Manataka American Indian Council                                                                      Volume XIV Issue 02  FEBRUARY 2010





Manataka - Preserving The Past Today For Tomorrow\



Page 2 of 3 Pages






Contents of Page 2              

Legends of Old: Crow-Head A Chipewyan Story
Feature Story::   Walk in Beauty
Feature Story: Lakota Buffalo Caretakers Cooperative

Letters to the Editor:

Steer Skulls, Light Weavers, Hello From Greenland
Organic Consumers: Why We Should All Eat More Organic Food
Elder's Meditations: Black Elk (Hehaka sapa), Oglala Sioux
Plant Medicine: Giving Herbs to Pets
Warrior Society News:   Native American Medal of Honor Monument
Fluoride: House Healthcare bill HR 3962 mentions fluoridation
Animal Rights and Wrongs: A Animal Cloning - Pros and Cons Discussed
Sacred Sites: Shawnee Lookout Oldest Occupied Site





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A Chipewyan Story

Soon After Crow-Head's birth, his father died. Crow-Head knew nothing about him. Once the other Indians were fishing, and there were several medicine men among them. It was in the evening, and the setting sun presented a bloodshot appearance.


One medicine man pointed at it and asked the boy, "Do you see that red sky? That is your father's blood."


This made Crow-head suspect that one of the medicine men had killed his father. He went home, where he was living with his grandmother, and began to cry.


"Why are you crying?," grandmother asked.


"I heard those men talking about my father," said Crow-Head.


 "There is no use crying, you will be a man some day," grandmother consoled.


The next day the people were fishing. Crow-head punched a hole in the ice and began angling with a hook. The Indians caught nothing, only Crow-head caught a large trout. He pulled out its soft parts, and hid the bones under his deerskin capote. He started towards the medicine man who had killed his father, pulled out the fish spine, and broke it over him. When the people went home that evening, they missed the medicine man. They did not know what was the matter with him. One man went out and found him lying dead by his fishing rod. This was the first time Crow-head ever killed anyone. By breaking the fish spine, he had broken that of his enemy and thus killed him.












Submit your graphic design for the new World Drum Flag by April 30, 2010

for a chance to win cash and other exciting prizes!



Do you love to draw, color, paint, or design?  Do you love the Mother Earth and want peace throughout the world?


We want YOU to design a beautiful, colorful flag to symbolize the World Drum Project. If you win, your design will be made into a flag and it will fly on at every location worldwide where the World Drum is presented.  See your name and photo in media releases and videos worldwide, plus get a chance to win $500 cash, plus other great prizes!


Anyone can enter!  No purchase is necessary and there is no entry fee.  It's free!











The Lakota Buffalo Caretakers Cooperative (LBCC) is a 100% Native American owned and operated cooperative association on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. Its membership is made up of small family buffalo caretakers who respect the buffalo and the land. Members of the LBCC are committed to the restoration of the northern plains ecology, self-sufficiency and strengthening the sovereignty and self-determination of the Oglala Lakota Nation and all indigenous peoples.


LBCC Members: Ed Iron Cloud (Knife Chief Buffalo Nation), Henry Red Cloud (Lone Buffalo), April Abril (friend of co-op), John and Judy Black Feather (Black

Feather Buffalo Ranch).

Buffalo raised by members:

  • Live on open ranges, never in feedlots (non-CAFO)

  • Eat wild grasses their entire lives

  • Are Free from antibiotics and hormones

  • Are Respectfully harvested in the field

The mission of the Lakota Bison Caretakers Cooperative is to come together to create unity amongst Lakota Tiwahe bison ranchers. To be a common voice in support of one another. To help develop and promote the sales of buffalo meat as well as the care for the animals. To develop markets and to help out and encourage more Lakotas to raise buffalo on the reservation. To expand the amount of acreage in buffalo and land restoration. And to promote the consumption of buffalo meat on the reservation. And to strengthen the culture, language and ceremonies of the Lakota nation.









