Monday, June 26, 2017

We Cannot Be SEEN.

Chef Loretta Barrett Oden, Citizen Band Potawatomi

Chickasaw storyteller and actress Te Ata (Mary Frances Fisher) 1895-1995 created one woman shows about NDN dance, music & storytelling. Travelled widely performing hers & other NDN traditions for worldwide audiences.

Nez Perçé Chief Joseph said:

"We were taught to believe that the Great Spirit sees and hears everything, and that he never forgets, that hereafter he will give ...every man a spirit home according to his deserts; If he has been a good man, he will have a good home; if he has been a bad man, he will have a bad home. This I believe, and all my people believe the same.
I am tired of talk that comes to nothing It makes my heart sick when I remember all the good words and all the broken promises. There has been too much talking by men who had no right to talk.
It does not require many words to speak the truth.
If the white man wants to live in peace with the Indian, he can live in peace. Treat all men alike. Give them all the same law.Give them all an even chance to live and grow. All men were made by the same Great Spirit Chief. They are all brothers. The Earth is the mother of all people, and all people should have equal rights upon it. Let me be a free man, free to travel, free to stop, free to work, free to trade where I choose my own teachers, free to follow the religion of my fathers, free to think and talk and act for myself, and I will obey every law, or submit to the penalty."
You might as well expect the rivers to run backward as that any man who was born free should be contented to be penned up and denied liberty to go where he pleases.
We are taught to believe that the Great Spirit sees and hears everything, and that he never forgets: that hereafter he will give every man a spirit-home" 

Those words fell on deaf years, closed ears today. More than a hundred years later being Indian is just a novelty in popular culture, and Indians are invisible, identified by Hollywood standards, if any recognition comes our way. - Gregory E. Woods, Keeper of Stories June 26, 2017  

Chief Joseph (on right) and his nephew - Nez Perçé - 1897

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