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freemanjud
Boston, US
Posts: 288


Readings (select AT LEAST 2 of these 4, which pains me because all are eye-opening):


-------------------------

Many people believe that indigenous folks have been erased from the story we tell about the history of the United States. America was discovered….by Columbus. Let’s be generous: let’s call it an “encounter.” Its first settlers? The British and the Dutch, let alone the Spanish and French. Before 1492, this land was wilderness, waiting to be “discovered.” Were there people here? Were they people or savages? How did we depict them, describe them, study them, remember them?


If you believe in ghosts, then Native American ghosts are all around us. And yet their descendants survived. They are here but how often do we hear their voices? Are we paying attention to them? We have much to learn from the Native peoples of this country, if we are willing to take the time to do so.


As you know, it is argued by many that what happened to indigenous folks in this country was genocide. The definition of genocide is the deliberate killing of a group of people because of who they are, what their identities are, often with the goal of eliminating them entirely. Yet on Beacon Hill, where a bill (S.327) mandating the teaching of genocide was being discussed by the Massachusetts Legislature in October 2019 (for a text of the bill, see https://malegislature.gov/Bills/191/SD1441, and for coverage of the motives and the legislator behind it, see https://mirrorspectator.com/2019/10/03/bill-seeks-to-mandate-teaching-of-genocide-holocaust-in-ma-middle-high-schools/) , take a guess: which group was conspicuously not mentioned?


And believe it or not: this bill is still unresolved and has morphed into several new versions over the past few years. And references to specific genocides were ultimately omitted from the most recent draft: https://malegislature.gov/Bills/192/S2557.


Consider what we’ve looked at in class and the content of the readings listed above as you respond to the following questions.

  1. What do non-Native folks need to do, moving forward, to better understand the experience of indigenous peoples in this nation? How do we fully confront that history?
  2. How do non-Native folks address the stereotypes, misperceptions, the “twistory” that has been passed down among non-Native Americans about this population?
  3. How do we address the fact that indigenous people were murdered for who they are—the very definition of “genocide”? What apologies and amends do non-Native folks need to make, if any?
  4. How can non-Native folks become allies so that indigenous peoples become fully integrated members of society? What concrete actions can we take to move forward and build a nation with indigenous peoples?

Be very specific in your response, SPECIFICALLY citing examples BOTH from class and from the readings.

saucymango
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 25

1. The best way to understand the history and present day situation is to listen to Native voices and incorporate that into our education system. We need to reform our education system in a few ways. First and foremost is to include a more in depth narrative of Native American history and how it was destroyed by settler colonialism. Moreover, this curriculum should be written by or at least approved by Native peoples themselves in order to explain an accurate picture of history. White people will always have their own biases, never be able to possess a first hand perspective, and are the perpetrators of the crimes. Finally, schools should hire more Native teachers; the National Center for Education Statistics quantifies that only 0.5% of K-12 teachers are AI/AN in the 2017-2018 school year. They can offer more accurate and valuable perspectives, especially for white students who have more difficulties grasping the true nature of the effects of settler colonialism.


2. I think it will be hard for many people to rid themselves of stereotypes and misperceptions because they exist to strengthen white supremacy and serve as racist traditions that corporations make profit off of. Thus, in our capitalist and so-called democratic country, we need to change public sentiment to either educate or pressure the removal of harmful stereotypes. This can be done by drawing media attention. If more people speak out and read articles about the harmful stereotypes, it brings news and media companies profit, incentivizing them to increase their coverage of Native issues and provide funding to journalists and community leaders who write about the harms of stereotypes.


This is significant because the AEON article explains that troubles that Native Americans face are often neglected due to the fact that they make up such a small population, in fact only 1% of the total US population. Thus, this is the only way to garner more attention and cause both public and private organizations to remove and address their harmful stereotyping of Native Americans.


3. The very first step should be for governments to acknowledge the genocide of Native Americans, both in the past and the present. Tristan Ahtone points out in his article that the narratives surrounding Native Americans focus on their past struggles and oppressions. Our literature and government regularly fail to note the atrocities committed recently. Over ¼ of Native women were sterilized in the late 20th century, simply because people believed that the growing population of minority groups threatened white supremacy (JSTOR article). There is an ongoing crisis of Indigenous women being disproportionately kidnapped and murdered (MMIW). Reservation land is being forcibly taken back as depicted in the AEON video for the construction of pipelines and mining. There are voting policies that very clearly suppress the votes of Native peoples (i.e. requiring home addresses that don’t exist on reservations).
If the federal and state governments cannot admit that they are allowing or committing these crimes, they can never make amends for them. At the VERY least, governments need to stop revoking reservation treaties and guarantee basic rights for Native Americans (right to vote or even right to life!) However, we should be going beyond that and returning land to Native tribes and providing them with the resources to transition back to their land. Like the case with the monument on Deer Island, simply “giving land” (that ironically is not theirs to give in the first place) cannot help Native Americans reclaim their culture and way of life; that is just neglect towards people that they have been hurting for centuries.

