Manataka American Indian Council

 

 

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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR...

March 2011

 

 

 

SOUND OFF!

 

 

Manataka receives hundreds of letters each month. Space does not allow us to publish all letters but we make a concerted effort to print letters that are representative of a majority. Let us know if there is a topic you feel needs to be addressed.

 

Racist Christians

O'siyo Everyone:

The racist right wing Christian organization, "American Family Association", has gone after Native Americans as being deserving of what happened to them. They believe that the American Holocaust and current subjugation of Native people is justified by Native rejection of Christianity. They have quoted some of the text of the "Doctrine of Discovery", to help them to justify these hateful statements and brutal, genocidal acts.  I have detailed some of the facts of the "American Holocaust" previously, such as 95% to 98% of the population being killed, skinning of people and making clothes from Indian skin, hacking up and feeding Native fetuses and infants to large mastiff dogs, sterilization of American Indian women, etc. Read this article and respond:  http://www.splcenter.org/blog/2011/02/09/gay-bashing-american-family-association-official-has-new-target-native-americans/  ~ Richard Wilson

Christian Persecution of Indians

Dear Editor,

There can be No excuse for the actions taken by the band Cree to stop one individual from communing with the Creator. The band Cree are obviously no longer Tribal indigenous people. They have adopted a foreign religion and practices. As Christians it is inexcusable that they are placing sanctions on other Cree.  What is wrong with those people? Do they not know that the first Christians that arrived on this continent did so searching for religious freedom from persecution by the Church?  Please provide an email address for that band or a mailing address if you can. I am forwarding this web link to all Tribal peoples I know and they will be as shocked as I am. They will also send emails and letters of SHAME and DISHONOR to the band Cree for their actions. ~Julianne Aknin

 

Christian Crees Tear Down Sweatlodge

Dear Manataka,

Are you kidding me?  I think I heard somewhere before “Live and let live”.  This article troubles me deeply! ~C.Lee, PA

 

Christian Crees Tear Down Sweatlodge

 

Dear Editor,

This article angers me.  I am a Catholic and Lakota as with many Native Americans who are also Practicing Catholics.  These people who call themselves Christian/Cree are neither in my opinion . This is disgusting behavior and not the Christian or Native way.  My heart goes out the children of these bigots because they are being raised in ways not acceptable to God ,the creator.  I never thought our people would act this way and they should feel ashamed.  If they are so Christian, why are they going against Gods teachings, we are all his children and no one should be discriminated against because of their ways or religion.  Our people have gone through enough abuse ,death, and discrimination through out history and it's sad to find out it is actually still continuing .   Mitakuye O'yasin   to our real brothers and sisters of the Cree Nation.  Find peace to know that most of us are with you.  Aho.  ~S. Sub

 

Christian Crees Tear Down Sweatlodge

 

Osiyo Everyone:

Most of the people in this list are quite aware of the damage done to our people through forced Christianization and the boarding school program. I believe that this article gives a very powerful story about the damage done to Cree people by this horrible practice. I believe what we are seeing in this story is internalized oppression. Internalized oppression is when the person internalizes the oppression of the oppressor and then adopts the methods of the oppressor and begins to use those methods on him/herself and others. This is all a part of the process of historical trauma.  http://www.manataka.org/page2406.html  ~Richard "Thunder Wolf"

 

Christian Crees Tear Down Sweatlodge

Dear Editor,

I wish that I could be surprised about this happening, but  I am not. No group of organized religions have the right to judge and or  keep Native People from practicing  in traditional spiritual  ceremonies.  I wonder what they would do, if their places of worship, (churches, temples, etc.) were torn down, and told that they could no longer pray in this way?  No one has the right to tell some one how or where to pray. Take it to NARF and their lawyers, brother. Happy to know that your family is doing better now. ~Natalie SunFlower, NM

 

Christian Crees Tear Down Sweatlodge

Dear  Editor:

What year do we live in? Have we not learned from the past? Do we still think that  there is only one way to worship the Great Creator, while all the religions cannot agree on what there Bible says. ~James Riggs

 

Healing Wounded Soldiers

Good Day Manataka, 

I'm an Iraq Vet and was wondering if you knew how I could get some of my fellow soldiers into healing ceremonies in SoCal. I know there is a Sweat Lodge in Northern California. I want to make this project national, but wanted to test it in California first. Any guidance would be greatly appreciated.  Thank you!  Lori Goodwin, Disabled Iraq Veteran (SGT, US Army)

 


Warrior Distress Line - 1-800-689-1850

    Opt 1: Warrior Main ::: For ALL warriors of every era. Manned by both male and female combat veterans.
    Opt 2: Lioness Outreach Team ::: For female warriors only. Manned by female combat and non-combat veterans to tackle   

                female issues such as MST.
 

