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Old 04-29-2009, 01:13 PM   #61
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ndn_thyme View Post
First of all let me say that I don't agree with all of what happens at GON, for that matter there are alot powwows that I don't care for how something is run, even some of the more local & small powwows but if I really don't care for something I just don't go back. However, I will continue to attend GON because I know it & accept it for what it is, a commercial event that is a mish mash of all kinds of things that I would not see at a traditional powwow, and that's why I attend. If I want to see a powwow that is primarily traditional or a mix of traditional & dance contests, I know which powwows to go. My family has been involved with northern powwows as dancers & singers for many generations and I have seen northern powwows evolve, from no GE's to GE's with color guards, eagle staffs & flags brought in, princesses; expanding contest categories from Mens, Women's (13 & up), Little Boys & Little Girls (12 & under to all kinds of categories for N & S dancers, all age groups; from getting hand picked during daily elimination rounds & finals on Sunday nights to having registrations with numbers and judges scoring; from no drums getting paid except for the love of singing to drum/singing contests with thousands at stake. It is a change...but even though it costs alot & I complain about how crowded the pit is & small arena & how much it costs, I'm not going to see all the dancers, drum groups, vendors, entertainers (both native & non-native), skinz from all over in one place during one weekend. I look forward to this event because we're usually coming out of a long hard winter, being couped up & ready for the beginning of the powwow season to be in full swing. I know that money I spend is worth it, some people spend their money on name brands, booze, drugs, etc. but this is a sober event where people of all ages can attend even if I know I have to save up all year to get there! I don't care if I can't buy souvenirs, have to hit Sonic, McD's dollar menu & bolony/chip/bread so I can eat, paying for a single room occupancy & crowding in a whole crew & some sleeping on the floor. Hearing many world class drum groups in one place, seeing the many champion & new dancers, and seeing many friends & relatives who I may only see once a yr is well worth it. I don't see it as exploiting the culture, what I see as more damaging to our native people & culture is the addictions, violence, poverty & negativity. With all the energy that is spent dogging the GON, maybe it would be better spent on on stopping the insanity going on in our homelands/rezes or communities. How about a petition to stop domestic violence & abuse against women and children or to promote wellness & a pledge to sobriety & healthy relationships and families! Better yet, start your own powwow committee & organize it how you think it should be... you will see how hard it is to raise money, coordinate all the details, stay up late & get up early to get things going and maybe even come to appreciate those who do put on these large commericial pws. I've been a part of events held in non-native venues & you had to pay for everything, from the cost for every chair, table, mic, security hrs, liability insurance and taking the financial risk if you don't make the $$$ to pay the final bill. It's too bad people are taking implied & straight out potshots at other people, sending those negative thoughts, feelings & words into the universe without knowing how it might affect someone. It sounds like someone has a personal vendetta against individuals & don't care who gets caught in the cross fire - singers/drummers, dancers, vendors, headstaff, etc. It's too bad that respected people & families who serve as staff are being called puppets when they are doing this to promote native culture. As for the ladies old style fancy shawl, don't blame the judges, they finally got it right! I know how the dance began & how it looked when it began because I danced it. Back when it began, late 50's & early 60's, it was known only as women's & we all danced in one category. Later it became known as the ladies shawl dance when in SD they stopped allowing the women to dance fancy steps in a buckskin so we had to switch to wearing shawls. The winners of that contest all danced a style from different eras 1960's, 70's & early 80's. 2nd & 3rd placed danced 70's & 80's, and the winner danced from the 60's before women started bouncing up & down. I havent seen the REAL (ORIGINAL) OLD STYLE LADIES FANCY SHAWL dance in a long time & it almost made me cry to see that young lady dance that way and the other two were champions from their eras and are still dancing & champions to this day! Kudos to them! The only thing they got wrong was they called for a footslide instead a double beat crow hop was sung instead of a footslide which some mistakenly call a crowhop. Having also judged at GON, I know that it's hard to judge all those good dancers, but it can be done it you know what to look for & start narrowing down your choices right from the first pushup and then prioritizing them. I look for dancers with the total package, good timing/rhythm, unique or old style moves, & nice outfits, but I also look at dancers who have a decent outfit & maybe not as well known but can dance like nobodys business. Granted some were harder than others. Can't account for how other people judge, but I know I tried to be as fair & objective. I didn't even know the head judge. As for some of the great dancers who didn't place, it may be their turn down the road. Lots of good dancers & drum groups didn't place this time, but maybe next time. For many dancers & drummers, it's love of the powwows that keeps them going, whether they place or not. I do agree with the comment about either deciding to invite drum groups, paying their way & plus an honorarium and then shouldn't compete -- same for the head dancers. Again, this is just my opinion, people can decide on their own whether to attend but having a petition to ban GON is impractical, because how can it be enforced, other than just don't go??! People have a right to start their own commerical or non-profit businesses (even if GON was making all thoze bucks, the federal audits that are required of non-profits would nail them if they were making huge profits and not able to justify why they are carrying all that money on the books!) Organize your own pw and all the people who sign your petition & share your sentiments can donate couple dollars to you so you can sponsor a traditional powwow -- then you are doing something positive and in a good way, instead of bashing others!
Some valid points I know I have *****ed about big powwows such as the gathering and Redearth myself
So get involved and help help out you say
And if you dont like the powwow dont go
Good words of advice!
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Old 04-29-2009, 01:21 PM   #62
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so where the heck would that guy proposed if no gathering? jus kidding c'mon starting to sound like old women at the band office, we all know what gathering is and isn't thats why i gonna go to to NIBA instead save my cash for that trip cause i knew as did everyone else how gathering would be. personal choice folks, be informed and choose accordingly if i ever feel the need to hit up a big commercialized event then there is a long list to choose from not just gathering safe trails
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Old 04-29-2009, 01:26 PM   #63
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gon perspective