4. Non-Indigenous folks should act similarly to the government in that we need to acknowledge our own biases and lack of knowledge when it comes to issues pertaining to Native Americans. We should desire to learn more on these topics and to seek information that is most accurate and appropriate, which will inherently be the words and writing of Native Americans. It is our duty to actively listen and accept what they are saying because while they do not have a responsibility to teach, we have a responsibility to learn and make amends. Therefore, we should also promote Native American leaders so that they can reach a greater audience. This is an accomplishable and proven strategy as Ms. Deb Haaland, a member of the Pueblo of Laguna and first Native American to serve as a secretary in the President’s cabinet, has been making progress in removing racial slurs from federal government names.
Lion03
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 21

Indigenous Peoples struggles and solutions

  1. To better understand the experience Native Americans in this nation we need to sit back and listen to their perspective instead of others perspectives. We need to listen to the ones that have been living as Native American and listen to what we can do to help them. We should stop having white or non-natives speak FOR them in talking about their experience of the United States. We need to fully confront that history my learning about the Native peoples in out history classes at school instead of the white-washed version. We should recognize that Native’s are the victim of the colonization of this country.
  2. We need to address the stereotypes about Native Americans by debunking the fiction that was presented to us by modern history courses. We need to re-educate the population about the genocide that occurred between colonizers and the Natives. These negative stereotypes such as those used in sports needs to be eliminated because even though it may seem “unproblematic” to some, it still deepens the false misconceptions about Native Americans. It is also a huge part to recognize that most of the land we live in is stolen from the indigenous people.
  3. I think we could address this genocide by implementing compassion towards Native Americans through the government. The government doesn’t do a good enough job of extending concern towards the dramatic decrease in the Native American population over the years. Over ¼ of Native women were sterilized in the late 20th century, simply because people believed that the growing population of minority groups threatened white supremacy (JSTOR article). The government shows carelessness when it comes to Natives and that is part of the reason why Natives history is so white washed. You even have to PROVE your Native blood in order to call yourself native (video). I think everyone as a collective community need to make apologies to the Native community because they have experienced silence for so long. We should probably make an apology for how sports make a “joke” of their culture with their mascots and offensive names.
  4. I think we can be allies with non-indigenous folks by uplifting the voices of indigenous peoples instead of speaking over them. It is one thing to THINK you’re being an ally and another to actually be an ally. You may think you’re helping by speaking up but in reality we just need to amplify the voices of those who are truly native and have gone through that trauma. We should educate ourselves on the culture and listen to them. Recognizing we are on stolen land is also important. Some concrete actions moving forward that we can do is showing respect, making amends, and giving at least some of their native land back as a tribute to the genocide that colonizers have caused.
no name
Boston, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 18

The Effect of Settler Colonialism on Indigenous Peoples

The bare minimum is to require a major part of US history courses to be taught, Indigenous side and then non Indigenous “Good history makes good citizens''. We must confront the true history of what America did to the Native Americans, and since they do not have the big voice they need, we must uplift Native voices instead of talking for them. A page must be taken out of the conservatives culture war playbook. The reactionary right will not allow a decision to naturally form so we must force a mainstream conversation. In doing so, conservatives figure heads must respond, giving a platform to this conversation by accident.

We need to stop teaching “oh this was ages ago, it is over '' when 25-50% of Native American women were getting sterilized 50 years ago, the same time as the Vietnam war. We do not say the Vietnam War was the past, we still refer to it as a modern American war. America cannot never apologize for the amount of damage they have done for hundreds of years, and Non-indigenous should not be the ones to decide the amends or apologizes it should be the communities

You should call out these stereotypes and misperceptions just like you would any other one of other races, just like the comic in class on how nobody would stand for any other stereotypical mascot . All that I am worried about is pressuring people into activism if it will end in performative activism like the black square on Instagram. The TRC we saw should be only the national beginning of what should be a lifelong process.

pseudonym
boston, Ma, US
Posts: 25

The Effect of Settler Colonialism on Indigenous Peoples

1. I believe that moving forward to better understand the experience of Native Americans in this nation we need to listen to what they have to say. It's important to get the perspective of someone who has physically or mentally gone through the challenges or at least have had family members who have gone through the challenges. Oftentimes as we've seen in history people who have never been affected by the issue are fast to speak in place of those who have. This is where the issue arises in my opinion. A story told by someone who has experienced whatever the topic is differs and is more truthful than someone who has never experienced it where they have never been there in that situation. It's easy to judge or to talk to others instead of taking the time to listen. A problem our society seems to have.

2. Addressing stereotypes, especially the negative ones we have seen in class on how they are commonly mascots for schools or sports teams, comes with educating ourselves. Unfortunately as much as I would love for our older generations to have a more open mind when learning about history the real way and not fabricated to fit the standards that America puts on History textbooks, is much harder than it seems. That is why I think targeting the younger generation, the one that is currently being educated and learning, is a great idea. Implementing these curriculums in every single high school and even Middle School would raise children to have a different perspective on how they view Native Americans. I believe that their story should be told truthfully so that we can open our eyes and acknowledge the burden they went through.

3. We can address the fact that Native people were murdered by making sure that from now on they are protected. This protection could come from society in general and with the help of the government. Take Main as an example, the state came to the realization, the right one, to protect the few territories and people who are native. If these steps were to be taken all across the united states then I think a lot of progress would occur.


