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Old 09-20-2007, 02:30 PM   #1
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Proud to be an American? Indian?

Okay so I have always wondered about this question and seeing how we do have some natives that are or have been in the military I hope to get some good and RESPECTFUL discussion. However I have this feeling it'll be more good and less respectful!

As a native american, how do you feel as far as patriotism goes? I will admit that my uncle who was in the military and I have butted heads many times concerning this issue. On one hand when I hear the songs they play on the 4th of July during fireworks displays, I feel somewhat patriotic and like I am a part of this country. On the other hand there's always this "guilt" factor that feels like I'm betraying my ownself b/c "it's not my government". Does anyone else ever feel like this?

So I guess the question for everyone is....."Does being a patriotic American make you feel like you're betraying your identity or should we as natives just get over it and start being a part of this country?"
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Old 09-20-2007, 02:36 PM   #2
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im proud of my uncles and other natives fighting in wars but i dont really care im "canadian"...im native..most canadians are racists and how the rest of the world sees them is fiction...i do hope they go fight the bad guys..oops sorry im not American either but im native aye
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Old 09-20-2007, 02:40 PM   #3
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it makes my head spin lol, living in two worlds is not easy thats for sure...I love thanksgiving for the food, not the reason I know lol, but I also feel like the token ndn sitting at the table when I'm invited to a thanksgiving dinner...lol...but I still go......fourth of july is iffy LOL if I'm upset at the govt, then I don't go see the pretty fireworks lol....lately I've been doing what my tribe does....like I said it's not easy to share both points of view......Aho! CandaePrincess, looking forward to others point of view lol....
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Old 09-20-2007, 05:19 PM   #4
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dang I don't care what you're celebrating.. them fireworks in St. Louis are AWESOME!


I'm not a patriot... but I do feel that natives fighting for the US are fighting for their nations as well. We don't as nations have the numbers to form our own armys so to speak, and I believe it was the US government that agreed to provide us with military protection.

But heck... many eastern tribes fought in the wars before USA was considered a nation... in wars against other indians as well. And we fought in the french indian war, and the revolutionary war, not to mention the civil war.

But we are not entitled to fight for the USA. Our men don't have to register at 18 and we cannot be drafted. It's our choice. Is there something to feel guilty about when our men go off to be the warriors they were born to be?
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Old 09-20-2007, 05:25 PM   #5
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dang I don't care what you're celebrating.. them fireworks in St. Louis are AWESOME!


But we are not entitled to fight for the USA. Our men don't have to register at 18 and we cannot be drafted. It's our choice. Is there something to feel guilty about when our men go off to be the warriors they were born to be?
them fireworks are AWESOME lol....and a big LU LU LU for the last part of your post.....ayeeee lol
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Old 09-20-2007, 06:47 PM   #6
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This is a pretty good question, and I as well you know, that opinions will differ....for me, I guess I'm proud to be both, in the sense of some of the simple liberties we do have....am I proud of my country? homeland??...definately! am I proud of how it's being run? HECK NO!!....so I guess I take what I can and push aside what I can't......which I guess it goes almost in line with "Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder"...

as for my military service as a Native man... I am most definitely proud....even though my parents raised me right, the military offered me something much more, I would not have been able to see for myself what goes on in this world with my own eyes, I would not have traveled around the world 3X and experienced something new each time...it gave me the confidence to go into this world and take what I want (need) to become a very successful person who does not have to wish for what I want...
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Old 09-20-2007, 09:22 PM   #7
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Wow, this is a subject. I have discussed this subject very thoroughly with many of my family who are Indian, some are vets and other's are not. You can imagine how that went.LOL My dad and my grandfather were both in the Military and my own son was going to go in and many of his young friends have gone in and are overseas right now. I don't know if I would call it Patriotic. But how I put it to one of my Uncles a few years back was this "I honor the soldiers who go and fight. They stand up for what they believe (what ever that may be) and the people as far as I am concerned. But I have no use for the Military as a governmental Entity." I do not like the war that is going on right now and think that it's gone too far, but I will be D***** if I will put down any of the ones who are over there fighting. I have a friend whose son died over there recently and so that hits pretty close to home. Fireworks---shoot I like them and like to watch them. And as KK said I like the food and family and friends getting together, not so much what it stands for.
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Old 09-20-2007, 10:39 PM   #8
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Where to start...