I enjoyed competing at gon in late 80's and 90's before it became a show for dollars. It's been about 4 years since I attended. I competed for the last time at gon in 2000; I stopped when I understood that as an old style dancer, I had no chance of competing against the bling and perfectly made up dancers. I come from a pow wow family that is known for its traditional regalia and dance style so obviously we wouldn't be considered for the head dancer staff or will be crowned on Saturday night as champions. My point is gon is commercial and overdone. If I go again (haven't been there since 2005--losses in family and other priorities have prevented me from attending)-I will go to see old friends who are from pow wow families of the past. I have no illusion about making new friends because the people of today's pw circuit are not that interested in you if you are not connected to the "popular' dancers, drums/singers, head staff and the pw organizers. Gon is not the only pw that gathers champions in one venue; Red Earth, United Tribes, local pws are examples of that. One comment: if the head dancer is from your category of dance style, do not be delusional-you will not win the championship; maybe 2nd, 3rd, 4th or last place (heaven forbid). I enjoyed the webcast live and better than being there---even took a nap in between, LOL.
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Old 04-29-2009, 01:35 PM   #64
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I borught in a box of food one day and a whole grocery bag of food the next. They would not let me bring in a bottle of diet coke I had already opened but the food was fine. Again....what Paul said, many times it is not the committee's rule of no food/no drinks. Its the venue contract for concessions and vendors.

Recorders? Well last year in 08 they kicked me off the floor. This year they were way more lenient with that "no recording" rule. I guess its just how they feel on certain years maybe? lol

I am glad they are moving it to the field next year so maybe we can find all new things to gripe about!! Yea, the stairs sucked and the drinks were expensive and it was too crowded to get anywhere fast.....and the heat, what else? lol