4. Non- Indigenous people can become allied so that native people become fully integrated by helping them get their stories out and making sure their culture is viewed as beautiful like the others and not seen as bad. It's important that people who have the privilege of using their voice and being heard, which is not the case for everyone unfortunately, use it for the better. To represent those who in this moment might need someone to speak for them until our society has gotten to the point where everyone is heard. Although I wish we lived in one where everyone was heard the same way, it's not always the case. So for now, with the help of Native Americans and their story, we can come together as a whole and let them speak for once.

redemmed2021
Boston, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 26

Effects of Settler Colonialism on Indigenous Peoples

  1. One thing that non-Native people need to do is to hear stories and experiences from AI/AN about their life in the US. This can be achieved by establishing things like the TRC or different communities where people discuss, interact, and develop relationships with Native American peoples. We need to allow Native Americans voices to be heard. Another thing that is needed to confront the horrible history the native American faced is a reform in the education system. Instead of sugar coating and telling a false history, schools need to teach students the real hard facts. In class we discussed how as younger kids we were taught that everything was peaceful between the Native Americans and Europeans when they encountered America. I just believed that was the case until I learned that the entire peaceful thanksgiving, and treaties were not so true. Once we have a more accurate history then we can truly change as a nation.
  2. To address the stereotypes, misconceptions, and “twistory” non-Native people need to strive to change the education system. History courses need to teach the real history behind settler colonialism. People need to hear the real statistics and events that took place in order to overshadow Native Americans. From the article “The invasion of America” by Claudio Vaunt, it mentions between 1776 and present day the US seized 1.5 billion acres from North America’s native peoples. That is an enormous amount of land. The map that is also displayed in the video demonstrates how over time the settlers took native land. This interactive map needs to be shown. The visual shows the depth of how much the colonizers invaded. Not only this but the Native Americans received little to nothing in return, except some small reservations areas. Another thing that can be done is to remove inappropriate images and fictitious images of Native American people on consumer products. An example of this, which we talked about in class, is the changing of the label for Land Lakes Butter. We should learn and interact with the Native peoples to understand their culture that way we're not making stereotypes about them. Since everything uses the Internet today in the US, there should be articles, podcasts, videos created that give attention to the stereotypes, and misconceptions that many people today don’t think about.
  3. I believe that it is clear that Native Americans are victims of genocide. In the article “The Little-Known History of the Forced Sterilization of Native American Women” by JStor, it describes how the Indian Healthcare Service forcefully sterilized women instead of giving them the medical help they needed. Their whole goal in doing this was to get rid of the “morally, mentally, and socially defective” race that is “ causing problems in the nation today”. Today Native American women face everything from divorce to depression because of forced sterilization. Because the number of Native American were dwelling they had little political power. One good apology that I think the US can accomplish is to just simply acknowledge the simple fact that the Natives people were here first and that we invaded their land. The amending process is a long process that involves cooperation, love, and truth. Maybe creating holidays, memorials, to remember the history of the Native American that they experienced under settler colonialism, and that they are still experiencing. To help the Native Americans out of the situation that the nation put them in we need to change ourselves.
  4. One action that we need to take is to create more TRC’s. I really enjoyed watching the “Dawnland” video in class that showed how native americans got to be seen and heard. The more non-Native are able to hear and interact with Native Americans the better. Creating platforms where we can uplift the Native peoples voice is also a great idea. Instead of the US talking on their behalf, let them speak for themselves. It's important that the government recognizes that we invaded this land and have forgotten about its first inhabitants. Making more laws, reservations, and events where all the inhabitants of this land are able to have peace with one another is something that the nation should strive for.
hotchocolate
Boston, Massachusetts , US
Posts: 24

acknowledge and uplift!

