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Old 01-13-2007, 04:40 AM   #1
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Trying to get a friend to care about his culture and people

Well my friend is half white-half Dine/Comanche/Apache/Cherokee, really he looks to most folks like a blue-eyed white dude with a very good tan, anyway I was talking to him one day and asked if he would try to enroll and join the Navajo nation.
He told me no and said that he didn't want to he wasn't a indian and didn't care just as few days ago he said that the culture and costoms everything is weird to him, this was confusing to me because I acknowledge every single group I am no matter how small little I claim
black/white/NDN/Creole/hispanic and wear it as a badge but he could care less. I finally got him a book called The References of South-West Indians I am trying to get him to read more books get in contact with his grandmother who by what I heard tried to keep tradition (she even made him two cradleboards).

Anywho I want to know what I can do, or what books I should get to get him into his culture
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Old 01-13-2007, 02:03 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zambo
Well my friend is half white-half Dine/Comanche/Apache/Cherokee, really he looks to most folks like a blue-eyed white dude with a very good tan, anyway I was talking to him one day and asked if he would try to enroll and join the Navajo nation.
He told me no and said that he didn't want to he wasn't a indian and didn't care just as few days ago he said that the culture and costoms everything is weird to him, this was confusing to me because I acknowledge every single group I am no matter how small little I claim
black/white/NDN/Creole/hispanic and wear it as a badge but he could care less. I finally got him a book called The References of South-West Indians I am trying to get him to read more books get in contact with his grandmother who by what I heard tried to keep tradition (she even made him two cradleboards).

Anywho I want to know what I can do, or what books I should get to get him into his culture
Not to be a downer or anything, but you're not gonna accomplish with books what his parents failed to teach him over the course of his entire lifetime. And if his parents did teach him pride in who is then it sounds like he's made a clear decision to move away from that path.

I would say pull back a little because the more you push the more he's gonna put up a wall against it. Also why do you think he should enroll Navajo, instead of Comanche or Apache or Creek? That's a decision he and his family need to make.

Your intentions are good, they are, but i don't think there's much you can do. He needs all that pushing to come from his family members.
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Old 01-13-2007, 02:18 PM   #3
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Kgirl is right you can't force anyone to accept the culture if there parents taught them to be ashamed of it. This kind of thing is all too common. The only thing that we can do about it is to raise our children to be proud of what we are. There is a lot to be proud of.
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Old 01-14-2007, 08:00 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zambo
Well my friend is half white-half Dine/Comanche/Apache/Cherokee, really he looks to most folks like a blue-eyed white dude with a very good tan, anyway I was talking to him one day and asked if he would try to enroll and join the Navajo nation.
He told me no and said that he didn't want to he wasn't a indian and didn't care just as few days ago he said that the culture and costoms everything is weird to him, this was confusing to me because I acknowledge every single group I am no matter how small little I claim
black/white/NDN/Creole/hispanic and wear it as a badge but he could care less. I finally got him a book called The References of South-West Indians I am trying to get him to read more books get in contact with his grandmother who by what I heard tried to keep tradition (she even made him two cradleboards).

Anywho I want to know what I can do, or what books I should get to get him into his culture
You know what I am an example of this case, My Best friend Cody told me that I should start dancing and enroll into Mohawk nation I am white and that was my choice of not enrolling I am now an acomplished grass dancer just not enrolled in Mohawk nation, so get him out there and take him to some good pow-wows and gatherings let him live the culture and make sure he has indian fry bread and im sure he will come around and what to join in all the fun and good times, I hope this helps,
Brian WhiteDeer
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Old 01-14-2007, 11:50 PM   #5
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Boohoo niji,

I know someone also, who is part cherokee. I tried for a few years to get him to come to a pow wow. Its not something that he really wants to do. He acknowledges his heritage, but I guess he doesnt see any advantage in going that route, doesnt seem to fit into his lifestyle. His decision has nothing to do with his relationship with either of his parents or anything like that, was his choice.

The point is, what we do, the way and how does not work for everyone. I met a couple of Anishinaabeks over the weekend, they are vendors, and neither one of them dance nor do pow wow songs. But they are pretty high in traditions. On the flip side I know people that only know the pow wow life, only dance in competitions and do nothing with tradition.

Then there are people that want nothing to do with any part of it. I use the word people because it applies to everyone, every race creed and color.

you want to help your friend? Pray for him.