Personally, I would not go as just a spectator ever. If the bf was not in an invited drum or we were not doing the webcast, I would be at home in Shawnee, Ok most likely. So I see the turnoffs but dang....don't go if it's that bad. Maybe GON is just one of those things you gotta do at least once tho? I know admission to GON and Red Earth is expensive but there is a major way to bypass that cost......volunteer. I have done this in the past for Red Earth just for serving drinks in dancer hospitality a few hours a day, I got in free for the weekend. Not hard work at all.
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Old 04-29-2009, 01:56 PM   #65
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I would just like to say "Thank you!" to Paul and powwows.com I could not afford to go to GON, but I was able to see it anyway in the comfort of my own home, thanks to Paul and my computer.
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Old 04-29-2009, 01:58 PM   #66
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Originally Posted by neling4 View Post
I would just like to say "Thank you!" to Paul and powwows.com I could not afford to go to GON, but I was able to see it anyway in the comfort of my own home, thanks to Paul and my computer.
You're welcome!
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Old 04-29-2009, 02:31 PM   #67
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well I went.....after a couple of yrs of not going....sorry paul for not helping out but I had probs on thurs into friday......by sat I was jus tired..lol..soo my complaint is still the same.....why the same mc's every year (exception is rbl) n same ad's??? There were alot of dancers so my question is this b/c I have done tabulations before.....if there were 3,000 dancers how can you input all of their numbers for GE??? by hand I know it takes a couple of hours at least for 300 dancers.....and the 10 or so judges......and one song??? cmon I have judged before and that one song just doesn't cut it when there are that many dancers out on the floor........the difference in denver parking n gon was you can leave n come back..same with the passes so that was a positive...it got crowded on sat..nite...what I don't like is the lack of respect some people have for feathers and such...they come and move your stuff..that just irks me..I am undecided if I will go back next year..it would be different outside...we didn't really get harassed by security guards...but it was very stifling out down there in the arena...what is the point of keeping those lights on down there..like ur in a movie..lol......yeh the other thing I don't agree is bringing those bands...all the way from ontario? I mean they are good but we would rather listen to our own local native singers? not put them outside..lol..and then they ask u to buy their cds..yeh if you didn't have to shell out 100s of $$ to get in..we might buy cds and shop at the vendors..yeh a/c I didn't even get to buy any beads....etc.....nothing...but I got to eat green chili too as someone said...so that was good...the other thing I was really disappointed in is that people will go to any lengths to win..that is really sad..to do that to your own native relatives thats when you know what money and corruption can do and will do....I knew that none in our group would win..but we went anyways....but yeh it was very expensive.....
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Old 04-29-2009, 03:14 PM   #68
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I wonder when they say there are 3,000 registered dancers, how many are actually dancers? Everyone I go with always registers as a dancer even if they are not dancing, because you do cannot go in and out with the one or two day pass. The dancer bracelet, however, lets you come and go. I'm sure most dancers' families do this, so how many people actually are, say, in Grand Entry? Paul, have you heard any estimates? Thanks for doing the webcast. On a broader note, I don't think there's anything wrong with people posting their opinions, positive or negative, as long as criticisms focus on the event instead of making it personal. Yeah, if you don't like a powwow, of course you don't have to go, but that doesn't mean you can't express your opinion. I think that powwow committees probably would like honest feedback, either good or bad, to make their events better. I, for one, am happy to see how the new temporary location works, because the Pit is just too crowded, and it gets too hot with all the people and the lights.
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Old 04-29-2009, 03:35 PM   #69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skybird5 View Post
Did you even read the letter at the beginning of this thread or just pick up on the rhetoric that Coyote was spewing? The point of the letter AND this thread is that Gathering of Nations is NOT a pow wow for the sake of pow wow, it is a Money Making Enterprise at your expense. And my expense and ANY indigenous person's expense. You may think you're going to see and meet new friends but you're doing it at a cost-not just in monetary terms but the very fact that OUR culture is being exploited for the pocket to be lined of a NON NATIVE person.

To simplify that very fact is to negate the value of our songs, dances and teachings and reduce their value to that of the price of admission. If you can't see that, then heck you should be out there at Gathering with the rest of the lemmings, selling your culture, because you don't deserve to have it to start with.
I suppose....... the rather large .........mind you......group of people who attend are Lemmings who sell their culture......Who died and left you queen of the world? Sure your entitled to your opinion (however narrow minded it is...) but be mindful of what you say......My impression is your young and angry.....I've read some of your "exchanges" on this site and you sound shallow at best.....Whats wrong? You didn't get considered for the big show? judging from what you said.....you basically cut your nose to spite your face.....If you or anyone else has a bug up their butt in regards to the Matthews family.....Take it up with them....I've always been treated good by them and find them to be very respectful people.....Talk is cheap, but walking your talk is priceless....
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Old 04-29-2009, 04:41 PM   #70
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I suppose....... the rather large .........mind you......group of people who attend are Lemmings who sell their culture......Who died and left you queen of the world? Sure your entitled to your opinion (however narrow minded it is...) but be mindful of what you say......My impression is your young and angry.....I've read some of your "exchanges" on this site and you sound shallow at best.....Whats wrong? You didn't get considered for the big show? judging from what you said.....you basically cut your nose to spite your face.....If you or anyone else has a bug up their butt in regards to the Matthews family.....Take it up with them....I've always been treated good by them and find them to be very respectful people.....Talk is cheap, but walking your talk is priceless....
Yes, I did indeed call it rhetoric, because your posting didn't make a valid argument about anything, at one point you said I can tell you first hand what it takes to put on an event of this size and at another it said How do I know one iota what this event takes? As you said yourself, you were playing devil's advocate. You managed to simplify the discussion to nothing more than "if you don't like, don't go", and the point I was attempting to make is that the whole issue is MORE than just staying away from an event if a person doesn't like it. It is not as simple as you'd like to make it.

