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Old 04-17-2006, 02:24 PM   #1
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litefoot lectures us.

In a remote community in shonto, az we had a concert performed by a native performer, but were given a stern lecture on how are students should not listen to our elders, that language is not important, and teachers are .....well an example of the outrage.

Litefoot performed at Shonto yesterday as part of the Reach the Rez tour free concert. He sang 3 songs and then he proceeded to beat up the audience for almost an hour and a half. His speech was insulting and excruciating to sit through. He actually insulted more than motivated. I guess he must have had a bad day.

He told us that we were ignorant. He also said that he is going to tell us something that we probably never heard before and that is "pray" - we should "pray". He kept repeating to us about how ignorant we are/were. It was good when he sang - but his so-called "motivational" speech was far below par.

Our kids just finished 2 days of AIMs testing and were excited for hear Litefoot's concert as a treat. Instead of singing for and to middle and high school remote rez kids who typically don't get to see a live concerts, were spoke at and down to and were basically insulted for over 60 minutes. Poor kids who were well-behaved considering the circumstances, were a captive audience because since this was a school function, they could not leave the auditorium - while his continued questioning no badgering to the audience " . . .why were we even there . . . and . . . why don't we just leave." He spoke out that our native language was not important; he insulted our elders too - saying that just because they have grey hair doesn't mean that they are elders; he told native teachers that just because they have degrees doesn't mean that they are smart . . . and I could go on and on . . .

The children had to board the buses confused and dazed - most of the adults were as well. The whole debacle was plainly rude. You don't visit a small rez community (people of the land), make assumptions, put everyone in the same mold as if they were inherently bad and no good, and insult the whole community as a guest/visitor and add insult to injury by filming the community to self-promote yourself for some documentary that can be edited and twisted as he sees fit for further financial gain and ego satifaction. We are a simple people. On the whole we are survivors who are close to the creator and do pray everyday - our very existance is proof of that. Maybe he thought he was talking to thugs, gang bangers, addicts and prisoners because that how he was talking to us. Our children did not deserve this kind of treatment.

i hope he does not come again. thank you.
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Old 04-17-2006, 02:34 PM   #2
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Your last line... that is a possibility... so is reverse psychology, and maybe he's just an ***. But to tell us and not HIM how you feel... then you are not doing yourself any favors. Email/write him and let him know how you and others of your community feel about his speech and about the kids he talked to. It sounds like he could use a speech or two from you guys and learn something himself.
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Old 04-17-2006, 03:19 PM   #3
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I used to think Litefoot was going to be a good role model.

Lately I have heard some not so positive things concerning his presentations.

I had heard he referred to himself as "The Messiah," at a presentation in Rapid City (South Dakota).

I thought, Hmmmmm?

Now this?


HHHHHHHHMMMMMMMMMMM? ? ?
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Old 04-17-2006, 04:16 PM   #4
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I would like to applaud you for posting this issue on here. As educators, teachers and organizers of positive influences for our young people...we need to hear what is taking place in other areas and what effects our young people. This is not a personal issue in which Litefoot was talking to a few people, but to a school system that left a negative impact on their idea of Litefoot as a role model. I have seen him perform and have also seen his attitude "behind the scenes" and it is my hope that more people will inquire about his tactics before hiring him to speak/perform for their young native people. Everyone has a personal opinon of our entertainers, whether they are Native American or not, and sharing that viewpoint with Native people is appreciated.
"Messiah"????
This is the time and place for positive reinforcement to our young Native American people, sharing culture, teaching languages, teaching traditional values and it is my hope that we will continue to do so and continue to share our knowledge with one another. This is definitely a native issue.
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Old 04-17-2006, 10:42 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WhoMe
I used to think Litefoot was going to be a good role model.

Lately I have heard some not so positive things concerning his presentations.

I had heard he referred to himself as "The Messiah," at a presentation in Rapid City (South Dakota).

I thought, Hmmmmm?

Now this?


HHHHHHHHMMMMMMMMMMM? ? ?

Almost sounds like he's taking some kind of drugs don't it? Sounding like a heroin addict to me.
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Old 04-17-2006, 11:05 PM   #6
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Unhappy who?

never heard of the guy.......well I did but never bother with performances that start off with praying and end up cutting the audience in half!
Powwows are good enough for me and I am glad you aired out your feelings!
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Old 04-17-2006, 11:19 PM   #7
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Boozhoo niji,

You know, I got to talk to this guy personally, around 3 years ago or so. I remember dancing a good evening, going back to my camp and taking my outfit off. About 20 minutes after the last drum beat, the concert started, and I could not finish undressing fast enough and driving to a remote part of the rez. The whole thing reminded me of Miami, and Florida was the place I was trying to get away from. So I left the grounds and parked on a dirt road someplace for a couple hours.

When I got back, he was still going, but preaching, not singing. He went on for maybe 45 minutes and quit. So I got some sleep. The next morning I woke up and passed by an elder. He asked if I went to the concert, and I said no. He said, Too bad, you might have learned something.