AMVETS Dept of CA Young Veterans / Persian Gulf/ OIF-OEF/ RECA Committee - 912-704-1329

 

Seeking Phoenix Indian School Veterans

Dear Manataka,

 

I'm with the Lori Piestewa Committee, we are seeking the whereabouts of Native American Veterans that attended Phoenix Indian School, before it closed.  Below is a list of veterans in scripted on a plaque.  My search has lead me to a dead end.  If you can help, thank you. ~Wilfred Jeans

 

Veterans from Phoenix Indian School
 

Honor Roll:

•  Harvier Adams

•  Maurice Alexander

•  *Wallace Antone

•  Calvin Atchiavit

•  William Baxer

•  George Bell

•  Webster Buffington

•  Marcus Carbaha

•  Blaine Carlisle

•  Lewis Carlisle

•  Charles Cedartree

•  Jose Juan Chico

•  Willliam Ebersol

•  Scott Eldridge

•  Juan P. Enas

•  William Enas

•  Theodore Fierros

•  Charley George

•  Charles Gougn

•  Roy Left Hand 

•  Charles Harper

•  Juan P. Enas

•  William Enas

•  Theodore Fierros

•  Charley George

•  Charles Gougn

•  Roy Left Hand 

•  Charles Harper

•  Fred V. Jackson

•  Isaac Jese

•  Edward Johnson

•  Walter Keyes 

•  Adolph Kinney

•  Andrea Laws

•  Beverly J Laws

•  Charles Laws

•  Evelyn Anne Laws

•  Gail F Laws

•  Harry Lewis 

•  Stewart Lewis 

•  James Little Son

•  Hudson Lockwood

•  Joe McCarthy 

•  Cruze McDaniel 

•  John McNary 

* killed in action

•  Guy Maktima 

•  Conrado Martinez 

•  Jose Martinez 

•  Peter Moore 

•  William T. Moore

•  Pedro Nortez

•  Seth Oldman

•  Antonio Pallan 

•  Joseph Pallan 

•  John H. Porter

•  *Lee Rainbow

•  Prudence Resvoloso 

•  Charles Reynolds 

•  Fernando Rodriguez

•  Ross Shaw 

•  Harley Shipes 

•  Oliver Sneed

•  Herman Soto 

•  Frank Stanley

•  Teddie Weahkee 

•  Jesse Webb 

•  Charley Wilson

•  Frank Young Eagle

 

If you know any of the American Indian Veterans above, please respond to: 

Wilfred Jeans @  wjeansphxaz@yahoo.com

 

Women Cannot Touch My Drum...

 

Dear Editor;

 

The American Indian drum is one of the most revered instruments in the world. Just like humans, each drum has its own unique voice and vibration. There are different sizes, shapes and traditions relating to the native drum. The Manataka American Indian Council is honored to embrace and teach traditions of the ceremonial drum, hand drum, rattle and song.

 

After talking and learning from many spiritual elders, I have come to the understanding that the drum was once the woman’s place. Many moons ago, the women gave the drum to the men to allow them to feel the heartbeat of the Mother Earth. As a woman, we feel the heart beat of Mother Earth naturally because we are life givers. Since the time of the English settlers and Christianities large effect on the American Indian population, views have changed and opinions have been altered.

 

Ego has no place in ceremony, and that’s what I feel this issue really boils down to. We need to come together with good intentions and an open heart so that our communities can grow.

 

The drum has a lesson for us all. It has faced much adversity yet it continues on in hopes of a brighter future for the people and the Mother Earth. The drum and I are quite alike. We both want what is best for the people. They hold a special place in our hearts and it reverberates in our song. ~Amanda Morningstar Moore

 

Women Cannot Touch My Drum...