  1. In college tours and public presentations, we’ve started acknowledging the tribal lands these institutions are located on. While I think this is a good small step, it’s probably a marketing strategy for colleges and what does it really do in terms of actions? We should start giving lands back to Native American populations like what Obama did, but more successfully. Also becoming more aware of the truth of the history like the real reason behind Thanksgiving which is celebrated and mostly turns a blind eye to the Native peoples’ oppression. Listen to them! White people have savior complexes and justified the suppression of “the Indian” by civilizing them. I think the truth and reconciliation commissions are key in creating a safe space for cultural sharing and storytelling and grieving, especially if they’re government endorsed.
  2. For educating about the Native people and their diverse cultural practices, I believe there should be someone part of that community spreading awareness, a spokesperson or multiple. In many instances, misinformation is given at the hands of those not part of the community and someone should be held accountable for it. It’s mostly a society of oppression and divisions and white supremacy that’s to blame. It’s easy to continue living unaffected by the discrimination surrounding us but it’s the responsibility of being a human to show that diversity matters and it’s most important to create a safe and stimulating environment. There is this permanent narrative that Native people are “Satan's disciples'' and have barbaric cultural practices, which is why we came in to send them to abusive boarding schools. We need to have empathy for the oppressed. Especially in the media and even the lack of representation Native people get, especially that’s a correct representation, impacts how they see themselves and is a societal symbol that they don’t belong. I still get really angry that Asian people are always portrayed as having “tiger” parents, the actors sometimes mock the languages mostly in older films, and they’re not wanting to have fun but study. Many depictions of these communities have become tied into society and are no longer questioned because we compare and put down to feel better about ourselves. There should be more Native people voicing their thoughts in the news and public media of all types.
  3. It’s important to identify commonalities between the types of oppression minority groups face and have endured throughout history. A lot of what I see are people acknowledging these events occurred but not acting on it. Besides genocide, the gruesome history includes scalping and treating Native people as animals or sterilizing women without their consent and knowledge. Some policies today like the blood quantum is a way for authority to exert power over already vulnerable populations. I think we aren’t giving them the freedom of identification let alone acknowledging their cultures, which everyone deserves to have. In other instances, different cultural histories are obscured and tainted by western views on it so what happens to the truth? People still try to suppress the Native peoples’ identities and freedoms, demeaning them until they’re reliant on white authority. Nothing can replace what their cultures have lost. We are trying to make them feel unsafe in their own homes. Sterilization was outlawed and still occurred, previously with the help of laws and medications. If we see something, we should say something as our responsibility and especially as someone who’s part of a group who’s faced oppression. In the video about Penobscot Native people, they made a point I’d want to explore more which is that trauma runs in your blood and is passed down, scientifically and psychologically. Even by fully accepting Native people, they’ll always be scarred by violence and need to be able to find comfort in their families and communities and tribes. They need folks who understand to be support systems. And we need to supply the resources for that to happen. I’ve been on some college tours and they have a bunch of different cultural clubs, dorms, and houses to be a part of but no Native American one. It was good to hear that when a Native American child is orphaned, they’ll hopefully stay in the tribe so they don’t lose out on their identity. Apologizing is important but so many people took part in the violence that how would that rectify it? They need actions taken.
  4. Deb Haaland has the goal of replacing and taking out derogatory racist terms from federal public documents/use. These terms like “squaw” are something negative to generalize a community without acknowledging their culture. Or the term “redskin” which refers to scalping but is a common term that some celebrate. People should stop using all racist terms of the parties they don't identify with, and there should be resources in schools and communities to learn about the cultures we are exposed to very little. In almost every situation, white people are needed to endorse a movement because white people listen to themselves. When minorities rise up and unite, white people often feel like their power is being threatened so it’s important to gain support from every walk of life. They can educate themselves and start teaching the correct history as opposed to one being glossed over. We just need to start listening instead of denying what Native peoples say and need. I watched a fascinating NPR video about the term BIPOC and how while it’s inclusive, Native people and Asian people have all faced horrific discrimination so it should be BILPOCA, and the term people of color is used sometimes to avoid saying “black”. The language we use is crucial to showing minorities that they’re accepted, while it never will be a straight line of progression. I think there should be more money and funds going toward the Native peoples and we need powerful figures supporting the environment and return of lands, at least not to use it for manufacturing and industrialism which hurts the environment. In the past, we integrated them into society by “killing the Indian” and saving the man, so it’s time to uplift them.

Camm230
South Boston, MA, US
Posts: 17

The Effect of Settler Colonialism on Native Peoples

1. A problem with people, not only Americans but people in general, is that they tend to forget negative history that involves a group of people they identify with/ as. A study was done where people who identify as American read about the genocide of Indigenous people. The first time they read about a massacre of indiginous people, the people who were killing were referred to as American, another massacre of indiginous people they read about the people killing were referred to as European colonists. The study concluded that when people were associated with the "bad guys'' in history, people tended to forget it, and when they were not associated with the people who killed they remembered it better. This is part of human psychology, people don't want to confront the negative part of "their '' history. An easy answer is we need to look past that, as if every person in the U.S. is willing to do that, the only way this would work is taking legal action within the education system. RIght now states are allowed to pick and choose what they teach in schools, they can omit the "bad" part of history, or choose not cover topics in general, if the court came down and said there is certain curriculum schools had to teach and be tested on is how we can ensure majority of the U.S. will learn this history.

2.Get rid of them, don't erase them from history because that is definitely part of facing the history of indiginous people. Hold brands accountable to not lean on stereotypes for their mascots. Reteach what has been twistory America has established, for the correct history and representation of indiginous people. Establish a disclaimer in old films that did rely on these stereotypes, that they are incorrect and not fact/accurate in history. To have a better representation of indigenous people in media (movies, plays ect.) let indiginous people show how to represent their tribe or give more light to indigenous directors or playwrights such as Madeline Sayet, who is working to break the stereotypes set up in American culture and replace with an accurate representation of who is being portrayed in the media.

3.There needs to be more than just an apology. I think we should follow Maines example in giving people space and the resources to heal how they need to, either through individual or group therapy(as seen in the film in class). Establish an organization(s) to help indiginous people with a variety of situations(weather to reunite torn apart families, therapist to help those who have had traumatic experiences as an indiginous person). In the film there were clips of an indiginous man of the Mashpee tribe going to a classroom and educating the children about his culture. There are multiple tribes across the country. There could be a group of people in each tribe that go to schools and educate people about their tribe and culture.

To address the subject of genocide, there is no dancing around the subject or sugar coating it, there has to be a strict curriculum that teaches about the genocide of Native people, or teachers can and will omit it all together.

4.First by learning factual history and understanding their history and culture.(To be completely honest speaking from the point of view of a non-indigenous person, I can't give a direct answer but I think that enforcing a curriculum that teaches about indinginous people.) Some concrete actions we can take is establishing a statewide, nationwide organization that helps indinginous people. By getting rid of stereotypes in modern culture, and changing brands logos or mascots so that they're not offensive or rely on stereotypes.

