnet?

“Do you know why Indian rain dances always worked? Cuz Indians would keep dancing until it rained.” Sherman Alexie
Further information can be found at

http://www.racialicious.com/2008/10/02/indigenous-feminism-and-cultural-appropriation/

http://iheartthreadbared.wordpress.com/2010/05/24/more-native-appropriations-heritage-capitalism-and-fashion-on-antiques-roadshow/

http://mycultureisnotatrend.tumblr.com/

http://nativeappropriations.blogspot.com/2010/04/but-why-cant-i-wear-hipster-headdress.html

http://www.racismagainstindians.org/UnderstandingMascots.htm

not dead

Posted by admin on July 26, 2012
Uncategorized / No Comments

just been hibernating.

why I wake up hurting like an old man

Posted by admin on November 09, 2011
Uncategorized / No Comments

Toes have been from running into furniture and dropping crap on them like air conditioners

Fingers are from doors, and dropping things like engine blocks on them.

Right hand was from taking a short cut that involved jumping over a fence…. thats also when I got bruies 8 inches wide that whent from crotch to knee on both legs.

Right elbow, tripping over a rock.

 Right scapula,Falling out of my car, from the drivers seat while in park, just trying to get out. 2 ribs, same incident with falling out of my car.

 Right cheek bone and nose and concusion the first time lacrosse stick (the old fashioned made from Ash wood kind to the face while not wearing a helmut)

 Right side of my skull and 3 ribs, and concusion, falling off the top of my dads tractor trailor, becasue I was trying to be nice and scrape bugs off the windshield.

 2 Ribs from lacrosse.

2 ribs from when I had pneumonia and coughed so hard I broke them.

Wrists at the same time from skateboarding.

Burn on my leg from motorcycle exhaust pipe, and hot glue gun.

Stitches on my left leg from running into an aquarium in the basement.

Stiches on my ass from a bottle of beer being tucked inot the back of my apron when I was a bartender and then trying to open the kitchen door with my ass.

Stiches on my scalp from A plane hitting me.

Second broken nose falling on my face on a patch of ice.Concusion.

sprained my back getting out of the shower, I slipped and tried to catch myself.

Sprained neck from sledding.

 Dislocated jaw, umm.. lets just say it was an intimate moment.

 Concusion and broken foot from falling down stairs while carrying a fulls size keg.

Thumbs, airbag from a car wreck. totaled the car, only sprained my thumbs.

 I wont even go into how many time I have cut myself, cleaned it out with peroxide, and just super glued it shut.

Or how many time I have dropped something on my finger and gotten a blood blister unde the nail and taken a hot needle and poked it through my nail to releave the pressure.

 Or that most of those stitches where given to me by vet students, or paramedics because I didnt have health insurance.

or the time i got a boil in my armpit, that got infected and turned into cellulitits and had to be hospitalized.

 The vast with the exception of the broken leg, I walked most of these off. the broken foot I walked on for 3 days before I went to the er becasue I thought bah it will be fine, besides, it cant be that bad I can still move my toes and put weight on it.

since 1492

Posted by admin on October 22, 2011
American Indian, IDN, Native American, NDN, social justice / No Comments

I went down to Occupy Boston. My intention was to see what was going on, and hold my sign.

So, my sign “Occupied since 1492″ was a mixed reaction, one reporter asked me about it and 2 other First Nations people (both Vetrans), and a Unitarian Minister. Everyone else looked and took pictures of the signs on either side of me, but quickly read and then averted thier eyes when they saw/read my sign. Over 200 people in the second group, 4 in the first group. I think I pissed off the occupiers.

Then again they pissed me off too, with drum circles and sage burning.

Approprating from Native cultures is one thing, but it is another to use it in a movement that is so wrongly named.

Yes, I hear “that was a long time ago, why don’t you just get over it.” A lot. I mean A LOT. Well I can tell you that it wasn’t that long ago. The systemic genocide, yes, genocide of Native people is continuing even to today. After the Indian wars where declared over by America, the US government went on to Residential Boarding schools, to the relocation act, to the reoganization act, to the involuntary sterilaxtion program that existed into the 1980s, to the 550 treaties that where signed that are not acknolwdged, to The landmark case of Johnson v. McIntosh (1823) that is still used to justify the taking of land from Native peoples. It wasn’t until 5 years ago that Boston took the law off the books to shoot an unescorted Indian on sight. Its not over. We are still here. We have been occupied for over 500 years.

Racialicous: Decolonization and Occupy Wall Street
Racialicous: Occupy Wall Street: The Game of Colonialism (Jessica Yee’s article)
John Paul Montano: An Open Letter to the Occupy Wall Street Protesters
Unsettling America: Decolonize Wall Street
Indian Country Today:
Indians Counter Occupy Wall Street Movement with Decolonize Wall Street
Indian Country Today: Why I’m Occupying Wall Street
Press TV: Indigenizing Occupy Wall Street (about Occupy Denver)
Occupy Denver: An Indigenous Platform for Occupy Denver (AIM’s 10 Points)

Occupy Me

Posted by admin on October 09, 2011
Uncategorized / No Comments

Cain said. “Don’t blame Wall Street, don’t blame the big banks — if you don’t have a job and you are not rich, blame yourself!”