 

Good Evening Ladies,

I am a traditionally trained women of the Medicine Ways. I traveled for years with the Chief Medicine Man of the Lakota, and carried him to his crossing time. As he was leaving this planet he asked me to keep the promise of ALWAYS HAVING WOMEN ON THE DRUM. His wife played the drum at his Sun dances and in his lodges as did every women he trained. Hang in there, you ARE the heartbeat of life.  Many Blessings. ~Charla Hermann

 

Women Cannot Touch My Drum...

Hello Manataka,

Thank you! I always wondered how women of any nation could be excluded from the touching into the heartbeat of the Mother. That never made sense to me.  I'm looking forward to reading on the feedback you receive.  ~Judi Hendricks

 

Women Cannot Touch My Drum...

Dear Manataka,

 

The first Mother of the people brought the first drum to her offspring.  It was her heart beat. Even today infants are soothed best by the mothers heartbeats.  I believe that the drum represents this quiet steady beat we were all born listening too.  It belongs to all people thru the First Mother's heartbeat which gives a rhythm to life. Just as it takes both male and female to create life so it takes both male and female on the drum to  get the heartbeat right.  Wado for listening.  ~Connie Heald, Lebanon, MO

 

Women Cannot Touch My Drum...

Dear Editor,

 

I believe Great Spirit has a big belly laugh at our spiritual ignorance. Again,  someone who believes they have a under-standing of the old ways,  yet comes up with short of a true understanding. We need to respect each other differences and

continue to show wisdom in how we act towards all our relatives. No one tribe or person can protect that which belongs only to the Great Unknown and he doesn't need our protection.  ~Dennis Nagel

 

Women on the drum

 

Few understand that the Holy Spirit is made up of the twin aspects of: Light & Sound. One, of the many, Sacred Sounds; is that of the Drum. Indeed, those who lovingly stroke the skin of a drum, are but Vehicles for Spirit. And, as such; they are extensions of Soul; which is neither Masculine nor Feminine , but a Unity of both polarities. Drumming is for the Awakening of Soul... It is ALL ABOUT LOVE.  ~Michael Morton

 

Women Cannot Touch My Drum...

 

Dear Manataka,

What human man has the authority to say "Women can not drum".  If the creator says she can is man higher than Creator.. Who would dare to say such  The drum is healing  for the people as well as the drummer.. So what is a powwow today a social gathering a place to enjoy being with friends.. When the Creator says you can drum and sing you can. In fact he will give you songs to sing if one listens and hears the wind from which it speaks.  They change stuff in 1970 for them selves not to help or comfort others...Creator was here first he gives vision and tells us what to do -- not man who thinks of himself as superior.. Creator did not take  any thing from head or feet to  create woman so he would be higher than woman or lower. He took a rib from the man's side so they walk equal together side by side. To help each other not to hinder. So who do we listen to Creator or a foolish man.  ~Helen Red Wing Vinson, TN

 

Horrible Herbicides

Greetings Manataka,
 
I was most interested in your article about Roundup Ready Alfalfa.  I will not have any pesticides used in my garden,  however people in Australia use it because they are too lazy to weed.  Councils use it to on meridian strips along main roads - so you get a border of dead grass and healthy grass in the centre.  Alfafa is such a health giving food.  If you look up glysophate in Google the following information appears.    It would seem that this broadspectrum herbicide is used right across America.  I know you have an issue with the bee population at the moment and we are sending our healthy bees over to USA.  Perhaps it is the use of this horrible herbicide that is one of the reasons affecting the bee colonies.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glyphosate

Kind regards, ~Cynthia Neville, Australia

 

Native Poverty and Scams

Hello Manataka,

I just saw this page about Native poverty and "charity" scams and am glad to see it.   http://www.manataka.org/page2417.html   I didn't get to read the whole article yet - but I looked it over enough to recognize a few of the prime "offenders" that I've dealt with before - they are still operating. 
 

I got snookered with the AIRC and got tired of their relentless phone calls and mailings, I never gave more than $10 or $15 at a time (and that was pushing it for me), but there was always some "crisis" they were answering and they were VERY persistent, always wanted more. 


If you answer the phone, they guilt you (or try to) and act like they know all about reservations - that was insulting, as I ended up knowing more than they did, and what they said was based on stereotypes from some script they were reading. I'd correct them and they'd change the script - or start asking me about MY name and where I come from, which I found suspicious, because they just used my info to try to get money out of me. 


I thought, what makes you think I have money to give - I've got kids to feed!  And I'm not on the phone for a coffee klatch! 