Furthermore, I'm not young, angry or shallow. I'm educated, honest and fully embrace my culture. I do know exactly what it takes to put on large events, including pow wows, I fully understand the implications of what happens at GON in terms of the so called "fair" contests, and I believe that I have a valid argument.
At the very least, I do know the difference between your and the contraction you're-which is the two words you are and that which you apparently don't know how to use correctly. And Yes, I am getting personal because you actually made the whole thing personal, I never said one word about you personally, if you have indeed read my many posts, you'll see that I don't generally ever call people names or point out their individual short comings, I stick to the facts and lay out an honest perspective that is my own opinion. I don't believe there is anything to be gained from name calling or attacking people personally because I don't agree with what they are saying, it's somewhat childish and self serving, at best.

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Old 04-29-2009, 05:05 PM   #71
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Originally Posted by Lakota_winyan View Post
well I went.....after a couple of yrs of not going....sorry paul for not helping out but I had probs on thurs into friday......by sat I was jus tired..lol..soo my complaint is still the same.....why the same mc's every year (exception is rbl) n same ad's??? There were alot of dancers so my question is this b/c I have done tabulations before.....if there were 3,000 dancers how can you input all of their numbers for GE??? by hand I know it takes a couple of hours at least for 300 dancers.....and the 10 or so judges......and one song??? cmon I have judged before and that one song just doesn't cut it when there are that many dancers out on the floor........the difference in denver parking n gon was you can leave n come back..same with the passes so that was a positive...it got crowded on sat..nite...what I don't like is the lack of respect some people have for feathers and such...they come and move your stuff..that just irks me..I am undecided if I will go back next year..it would be different outside...we didn't really get harassed by security guards...but it was very stifling out down there in the arena...what is the point of keeping those lights on down there..like ur in a movie..lol......yeh the other thing I don't agree is bringing those bands...all the way from ontario? I mean they are good but we would rather listen to our own local native singers? not put them outside..lol..and then they ask u to buy their cds..yeh if you didn't have to shell out 100s of $$ to get in..we might buy cds and shop at the vendors..yeh a/c I didn't even get to buy any beads....etc.....nothing...but I got to eat green chili too as someone said...so that was good...the other thing I was really disappointed in is that people will go to any lengths to win..that is really sad..to do that to your own native relatives thats when you know what money and corruption can do and will do....I knew that none in our group would win..but we went anyways....but yeh it was very expensive.....
I've wondered about the point system myself. I don't believe it is possible to input that many dancers numbers for Grand Entry. I think they must put in the ballots from the contest and then go back and look for those dancers numbers on the Grand Entry list and give them points, that way only those 10-15 dancers who have a chance at placing will need to have points entered. That's how I would do it anyway.
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Old 04-29-2009, 06:40 PM   #72
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skybird5 View Post
Yes, I did indeed call it rhetoric, because your posting didn't make a valid argument about anything, at one point you said I can tell you first hand what it takes to put on an event of this size and at another it said How do I know one iota what this event takes? As you said yourself, you were playing devil's advocate. You managed to simplify the discussion to nothing more than "if you don't like, don't go", and the point I was attempting to make is that the whole issue is MORE than just staying away from an event if a person doesn't like it. It is not as simple as you'd like to make it.

Furthermore, I'm not young, angry or shallow. I'm educated, honest and fully embrace my culture. I do know exactly what it takes to put on large events, including pow wows, I fully understand the implications of what happens at GON in terms of the so called "fair" contests, and I believe that I have a valid argument.
At the very least, I do know the difference between your and the contraction you're-which is the two words you are and that which you apparently don't know how to use correctly.
Why argue in the first place? Oh I forgot.....Your educated! excuse me....Did it make you feel good saying that? OOPS! I better be careful....a contradiction may be at play.....? Round and round we go where we stop.....Nobody knows....Although if we keep it simple..... we just may realize...... Dorothy did not have to go all the way to the land of Oz to realize there is no place like home.....

Keep embracing your culture and be mindful or aware that when your negative and judgemental it limits you...Remember what you said about lemmings.....Your words.....

As far as any Powwow being fair, well Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder....No pun intended....(Think hard!)
There must be a long list......

So lemme (did I dare use "lemme" why thats not a word...Hmmmm better be on the lookout for the Internet Grammar squad....) Oh! Check your usage Skybird5.....are and is......2nd paragraph last sentence.....

Although I plan to be ova dare in 2010! having a grand old time.....Cause GON is a blast! Congratulations MNX and Wild band of Comanches.....You sounded CHO! Oh! and so many other Skins who attended or should I say lemmings?

