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Honoring my families military service

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  • Honoring my families military service

    Hello All
    I am a buckskin short fringe traditional dancer and I just recently re-did my regalia. As a way of honoring my family members who have served our country, I put symbols of each person on my sleeves. I have my husband's dog tag from boot camp in the Army, my grandfather's dog tag from the Navy (rest in peace papa), and then on my other arm, I have my brother's patch from one of the naval ships he served on and my father's unit patch from the Air Force and my brother-in-laws pin from serving in Iraq. All of these items have been gifted to me by these people. AS you can see I come from a long line of military family as well as myself being born on an Air Force base. The military life means a lot to our family, and I wanted a way to honor all the sacrifices my family has made for our country and I thought this was a special way to do that. However, I have been told that I am disrespecting the elders of the circle by doing this and that women are not suppose to show this type of honor on their regalia. Is this true? Should I leave these items as is or remove them?
    Thanks for you wise advice ladies!!!
    Ellie

  • #2
    Well by the no-answers to this question but amny readers, I am assuming that this is dis-respectful and I really am not intending to be!!! So I have taken all the emblems off my regalia and have replaced the areas with shells that go along with the rest of my regalia. Would it be ok to put these pieces on my shawl instead? Thanks for any response to this important (to me) question!!!
    Ellie

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    • #3
      Originally posted by nascarboys3 View Post
      Well by the no-answers to this question but amny readers, I am assuming that this is dis-respectful and I really am not intending to be!!! So I have taken all the emblems off my regalia and have replaced the areas with shells that go along with the rest of my regalia. Would it be ok to put these pieces on my shawl instead? Thanks for any response to this important (to me) question!!!
      Ellie
      nascar,

      Each tribe is different. There is no standardization in what is appropriate in making dance regalia. What is perfectly acceptable in one tribe is not allowed in another.

      In many plains cultures the wives, sisters and mothers of warriors' wore their trophies earned in battle in victory ceremonies and celebrations. This included warbonnets, scalps, fingers, weapons and eagle feathers.
      Powwows will continue to evolve in many directions. It is inevitable.

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks for the response WHOME. So how do I not offend other tribes that may be the hosts of a particular powwow that I attend. Is is "safer" to put the items on my shawl?
        Thanks
        Ellie

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by nascarboys3 View Post
          Thanks for the response WHOME. So how do I not offend other tribes that may be the hosts of a particular powwow that I attend. Is is "safer" to put the items on my shawl?
          Thanks
          Ellie

          Ellie,

          Is attaching military articles to your short fringe buckskin or shawl a part of your tribe's culture?
          Last edited by WhoMe; 07-15-2008, 04:40 AM.
          Powwows will continue to evolve in many directions. It is inevitable.

          Comment


          • #6
            Deleted
            Last edited by Kaina1128; 11-14-2018, 08:14 PM. Reason: Deleted

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by nascarboys3 View Post
              Thanks for the response WHOME. So how do I not offend other tribes that may be the hosts of a particular powwow that I attend. Is is "safer" to put the items on my shawl?
              Thanks
              Ellie
              If you do things your way and the way that your tribe does things, then don't worry about offending anyone. If they get offended, oh well, they'll get over it.

              Personally, I can't imagine anyone getting offended over a person wearing military items in honor of a family member that served. If they do, oh well, they'll get over it.
              I think everyone on this rez is addicted to Harry Potter...lol...

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              • #8
                Few yrs back I saw a Veterns Princess and her dress was awesome she had patches from her family, on her dress. I went and shook her hand and visited with her a bit ,shared with her how proud I was of her , I could see it wasnt just a dress to her and she was able to tell me what patch was what and where they were earned and why. She also had patches representing the differnt branches of service..
                I got a fevah! And the only cure is more cowbell!!!

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Eagle Plumes View Post
                  Few yrs back I saw a Veterns Princess and her dress was awesome she had patches from her family, on her dress. I went and shook her hand and visited with her a bit ,shared with her how proud I was of her , I could see it wasnt just a dress to her and she was able to tell me what patch was what and where they were earned and why. She also had patches representing the differnt branches of service..
                  POW MIA Dress: Honoring Our Veterans

                  Like that one? That's cool too. Just make sure that it agrees with your people's traditions of war trophies, etc...

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                  • #10
                    very pretty dress
                    I got a fevah! And the only cure is more cowbell!!!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Kaina1128 View Post
                      POW MIA Dress: Honoring Our Veterans

                      Like that one? That's cool too. Just make sure that it agrees with your people's traditions of war trophies, etc...

                      Kaina,

                      This is good advice. One of our relatives is a Vietnam Veteran who served as a Airborne Ranger. He is also a member of the Red Feather Society of the Northern Plains. He gifted my niece with a red feather to wear in his honor. He earned this feather in hand-to-hand combat with the enemy and often tells a war story after a feather is retrieved from the dance arena.

                      To me, this is a war trophy that she was given the right to wear. So far, no one has questioned why she wears this feather, even at all the mega powwows she attends.
                      Last edited by WhoMe; 07-15-2008, 09:42 PM.
                      Powwows will continue to evolve in many directions. It is inevitable.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I was approached by a child for her grandfather who asked me if I was a veteran myself. I told her no that I wear the items to honor my family members whoa re veterans and nothing else was said. I think I am going to attach the items to my shawl as I did change up some other things on my regalia. Thanks everyone for your advice ont his matter!
                        Ellie

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                        • #13
                          Back in the early 90s, I was asked to dance in honor and memory of a soldier that my step father had served with in Veitnam at a local Memorial Day Powwow. I made an outfit to honor the Pow/MIAs that served with them as well. I was afraid of offending someone, so i went to the military recruiting office and found out info on the ribbon that they would have received and discussed my plans with the gentleman there concerning my outfit ideas. (My shawl utilizes a POW/MIA banner/flag and red/white/blue strips of material on each end. The fringe is made out of ribbons that hang down to represent the ribbon issued to all POW/Mias) I also got permission from the head veteran to dance in the arena in the outfit as well as gifting all the veterans with tobacco. Although I am not a veteran myself, I found that if you are respectful and ask permission to dance the outfit, others are happy to recognize that your intentions to honor their sacrifice is true. Best of luck with your outfit.

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                          • #14
                            This doesn't have anything to do with this thread, but still buckskin related. And it make me go BUH. LOL

                            Comanche image by kissgal on Photobucket

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                            • #15
                              I just cant imagine how this would be "disrespectful". I mean, every culture evolves, and most of our tribes have had to, at one point or another, redefine "warriors", even as far as including women, because of the US Gov, and the different branches of service, as well as the purpose of wars and conflicts. Alot of new elements to traditional ways of dress were brought about by 1. necessity, 2. introduction of new materials, and 3. individuals creating new ways of honoring, or celebrating different aspects of their lives and families.

                              In this instance, it should be seen as an entirely individual decision to honor, or not honor, different members of your familys service. The person or people who took it upon themselves to instruct you as to how you are disrespecting elders (?), should have then brought it full circle and let you know exactly why, and then how you should do it, if at all. I would be very interested to know what tribe you come from, because, even though I'm not an expert in any one's tribal beliefs, I have traveled all over the country in the past 30 years to powwows WITH veterans from my tribe ( different legion post members), and have never come across knowledge that a tribe consideres honoring warriors (ie service men and women) a disrespectful thing toward elders. I'm not questioning you, I was just wondering about that, is all.
                              Ipsica Waci
                              Wicahpi Eyoyambya Olowan

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