Finally I contacted some main office and asked to be removed from ALL mailings and cited "too many calls and mailings" and they said they'd only contact me once a year .... uh, yeah, right. The AIRC and the NRC (I think) are part of a whole conglomerate of "charities" that don't necessarily report on their dealings with the public. They're all shady, as far as I'm concerned, and if they start their junk with me again, I'll report them (somewhere). 


I told them I only give to Oceti Wakan and Manataka and they did not know who I was talking about - enough said, I told them never mind, don't contact me again. I stick with organizations and people I know I can trust, that I have a good history with - and don't use wasicun tactics on me. 
 

Still, the requests for money for "poor Indian reservations" flow in, with trinkets of dream catchers, cards and other stuff I don't ask for, pathetic pictures and other stuff that costs money to make, print and mail ..... what a waste.

 

I know that Native communities need help ..... but not this kind, not this way. What these businesses are doing is deceptive.


My opinion, based on what I have experienced. From the looks of the article - seems others have also. 


My opinion also - the ones who truly help Native communities, don't behave this way. Yes, they have products available for sale. Yes, they have donation opportunities available. But they leave it to your choice to give - they don't shove it down your gullet. It's a mutual exchange - and they offer ways to learn, heal, grow, experience. Not show a deceptive pity party and play on guilt and stereotypes that only they benefit from.   ~ Kim Summermoon Wilson

 

Native Poverty and Scams

 

Dear Manataka

I just read, with interest, your article about scams raising big money on behalf of native tribes.   One of the main organizations running scams, and with a law suit named in the article is the Native American Heritage Association.   You list it as one of the organizations you support.   Maybe you need to read your own articles. ~Paulino Skywalker

 


 

Aho!  You are so right!  We did support that organization until last month, when a proposal for renewal came up before the Elders and it was tabled for investigation.  The article was one result of the investigation.  Other results were to instruct our web folks to remove the name; send a letter and copy of the article to the organization; and increase our vigilance of programs and organizations that we support.  Yep, you caught before their name was removed.  It has been now.   Thanks!  We appreciate you pointing out our error.  ~Editor

 

Wolf Slaughter is Insane

 

To the Manataka Indian Council,

 

I am doing some research on the wolf and its relationship with the North American tribes.  There are those who seek to destroy the few packs surviving in Yellowstone National Park and in northern Colorado.  These people say that the wolf had no value to the Native American tribes; that the American Indian had no respect for the wolf.  I would appreciate information from the tribal leaders, and anyone else that may come to your minds, that will demonstrate the truth of the relationship. Respectfully,  ~William Aplin, Fort Collins, CO

 


 

Hello William,

It is beyond our understanding why anyone might wish to respond to ignorance. Educating the ignorant is only possible if they have ears to listen.  Obviously, these people are ignorant and no matter what evidence you offer, it will be rejected.

 

Our website is full of stories, legends and articles about the history of the close relationship between indigenous people of North, Central and South America and wolves and all other forms of wildlife.

 

Whatever these ignorant people do to these least of nature, they do to themselves – they do to all of humankind. 

 

Eradicating the wolf in Yellowstone is the epitome of bureaucratic ignorance.  It upsets the balance of nature and is aberrant to the nature of God.  The motivation for killing the wolves is money.  They ‘think’ if they kill our brother the wolf, the cows or sheep will live longer – a silly notion not based on fact.  Whenever the motivation is money, there is nothing any citizen or voters can do. 

 

The Bear and the Wolf are my spirit guides.  May they live long and healthy.  ~Editor

 

Likes Manataka - Native Remedies

 

Dear Manataka,

I spoke to Mr. Lee Standing Bear the other day about the natural remedies that I ordered from Manataka. I am very pleased with the results. What a difference!   ~Joie Klass

 

Thank you from Sri Lanka

Hey Manataka,

 

