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Solaris 01-28-2007 11:49 PM

The way I'd like to see it, maybe it's too idealized, but hey...is that all of us who reside in North America are Amercian. Not all the cultures who consider themselves also American, African, Mexican, Native, Asian, etc, shouldn't necessarily be seen as separate then your so-called white, over-excited teenagers who are wet behind the ears. A lot of people have a tendency to forget that we white people do have cultures as well, French, German, Swedish, Polish, whatever, and we're not all uncultured hicks. However, what's unique about the Native culture is that they are one of the few who can say, because they were here first, that they were definitely infringed upon, same with Mexican-Americans. But, recently, North America has become home to people of many different races and cultures, so that Canada and US have truly become a melting pot. Although some are trying to keep their cultures alive, I'll bet we can no longer find too many pure-blood anybodies, Native, white, black, etc. We've intermingled to the point where it'd be great to be able to consider ourselves just Americans, Canadians, whatever...humans even?? I do find myself in the same boat as Ken - I'm not sure if I've gotten my message across the way I wanted...we'll see...

TKMJ Productions 01-29-2007 12:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by trob226 (Post 864477)
How do we get the kids to stop and listen to the elders? How do we get the elders to want to try to grab the kids who are slowing down?

The old ways have worked for generations. However with the new laws the "big stick" is illigal.

My wife still has marks on her legs from the willow. At one time, this is how we were taught to dance. Out of step and meet the switch. Don't knock it, It works!!! To this day my wife always has a perfect step.

trob226 01-29-2007 11:06 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Solaris (Post 864496)
The way I'd like to see it, maybe it's too idealized, but hey...is that all of us who reside in North America are Amercian. Not all the cultures who consider themselves also American, African, Mexican, Native, Asian, etc, shouldn't necessarily be seen as separate then your so-called white, over-excited teenagers who are wet behind the ears. A lot of people have a tendency to forget that we white people do have cultures as well, French, German, Swedish, Polish, whatever, and we're not all uncultured hicks. However, what's unique about the Native culture is that they are one of the few who can say, because they were here first, that they were definitely infringed upon, same with Mexican-Americans. But, recently, North America has become home to people of many different races and cultures, so that Canada and US have truly become a melting pot. Although some are trying to keep their cultures alive, I'll bet we can no longer find too many pure-blood anybodies, Native, white, black, etc. We've intermingled to the point where it'd be great to be able to consider ourselves just Americans, Canadians, whatever...humans even?? I do find myself in the same boat as Ken - I'm not sure if I've gotten my message across the way I wanted...we'll see...

I think I understand your point. I agree, Americans are a melting pot to some degree, but also a tossed salad - we're together, we blend to a point, but the tomato still wants to be a tomato and the pepper a pepper. That's one of the most unique things about North America - it's the first place where different cultures have occupied the same space and been forced to interact on a daily basis. The rest of the world is starting to feel it now, too - look at Europe now, with so many non-Europeans coming there to live. Would be good to consider ourselves just Americans, but until we each learn to respect the cultures of others, allow cultures to express themselves but to agree to reign them in when they hurt other cultures, we can't get there. I'm not a Christian, but Jesus made a lot of sense when he spoke and one of the best rules for living together I ever heard was do unto others as you would have them do unto you. If we could all live by that law - well, we'd only need one law.

Sleeping Bear 01-29-2007 11:12 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by trob226 (Post 864477)
OK, if you don't mind, I'll follow my train of thought a little farther. White American culture, compared to Indian culture, is like a bunch of misbehaving pre-adolescents running over their elders. It's just too young. It won't listen to the wisdom of the older cultures around it and just runs them down if they get in the way. Indian cultures, far older, got run down, got up again, got run down again, got up again and are now sick and tired of the little upstart. But the kids are too quick to grab and shake. The elders can only try to keep from being run over yet again. How do we get the kids to stop and listen to the elders? How do we get the elders to want to try to grab the kids who are slowing down?


For what it's worth, I'm listening.

Solaris 01-29-2007 12:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by trob226 (Post 864645)
If we could all live by that law - well, we'd only need one law.

My mom always says that...well, not ALWAYS, but you know...I agree with that.

trob226 01-29-2007 01:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TKMJ Productions (Post 864504)
The old ways have worked for generations. However with the new laws the "big stick" is illigal.

My wife still has marks on her legs from the willow. At one time, this is how we were taught to dance. Out of step and meet the switch. Don't knock it, It works!!! To this day my wife always has a perfect step.

