Reflections from the Ah­nish­i­nah­bæójib­way (We, the People)


November 25, 1994

Someone sent me a copy of the October 19 issue of Indian Country Today.  A front-page headline reads, “Mocking a culture,” with a photograph of a White high school student in turkey feathers acting the role of “Big Chief” of Bennett County.  In the Ah­nish­i­nah­bæót­jib­way language, there is no word which is a translation of the English word, “Indian,” and there are no concepts or words in our language for “chief,” “squaw,” “band,” or “tribe,” or “Indian Tribal Council.”  These words are all Western European words in their imported Indo-European languages, referring to alien European concepts which have nothing to do with traditional Ah­nish­i­nah­bæót­jib­way culture, values or language.  Neither the Indians nor the Whites have any understanding of the languages of the Aboriginal people of this Continent, and the “Indian culture” which is portrayed in the media—by both Whites and Indians—is a shoddy caricature and an insultingly cheap imitation of the egalitarian and harmonious Ah­nish­i­nah­bæót­jib­way language and culture.  Most “Indian languages” which are taught in “Indian Studies” University departments are Creole languages which embody Western European abstract thinking and hierarchical structure.

According to the accompanying article, a highly irate Indian of Porcupine, South Dakota, said that Whites wearing buckskin, beads, war bonnets and face paint is “a mockery of our culture.”  How can Whites dressing in feathers and buckskins be a mockery of Indian culture, when the Indian identity and Indian culture were created by the Whites and given to their subject people, whom the Whites define as “Indians.”  High school students in Martin, South Dakota, are no different than the Washington Redskins or the B-Western movies—and they are also no different than the Federally Recognized 1934 IRA Indian Tribal Councils and professional Wanna-Be blood quantum Indians.  Indians are an invention of the White man, so how can Whites portraying their own projections possibly be insulting to the people who have chosen to spend their lives acting out this fraudulent Indian identity?  Whether the person dressed in buckskin and feathers identifies himself as “Indian” or “White,” if they act an Indian role, they are caricaturing and mocking the Aboriginal Indigenous people—who are not, and have never been, “Indians.”

HANGOVER: The Indian was created to be the Euro-Americans’ political hockey puck and scapegoat, and “drunken Indian” and the other vicious projections that go with it are inseparable reinforcements of the White man’s old worn-out “Indian” stereotype.  Just as opium was vital for the Western European occupation of Asia, so alcohol has always been used as a tool of oppression against the so-called Indians.  To keep the stereotype in modern circulation, two breweries have chosen to use Indian brand names for booze: one called “Chief Crazy Horse” and the other one, “Oshkosh.”  The people who identify themselves as Indians—whether they are sober or drunk—are complaining about the use of these two Indian Chiefs’ names, protesting that this scapegoat commercialization is ruining their “good times” and their culture.  What these two breweries are doing is not fair play.  In order to create a level playing field, they need to let their Indians brand a few kinds of brew—such as Old George Washington, Pope John Paul Malt Liquor, Jesus Christ Lite (and Dark) and the demon rum called “The Devil Made Me Do It.”  They could sell liquor brands caricaturing White cultural icons in the Indian Casinos.  What’s fair is fair, but the White man has never allowed his subject Indians access to his monopoly on his economic system, although his entire monetary system is parasitic, feeding off of the Aboriginal peoples’ resources.  Even the so-called Indian Casinos are classical minority-preference businesses, in which Real blood-quantum Indians are fronting for the White man who created and defines Indians in his own agenda, and runs and controls them.

THE BELL CURVE: The bean-counters in Washington, D.C. are venturing onto the sociologists’ turf, and are seriously considering the invention of official designations for the new peoples, new ethnicities and new races engendered by the Western Europeans’ greedy occupation of this land.  The racial admixture of the U.S. population has become so blended that Whites’ arrogant claims of “bell curve distribution” of intelligence were obsolete before the Bell Curve became a widely accepted statistical tool.  (With the new mixtures, some so-called Americans are really getting “smart.”)  Rumor has it that a new racial category, tentatively called “mixed,” will be used on the year 2000 census.  A number of clever descriptions have also been proposed to describe the Western Europeans’ “diversity” which they have created to obscure the real, patrilineally Western European identity of their relatives whom they would like to oppress as lower-class subject people.  Some have suggested that the “melting pot” metaphor for the mongrelizing and hybridizing of the people here be renamed “a salad bar mixture,” although nobody has specified which groups will be the “lettuce,” “turnip,” and “pea.”  Other possible neologisms and new euphemisms for the mixing of races which is an inevitable consequence (along with new diseases such as AIDS and “Gulf War Syndrome”) of the Western Europeans’ violent war-and-peace have also been proposed.  The Census Bureau has been inundated with suggestions (they should have a contest), including: Heinz 57, “United Nations,” The Duke’s Mixture, “six of one and a half dozen of another,” and Nuts-and-Bolts or “Chex Party Mix.”

Speaking of “party mix,” years ago—and before the Bell Curve—the White man called other groups of people, who he did not know or understand, who were not under his control or domination, “wanderers” and “nomadic people.”  The ambiguities and the euphemisms in the language change, and now the Western European (mixed-blood) people here call themselves “highly mobile,” and complain about “jet lag.”  The White man claims, “we are ahead of our time—we even have Daylight Saving Time, we are making money and saving time.”  The horse-and-buggy days are gone.  The people who call themselves “Americans” are so highly mobile that significant numbers of the population are conceived in the back seat of a car or a Humpmobile, often as a result of what is called a “quickie,” and a lot of these Speedy Americans are born in the back seat of a car or a taxicab, going about 70 miles an hour to the hospital.  But then again, when they die, these “time is money” fast-living Americans take their sweet time going to the cemetery in a funeral procession at 20 miles an hour, creating traffic chaos and gridlock in every direction.  Could it be that they’ve been lied to so much about the “hereafter” that they really don’t want to go and they’re dragged, kicking and screaming, out to the cemetery; or is it a consequence of the “White lie” of the two-dimensional Bell Curve of the “highly mobile Americans.”  Well, anyway, have a happy Thanksgiving.

My telephone number is (218) 679-2382 and my mailing address is P.O. Box 484, Bemidji, MN 56601.

Wub-e-ke-niew


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