I figure, this, comming from an elder, was a bad thing to miss. So I got dressed for grand entry, and went over to talk to this guy, liked what he said, and bought a CD, he signed it. But like I said that was like 3 years ago. The CD is great, its motivational, as far as talking kids away from gangs, and just more or less pro-Native. But people can and do change, sometimes not for the best.

If he has turned for the worse, then I wish him the best, and only hope that he comes around to where he was 3 years ago. If what notlii says is true (and I dont douby you) then that is certainly not productive for what our youth need to be hearing. We need to respect our elders, learn from them. We need to keep our languages alive, and we need to listen to everything our teachers offer to teach us RIGHT OR WRONG. I say that, because how can you tell if something is right or wrong if you dont listen to it first?

Derek
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Old 04-17-2006, 11:28 PM   #8
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He performed in our community many many years ago. He brought my cousin up on stage saying that people like him were what was wrong with society. My cousins is half native/half black. He went on and on about it.
Then a few months later we recieved a letter sayin he wanted to appologize to the community for the remarks he made during his performance but wanted us to pay for him to come out for the apology.
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Old 04-19-2006, 01:00 PM   #9
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And people thought I was just hatin' when I bad mouthed him.
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Old 04-19-2006, 04:45 PM   #10
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So isnt that slander? Bringing someone on stage and saying they are no good in front of hundreds of people?

If there is ONE thing I learned growing up as "A" minority among "THE" minority....DONT LISTEN TO RAPPERS!

Sound like a total A**hole to me.

I think he was at Schemitzun once? I couldnt understand a damn word he said.

He must have watched some old AIM news footage recently.

I say make him take an IQ test or a standard aptitute test and than we'll see who the dumbazz is.
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Old 04-19-2006, 08:07 PM   #11
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I don't get a whole lot outta litefoot. I saw him at a couple of powwows with his booth and his crew and he seemed arrogant. What does he even do? Did he go to college and earn a degree or does he teach his language?
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Old 04-19-2006, 09:02 PM   #12
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i saw Litefoot here and there. he had been at Schemitzun the last 2 years, maybe three. He had done a concert last year that was good. i am at an age where the old bones don't like sitting on those metal bleecher when it HUMIDY so i left that conert early. there were a lot of young folks at the concert.

i should have asked a younger friend of mine who stayed for the whole thing how it went. I think when some people get fame, it changes their whole outlook. methinks this happend to Litefoot.
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Old 04-19-2006, 10:11 PM   #13
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I've heard about his arrogance from quite a few places.

TF, what the hell?! Are you serious? Some people have alot of nerve. wow.
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Old 04-19-2006, 10:17 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Singing Otter
I've heard about his arrogance from quite a few places.

TF, what the hell?! Are you serious? Some people have alot of nerve. wow.
that really happen??? eeekkkkk
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Old 04-20-2006, 02:31 AM   #15
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Yup that really did happen. We were all like WTF! I mean we had heard he was a good youth speaker thats the only reason we invited him into our community. Its all craziness.
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Old 04-20-2006, 07:16 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lexmar
I don't get a whole lot outta litefoot. I saw him at a couple of powwows with his booth and his crew and he seemed arrogant. What does he even do? Did he go to college and earn a degree or does he teach his language?
No, he's a self made millionaire and before he was like 25 too I believe. He owns his own studio and record label. I think that's why alot of folks considered him someone to look up to.

I love his first couple of CD's, but I'm not likeing what I have heard he's turning into.. and I'm serious when I say it sounds like he's doing heroine... either that or he's just gone nuts!

And I really do think that the native communities that he's doing this to REALLY need to send him letters and tell him how they feel or he's going to keep right on doing what he's doing. And I don't mean just one letter from a leader, but letters from parents and youth too.
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Old 04-21-2006, 04:22 AM   #17
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Litefoot lectures us

As the person who co-coordinated this event at Shonto and the President of the organization who was responsible for Litefoot to even be in Shonto, I would like to share some of my thoughts.
First, there were many things and quotes that were listed in your post that were very incorrect and inaccurate. If you have a problem with what Litefoot said, then maybe you should go to Litefoot. You are entitled to your opinion but I would strongly disagree and say that was not the feeling of the entire group. There were many kids that came up when Litefoot was signing autographs and thanked him for coming to Shonto and for what he said. There was even someone that was moved to tears and said that after Litefoot spoke, it changed their life.

I was there until the very end as well as our 10 crew members, our documentary director as well as my father and 7 year old son. There were two (2) ladies NOT STUDENTS who took what Litefoot said WAY OUT OF CONTEXT and MISCONSTRUED Litefoot's words and misinterpreted the focus point. They were even asked by several other Navajo adults from the school who were standing nearby...to "leave".

The show Litefoot did was nearly 45 minutes... not three songs.