My husband always tells stories about when he was a kid and misbehaved, his father would tell him to go get a switch for him to hit him with, so my husband would bring back something the size of a baseball bat and get out of his beating. But by then he was behaving again. People overusing the willow (or the switch) wrecked its effectiveness as well as its legality.

trob226 01-29-2007 01:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sleeping Bear (Post 864647)
For what it's worth, I'm listening.

Listening to your elders? Excellent.

Sleeping Bear 01-29-2007 01:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by trob226 (Post 864736)
Listening to your elders? Excellent.

I'll listen to almost anyone, for a while.
It's my elders I really pay attention to.

Lakota Wiyan 01-29-2007 02:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Solaris (Post 864430)
Ok...listening.



This is a little confusing to me...All the people you mentioned are doing a job for money, many of the jobs you listed are done just to get by and are not really enjoyed by the people who do them. Aren't Natives who dance and take the time to dress in their regalia doing it for the love of their culture and because they're proud? Since when is that to be likened to a busboy????



I've never asked a Native to pose w/ a loved one, I only ask them to pose themselves, with one of their own loved ones if they want, to document their gorgeous dance outfits.

Now, I've had many people, Natives included, ask me for directions, ask for the time, ask for any number of favors...should I get tips those times too? I'm fulfilling a request too, aren't I?

I don't wanna sound ignorant, and I'm sorry if I do...it just doesn't make sense to me that I have to tip a man for taking his picture...


There are no ignorant questions as long as you are willing to respectfully accept the answers!!

I dont think that any dancer dances just to entertain non-native spectators, BUT, the amount of work and creativity put into the creation of our regalia is tremendous. And it is done out of love and respect for our culture, and for the honor of our tribes and our families. Therefore, we are NOT there to pull aside and have pictures taken for YOU to take home and show off and enjoy for years to come.

We don't ask for money, so dont assume that we, as a whole, would do something like that. HOWEVER, sometimes people are APPRECIATIVE of our efforts, and out of their appreciation, they see a small monetary "Gift" would be an appropriate gesture. YOU are in no way obligated to show, or even feel, any appreciation at any powwow. You can take pictures all you want, and take and take and take all the enjoyment of the entire powwow which, by the way, we as a people, hold open to the public, which allows you to take and take and take enjoyment from.

Keep in mind, while you take and take and take your pictures and your enjoyment, that alot of our dancers are here by the skin of their teeth, having sunk alot of money and time into their regalia, into travel, meal and lodging costs for themselves and their familes, have taken time off their jobs and schools, in order to be at the powwows where you take and take and take.

Maybe, if you consider the whole picture, you might see a small monetary gift, or even a cup of coffee or a bottle of water, maybe even a pouch of tobacco for a drum or an elder, an appropriate gesture of appreciation for the tremendous effort that people have to put forth in order to keep an entire culture and way of life alive and well so that maybe YOUR grandchildren will be able to come and take and take and take as well.


We don't expect it at all, but when it does happen, it shows us a generous heart and a person full of appreciation and gratitude and understanding. That makes it easier for us to accept spectators and their questions. It makes it easier for us welcome you and your families to take those pictures.

But don't feel obligated, cause nobody is going to ask you....
It is the simple, honest truth: We don't benefit from YOU coming to our powwows as much as YOU benefit from being invited...

Solaris 01-29-2007 04:49 PM

Wow...I don't know...I can't help but be a little put off by this message. I understand where the feeling of whites taking and taking comes from, but I assure you, I don't go to powwows to take, take, take, and it's very disheartening to know some people feel I do. I'm not a money machine, but I do give back where I can, like when a family hosts a round dance where they pass a blanket around. We gave money for several reasons, because it was a good cause, because we felt it respectful to show our appreciation somehow, and yeah, so that we can feel like we gave something back.

By you saying you don't benefit from us being there as much as we benefit from being invited is driving a huge wedge between us, and almost implying that you're doing us a favor. I don't feel anyone is doing anyone else any favors, you're just paying homage to your culture and the fact that it's open to the public says you welcome anyone to take part. Is it so bad to see white people who are open to learning about your culture at a powwow? I personally have never seen any go just to ridicule or cause trouble, we go out of respect and wanting to learn more about something foreign to us...at least I do.