YellowPencil
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 23

  1. Non-Native folks need to actively learn about the history and culture of indigenous people. Currently the US elementary to high school curriculum doesn’t do this well. In my experience, the extent of what I learned in regards to indigenous people in my school career is very surface level. Also, the exposure to anything about native peoples are from the perspective of whites or generalizations. I believe this is true for most people in the US. In the movie Dawnland we watched in class, one speaker that worked for child welfare said she believed that learning how to wear and tie shoes are more important than knowing how to do indigenous dances and that in a way justified bringing native children to foster parents. But according to an indigenous woman, the removal from her home caused her to lose a part of her identity and sense of belonging. She said that when attending her first powwow, all she did was hide. Knowing the impact of centuries of oppression and stories could help non-native people understand the current situation and not repeat errors. We should as a nation confront history by admitting that we have wronged indigenous communities. In the film we watched in school, the Welfare Truth and Reconciliation Commission does a good job sharing the experiences of Native folks and now we just have to have this be common knowledge.

  1. Non-Native folks should change negative and degrading symbols and names that depict indigenous people wrongly. In class problematic images like the Red Indians and butter with an indigenous person were shown. To address the issue of stereotypes and misperceptions, firstly, we have to cut the roots of the stereotypes that are in our everyday lives like butter and popular sports teams. One recent event was Laguna Pueblo, the first indigenous cabinet secretary, ordering a federal panel to rename geographical locations with derogatory or racist terms. And one example is changing all locations with “squaw” in it because it's a derogatory definition for a native woman. Changing these names and symbols would denormalize and strip communities from being surrounded with misperceptions. The federal panel also renamed one location Piestewa Peak to honor the first women in the US military to die in combat. Changing symbols of misperceptions with the truth and connections to the US, moreover, allows for people to see Native Americans to be part of the US community and not some exotic group of people that were victims.

  1. From assimilation in boarding schools to the very recent forced sterilizations of women, it is clear what what happened to the native people was a genocide. Although it seems obvious after looking at the events the label genocide isn’t often attached to what happened to the native peoples because it isn’t officially declared like the Holocaust and it’s also a tough subject. To make amends it would be impossible to give everything back to the native peoples since the US is very much in power and the deaths of their people cannot be reversed. So the first step would be acknowledgement of wrong and acknowledgement of the original holder of the land. What needs to be also is taking down the currently existing forms of inequity and having their voices heard. Many victims like the two 15 year olds that were forced to be sterilized have stories that are unheard. Non-native people must know what they have done wrong in order to apologize.

4. Firstly non-Native people should know that native people aren’t the same way they were in the past. They have also modernized with the world. For example Hillel Echo-Hawk is a cook who prepares traditional indigenous foods but it isn’t what some people may expect. One dish he makes is pickled seaweed with cured salmon roe and smoked seaweed broth. One concrete action that we can take is integrating parts of native culture to be part of the American identity. Like how music from various cultures and places are part of american culture, native musics and foods and culture could also be. Cross, a native actor, shares her culture through plays. This could be more common and when native culture is seen by non-natives and is embraced, maybe we can build a nation where indigenous people can be accepted and integrated.
9oclock
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 20

Originally posted by freemanjud on November 28, 2021 18:19


Readings (select AT LEAST 2 of these 4, which pains me because all are eye-opening):


-------------------------

Many people believe that indigenous folks have been erased from the story we tell about the history of the United States. America was discovered….by Columbus. Let’s be generous: let’s call it an “encounter.” Its first settlers? The British and the Dutch, let alone the Spanish and French. Before 1492, this land was wilderness, waiting to be “discovered.” Were there people here? Were they people or savages? How did we depict them, describe them, study them, remember them?


If you believe in ghosts, then Native American ghosts are all around us. And yet their descendants survived. They are here but how often do we hear their voices? Are we paying attention to them? We have much to learn from the Native peoples of this country, if we are willing to take the time to do so.


As you know, it is argued by many that what happened to indigenous folks in this country was genocide. The definition of genocide is the deliberate killing of a group of people because of who they are, what their identities are, often with the goal of eliminating them entirely. Yet on Beacon Hill, where a bill (S.327) mandating the teaching of genocide was being discussed by the Massachusetts Legislature in October 2019 (for a text of the bill, see https://malegislature.gov/Bills/191/SD1441, and for coverage of the motives and the legislator behind it, see https://mirrorspectator.com/2019/10/03/bill-seeks-to-mandate-teaching-of-genocide-holocaust-in-ma-middle-high-schools/) , take a guess: which group was conspicuously not mentioned?


And believe it or not: this bill is still unresolved and has morphed into several new versions over the past few years. And references to specific genocides were ultimately omitted from the most recent draft: https://malegislature.gov/Bills/192/S2557.


Consider what we’ve looked at in class and the content of the readings listed above as you respond to the following questions.

  1. What do non-Native folks need to do, moving forward, to better understand the experience of indigenous peoples in this nation? How do we fully confront that history?
  2. How do non-Native folks address the stereotypes, misperceptions, the “twistory” that has been passed down among non-Native Americans about this population?
  3. How do we address the fact that indigenous people were murdered for who they are—the very definition of “genocide”? What apologies and amends do non-Native folks need to make, if any?
  4. How can non-Native folks become allies so that indigenous peoples become fully integrated members of society? What concrete actions can we take to move forward and build a nation with indigenous peoples?