We join the Military to get away from proverty, I know in my case it was a way out of Cherokee County in Oklahoma
I served 6 years and 2 months with the United States Navy
And as a Veteren When I stand to pay honor to the Flag I am doing it for my fellow shipmates and people I served with
that did not return although we were not at war, when you die at sea it still a death at sea...

I honor the flag as a symbol of my service to it and I am proud of that service and the opportunities it allowed me when I returned

Funny how that Flag can mean different things
We as Veterans focus on that because we know the vast majority of people that are in this Country in there Day to day Lives do even think about it
We focus on the that symbol and nothing else

I am Proud to be an NDN Veteran
And an Okie
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Old 09-21-2007, 12:45 AM   #9
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I have many family who were proud and selfless in serving their country. My one and only sister just retired from the USMC 2 years ago, after a 15 year career with them. I have my own issues and ideas about the US govt. and their pass misdeeds with my ancestors. BUT, I always remind myself that because I come from ancestors that were truely warriors and fought and died to protect our native people and the lands, they always felt a pride in protecting others and being in the services in this country, no matter whom is in charge. We have many loved ones whom are willing to sacrifice for us, no matter how unpopular it is at times.
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Old 09-21-2007, 03:23 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 50cal View Post

as for my military service as a Native man... I am most definitely proud....even though my parents raised me right, the military offered me something much more, I would not have been able to see for myself what goes on in this world with my own eyes, I would not have traveled around the world 3X and experienced something new each time...it gave me the confidence to go into this world and take what I want (need) to become a very successful person who does not have to wish for what I want...

I love this attitude. Our experiences as indigenous people does not have to be limited to the reservation and never was. There are stories among our peoples that tell of going to far off places ... maybe not overseas back then, but then maybe for some there are. And it seems most of our most memorable leaders and elders went to see what they can of this world and brought back with them their experiences. Maybe it's those experiences that made them such strong people.
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Old 09-21-2007, 05:17 PM   #11
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This is an interesting query. (I, actually, am the first male in my family to NOT have military service. Even my paternal grandmother was an Army cadet nurse.)

As a model, we live here [United States], reap the benefits of living here, vote, pay taxes, etc., so let's not pretend this isn't "our government/country." (If some wish to pretend that psuedo-sovereign tribal cliques amount to a full-scale government of their own, they can go ahead: but that is delusional.)

Sure, I am as patriotic as the next guy, more so at times.
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Old 09-21-2007, 06:39 PM   #12
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My sister was telling me a while back she had heard on the news that of all the minority groups in the United States Ndns have the largest number serving or veterans of all services

Makes you think about that for a moment, Is it because we are as a group very Patriotic??
Naw dont see that

But I do see that all over Ndn Country we as a group shake hands with our Veterans and make them feel welcome
We make them stand up at Powwows and we have them parade in during Grand Entry
We give them a place of Honor in our Tribal Complexes.
Looking back in history that was common theme going back to even before this country was born
My ancestors fought in organized companies against the Americans during the Revolutionary war
And again during the Civil war we fought on both sides and sometimes against each other

All the way up to today we still join and fight

Does this make us Patriotic?
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Old 09-21-2007, 07:09 PM   #13
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Does this make us Patriotic?
Either that, or we have (and always had) a desperate social need for "warriors" because they are our most respected social class.
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Old 09-21-2007, 11:35 PM   #14
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Good question

This is such a good question on so many levels and something I think about a lot. My husband often asks on 4th of July, "what are we celebrating?" and it is a good question. I have a lot of veterans in my family and I love and respect each and every one of them very much. I was at a powwow on Father's Day where a non-Indian Vietnam Veteran asked to speak to the crowd and he was given the microphone. He spoke about the very first powwow that he ever went to and the shock and surprise at the honor he and his fellow vets were given. It was the first time he ever really truely felt honored for his service. The speech he gave was very moving. My Mother always taught me to respect veterans and she raised me in the Quaker tradition, which is a pacifist tradition and teaches that war is morally wrong. So, I am trying to figure out what to teach my son, who is only 2 now and goes to powwows with my husband and I very often. He sees the love and respect that we give to our veterans and I worry that he will choose to become a soldier because of that. No mother ever wants her baby to go to war. So, I pray for our troops that they all make it home to their families and I shake our veterans hands at powwows and family gatherings and thank them for their service. I also pray that my son will choose not to be a soldier. He is my only baby. And every soldier is just a precious as him.
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Old 09-23-2007, 05:06 AM   #15
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I once read this news article... I forgot the name of the soldier... but this Oglala chick was like the great grandaughter of Crazy Horse I think...

anyway... she joined the military in the very same unit that Custer was in.