Derek
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Old 01-16-2007, 03:41 AM   #6
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I know alot of you are gonna look at me cross eyed for saying this, but.... does this person have the right to identify as he wishes? WHY does he have to choose his native side? If he did'nt grow up being raised with the culture and does'nt "feel it in his heart", then why can't he?

Seriously, at least he is'nt saying, oh hey, I should go register cause then I can legally have indian feathers and maybe get some money and free college out of this. You certainly don't want to turn him into an "instant indian" where he starts annoying people because then he suddenly has read a few books and "knows more than his relatives on the reservation know". I mean, how many times have we heard that line? Or get so gung ho that he starts "acting indian" because suddenly one day he's decided he's proud of it... right?

Lord knows he'll get called wannabe and whatever else anyhow for not looking indian, and if he was'nt raised in it then he's not going to culturally be one, so why "convince" him to be one?

One day he might take more interest in it all by himself without anyone's pushing or "feeling sorry for him". So let him be who he wants to be. He descends from both and has every right to live one way or another if he so chooses.
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Old 01-17-2007, 02:56 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Blackbear
I know alot of you are gonna look at me cross eyed for saying this, but.... does this person have the right to identify as he wishes? WHY does he have to choose his native side? If he did'nt grow up being raised with the culture and does'nt "feel it in his heart", then why can't he?

Seriously, at least he is'nt saying, oh hey, I should go register cause then I can legally have indian feathers and maybe get some money and free college out of this. You certainly don't want to turn him into an "instant indian" where he starts annoying people because then he suddenly has read a few books and "knows more than his relatives on the reservation know". I mean, how many times have we heard that line? Or get so gung ho that he starts "acting indian" because suddenly one day he's decided he's proud of it... right?

Lord knows he'll get called wannabe and whatever else anyhow for not looking indian, and if he was'nt raised in it then he's not going to culturally be one, so why "convince" him to be one?

One day he might take more interest in it all by himself without anyone's pushing or "feeling sorry for him". So let him be who he wants to be. He descends from both and has every right to live one way or another if he so chooses.
Oh I agree but he dosen't even care, its weird every single person at my school who is NDN (all 4 or 5 out of 1000) either don't care,don't want to know, or don't think about it. I don't have a problem not considering himself NDN or even biracial, but he needs to acknkowledge his roots, that is what truly pisses me off, and i think about this alot why am I someone who is a "waterblood" caring alot on my Native bloodline while thoughs who are 1/2 and 1/4 don't care
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Old 01-17-2007, 05:02 PM   #8
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...why am I someone who is a "waterblood" caring alot on my Native bloodline while thoughs who are 1/2 and 1/4 don't care
At the risk of being rather blunt, being able to "pass" has great advantages. We who are fair can structure our identity as we want, without the downside of falling within a phenotype treated by distrust or dislike by dominant culture. We don't walk around getting the "get away from me you dirty Indian" look, or being stopped for driving in the wrong part of town, or having the salesperson follow us through the store. We experience at least superficial inclusion from the institutions of larger society, so we concentrate on gaining a similar level on inclusion and participation within Native society.

It is quite understandable that those, who by virtue of phenotype do not have the option of escaping prejudice, might not wish to engage in activities that increase their feeling of separation.
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Old 01-17-2007, 05:16 PM   #9
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...So let him be who he wants to be...

BB,

Yeah the world needs more "blue-eyed white dudes" *L
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Old 01-17-2007, 06:00 PM   #10
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At the risk of being rather blunt, being able to "pass" has great advantages. We who are fair can structure our identity as we want, without the downside of falling within a phenotype treated by distrust or dislike by dominant culture. We don't walk around getting the "get away from me you dirty Indian" look, or being stopped for driving in the wrong part of town, or having the salesperson follow us through the store. We experience at least superficial inclusion from the institutions of larger society, so we concentrate on gaining a similar level on inclusion and participation within Native society.

It is quite understandable that those, who by virtue of phenotype do not have the option of escaping prejudice, might not wish to engage in activities that increase their feeling of separation.
As you can notice Im not pale I get all those looks and when I drive most likely will be stopped and on many a time been followed by a salesmen. i dont pass but I can understand a person passing for white, many of my family have passed for white since the beginning of our history.Oh would bring him to a powwow be good
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Old 01-17-2007, 08:13 PM   #11
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As you can notice Im not pale...
Actually, since my browser is opting not to display avtars or photos in profiles today, I'm not noticing much of anything, LOL.

