Concessions and Compromise
October 1st, 2007 by admin / Carole Approved at Native Vue Magazine:)
Since my family is very traditional and walks the path they do, I am obliged to walk with them as well. There is no other path nor are there compromises within our customs and traditions. My family are my teachers not some lofty book, advisory board, the whimsy from some passers by or casual acquaintance. For traditional people everything is black and white within our belief system. There are no short cuts, substitutes or gray areas when it comes to our beliefs, teachings and what we honor.
Hmm, what is a traditional Native?
Well I can only speak for my people but a traditional person are ones who knows ancient stories to tell the Dancer during our highest holy days. A traditional is a person who knows the difference between eagle bone flutes and the purpose of a deer’s tail. A traditional is the last vanguard in protecting our history, lore, spirituality and our people. A traditional has no use for terms like status quo, contemporary wisdom, bottom line or the greater good. A traditional is immersed in a wealth of knowledge and wisdom from the old ones who share their observations in life. I am honored to have such a family and will not compromise the tenants of my people for any sum of money, goods or a pat on the back. And I stand with my people in the face of all adversity and the foolishness of this contemporary era as we prepare for the Change.
We are living in a world of compromise and false dreams. Everything has a price tag within this material world we live. Our culture is on the auction block as corporate America targets us and our cultures simply for the bottom line. The Sacred Sneaker by Nike unto itself is not a major hit but cumulatively we’ve suffered a nuclear strike from this picking at the pile. We’ve been constantly under assault since conquest. Absolutely everything we had was taken, desecrated, destroyed or made a folly. Treaties since time immemorial have not been honored and our people murdered simply for the land they live on. Our religions, traditions, customs and our lore are fodder for multi-billion dollar corporations. There is nothing sacred in the eyes of the conquering people, only profits and stock indexes.
From the perspective of my elders, many people have not only crossed the cornmeal line they’ve obscured its very location and have long since lost their way. Ask my elders about all the false claims, hopes, dreams and all them feel good propositions offered by corporate America AND politicians over the last 90 years. And they will tell you that these so called donations and give away's never seem to make it to most reservations including ours.
And there is a vast majority of Natives who’ve not seen any of this poppy cock corporate America spouts with their feel good ads patting themselves on the back. Sometimes we actually hear about some philanthropist giving out candy, trinkets and beads to the Natives, but as usual Na Da . Like the others we never seem to make the loop. So before you wave the flag of corporate love and generosity just look at how many people will actually be helped by Nike’s “ACT” of kindness. For all the pomp and ceremony these corporations use to tell the world about their “Good Deed” their words fall short for the vast majority of us. And of course, the media will tell the world how lucky we are to have such generous capitalists sharing their wealth with us unfortunate souls, the poor Indian. It’s all a lie for those who never see all the feel good crappola and it’s the vast majority of us period.
They should call it the “Ghost Dance Sneaker” since it offers false hope to a desperate people who are suffering the effects of diabetes. We did not have sneakers back in the day and we did not have diabetes either. Science knew the world was flat, science knew Natives were subhuman and science could cure diabetes with a sneaker.
Timing is everything or is it just coincidence that this miraculous discovery came on the heels of the “Longest Walk 2008.” What a publicity coup that will be and you better believe Madison Avenue will be watching. Maybe they will come up with a shoe that cures cirrhosis or PTSD’s. Its sort of exciting in a way, I look forward to “Boxers cut for the Native Man in mind.” But if they come up with a sneaker that returns the buffalo to the Great Plains, that will be something eh.
PT Barnum coined a phrase that has become the axiom of corporate America, “A sucker is born every minute” and sadly the public at large are the suckers. But happily according to our tradition we are living in the time of great change and soon the facades and false store fronts of this so called civilized society will come crumbling down as Ma Earth cleanses herself of all that causes her discomfort. And those who chose to live in the world of false store fronts and material consequence will find them selves with nothing except green paper that does not burn well.
All the rhetoric, foolish lists and banter promoting corporate America are meaningless to me and the others who see through this and other elaborate scams targeting us. It’s the same ole same ole, another shell game and ultimately we will loose, again. It’s all about the money it’s as simple as that.
