Showing posts from 2021

Pandemic-Safe Tribal Youth Programs—Innovative and Traditional

This article was published in August 2021 by Yes! Magazine .   Today, Native nations are creating vibrant children’s programs, using the most up-to-date and culturally appropriate means to keep their youngsters involved in tradition and community—while still ensuring their safety in these dangerous pandemic times. Young tribal members have virtual links with top-notch artists and teachers; distanced heritage activities such as running, archery, dancing, and storytelling; and much more. The imaginative programs support ancient communities in dynamic contemporary ways. Even more, tribal programs enhance local food systems and create housing that allows residents to more easily support each other. And yet, all of this vital, culture-affirming work occurs at a painful and historic moment for Native America. Impassioned Indian-Country support for its future generations is suddenly accompanied by wider public recognition of the immense challenges that have been placed in the way. The non-Nat

Native Americans on Police Response to Capitol Insurrection

 This story first appeared in Yes! magazine in January 2021. “We are unarmed” was the repeated cry of water protectors at Standing Rock. Photo by Joseph Zummo. On Jan. 6, while Congress was certifying the 2020 election results, hundreds of Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. They smashed windows, broke through doors, breached the building, and ran through it, snapping photos of themselves carting off documents and artifacts. No attacking force has rampaged through the Capitol since 1814, when British soldiers torched it during the War of 1812. Tasked with protecting lawmakers and the building, the Capitol Police’s response was wildly disorganized. Their actions ranged from shooting a woman dead to taking a selfie with a rioter. Officers were pepper-sprayed and hit with projectiles; one has died of his injuries. The Capitol Police force detained no insurgents that day, though efforts are now underway to identify and charge the rioters,

Online Powwow Rallies Georgia Native Vote

“M ake the vote. Catch the vote. Make the change,” rapped acclaimed hip hop performer  Supaman   (Apsaalooke Nation), seen left. With control of the Senate hanging on Georgia’s two January 5 run-off elections, Supaman, also called Christian Takes Gun Parrish, joined other Native artists and activists in a January 3 online event. Organized by Four Directions voting-rights group, the event was aimed at energizing the state’s indigenous voters.  An estimated 40,000 strong, this bloc has a chance to be as influential in Georgia as the Native vote was across the country in November 2020. Though indigenous people make up a small portion of the US population, they are clustered in states—Alaska, Montana, Arizona, Nevada, and numerous others—where for decades they have had the final word in a range of federal, state, and county races.    “We have Joe Biden as President because Indian country came out to vote,” said Congresswoman and Interior Secretary nominee Deb Haaland (D-NM; Laguna Pueblo)