This is N. Hameed.  I saw your information on counseling. I am 16 year old Muslim from Sri Lanka.  I hope you know where it is. Actually I have this really weird problem and I really do not have anyone whom I could speak to about this.  It is not relationships or family or whatever my problems is the world I cannot stop thinking about what is going on around me and it hurts me so much even if I am not directly related to it. I have always been the sensitive shy type I do not attract all the attention I just stick to myself and I have fear for nearly everything: ghosts, thieves, natural hazards and everything I know.  I sound lame but I do not know what to do.  For example the situation in Japan now distracts me I do not do my work and I lay on bed thinking about how bad it would be for them. And dying I fear death more than anything. these world end rumors and so many crisis adds to my fear about things and I really do not know how to express myself. I dream of doing something worthwhile.  I feel as though I am not doing anything useful with my life and it feels as though I am the only one racking my brains thinking about world issues and dying early in a world ending while others my age are worried about guys and relationships. I have always been an straight A student and I do not really worry about exams in school but one day I wish to help the people around me but I am freaked out that I will never be able to experience that day. Additionally, I am a very lonely person, I am alone at home most of the time. People here do not interest me much because I get annoyed with their carefree attitude. It hurts me thinking about things in life is unfair.  I did not even accomplish what I dreamt of and all these things are just hurting me to a great extent I cannot concentrate on anything. Plus I am Muslim. I feel that believing in God and Prophet is good and fine and I do not oblige to many other rules in my religion.  I feel so bad and guilty for that I hope I made myself clear enough. ~N. Hameed

 


Hello N. Hameed,

It is an honor to communicate with you.  I will speak with you as your grandfather might -- after all, I am over four times your age and have experienced much of what you are feeling now.  Your concerns are not much different from millions of young adults in America and the rest of the world.  You addressed several issues in your message, so it is necessary that we talk about one issue at at time.

 

Your deep concern for the condition of the world is not wrong or bad.  It shows that you are a deep feeling and intellectually astute individual.  Your words express frustration and fear of world situations.  This is a good thing because it is what will drive you to do things in your life to make a difference -- to improve the world -- to bring peace and health to the world.  It will give you the tools you will need to do the job that needs to be done.  Yes, fear and frustration bring about good changes.  It is what we do here at Manataka -- a sacred place -- as we help others to help themselves to find balance and peace in a volatile world.

As a good student, you know the value of an education.  As a woman, you feel with your heart.  Allow your heart to guide you and channel your fear into a work of life that will not only bring personal satisfaction, but will help people in many places to cope with the same fears you have now. 

 

Let us now address personal fears, guilt, and loneliness....   Yonv  

 

 

 

Let me introduce you to Mr. Best.

 

His name is most appropriate.

 

A while back a letter I wrote was published regarding my respect and awe of our young marine families and the sacrifices they make for us. This time it's about a Vet of Vietnam and more, I don't know his full name or even his rank but I do know he is a man of honor, a hero and a practices acts of random kindness.

 

Something I myself most definitely believe in doing whenever possible. My husband, the love of my life and a extremely good man had been very ill. So ill he could neither sit or stand. He had lost fifty five pounds in two months. After being released from the hospital he was sent to rehab at Coastal Rivers. There we met Mr. Best. He was my husbands room mate.

 

He is Marine through and through. His bed is neatly arranged with red white and blue. His bible and the other things important to him are neatly arranged on the bed. The walls have pictures of him, some appear to be at a commendation ceremony. His cap, shirts and jackets are with Marine insignias including POW. He is a big man with a laugh and heart even bigger. He is gruff but the sparkle in his eyes show a friendly humor to his spirit. He talked to of us of other times including foxholes and a six legged water buffalo.

 

As interesting as he and his stories were that is not what impressed me most. And yes I did thank him on behalf of all of us for his service on our behalf. Mr. Best took a frail ,very ill seventy two year old man under his wing. My hubby became like a foxhole buddy and Mr. Best had his back. This was a new experience for our family no one had been to rehab before and we were anxious about it. I went there everyday but still.... I soon found Mr. Best was on duty and all was secure. He made sure someone came to my husbands aide when needed, He went to the little store and brought him ice cream bars and popcorn to "fatten" him up. He made sure the wheelchair for hubby was just the right one.

 

Spending hours there I observed Mr. Best whizzing around everywhere making sure everyone was ok and checking to see if anything was needed. He got up early in the morning to go to the dining room to help those who had trouble feeding themselves. He has as the expression goes "bloomed where he was planted" As we were leaving they had an election and voted him President to be a liaison between the residents and the staff. Perfect choice. My family will always be indebted and remember fondly this kindly man of war who brings peace and comfort in so many ways to others. Semper Fidelius! Mr. Best! 

 

With Love and respect.  ~Ruth King


 


 

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