But, my apologies. My "we" was intended to be a more generic reference to a group of fair mixed-bloods of which I consider myself to be a part. I meant no offense.
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Old 01-19-2007, 04:06 AM   #12
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Well I'm a part of that "we" and I agree. To pass is easier simply because the majority of the world will not stereotype us simply by looks. But that's not what I was getting at really. I'm just..WHY? Why do we HAVE to pick our native side, and be all interested? Is it a cardinal sin? We're gonna get crap from either side regardless if we do or don't follow tradition and identify so in a way, what does it matter ?

You have your life, your interests and your own pride in who you are and no one faults you for having all that right?

Personally I do feel it's sad that he does not want to know and identify with his dine side as well, but I also realize that it's really only becuase I do know and identify my native side and grew up with it. If I had'nt grown up with it, I'd probably not give a rats azz one way or another.

Like I said, someday dude's gonna wanna know more about it and probably have an appreciation for it.
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Old 01-19-2007, 10:26 AM   #13
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True freedom means freedom to be the person you choose to be. When a dark person is free to be the same as a member of the dominant society if they want to without recrimination, there will be freedom. When a fair mixed blood person is free to become a member of their Native society if they want to without recrimination, there will be freedom. As a broad American society, we're not there yet. We still generally classify each other by skin color, and that won't change anytime soon.
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Old 01-19-2007, 11:08 AM   #14
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I visit other Anishinaabe territory where there are casinoes. I generally visit people who are shaded just about like me. They always say that percap day is just like " WTF?" They have no clue who is who. The only time they see these people is.... can you guess?

Poor me..... I don't get percap. Ayyyee.
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Old 01-19-2007, 11:33 AM   #15
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Yeah, you can't force anybody to change their views. Maybe in time, he'll change them himself. And maybe not. Let him be, and maybe someday he'll seek it out himself.

Just check out my older brother. He's 4/4th and (ahem) very dark. He knows his heritage, etc... and could care less. He lives in town, has mostly white friends, and has no inclination towards powwows, native ways, etc... and THAT'S OK.

Well, sorta! Anyway, he's set in his ways and noone's gonna change him. Maybe someday he'll change his views himself, but until then we just accept him as he is.
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Old 01-22-2007, 06:35 PM   #16
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You can't make anyone think or feel like you do. They feel and do what they do because it fits or makes them feel good. They may have no reason, or a good one for how they feel. Can only suggest, but everyone is different.

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Old 01-22-2007, 06:47 PM   #17
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I think you need to let him be, and let him choose his own path...you cannot force anything on him. If he does not want to be Indian, don't try to make him.
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Old 01-22-2007, 07:07 PM   #18
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was in same boat

I think your friend needs to make the choice to embrace who he his.I did not know that i was shawnee untill my mother told me when i left for the service.At first i did not care but in the service i met some other bros and made up my own mind up to embrace who i am.Never been happier!!!!!Let your friend make up his own mind, he will one day.
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Old 02-01-2007, 09:57 PM   #19
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One question I would have is what made this person not care about his history. I have a first cousin who is 1/2 Coast Salish and 1/4 Cree but up until the late 80's the government considered him non-status due to his dad being Metis. Our own people treated him and his siblings terribly because they were fair-skinned. If nobody wants them then why should they want to be ndn. I have apologized to my cousin because I used to tease him about not being able to get tanned like us. I also used to say snotty things like they were only half okay. It must do some pretty emotionally terrible things to people who already feel like they don't belong because of their skin color. They don't know that we as a group are simply doing the Lateral violence thing of crabs in the bucket. Every time somebody tries to do something to improve their lives we haul them back to the bottom to be with the rest of us. Its quite pathetic really. Don't be too hard on your friend, he probably has a lifetime of confusion he has to overcome.
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Old 02-08-2007, 04:31 PM   #20
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LuncheonMeat49 is an unknown quantity at this point
Join Date: Dec 2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zambo View Post
Well my friend is half white-half Dine/Comanche/Apache/Cherokee, really he looks to most folks like a blue-eyed white dude with a very good tan, anyway I was talking to him one day and asked if he would try to enroll and join the Navajo nation.
He told me no and said that he didn't want to he wasn't a indian and didn't care just as few days ago he said that the culture and costoms everything is weird to him,
Well, if he identifies with his non-Native side, then I guess that's what he is.
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