Manataka receives dozens of letters each week. 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.


Charge a Membership Fee?


Dear Manataka,


Hi, I was interested in joining/becoming a member of Manataka but was hit by a ton of bricks when I saw that there is required payment just to be a member. I'm very sad by this. It is my hope that your group learn that money is a corrupting force and that it should never be required for a seeker to have to pay to become a member of a group. Charging money for material items like books is one thing and that is perfectly fine, but to charge money to be a member of an organization is not right. This is just my opinion and I hope that you are always well. Love, ~Tim Reese


Hello Tim,


Thank you for asking Manataka.  

  • The Manataka American Indian Council is a 100% all-volunteer organization with no paid staff.  Yet, we administer many programs and services, publish a 65-75 printed page Smoke Signal News each month, conduct many seminars, host gatherings and other events, and answer hundreds of emails, telephone calls and letters each month.  Many of our volunteers have been around for more than 15 - 20 years.

  • Manataka does not accept federal, state government or corporate funding.  We do not do door-to-door, mass-mailing, email or telephone fund raising.  Many of our events are free.  We depend solely on our good members and  a small online trading post to support this work.

  • We are not aware of any full-time, full-service nonprofit membership organization anywhere that does not request dues.   Do you?  Every civic, state, or national membership organizations we know request dues.  Even churches ask for tithes.  There is nothing wrong with this.

  • A considerable amount of money is spent each year for the direct benefit of individual members.  The Smoke Signal News requires over 200 hours to produce, hundreds of phone calls, emails, etc. for research; tons of paper; and it sent to every member each month.  Some folks need emotional, career, school or family counseling from time to time -- we provide it free of charge with a dozen trained professionals. Many events are free to members -- some events cost thousands of dollars to host.  There are many other ways members benefit from membership. How would you pay for all these things?

  • Many of our members are unable to pay their dues from time to time due to health or unemployment, but the Elder Council does not expel the member for non-payment.

Tim, it is vital that our members take on the responsibility of supporting the organization  -- Just like in the old days when all the members of a tribe pitched in a did the work needed to be done to survive.  Because our members are spread across every state and in several foreign countries, there is no practical way for them to "pitch in" in the daily work, therefore, they send dues once a year.  Not one single non-member or member in over 20-years has ever complained about sending a small amount of dues each year.  We hope you now understand how Manataka operates and why we ask our members to give of themselves for the good of all.  Thank you.  ~Editor


Cleaning A Steer Skull

Dear Editor:


I have a steers skull I would like to have painted but I don't know how to cure it or to clean the meat off it, or how to clean it for that matter.  Can you tell me how to do this?  ~Doris Geier


Hello Doris,


There are several ways to clean a steer, buffalo or any animal skull.  Here are three easy ways -- there are more.


1.    Securely tie a rope on it, put it inside a plastic basket with lots of holes and gently lower it into a pond or lake.  The fish will do the job.

2.    Tie the skull to the top of a roof.  The weather and birds will do the job.

3.    Place the skull inside a basket with a secure lid, weight the basket down and put it on top of an ant hill.  The ants will do the job.


It is good to leave the skull in a high secure place where the animals will not get to it, so the sun will bleach it out really well.  We cannot tell you how long each method will take -- it depends on the fish, birds or ants.  When all the meat is completely gone, place it in a bucket of bleach (to kill any parasites) and then wash it with soap and water.  That's all there is to it.  ~Editor


Water Petition

Friends and Family of Manataka,

Please take a few minutes to sign this petition and pass it on.  The petition respectfully calls upon the United Nations to add a 31st article to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, establishing access to clean water as a human right, not a privilege.  I hope you agree with me that water is a right and not a privilege, and that this addition to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights represents the first step toward the goal of water for all-- please join me!  Water is a right, not a privilege. See and sign the petition to adopt Article 31:

~Angela Riley


Weaver of Light

Something I want to share .... 