Be very specific in your response, SPECIFICALLY citing examples BOTH from class and from the readings.


1. To better understand the experiene of indigenous peoples in this nation non-Native folks must do a number of things. Non- native folks must first reflect on their own taught prejudices, privelege, and place in this topic in order for them to correctly retain new information and to avoid negatively impacting indigenous people in these interactions. Then non-native folks must do their research! In conducting this research the priority should be on sources by indigenous people. (note, non-Native folks should not pressure Indigenous people to share their story and/or their community's story. That can negatively impact the individual) Non-native folks should continue their research through credible sources on historical events, current events, and the cultures of indigenous tribes in this nation. Researching is crucial; the major majority of the United States (and myself before learning this in class) does not know that Thanksgiving was founded in respect to the whites' celebration dinner after they massacred hundreds of Pequot children, women, and men in 1637. After substantial reseaerch, non-native folks must reflect on how they perpetuate the miseducation of this nation and the marginalization of this group and address it. As we examined in class, it is rare for inhabitants of the United States to not celebrate Thanksgiving, let alone to respect the tragedy that Thanksgiving is founded around.

2. "Today, over one per cent (3.8 million) of Americans identify as native"(Aeon's "The Invasion of America" article). Claudio Saunt explains that the Indigenous population of the United States does not have political influence due to the low population. Like the political cartoon of the racially derogative mascots for four races protrayed, government saunctioned progress of a marginalized group always is due to the pressure applied by a large number of people. Therefore, non- Native folks must use their political power to help the liberation of indigenous people from oppresion by the United States, following the instructions of indigenous leaders. One of the ways to address this miseducation is to push and require history curriculum be redetermined. The history that we are taught must be the complete and unbiased truth, not a story that glorifies whites at the expense of the rest's image and commemorations.

3.A part of apologizing is taking accountablity. It is crucial that the United States take accountability for the genocide of the Indigenous people of this nation. They must publically admit how they intentionally sterilized Native American women (Black women, and latinx women- even today), how they seperated 1 out of four indigenous children from their family in the late 1900s, how they enticed settlers to murder Indigenous people with money and status.

The United State's (nearly completely non-Native) government must respectfully remember, commemorate, and repay for the genocide of the original inhabitors of their state. This can be publically addressing, changes in curriculum, memorials, reparations, affirmative action, and representation. A video we watched in class showed the complete lack of disrespect of the site of a massacre of Indigeous people by the United States. Sites of events in this genocide should be respected, there should be memorials at all these sites. Those affected by the Native American erasure generationally should recieve reparations. For as the film "The Dawnland" displays, generational trauma, generational economic disadvantage, and generational mental troubles is concerningly pravelent in Indigenous survivors of this nation. Non-native folk that are not in the government must push the government to take these actions, educate themselves, pay respects, and to fight against those perpetuating the marginalization of this community.

4. Non-native folk must first do the self work explained in response one. Then non-native people must pressure their government and thier companions to take the same actions. Non-native people should then reach out to Indigenous leaders and organizations to see how they can help.

niall5
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 26

To better understand the experiences of Native Americans in this nation, we need to talk about and come to terms with our history. This can be accomplished in many different ways. The first is a Truth and Reconciliation Commission, first used in the aftermath of Apartheid in South Africa, to gather relevant and powerful stories and facts from survivors. Like we learned in the documentary, Maine is the only state to have had a government-endorsed TRC, an embarrassing fact. A big part of this process will be amplifying native voices. The entire AI/AN community has gone through immense hardship even as recently as the past few years in this country, and the only way to confront this is by allowing them to speak their truths. This means anything from the simple switch to Indigenous People’s Day instead of Columbus Day, to more complex things like classes in school, and Native speakers at the communities of former sites of Native American slaughter or hardship. An important fact that every person in America should know for example is the massive amount of forced sterilizations that occurred to Native women in the 60s and 70s. Much of this was deeply rooted in an internal bias in the healthcare system that “native people and people of color were morally, mentally, and socially defective,” (Lawrence) one that continues to permeate our current healthcare system today.

Stereotypes and misperceptions about the history of Native Americans run rampant here. A crucial piece of this collective blindfold over all of our eyes, is the tendency to simplify and whitewash history. People in power tend to rewrite history to look more favorably upon their ancestors, no matter how egregious their deeds. Like we talked about in class, many American children first learn about the colonizers and Natives of America through the elementary school fun of thanksgiving. Holidays with this premise ignore the atrocities of the European colonizers in the Americas, and portray their arrival as peaceful, and even necessary for the good of Naive peoples. What should happen instead, on holidays like thanksgiving and Indigenous People’s Day, is we should learn the real history of what some of our ancestors did in the colonization of this land, and dedicate hours of service to helping bring justice to native communities today. This type of real world involvement will further engage people, especially the younger generation. With further spreading of this knowledge, political capital for monuments in places like Deer Island will be possible, and honoring the Native People that were murdered in mass on this land will become more widespread. The issue that shows up in the article Recasting Views of Indigenous Life is that Native American history is simply not present in many areas that are essential, suc as textbooks, media, and even everyday conversation. This lack of dialogue breeds misconception, and the systematic dehumanization of Native American people.