If I could get my hands on Mr. Cain I would tell him my story.

I was a smart kid, I did well in school. I earned scholarships. Didn’t get into trouble. I was even tested as proclaimed a genius with a 126 IQ, learning disability and all.

I worked hard; first in my family to go to a university.
It was an Ivy, even. I took out student loans to pay for it. They weren’t enough so I worked 40 hours a week while attending an Ivy. I maxed out my federal loans and did not have a co signer. So I got a job at that Ivy, enrolled into the employee degree program. The employee degree program refused to take the classes that I earned already at that same institution.

I got a job as a dot commer. I was responsible for a multimillion dollar e commerce websites usability. That market collapsed. So, even thought I had 4 years experience, I couldn’t get hired because I didn’t have a Bachelors.

It was the late 90s. I went to a military recruiter. I took all the tests, they wanted me. I agreed. I show up to sign my contract, and they backed out. They said they couldn’t put it in writing that they would pay for me to finish school, but I might qualify after 8 years of service.

So I went back to school. I worked full time while working for a separate Ivy. I was responsible for the development of a system that saved the Ivy millions of dollars and actually let that Ivy get more money in research grants. I was so good at my job, that when my initial 3 year contract was up, I was no longer qualified to do the job I made, in the sub department I built, that save millions of dollars and generated more grant money, because I didn’t have a masters degree.
I finish my undergraduate the same day as my last day on that job.

I start getting phone called from the military; recruiting calls. So you want me now there are 2 wars going on…

I learn about a program that if I work for a non profit for 10 years, and make payments on my student loans that entire time that they would be forgiven. I go back to school. Get my masters degree. Sell blood plasma to buy a new lap top. Work Full TIME while getting my masters degree. And take side jobs during school breaks.

The program is canceled.

So now I sit, with 16 certificates saying I made the deans list. An impressive resume. At a job at a non profit. That I am over qualified for. Living pay check to paycheck. With 88K in student loan debt.

Fuck you Cain.
I didn’t expect much, but I did expect not to be the working poor. I’m not mad at myself.

You’re wrong that the System didn’t promise me something. It promised me with hard work I would have a savings account, that with hard work I would have a 6 year old car instead of a 12 year old car. It promised me I wouldn’t have to live with roommates in my thirties.

My apartment is furnished with street finds, my computer is a mid level HP that I bought with a coupon 3 years ago for 450 dollars. I don’t have an MP3 player that isnt 6 years old. My phone is 4 years old. I didn’t fritter away and squander things.
I’m not saying the system owes me a high paying job. I’m not saying the system owes me vacations in exotic lands. I’m saying the system owes me to be able to get 2 months of living expenses in my bank account. I’m saying the system owes me the opportunity to be middle class.

I am sick of hearing just pull yourself up my bootstraps and everything will be A OK.

No! It will NOT.

So I am going to scream, and be a beacon of warning. DONT BUY WHAT THEY PROMISE YOU!

Cuz if I can prevent one person from being fucked over then it’s worth it.

I miss my parents.

Posted by admin on August 14, 2011
Uncategorized / No Comments

Its been a long time since I have updated, and alot of things have happened. I will update on those soon.

But tonight, I spoke with my parents on the phone, and I am overwhelmed with home much I miss them.

my review of white noise by Delito

Posted by admin on May 04, 2011
Uncategorized / No Comments

White NoiseWhite Noise by Don DeLillo
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

oh dear god, I hated that book. Like hated it more than I hated Anna Korinana. Hated it more than Han hated Jabba. Hated it more than peanut butter loves jelley. Hated it so much I literally ran my copy over with my car when I was done with it. 300 pages of, “no, you need to pay more attention” and I wanted to die. Srsly, thanks to this book I lost 2 days, where I could have been paying attention to something else, anything else, but no, ironically this book impeded me from paying attention. God i hated that book. And If I ever see Deillo I am kicking him in the nads;tell him Fuck you and there is meaning in me kicking your ass. I WANT MY 2 DAYS BACK! kick

You elistist jerk. You write from the colonial patriarchy. kick

suck it whitey kick

View all my reviews

its been a month

Posted by admin on May 01, 2011
Uncategorized / No Comments

Since I updated, and honestly, it feels like nothing has happened other than rain. Im getting antsy again. I feel like I shouldnt just be spinning my wheels waiting for something to happen. But I dont know what to do…

Keep calm and carry on

Posted by admin on March 30, 2011
Uncategorized / 1 Comment

Work had a reduction in work force today. 10%. I am worried. I am worried, but trying to keep my british stiff upper lip about me, even though I am not british.

This weekend, its time to update my LinkedIn, and resume.

It helps that my mom and sister have promised that i will not have to live under a bridge in a card board box.

I can’t talk too much about work. These things are public knowledge.

All I can say, is worried but Keeping Calm and Carrying On.

fb updates

Posted by admin on March 26, 2011
Uncategorized / No Comments

Bree Hookah, Ihop, whoopie pies, chillin with my homie Valerie Sacchetti. Thats my saturday.

(Updated 16 minutes ago)

Bree ok its only been 18 minutes, but I just discovered I own 31 dresses, MY GOD WHO AM I??

Continue reading…