I am working with a small Weave-It Loom ... probably one of the original designs. I think it was my grandmother's. I've been resisting the urge for a while, trying to put it out of my mind. Tonight - I stopped resisting, when I found an old skein of yarn. Unfortunately, the skein is red, white and blue. I don't like "patriotic colors" - they annoy me. But, it was the only yarn I could find.  Then I realized - there was a lesson involved in this. Oh well - okay, I'll bite. I started working with it. I thought it would go quickly. 

Nope. I discovered that weaving is not a fast process. And I had to learn to work with the colors, and to like them as they are. 

So I started to reclaim them in a different way - apart from what America has told me they should be together. The colors separated for me, and became different. Through the weaving process, the colors told a different story. Blue became the spirit world, the blue light that appeared to me, and the blue lights that flicker sometimes in the darkness. White became the silent north, the winds I listen to, and silence itself - my quiet nature that people give me a hard time about. Red became heritage, the Good Red Road, and many good things, and my red shirt from my dream. All the colors changed, blended together, and became a new story. 

Then I noticed .... weaving itself is a long process. I was learning about the yarn, the tension, the colors, and what I wanted it to be. And it was telling me what it thought also. 

I don't think I'm there yet .... there is more to learn. And it is a small loom - and I only did one square tonight (I took my time). 

It seems to me that weaving is a process that cannot be rushed. That's okay - I'm not in a hurry.  ~ Kim Summermoon


To Friends Around The World From Greenland

Greetings Manataka,

I am sending you my deep felt gratitude for all the support we have received this past year.

In July 2009 an age old prophecy - so old, no one knows the time - has been fulfilled, thanks to the many beautiful contributions from every part of our Mother Earth.  Atsaarsuaq Hansiina kindled the Sacred Fire not only at Aasivik in Greenland, but in hearts across the world.

Many prayed, many sent love, many offered financial support, many sent Sacred Ashes, many sent letters of support, many held Sacred Fire Ceremonies in their own communities, many came and worked in the camp, many helped in the organization, many chanted and sang songs, many are writing articles, many are giving talks, others are writing books.

Let me express again to all of you, heartfelt gratitude for the incredible difference you made for the local people on The Top Of The World.

All of us are part of the Circle, Which Has No Beginning Nor Ending, In Which We All Belong.  In unity,  Angaangaq  Angakkorsuaq


Searching for Women

Dear Editor,


I am interested in corresponding with mothers and women from all cultures and countries who believe that families are foundation and that  liberty and  peace are connected to principles and precedence established in righteousness and in defense of the rights and responsibilities of  the people..
I am pleased to be able to receive of  your Smoke Signal News for I believe that Native Americans and  others in communion to commandments and order of constitution USA , can make  a difference in bringing peace to our land, and families.. as we unite to learn and respect one another, and remember always the power of the pen, prayer, and petition. May God bless abundantly and protect and keep .  I have a research organization called  S. Heritage International Consulting, Inc. that encourages understanding of who we are , and the history of our people and ancestry that we may be one in peace, principles and precedence   for order and honor , glory to God for life, liberty and happiness.

Thank you for your endeavors re publishing the Smoke Signal... it is of much worth and  appreciated, as inspirational.   ~Camille




Get on the ball! 

Sign me!


Feature Story



Walk in Beauty

By Daniel Rearin Horse Beatty


It was an evil south wind that caused the feathers of Hunka, the young immature eagle to rise against the resistance. The edges of each feather looked like the hair on the back of a wild hog. Despite his unkempt appearance, Hunka flew higher and higher, for he was on a mission. His job was to deliver a special and important prayer to the Creator from the elders of the Osage Tribe.


As he circled and soured even higher, the air became lighter and lighter, and he thought, what a strange cultural time those human beings live in today. As he look downed he could see the ocean was not as blue as it used to be, the smoke from the trees told him that the forest was not as old and bold as it used to be, in fact from this distance it looked frail and discolored.