The extermination of Native peoples in such large mass as it occurred can only be described as just that, genocide. Yet children across the American school system never hear that word in conjunction with the European colonization of the Americas. The victims lost in the widespread genocide of Native Americans will never be brought back, but we are still able to help the survivors, and try to stop the continued suffering of their people. An official apology is an important step, meaning our country and states need to officially recognize the massacre of the Native Americans as a genocide, and stop celebrating the colonizers as hero’s. Native peoples still suffer greatly today. As we learn from The Little-Known History of the Forced Sterilization of Native American Women, tribes still suffer adverse impacts of the discrimination and eradication of their ancestors. Native communities experience high rates of depression and divorce, and can lead to other health issues down the road. This shows us that not only is it an important cultural issue to recognize and apologize for the horrific tragedy that occurred when the Spanish and English first set foot on this land, but just as importantly, it is a health issue, and one that affects the Native American tribes of today.

It should not be the responsibility of Native peoples to become fully integrated members of our society, but ours. We need to find the right balance between respecting their sovereignty, but honoring their right to be integrated members of society, and benefit from health services among other things. Madeleine Sayet’s father in Recasting Views of Indigenous Life is a perfect example of this balance, as he was the first graduate from Dartmouth College’s medical school. This allowed him to pave the way to success for his family members, while still maintaining his important roots and cultural heritage. A concrete way to build a joint nation, is to officially recognize the genocidal history of our country, and build several TRC’s, to dive into the history we have tried to cover up. Another step is to expand current reservation lands, as we have just a tiny sliver of America dedicated back to its original stewards. One step has been taken for the better. Joe Biden appointed the first Native American secretary of the interior, a step in reclaiming parts of our country for Native Americans.

android_user
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 17

The Effect of Settler Colonialism on Indigenous Peoples


  1. I think that the article talking about Deb Haaland and her goal to eliminate degrading terms towards indiginous peoples is a big part of fully confronting our history. It is important to realize and reflect on the history that other non-Native people might have traumatized mass amounts of indiginous people and the hurt, the suffering, and the genocide we inflicted along the way. Haaland made it a point to eliminate anything federally involved when talking about the slurs used against indiginous people, as in she tried to get rid of any slurs from government documents. I think to fully confront this history we should make people more aware of what happened and what we did to the people who owned this land before us. There aren’t many people who know what many indiginous people in this country went through because most of it was just swept under the rug and isn’t structurally taught in our U.S. history classes. I strongly believe that we need to teach this history and all the gory details that come along with it.
  2. Non-Native Americans normalize these misconceptions and actually make movies, books, and songs about them. For example Disney has the movies Peter Pan and Pocahontas, and most of us grew up watching those movies normalizing the messages that they “taught” us about indiginous people. This all fed into more generation ignorance and no solid solution to the problem it caused, these movies are still showing these images today.
  3. I think we can start by just addressing Native American genocide in the United States considering it is not commonly addressed. Unless in a class like facing history, there is a brief moment in most classes that the genocide is addressed, but unfortunately it is not deeply analyzed. That’s why I think we should start talking about it more in U. S. history classes, as it is a large part of our country and is still influential today. I feel like there is no easy way to justify or apologize for what happened in the past, but one way that we can try to rectify the mistakes of the past and present is to try and give back some of the land that we stole.
  4. We can become allies by trying to rectify what our country has done to their peoples and support them in any fight that they have with our government about any laws that might be degrading and offensive. I think that it is important to try and lift their voices and issues up because they have been oppressed and forgotten by so many people over the years. We can continue doing Haaland’s work and continuing to reform government documents that are offensive to indiginous people.
girlboss16
Boston, Massachussetts, US
Posts: 27
  1. What do we need to do, moving forward, to better understand the experience of Native Americans in this nation? How do we fully confront that history?

In order to better understand the experiences of Native Americans in this nation, we have to listen to Native people’s stories, rather than listening to other voices who speak for them. It is important to incorporate their voices into our educational system. We often see people who aren’t actually victims of this history speaking out to experiences they didn’t go through. We need to really listen to their stories in order to give them the voice they deserve. We need to fully confront our history by learning about their culture and experiences in school, instead of textbook learning, which is where the white-washed version would be. Native Americans are victims of colonization in this country, so it is indicative that we need to seek them out.

  1. How do we address the stereotypes, misperceptions, the “twistory” that has been passed down among non-Native Americans about this population?

We need to address these stereotypes by getting rid of them. They should not be used anymore. However, this doesn’t mean we should completely erase them. Being respectful by stopping the use, but acknowledging the issue is important. People should teach why these stereotypes are racist and non factual. One way to do this is changing the name of some sports teams. Another way is teaching in schools or at work what really happened on holidays. Days such as Thanksgiving and Indigeous People’s Day are commonly misconstrued, so people should teach about the colonization that happened.

  1. How do we address the fact that Native peoples were murdered for who they are—the very definition of “genocide”? What apologies and amends do we need to make, if any?

In order to address the genocide that took place, it is crucial to take accountability. Taking accountability is an important step in apologizing. In the 20th century, the United States would remove 1 in 4 indiginous children from their homes and put them into foster care. The government should set up a protection plan for Native Americans to ensure that their communities are safe from any potential harm. The state of Maine set up protection for the Indigenous territories. This was a step in the right direction and should be practiced in other states as well.

