It ain't easy being indian


Last month’s BIG NEWS was, of course, the death of Osama Bin Laden, U.S. codename Geronimo. What? Really people? Of course there was a war cry (kidding!) by Indian writers who very rightly questioned why the name of a worthy and famous man who defended his people and homelands was likened to a mass murderer.

Geronimo is implicitly racist and unworthy of any president, never mind an African-American president who has himself been the recipient of inherent racism. It confirms just how far this country has NOT come to an understanding of Native People and our cultures. Obama, your non-action by nixing codename Geronimo is an action affirming America’s xenophobic culture. You make me sick.

 Just when I thought Indians were out of the news along comes some Lakota people who cast a net (and a longer shadow) into a lake that used to be part of their homeland as a statement that their treaty rights are not being recognized and honored, ‘honor’ being an abstract word in American English.

Imagine my astonishment when I read that some Indians with a net in a lake in the middle of an urban city incurred a vast racist outpouring of wrath and hatred from non-Indians. And all they caught were a few five-eyed crappies, one finless trout, an old Nike shoe and some non-rotting diapers. OMG! The F-10x infinity tsunami of outrage is not what I ever thought would still happen in these more supposedly enlightened days. Someone forgot to CC the haters on this one.

Well, the outcome was seemingly amicable; the protesters made their point, the DNR confiscated the net, collected the fluoridated, plutonium-powered fish for evidence and no one was arrested. As an Indian I thought, "Good for them" but actually gagged at the mere idea of eating those fish. Ish. Ish fish.

By the response comments in the local newspaper regarding this non-incident you would think old Al Qaeda, or Satan, or a fish-destroying beast was taking the entire harvest of Cedar Lake and forcing the wealthy and privileged to die without tasting another crappy fish forever. I say, "Let them eat lobster."

I still wonder what it is I ever did to ‘them’ (the powers that be) that was so awful as to invite such nastiness and hatred? Hmmm….could it be…that I am an…Indian? Naw! Our modern country and its people are not like their ancestors who tried to kill us all off, are they? Are they? Are you? Until I see real humanity and compassion come straight from the progeny of the genocidal code makers, I have to believe the extremely candid violence in their written words is real.

Sure, there are those of you non-Indians with good hearts, I acknowledge that wholeheartedly and I love you, but there are many, many more that have been raised to hate on Indians right from the womb. Is it because we are a sore reminder of America’s past failure to eradicate us entirely? That Indians have persevered and never given up what is ours; our religions, our languages, our dances and culture? It seems to me that non-Indians are always pointing fingers at us for simply performing the rights our ancestors insisted on when making the treaties. We kept our side of the deal. I tell ya what, those of you who don’t agree with my opinion and continue to point fingers at me just for being an Indian – I have a finger for you, too.

I welcome your letters. As always, my email is at the bottom center of this column box.

At this time, pun intended, I must address the non-ending of the world. It’s too easy to make fun of it. But what about that poor, befuddled old man who did some fancy figuring to come up with last month’s date that was to be The Rapture. Whatever that is…. I’m not Christian so I didn’t sweat it. When will all the religious robo-trons finally get that if one thinks one needs ‘saving’, one knows where to go? I’m tired of them just glancing at me and assuming I am an unrepentant sinner. Be-gone thou overly-fervent reformers – I shall not heed your outcry of fear and ignorance!

Up in Rezberry, it’s road work and rummage season. I heartily consume and digest every day that’s not cold, raining or full of potholes. During what passes for summertime here, I cherish and worship the sun. You can find me in back of my house singing with little blue birds. And hopping with rabbits while they design me a new frock for powwow season, with the assistance of field mice and crows…or not.

Say, I forgot to follow up last month’s column about my esteemed chiefly ancestor Mangosid. Whoops! Now it has to be next time. Indian Princess…out!

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