The old ones of the tribe felt sad to see such selfish changes on mother earth, they had asked the eagle to fly as high as it could, because they said…








The Manataka American Indian Council supports:


Why We Should All Eat More Organic Food


Organic Food is More Nutritious

Organic foods, especially raw or non-processed, contain higher levels of beta carotene, vitamins C, D and E, health-promoting polyphenols, cancer-fighting antioxidants, flavonoids that help ward off heart disease, essential fatty acids, and essential minerals.


On the average, organic food is 25% more nutritious in terms of vitamins and minerals than products derived from industrial agriculture. Since on the average, organic food's shelf price is only 20% higher than chemical food, this makes it actually cheaper, gram for gram, than chemical food, even ignoring the astronomical hidden costs (damage to health, climate, environment, and government subsidies) of industrial food production. Levels of antioxidants in milk from organic cattle are between 50% and 80% higher than normal milk. Organic wheat, tomatoes, potatoes, cabbage, onions and lettuce have between 20% and 40% more nutrients than non-organic foods.


Organic food contains qualitatively higher levels of essential minerals (such as calcium, magnesium, iron and  chromium), that are severely depleted in chemical foods grown on pesticide and nitrate fertilizer-abused soil. UK and US government statistics indicate that levels of trace minerals in (non-organic) fruit and vegetables fell by up to 76% between 1940 and 1991.


Organic Food is Pure Food, Free of Chemical Additives

Organic food doesn't contain food additives, flavor enhancers (like MSG), artificial sweeteners (like aspartame and high-fructose corn syrup), contaminants (like mercury) or preservatives (like sodium nitrate), that can cause health problems.

Eating organic has the potential to lower the incidence of autism, learning disorders, diabetes, cancer, coronary heart disease, allergies, osteoporosis, migraines, dementia, and hyperactivity.


Organic Food Is Safer

Organic food doesn't contain pesticides. More than 400 chemical pesticides are routinely used in conventional farming and residues remain on non-organic food even after washing. Children are especially vulnerable to pesticide exposure. One class of pesticides, endocrine disruptors, are likely responsible for early puberty and breast cancer. Pesticides are linked to asthma and cancer.

Organic food isn't genetically modified. Under organic standards, genetically modified (GM) crops and ingredients are prohibited.








"Even the seasons form a great circle in their changing, and always come back again to where they were. The life of a man is a circle from childhood to childhood and so it is everything where power moves."  --Black Elk (Hehaka sapa), Oglala Sioux


In these modern times it is difficult to understand why we should think circles and seasons. People and society are always moving, through distance, over yonder, going here and going there-hurry up, grow up, be successful, climb the ladder of success, etc. The Elders tell us to slow down, to be patient, pray and think circles. Circle thinking applies to relationships, business and every area of our lives. We need to teach our awareness to look for seasons and cycles.


My Creator, teach me the seasons of growth

By Don Coyhis



Warrior Society News


Native American Medal of Honor Monument


It all began on New Year's Day 2006, when Reverend Bill Silaghi and his wife Teresa looked to purchase a 40-acre tract of land on Crocket Road, in Geneva County, Alabama.


Teresa sat on the ground and, with palms down, patted the earth. "It felt like home," she said.  She felt the  "land was saved for us."


"We came here with an idea," said Bill. "We want to give back to our people." Bill is descended from the Miami Indian tribe and Teresa is of Cherokee descent.

Immediately they began to plan the first Falling Leaves Gathering and Powwow scheduled for the weekend of Oct. 10-13, 2008. 


During this time, the Silaghi's became aware of the American Indian Act of 1994 that called for the construction of a National Native American Veteran's Memorial in Washington, D.C. by the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian.  The National Congress of American Indians was given the responsibility for acceptance of contributions and payment of the expenses of, the establishment of the memorial because no federal funds could be used to pay any expense of the establishment of the memorial.


"But after 14 years, nothing had been done to create this memorial.  Our veterans deserve to be recognized and honored so we took it upon ourselves to donate our land for this purpose," said Bill Silaghi.   








