As more and more people recognize the severe challenges facing kids growing up on reservations, the more people become fans of the characteristics of Native Americans. The humility, the native values, the traditions, the connection to earth, animals, people.
The original inhabitants of America were only allowed to vote in 1924, and yet many volunteered (not drafted) to serve a country in WW1 that didn’t recognize them as citizens. This mirrors slaves actually volunteering to fight in the Civil War with absolutely no rights, knowing if they were captured, they would face terrible torture, mutilation and a slow death.
Even though Native Americans were the target of genocide, they still wanted to earn the respect of a country that didn’t respect them.
Earning citizenship is certainly different than being born into it.
In WW2, there were the Navaho code talkers who helped ‘incript’ secret messages so our enemies could not intercept these messages.
The point being that Native Americans are an irreplaceable, vital part of our nation. They have gifts that are unique and can’t be duplicated. Their native language actually helped tilt the war effort for the allies.
The New York Times, on April 8th, had a long story chronicled the brotherhood of a group of highly successful high school basketball players on a reservation in MT helping curb suicide on their reservation.
Putting back the pieces of a society that has been all but forgotten, won’t be easy.
But it’s being done.
That’s why this blog is written to keep a constant dialogue with people who want to give a helping hand to people who have been oppressed for far too long.
If you pick a category in sports, business, etc there are glittering examples of Native American kids that defied all odds to become the best they can be. Billy Mills, an Olympic gold medal winner in Tokyo, became an author inspiring other First Nation people to become extraordinary.
Get involved in our movement. You can journey with us on our journeys to the reservation (second week in August), you can donate (link here), you can turn us on to groups who are in the position to help kids on the reservation.
Thank you for you much needed help!