Indigenous Peoples’ Day: Stop the Hate!

 

Written Transcript:

Celebrate Indigenous Peoples’ Day! Why? America belongs to who? Indigenous Peoples’ Day officially recognized in Washington, D.C., the nation’s capital. History in the making! Why? Years and years of activism, protests, workshops, conferences, feedback, misunderstandings, errors, etc.

Important: PATIENCE.

Celebrate Indigenous Peoples’ Day! There are some cities in America had removed Columbus Day in respect for Indigenous People’s Day. One day, it will be all over America, the land of freedom. Why? It belongs to Indigenous People. Christopher Columbus was a mass murderer, engineered one of the greatest genocide ever, racism, and it is time to throw Columbus out of the picture.

It is important to recognize Indigenous People’s history, tradition, stories, suffering, positive or negative that should be shared awareness. I remember when I was eight or nine years old kid, I just had a conversation with my dad earlier today, asking him whether he remembered the tepee story I built–and my dad said, “Yeah, I remember you were very skilled with that”. How did I learn?

My grandmother, her mother which was my great grandmother, 100 percent Oregon Cherokee and the entire family as well. I never knew. I never met them. Too bad. Why? My great grandmother died due to a child birth where my grandmother was born. She died right there. My family never discussed about that ever. Best to keep White race that way. Scottish, Irish as I was taught growing up. Then I found out that I have Cherokee until I was in 30’s.

I wish I’d grow up learning food culture, story telling, traditions, events, etc that would have been rich experience. Missed opportunities. Back to tepee story. How did it happen? My grandmother had an old book about Native Americans in drawings, pictures, stories, horses, etc and saw something that caught my attention and that’s why I decided to build tepee by myself.

“Hey Dad, look what I had done!” and I remember that day, my Dad was impressed! He allowed me to sleep there one or two nights. Great experience! I did not realize that I had great passion inside, I did not know that I had Native American inside me, only White–and Deaf.

Due to language deprivation, lack of communication in ASL, never knew the stories…but I felt funny because spirits or souls inside me testing my character, connecting to Native American experience, I would go outside all the time, wood chopping, fishing. My brother and I would go fishing together as kids. That was rich experience I would never forget. Always cherish moments.

I took American Indian Literature course in Oregon. Great storytellers, wrote several essays and how to respect and appreciate Native American culture and language, it was champ! I signed up for ‘Environmental Education through Native American Lenses’. For example, how Native American cooking, making natural tea, life experience stories and it was champ learning experience for me! My Nez Perce/Cherokee professor was phenomenal!

I went to a conference called “Racist Stereotypes and Cultural Appropriation in American Sports” in Washington, D.C. for example, mascots such as Atlanta Braves, Cleveland Indians, Washington Redskins, etc; I was only Deaf there with two interpreters all day from 10 AM to 5 PM. Took a stand and asked a question for panelists at a conference where you can find me via YouTube link below at 1:17:51–

I did my civil duty. Why? I do not support Racist stereotypes, mocking Native Americans. Why? I’ve seen enough stories, for example, Hate Crime.

This book: “Silent Victims: Hate Crimes Against Native Americans” published by Barbara Perry.

2016. I stood in solidarity and marched with Standing Rock Protest in DC. A sign was made: “Hate Crime is a gross injustice which denigrates Native Americans”

2019. It is officially “Indigenous Peoples Day” in DC! History in the making! Important to be aware about activism. Need more of your activism out there, open-minded, understanding that Indigenous Peoples’ Day is important. Christopher Columbus? No! He was a White supremacist, Racist, killing awfully LOT, and he was really hateful towards Native Americans. We do not need a holiday like that. Throw Columbus out! Again, celebrate Indigenous Peoples’ Day!

Thank you.

-JT

Copyright © 2019 Jason Tozier

This text may be freely copied in its entirely only, including copyright message.

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MAGA HATS: Hate-Filled Literature at Native Rally

Are MAGA HATS making America great again? In the light of hate-filled literature mocking, and intimidating Native Americans is trying to make America great again is not even close. Whose land belongs to in the first place? Silence equals hate. We need to stop hate targeting Native Americans.

CORRECTION: IT IS NATHAN PHILLIPS. NOT RICHARD PHILLIPS. MY APOLOGIES!

Abolish Columbus Day!

Join the Movement: Indigenous Peoples Day!

DEAFHOOD: Celebrate Indigenous Peoples Day!

IMG_1088Yes, celebrate Indigenous Peoples Day with Deafhood, too!

Time to celebrate Indigenous Peoples Day! No more Columbus Day! I am happy to inform that more cities are recognizing Native Americans today—the movement to change the holiday to celebrate the history and contributions of indigenous cultures around America. It is a huge deal.