Medicine for the People

By Harvey Walks With Hawks Doyle


Giving Herbs to Pets

I have a wonderful friend and his name is Soma short for (Soul-mate).  He is a male Border Collie and I found him in the local pound when I lived in Somerset, Kentucky while attending college near Lake Cumberland. He is unique in his own way since he is very intelligent and a very loyal friend and companion. When you live alone; animals are very helpful for your health and are great friends and also are good to watch for people who wish to take from you and also to harm your environment. I have read that they can extend your life approximately 4-7 years. As you know, it can save you a large veterinary bill.  I treat him when he is sick as I treat myself. The Creator wants us to use our herbal intelligence to help our animal brother and sisters when they are ill.  We have to be careful with them since their body chemistry and parts are different from us humans.      

Words of Caution

Aspirin and aspirin derivatives (i.e. White Willow Bark and salicylic acid), acetaminophen products (i.e. Tylenol), ibuprofen and Motrin can be fatal to cats or dogs. Do not use them. Do not give pets caffeine-containing herbs either, that includes chocolate, which can be dangerous for dogs even though they like it.  For chocolate flavored treats, try substituting with Carob. Also, the use of anti-inflammatory remedies is inappropriate when there is already prescription of strong anti-inflammatory conventional medication, unless the intention is to withdraw the conventional medications. Pregnant and nursing pets should be treated like people.  Use caution, ask your veterinarian, do research, and do not try any herb on a pregnant pet without complete knowledge of its properties!










House Healthcare bill HR 3962 mentions fluoridation

The word "fluoridation" is included as a definition for "disease prevention" in HR 3962 and should be removed. 


I wonder if organized dentistry, both inside and outside of government, had a hand in making sure this was included in this bill in exchange for legislators taking a hands-off approach in what really needs to be done - mandating that dentists treat more low-income Americans.  People in America are dying from the consequences of untreated tooth decay. This has been the subject of several Congressional hearings held by Representative Kucinich.


Most dentists refuse to treat Medicaid patients and 130 million Americans lack dental insurance.


A solution exists - mid level dental professionals - which have already proven successful in other first world countries as well as rural Alaska.  Minnesota just passed a bill allowing Dental Therapists to provide dental care.  However, organized dentistry is vehemently opposed to this.  They like their lucrative monopoly just the way it is.  Dentists routinely use their lobbying clout, with money derived from corporations that profit from tooth decay, to pass laws that benefit themselves - even if Americans must suffer as a consequence.  Then they bash people who live in constant dental pain as shiftless people who party with their money instead of using it for dental care.







No offense intended for any individuals or tribes.


This wagon train is heading across the desert, when all of a sudden the wagon master notices that on all sides of the valley,  there are Indian guys. He quickly forms the wagons into the "Hollywood" circle, to protect the families in the train. Nothing happens.


Soon, drums are heard pounding out in the distance, BUM, bum, bum, bum, BUM, bum, bum, bum, BUM, bum, bum, bum.......(the famous Hollywood drumbeat from the John Ford movies)


The wagon master tells the train, "I don't like the sound of this...."


From out in the distance comes another voice, saying, "We don't like the sound of it either. He's not our regular drummer!








See an amazing film about Austrailia's Aboriginal peoples.

Traditional Whale Dreamers







New evidence points to Shawnee Lookout as oldest continuously occupied site


Science Daily — The discoveries continue to surprise for a team of University of Cincinnati students digging in Ohio's Shawnee Lookout Park, with a major new mound being located and a rare kiln used to fire pottery excavated in recent weeks, along with even more evidence emerging to support the theory that the site could be the largest continuously occupied hilltop Native American site in the United States.


But perhaps most importantly from this year’s work, evidence was also found to bolster the theory that Shawnee Lookout was the largest continuously occupied hilltop settlement established by any Native American group. The dating of recent evidence found argues for cultural continuity at the site, meaning the Hopewell who lived at Shawnee Lookout up to 2,000 years ago are showing direct links to the Shawnee people who were living on the site less than 300 years ago.







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