Although I understand why so many Natives feel separate from whites, it would be great if both sides could make an effort to reach out to the other, one reason why I do go to powwows. Honestly, I have felt a little out of place when I go, because I feel like sometimes I'm not wanted...but why am I not wanted and stigmatized for something I couldn't possibly have done?

lostsalt 01-29-2007 05:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Lakota Wiyan (Post 864871)
There are no ignorant questions as long as you are willing to respectfully accept the answers!!


But don't feel obligated, cause nobody is going to ask you....
It is the simple, honest truth: We don't benefit from YOU coming to our powwows as much as YOU benefit from being invited...

These words by Lakota Wiyan are dead-on accurate. She said it in a very polite way. She could have taking the "take-take" theme much further than she did.
Solaris, Don't be put off, understand the content of what she is saying.
I have been completely amazed at the actions of some spectator and thier children. I'm a fancy dancers. I bet i have hundreds of hackles that have been "snatched off my bustles over the years. It's cool i never get to bent about it. Too say that an audience of whites is needed is not the case. Their are many small community and family powwows (at least there used to be) that aren't publisized.
I think the point is well made by Lakota Wiyan.

Solaris 01-29-2007 05:41 PM

Wow...some people take the feathers right of dancers' regalia?? Geez...I guess because there are things I'd never fathom doing, it's hard to understand why some people hold such rigid opinions, but you come to expect it from anyone with the right conditioning, huh? The minute you decide to give someone a break, in comes another Joe stealing your hackles, feathers, etc.

Yeah, Lakota Wiyan is merely expressing how Natives were made to feel after years of disrespect, I understand that. One can only trust and be insulted or burned so much before they shut themselves off. And who am I to think I can change years of opinions by a few little posts...I am only one person. I just hope that if I keep going to powwows with good intentions to learn of another culture, meet people, etc, that the Native people I'm around will come to realize that I don't have any alterior motives.

trob226 01-29-2007 05:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Lakota Wiyan (Post 864871)
There are no ignorant questions as long as you are willing to respectfully accept the answers!!

I dont think that any dancer dances just to entertain non-native spectators, BUT, the amount of work and creativity put into the creation of our regalia is tremendous. And it is done out of love and respect for our culture, and for the honor of our tribes and our families. Therefore, we are NOT there to pull aside and have pictures taken for YOU to take home and show off and enjoy for years to come.

We don't ask for money, so dont assume that we, as a whole, would do something like that. HOWEVER, sometimes people are APPRECIATIVE of our efforts, and out of their appreciation, they see a small monetary "Gift" would be an appropriate gesture. YOU are in no way obligated to show, or even feel, any appreciation at any powwow. You can take pictures all you want, and take and take and take all the enjoyment of the entire powwow which, by the way, we as a people, hold open to the public, which allows you to take and take and take enjoyment from.

Keep in mind, while you take and take and take your pictures and your enjoyment, that alot of our dancers are here by the skin of their teeth, having sunk alot of money and time into their regalia, into travel, meal and lodging costs for themselves and their familes, have taken time off their jobs and schools, in order to be at the powwows where you take and take and take.

Maybe, if you consider the whole picture, you might see a small monetary gift, or even a cup of coffee or a bottle of water, maybe even a pouch of tobacco for a drum or an elder, an appropriate gesture of appreciation for the tremendous effort that people have to put forth in order to keep an entire culture and way of life alive and well so that maybe YOUR grandchildren will be able to come and take and take and take as well.


We don't expect it at all, but when it does happen, it shows us a generous heart and a person full of appreciation and gratitude and understanding. That makes it easier for us to accept spectators and their questions. It makes it easier for us welcome you and your families to take those pictures.

But don't feel obligated, cause nobody is going to ask you....
It is the simple, honest truth: We don't benefit from YOU coming to our powwows as much as YOU benefit from being invited...

Thanks for this. I was always afraid that by offering money or anything for a photo,it would be taken as an insult. Good to know when I'm wrong.

streamhawk 01-29-2007 05:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Solaris (Post 865112)
I am only one person. I just hope that if I keep going to powwows with good intentions to learn of another culture, meet people, etc, that the Native people I'm around will come to realize that I don't have any alterior motives.

hey, as long as you go to have fun, be polite, ask good questions, know the do's and don'ts, and did I say have fun?, you'll be fine. You'd more than fit in to any powwow I attend with that in mind.