Litefoot did not say our language was not important. He said, without the CREATOR, the language has no power. Therefore, KNOW the Creator first and the language will be more meaningful than ever. You are right...Litefoot did say to pray.
Sometimes no matter what you do, there are always people who have hatred and negativity within their own life and they spread it like poison.

The tour is not solely about Litefoot (who by the way- does not get paid any money for his involvement in this effort), it is about doing something for the people. Most of the crew members are in their 20s and came on the road because of the impact that Litefoot had on them when he was in their community. Each and everyone of them want to be a part of something that makes a positive change in Indian Country. They have left their families, homes etc... to be apart of this project. The Documentary is not self-serving or about one-sided views. In all of the events we have had on reservations across the United States, everyone that wants to be interviewed and share their story as a Native American, they may do so, giving us full consent.
The tour is about upliftment and enlightenment....and I can honestly say that many, many people have been touched and reached because I have witnessed it first hand and we have received countless emails and letters from native people all over this country expressing the same.

We are not on this tour to spread negativity or talk trash about people. Doing this work takes way too much energy to expend if it were for something that is bad or negative. I do this work because, as a Native, I have experienced oppression from not just non-native people but our OWN people and I want to do my best to make a difference, which in my heart, I can say I have already done that. As a whole, our people are hurting. Yes, we have made advancements in todays society but when our youth are killing each other whether it is from literally hurting each other, or with drugs, alcohol, etc, it is up to ALL of us to take the responsibility to do our part.

I suggest you stop worrying about Litefoot and do your part, whatever that may be, to make a positive difference in Indian Country. What Litefoot does is not self serving...maybe you should walk in his shoes for a day so you have something to base your accusations on or for that matter anyone who is on the crew to tell you how many hours a day they spend in the vehicles driving, setting up the show, tearing it down and driving to next show. It is easy to sit there and TALK bad about someone and it hard to make the effort to do something positive.

Secondly, at Shonto, this was the only school where the kids were not allowed out of their seats to be part of the concert because the last time there was a concert at Shonto, there was a huge fight and letting the kids get out of their seats would cause the school to not be able to "control" the kids. Litefoot did not have anything to do with that other concert. These were parameters that were set before we even arrived. The tour was not given any monetary contribution to do the performance nor were we provided any lodging. Also, there was supposed to be a drug bust at the school that day and that is one of the reasons that they were so concerned with the students getting out of their seats. And yet, we say that there are not any problems in our communities.

Third, I thought before you joined this website that you had to agree to not post anything "hateful","threatening" or demeaning when you joined this website.

I am not going to even acknowledge any more of the other negative comments because they have no substance or merit whatsoever.
We are traveling this country because meth, drugs, alcohol, and most of all that negative dark side is at its worst in Indian Country.
I wish you the best and I will pray for you. Please pray for us as we travel this country for the next seven months.
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Old 04-21-2006, 10:39 PM   #18
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If what you say is true, then I will apologize for my comments only, but I also cannot ignore the accounts given by other people who are telling from firsthand experience and pass them off as liars or malcontents . That to me says that there is still some work to be done to clear up any of the supposed misconceptions you propose.
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Old 04-24-2006, 05:56 PM   #19
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perhaps there is a misunderstanding on both sides.
Perhaps on the side of the original poster and others who have had negative things to say about this person they have not taken the time to listen or understand the context of his message. For example I have heard several people say that it takes more than grey hair to be an elder. I happen to believe that is true. I also think that it is important for young people to know the difference. I also think that his comment about language might have some truth to it too. There is more to being native than language granted that it is a very important part. If you use drugs and mistreat people but you know your language does that mean that you are a better native than someone who does the same but doesn't speak their language? Perhaps this is what he meant. Maybe he meant that for your language to be powerful you have to walk the red road while speaking it. No one is going to care one way or another what you have to say if you are uneducated, ignorant or intoxicated while saying it. On the optherhand there is a school of thought that suggests that this loss of language is what leads to these misfortunes int he first place. As for the comment about teachers, I would bet that what he was trying to say was that there is more than one kind of knowledge and just because you are a treacher doesn't mean that you know everything. Peole have to step outside of the class room to gain knowledge too if they want to be balanced.

On the other hand I think that litefoot has some responsibility in ensuring that he is not taken out of context. If his target audience is youth then he needs to be straight forward with them. He needs to say what he means a stay away from riddles. A message is only worthwhile if the people you are relaying it to can understand what you are trying to say.
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Old 04-28-2006, 02:05 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WhoMe
I used to think Litefoot was going to be a good role model.

Lately I have heard some not so positive things concerning his presentations.

I had heard he referred to himself as "The Messiah," at a presentation in Rapid City (South Dakota).

I thought, Hmmmmm?

Now this?


HHHHHHHHMMMMMMMMMMM? ? ?
the messiah??? you mean we're saved? lmao...ill pass thank you if litefoots the messiah
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