My grandmother on my father’s side–her own mother–my great grandmother was Cherokee born and raised in small town called John Day in Oregon–she died at “childbirth” giving my grandmother a life and she refused to talk about it because her father (my great grandfather) told her not to bring up about it. I was from small town, Yacolt, on the southwestern border of Washington, in the shadow of Mount St. Helens. The name, from local Native American lore, means “haunted place” or “valley of the demons.”

I had no idea that I have Cherokee blood until I was 33 and I begin to learn more about Native Americans now and then. I had no idea about Wounded Knee incident in South Dakota where one of the courses I signed up for requiring us to read one of many books called “Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee” written by Dee Brown really bury my heart. Hint: Did you know that there was a Deaf Native American in that book by the name of Black Coyote who “started” it all? Then after that, I started to read more Native Americans books–from political to cultural to history to hate crimes and so. The picture you see above I bought in DC—I have more books stored inside a box in the great Pacific Northwest.

Heritage_1

As for hate crimes, it does happen—there is plenty of virulent hatred and bigotry toward Native Americans in this country—and feel that they only suffer from the challenges of poverty and neglect as well limited access to opportunities and it is not true. They are survivors of hateful assaults on given day now and then. I think diversity is racist in America. Why do I think it is racist? Because it presumes that the color of Native American or the surname of a Native American defining his or her thinking, that somehow he or she will bring something different to the intellectual table just because he/she looks Native American or his/her name looks Native American.

One of books, which had influenced me greatly written by Barbara Perry, called Silent Victims: Hate Crimes Against Native Americans, where Perry writes in page 25, “There is an important distinction between the two terms. The former, genocide, refers to the explicit and frequently brutal physical violence perpetrated against Native Americans in an effort to eliminate them as a people. There are those who would oppose the use of such strong terminology.”–Is true enough in this country with Perry writes another one in same page, “The second term, ethnocide, refers to the much more subtle efforts to deculturate Native Americans, sometimes through physical violence but more often through the social violence implied in efforts to “resocialize” or “civilize” Natives.”

Now I understand hate crimes more.

When I visited Harper’s Ferry, there were two rivers there—Princess Shenandoah and Potomac Warrior why the rivers were named. Princess Shenandoah and Potomac Warrior were forbidden to get married by their tribes. They both cried a lot and made the rivers to meet. That is where the Shenandoah and Potomac rivers meet. The Native American folklore. One of my favorite stories from a book I hold in my possession The Storytelling Stone: Traditional Native American Myths and Tales edited and with an introduction by Susan Feldman about ‘Bat.’

“Once there was a war between beasts and birds. Bat was on birds’ side. In the first battle, the birds were badly beaten. As soon as Bat saw that the battle was going against them, he crept away, hid under a log, and stayed there till the fight was over. When the animals were going home, Bat slipped in among them. After they had gone some distance, they saw him and asked one another: “How is this? Bat is one of the men who fought against us?”

Bat heard them, and he said, “Oh, no! I am one of you; I don’t belong to the bird people. Did you ever see one of those people who had double teeth? Go and look in their mouths and see if they have. If you find one bird with double teeth, you can say that I belong to the bird people. But I don’t; I am one of your own people.” They didn’t say anything more; they let Bat stay with them. Soon after, there are another battle; in that battle birds won.

As Bat’s side was getting beaten, he slipped away and hid under a log. When the battle was over and the birds were going home, Bat went in among them. When they noticed him, they said: “You are our enemy; we saw you fighting against us.” “Oh, no.” said Bat, “I am one of you; I don’t belong to those beasts. Did you ever see one of those people who had wings?” They didn’t say anything more; they let him stay with them. So Bat went back and forth as long as the war lasted. At the end of the war, birds and beasts held a council to see what to do with him. At last they said to Bat: “Hereafter, you will fly around alone at night, and will never have any friends, either among those that fly, or those that walk.”

If you visit DC for some reason, please visit the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian—it would blow your body and mind away. Appreciate Indigenous Peoples Day! I wrote this blog post last year (October 2014) to get better idea why I am against the idea of celebrating Columbus Day. The link below:

https://audismnegatsurdi.com/2014/10/13/racism-is-ancient-columbus-began-it-all/

For additional links about Deaf Community: A Hidden Dimension of Racism Among Sports. Plenty of Deaf vloggers wearing Redskins to belittle Native Americans. One of them is a teacher.

https://audismnegatsurdi.com/2014/10/01/deaf-community-a-hidden-dimension-of-racism-among-sports-2/

-JT

Copyright © 2015 Jason Tozier

This text may be freely copied in its entirely only including this copyright message.