Eagle Plumes 01-29-2007 06:06 PM

Ive made alot of good friends over the yrs that were not NdN and liked to pow-wow and they did things in a good way and never tried to do or be anything they were not and fit very well into our pow-wow scene, as long as you leave the Davy Crocket hat at home things should be fine lol

hobbs49 01-29-2007 06:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Solaris (Post 865112)
Yeah, Lakota Wiyan is merely expressing how Natives were made to feel after years of disrespect, I understand that.... And who am I to think I can change years of opinions by a few little posts...I am only one person.

Solaris, I'm not sure that the internet is really the place nor the way to change the world. The fact is that in all groups of people there are bigots and those with open hearts. The best you can hope for is to be one of those with an open heart (and mind). When you go to a powwow, pay attention to what is going on around you. If you're not wanted, you'll probably notice. Be humble, not showy. Seek first to understand, then to be understood. Meet some people, make some friends. Talk about things other than dancing, singing, powwows, etc. These are all things that as I've grown older, I understand better and work hard at.

You will stand a better chance changing the world one person at a time. And you'll get to meed a lot of neat people along the way.

TKMJ Productions 01-29-2007 06:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Solaris (Post 865022)

Although I understand why so many Natives feel separate from whites, it would be great if both sides could make an effort to reach out to the other, one reason why I do go to powwows. Honestly, I have felt a little out of place when I go, because I feel like sometimes I'm not wanted...but why am I not wanted and stigmatized for something I couldn't possibly have done?

Solaris,
The Native American has always given to the white man from day one back in 1492. In return the Native has gotten his lands stolden, his home distroyed, his food sources depleated, his family stricken with desease, his culture striped, his family structure distroyed, and much more. The white man has always taken and only given back empty promases. And a few bucks here and there. The treaties are a bunch of crap. They were signed to help save ndn lives. That's about it.

We were enslaved in our own lands and killed because of our beliefs. At that time we the native people were not christian as it was known but most tribes believed in "One Creator". Just like the christian believed in their god. Did you know that a few tribes had their own written language ane were traders of goods? No we didn't use gold or silver to barter. We used common necessataries instead. You can't eat gold or heat your tipi with silver.

The Native has always given and the white man has always taken with no reguard for the land or the people. We still open our hearts and lend a hand and still we get slapped in the face. Yea, I got an attitude! Look at the history from our point of view! Look at what was taken from us and what did we get in return. Believe me, It wasn't a fair trade!!!:mad:

trob226 01-29-2007 08:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TKMJ Productions (Post 865229)
Solaris,
The Native American has always given to the white man from day one back in 1492. In return the Native has gotten his lands stolden, his home distroyed, his food sources depleated, his family stricken with desease, his culture striped, his family structure distroyed, and much more. The white man has always taken and only given back empty promases. And a few bucks here and there. The treaties are a bunch of crap. They were signed to help save ndn lives. That's about it.

We were enslaved in our own lands and killed because of our beliefs. At that time we the native people were not christian as it was known but most tribes believed in "One Creator". Just like the christian believed in their god. Did you know that a few tribes had their own written language ane were traders of goods? No we didn't use gold or silver to barter. We used common necessataries instead. You can't eat gold or heat your tipi with silver.

The Native has always given and the white man has always taken with no reguard for the land or the people. We still open our hearts and lend a hand and still we get slapped in the face. Yea, I got an attitude! Look at the history from our point of view! Look at what was taken from us and what did we get in return. Believe me, It wasn't a fair trade!!!:mad:

Speaking for that large part of me that is white, none of us can change the past. The only thing we can change is the future. The Civil Rights era showed we can change attitudes and actions on a large scale, but eras like that are few and far between. Right now, in this America, we have to work on an individual basis. I know we as white people can't expect a hand in friendship where we are strangers. No reason on this earth we should expect that. We have to prove ourselves, but we can't do it for all white people, just as individuals. I think you know neither Solaris nor I are about to slap you in the face, not because we know you'd knock the s*** out of us (as well you should), but because we, as individuals, respect you as an individual and respect the Indian cultures we've come to know. Best we can do right now. I hope you can understand that it's tough to take the punishment for your race when you really are trying to do the right thing.

Solaris 01-29-2007 08:13 PM

Thanks guys...dang, no davey crocket hat? Awww....oh well, I'm not a hat person anyway. ;)

trob226 01-29-2007 08:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Solaris (Post 865289)
Thanks guys...dang, no davey crocket hat? Awww....oh well, I'm not a hat person anyway. ;)

Yeah, broke my heart, too. And they advise me not to wear my microsuede either - rats!


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