So go back to your corporate chums and tell them about the bad Injun who just would not buy into another great lie. Point the finger at the big bad Injun who would not play nice to liars and thieves from the corporate empire of this so called land of the free. But most important of all, let the world know who you are so they can thank you later fore they are watching.
Your Devil’s Advocate
Posted in BUFFALOhair – Somewhere between sanity and dementia, Featured Articles | At the Old Native Vue Magazine :) Back in the Day, before it retired in 2012. Yes, It ran for six years!
2 Comments »
- I don’t think cures for anything are on the agenda. Here’s what Nike plans to do:http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5jQTiHIzaTuxVvac_X5z63QxgZcYgNike said it is the first time it has designed a shoe for a specific race or ethnicity. It said all profits from the sale of the shoe will be reinvested in health programs for tribal lands, where problems with obesity, diabetes and related conditions are near epidemic levels in some tribes.http://www.nativetimes.com/index.asp?action=displayarticle&article_id=9049 Let Me Play–Nike’s new signature community effort–will expand the company’s commitment to sports and physical fitness for youth through the recognition that by playing sports, young people can make themselves, their communities and their world better. In additional to building surfaces for play, Let Me Play provides grants and product donations to support young people in their quest for sport; and it brings volunteers, organizations and decision-makers together to improve opportunities that help youth grow up healthy and active.Comment by robschmidt — October 3, 2007 @ 8:29 pm
- WHAT ABOUT BOB? For whatever reason Rob, you have managed to turn a simple article into some kind of hostile invitation between you and I. And personally, I am at a loss for words since I’ve considered you a colleague and fellow journalist. We both work in similar fields within the multi media world. Come on Bob, we are contributing writers at Native Vue as well. And personally we have never met nor spoke to one another since I signed on this ship. Why have you chosen to bait and badger me with innuendo filled remarks and less than professional commentaries? Do you badger Newsweek when they write an opposing view to yours?
- The fact I have to stand before you in a public forum (my blog) in the first place I find totally reprehensible to say the least. Under normal conditions I would simply ignore such foolishness. But since I had the golden opportunity to observe your conduct with your own fans yesterday, I find the need to put an end to this pointless dialogue so you don’t hurt anymore feelings with those who were loyal to you, your fans.
I realize of course that you removed all the hurtful statements you made about Natives and the people who wrote to you at Blue Corn. Therefore I saved your remarks for posterity because I found it most revealing and telling about you and your true nature. Why is it so important for you to find me wrong Bob? Is it because I am Native? What is the impetus that drives you to act in such a fashion as to insult your very own fan base in such a hurtful manner? I believe this situation has nothing to do with Nike Bob, it has everything to do with pettiness and jealousy. Intuition revels more than one can mask fore there are no secrets within the confines of the spirit world. And I read you like yesterday’s mail.
- So what, I don’t buy into the form of commercial advertising that Nike chose to use. I did some commercial advertising in my day and from a professional standpoint Nikes campaign was superficial at the very best. Other non Native advertising agencies baulked at Nikes lackluster and brazened approach to selling shoes then telling the world how good they were to us Native’s. Why did you not harass them since they also did not share your viewpoint Bob?
- As for you’re clutterous figure filled support of Nike and corporate America. Really, it means nothing to me. Words are just words and most of them are as worthless as the paper they are written on. Just ask anyone of us about treaties, promises and yes big talk from corporate America for this was not the first time we’ve been exploited and it will not be the last. I was very clear as to where I stood on the exploitation of my people. To coin a phrase you tossed at me, you missed the mark completely when you read my article.
Within the Native world we all don’t agree on many issues. We are from different countries, languages and cultures. There are tribal differences and feudal animosities that have spanned generations yet we are civil. This incessantness of yours has caused me not to keep focus since I’ve been trying to write a biography for a popular artist.
So please, lets stop this nonsense and lets move forward for there are bigger fish to fry in this world of indifference. I simply don’t have the time or energy.
Comment by buffalohair — October 4, 2007 @ 5:16 am