  1. How can non-indigenous folks become allies so that Native peoples become fully integrated members of society? What concrete actions can we take to move forward and build a nation with Native peoples?

Deb Haaland is trying to remove and replace racist derogatory terms from public documents. These terms used years ago are extremely offensive towards Native Americans, and people need to stop using these terms. If it is possible to remove these racist terms, white allies should use their privilege to explain to other people why we should stop using these terms, and start integrating indigenous people into society.

pinkskittles
boston , Massachusetts, US
Posts: 19

The Effect of Settler Colonialism of Indigenous Peoples

  1. I think in order for people to understand the experience of indigenous people, they really have to listen and research it rather than just assuming things or going with stereotypes as their source of information. Like a lot of things in the world, there have been a lot of stereotypical representations of indigenous people, for example the “typical” clothing that they wore or the sounds they made. Also, a lot of information people listen to is from the colonial people and what they wrote down, or the artifacts that the white people have made in the past. Like on statues that are supposed to represent them, it often is not correct or makes them look less than people.
  2. When you think about all the wrong misconceptions in history that have been made about Indigenous people, there is a lot that needs to change regarding it. You can't go back in history and change what people said, however you can change what people say and think now and move forward in the future. A big thing we can do now is try to fix the misconceptions like in the video of the Aeon article, called “The Invasion of America”, changing the maps that are wrongly shown. Also, the MFA statue, trying to change it or get it removed because it is an inaccurate representation of Indigeonous people. Also, just making sure you are education kids in school correctly about the history and addressing the stereotypes and misconceptions, like Ms. Freeman did. We went through the actual history that took place and saw and discussed some of the stereotypes. I think this is super important and should be done more especially with kids of a young age.
  3. In my opinion, Indigeonous people did experience genocide, as the definion is “the deliberate killing of a large number of people from a particular nation or ethnic group with the aim of destroying that nation or group”. The government and society in general did want to abolish this group of people, and by doing so they did in fact kill them. As we discussed in class, they used to literally take indigenous kids from their own parents, and send them to boarding schools where they would essentially be white washed and would learn the american way of living. I think a big way of addressing this fact is by accepting that it did happen, and people are still suffering from this fact. We need to make sure they feel supported now and make sure they have platforms where they can share their pain and stories. We did see a documentary in class, where many people got to share their own personal stories and I think this is beneficial for them as well as the rest of society.
  4. There is no way Americans can apologize or make up for the suffering the Indigeonous people went through, they can only move forward from learning the history of the past and realize their wrongs. A big way we can show appreciation is by making public places in honor of them, such as statues, memorials like on Deer Island, or places like restaurants made from indigenous people and food (Recasting Views of Indigenous Life article). We also need to listen to them and their stories, and give them a platform where they can spread awareness on their culture and what they went through. Basically just supporting them and appreciating their culture, also not making stereotypes on them is huge. Not making misconceptions about them and their life, as well as the history, making sure you educate yourself on the topic before speaking on it.
curioushuman
US
Posts: 15

the effect of settler colonialism on native peoples

1. Non-Native people need to listen to the experiences of indigenous peoples to better understand them because there is no better way to learn about what someone goes through and has gone through than to listen to their firsthand account of it. It is always better to learn about a people’s oppression and genocide from the people who are actually oppressed and not the oppressor. We can confront this by fixing our school curricula and what we are teaching. Education is a big way to alter the distorted perception of Native peoples because we are taught from when we are young an inaccurate depiction of them. By fixing the way we teach history we can try to see how much indigenous peoples have experienced throughout American history and understand how much distress Non-Native people have put them through.

2. Non-native people can address the stereotypes about Native Americans by seeking out actual indigenous people whether that is in real life or on the internet. There are so many resources and you could read articles or articles or watch videos created by Native people to learn more about them. It would also be helpful to know an indigenous person or multiple indigenous people because there is a misperception that Native Americans do not exist anymore. We can address the “twistory” that has been passed down among non-Native Americans through education like mentioned in the first question because it is such a crucial way we teach our populations. Another way to break these stereotypes and a false history is through the media and we could have more representation of indigenous peoples to show that they are as normal and alive as any other human being.

3. In 1800, the Native population in the US was 15% and in 1900 the population was 0.5%. Native women were sterilized, Native peoples had their land taken, their children taken, killed by European settlers, several of their body parts were sold, and so much more. The US government must address that this is a genocide and, like in the Indian Country Today article, must remove or change everything that is damaging or misrepresentative of indigenous peoples like names of geographic places with racist terms or disrespectful caricatures of Native peoples for sports mascots or food logos. Acknowledgment the treatment of indigenous peoples as a genocide by our government is an important step and non-Native people can try to make amends by giving back land that was taken from them and culture that is continued to be appropriated to indigenous peoples.

4. Today, the population of people who identify as Native in America is over 1%, showing there is more willingness to identify as indigenous and they are still here and are important members of society. It is important that we work together if we are going to be united and indigenous peoples become fully integrated members of society. In order to do this we have to better understand each other which means listening to Native peoples and helping to amplify their voices. Sometimes the best thing you can do as an ally is to step back and it is important to be involved in the process without overstepping boundaries or having too much control because it is all about what the indigenous peoples need to be heard and uplifted.

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