I wish I could've asked her in person 'what the fcuk are you doing'.

here's a simple fictional scenario:

KKK hates a black man because he thinks he's uncivilised so he sets out to murder him and his family.
The murdered man's son decides to get back, by JOINING the KKK.

Moronic logic!
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Old 09-23-2007, 09:57 AM   #16
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I have had the privaledge to talk with many combat vets from many different tribes over the years, who have served from WWII to Iraq, and many wars and hot spots in between. A large majority of them have told me they joined the service because, from their point of view, it was a good thing to do, the right thing to do. It had nothing to do with "Patriotism" in the stereotypical way that many mainstream Americans would probably think of it. Rather, the NDN Vets have told me that it has to do more with the fact that as a soldier, an NDN has the opportunity to be a warrior.

They tell me that a "warrior" is someone who serves the people. Puts the needs of the people before his own, and is willing to get hurt or die to protect the people he loves, and the land that he loves.

They tell me that when they see an American Flag, they do not see the government it represents, but they see the land that it represents. They see the blood of their friends in the red stripes of the Flag, that have been hurt protecting each other from the enemy. They are reminded, when they see the dark blue field with stars on the Flag, not of the fifty States, but rather the stars that they could see at night, far from home, in a foreign land, which was the same night sky and stars that their loved ones were looking at, and it gave them strength and courage to know that they were doing this hard thing for them.

Some also tell me that when they see an American Flag, it reminds them of the Flag drapped coffins of fellow soldiers who died in a fire fight, or other combat action that they witnessed. Soldiers who died, so that others may live. And they remember.....because so many of us will forget.

Is this "Patriotism"?....Not in my definition. This is love in it's highest expression. Love for your family, your people, your land, and the buddies you serve with, that is so strong and so powerful, that you would willingly put yourself in harms way to defend all that you love and care about.
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Old 09-23-2007, 12:09 PM   #17
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I once read this news article... I forgot the name of the soldier... but this Oglala chick was like the great grandaughter of Crazy Horse I think...

anyway... she joined the military in the very same unit that Custer was in.

I wish I could've asked her in person 'what the fcuk are you doing'.

here's a simple fictional scenario:

KKK hates a black man because he thinks he's uncivilised so he sets out to murder him and his family.
The murdered man's son decides to get back, by JOINING the KKK.

Moronic logic!
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Sometimes people who say some good words come up with stupid stuff like this.

Calling our native veterans moronic is stupid and insulting.
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Old 09-23-2007, 02:29 PM   #18
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othellobloke is infamous around these parts
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Are you saying its intelligent to switch allegiances and fight for the people who've murdered your ancestors in cold blood for nothing other than a different way of living?

Because if that's not moronic, stupid and insulting to the memory of those who have died fighting against the oppression and racism, then I'll join the KKK tomorrow and have my mother turn in her grave.
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Old 09-23-2007, 04:55 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by othellobloke View Post
I once read this news article... I forgot the name of the soldier... but this Oglala chick was like the great grandaughter of Crazy Horse I think...

anyway... she joined the military in the very same unit that Custer was in.

I wish I could've asked her in person 'what the fcuk are you doing'.

here's a simple fictional scenario:

KKK hates a black man because he thinks he's uncivilised so he sets out to murder him and his family.
The murdered man's son decides to get back, by JOINING the KKK.

Moronic logic!
WOW! Shakes my head at your ignorance, hopefully you will grow up someday.
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Old 09-23-2007, 06:40 PM   #20
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othellobloke is infamous around these parts
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WOW! Shakes my head at your ignorance, hopefully you will grow up someday.
If I'm ignorant - then educate me. It's a fact the U.S Army murdered millions of natives over the last 300 years. Are you going to dispute that?

What do you think the warriors of days gone by would think about their own ancestors joining the people that murdered them?

Instead of tutting and saying disrespect, ignorant yadda yadda... educate me. Explain to me why it's honourable to join a team that murdered millions of natives because of the way they do things.
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