No pouting......Oh and misery loves company......Be careful where you get your Intel......
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Old 04-29-2009, 09:33 PM   #73
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Old 04-30-2009, 01:15 AM   #74
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Same old same old

Every year its the same old bytchin and complainin...yes, people complain, but they will be back next year...and the year after and so on...for many years Schimitzun was also considered a "big show" and parade and it was...but people still went
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Old 04-30-2009, 09:51 AM   #75
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Originally Posted by eap7 View Post
I wonder when they say there are 3,000 registered dancers, how many are actually dancers? Everyone I go with always registers as a dancer even if they are not dancing, because you do cannot go in and out with the one or two day pass. The dancer bracelet, however, lets you come and go. I'm sure most dancers' families do this, so how many people actually are, say, in Grand Entry? Paul, have you heard any estimates? Thanks for doing the webcast. On a broader note, I don't think there's anything wrong with people posting their opinions, positive or negative, as long as criticisms focus on the event instead of making it personal. Yeah, if you don't like a powwow, of course you don't have to go, but that doesn't mean you can't express your opinion. I think that powwow committees probably would like honest feedback, either good or bad, to make their events better. I, for one, am happy to see how the new temporary location works, because the Pit is just too crowded, and it gets too hot with all the people and the lights.
I have no idea how many is in Grand Entry. The floor is always full.
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Old 04-30-2009, 11:01 AM   #76
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Yeah I know I always say I am never going back, however I'm probably the first one in line to get my pass...ha ha ha... Both sides have valid points...but to resort to name calling and put downs is not a true native vertue...lol buh...but yeah..people are still going to attend as long as it still running. I, myself, neither dance nor sing yet still attend. Its just the one event that I get in my once a year visits with people I dont get to see too often.
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Old 04-30-2009, 11:28 AM   #77
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Yeah I know I always say I am never going back, however I'm probably the first one in line to get my pass...ha ha ha... Both sides have valid points...but to resort to name calling and put downs is not a true native vertue...lol buh...but yeah..people are still going to attend as long as it still running. I, myself, neither dance nor sing yet still attend. Its just the one event that I get in my once a year visits with people I dont get to see too often.
Ditto!!
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Old 04-30-2009, 02:21 PM   #78
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I would go back if I could afford it. I know the costs, I know the hassles, I know there are big crowds. I know all that stuff. But................ I can't afford it. So I don't go. It's just that simple.

I would feel real bad if my Grandchildren came up to me and asked me to buy them some frybread and I had to say no, because I needed the money to get back home.

If you don't have the cash (like me) to comfortably enjoy yourself.......... stay home like Kiwehnzii.
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Old 04-30-2009, 03:55 PM   #79
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I wrote a message in the other "GON another perspective". So if anyone is interested, go there an read. My comment is this: Some are saying: "if you don't like it then don't go, stay home. That is not what some of us are saying. We are pointing out all of the things that happen there at the expense of us as Native Americans who go there and do their best, show off their best moves and beautiful outfits just so someone can make a lot of money off of us and who doesn't care one bit whether you win or lose. The guy goes all over Indian Country nuzzling up to Indian ,making them believe that he really has a special feeling for Indians. Gee, the girls even have to sell tickets to become Miss indian World. Most communities choose princesses on a whole different criteria: role model, tribal dress, beauty, goals, etc.

So telling everyone to stay home, quit complaining is not a legitimate piece of advice. Those of who are trying to explain that all of these things are not right and not fair are concerned about our Indian people so we are trying to help those of you to try to understand. We are not crying around, we are looking st the bigger picture.
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Old 04-30-2009, 03:57 PM   #80
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I wrote a message in the other "GON another perspective". So if anyone is interested, go there an read. My comment is this: Some are saying: "if you don't like it then don't go, stay home. That is not what some of us are saying. We are pointing out all of the things that happen there at the expense of us as Native Americans who go there and do their best, show off their best moves and beautiful outfits just so someone can make a lot of money off of us and who doesn't care one bit whether you win or lose. The guy goes all over Indian Country nuzzling up to Indian ,making them believe that he really has a special feeling for Indians. Gee, the girls even have to sell tickets to become Miss indian World. Most communities choose princesses on a whole different criteria: role model, tribal dress, beauty, goals, etc.

So telling everyone to stay home, quit complaining is not a legitimate piece of advice. Those of who are trying to explain that all of these things are not right and not fair are concerned about our Indian people so we are trying to help those of you to try to understand. We are not crying around, we are looking st the bigger picture.
What other thread?
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