Tag: native american

September 16, 2008 / / Outside the Binary
August 7, 2008 / / Uncategorized

by Guest Contributor Jessica Yee

One of the best kept secrets in American health administration is the existence of Indian Health Service.

Unbeknownst to many outside the Native community, our healthcare is actually delivered by the military.

Oh sure, they call themselves the “Public Health Service Commissioned Corps” which is just a nice way of saying they don’t carry guns, but you can bet that you will more than likely receive care from someone dressed in full-out camouflage gear who indeed works for the U.S. Uniformed Services.

How did this all get started? Well for lands seized (read: stolen) the government has a federal responsibility to provide healthcare to Native Americans. After assimilating us and annihilating our culture, the War Department had this duty in 1849. Which was then overseen by the Bureau of Indian Affairs who was responsible for the many abuses and mistreatments that occurred under their umbrella until 1955, when the government thought it would then be a good idea to turn it over to the Department of Health and Human Services.

I don’t know about you, but I’m not really comfortable going to see a doctor wearing army boots in a non-war torn country. Last time I checked, they haven’t exactly been our best friends in the Native community (forcible removal to attend Residential Schools, reproductive trauma from military testing anyone?) I’m also less than pleased being the only race whose healthcare comes like this. Read the Post Who is Responsible for Your Healthcare?

July 28, 2008 / / Uncategorized

by Guest Contributor Jessica Yee, originally published at The Shameless Blog

This story actually made me cry.

Five year old Adriel Arocha is being blocked from attending school in a Houston-area school district.

The reason?

As an Apache, he has long hair that he has been growing in his Native cultural tradition that “violates” this school’s dress code rules.

The kicker though is that the school board is willing to make exceptions on religious or other “proven” moral grounds, but doesn’t think that being Native American cuts it. Read the Post Denied kindergarten for being Native?

July 10, 2008 / / Uncategorized

by Guest Contributor Calabar, originally published at Girl in the Machine

Natan: …

Remember the good ol’ days after the first world war when European vampires still embarked on sabbaticals to the American south-west, cat-people ran Hollywood from behind the scenes, and cheeky teenage detectives could break into high-security compounds like Alcatraz without consequences?

Oh wait—that’s not real life. It’s Shadow Hearts: From the New World (thank goodness).

There’s something about this irreverent video game series that I find incredibly appealing, but sometimes it leaves me scratching my head. The way the developers choose to represent characters can be a little disingenuous. In particular, minority characters have their differences from the mainstream magnified one hundredfold. Whether it’s the swishy Magimel tailors or the so-Mexican-it-hurts mariachi singer Ricardo, everything is so overblown that it’s difficult to take it seriously.

While discussing the game with BomberGirl and PlasmaRit, we became interested in the “strong and silent” Native American character Natan. We wondered how much he actually had to say throughout the course of the game, and I honestly couldn’t recall. It’s been a while since I’ve played it.

To investigate our suspicions, I combed through one hundred and ten pages of the Shadow Hearts: From the New World script. From beginning to end, the script is 30,324 words long.

Natan says 768 words. Read the Post I’m Sure You’ve Got Plenty to Say

May 13, 2008 / / Uncategorized

by Latoya Peterson

This is Tom Torlino.

He attended the Carlisle School – a special boarding school for Native American students. The picture provides both a before and after spending time at the school. The before and after photo is but one illustration NPR uses to tell the story of Native American boarding schools in the US. In a report titled “Native American Boarding Schools Haunt Many,” correspondent Charla Bear digs deep into the practices and processes used to forcibly strip young Native Americans from their heritage.

Check out the chilling reason these schools were developed in the first place:

The federal government began sending Native Americans to off-reservation boarding schools in the 1870s, when the United States was still at war with Indians.

An Army officer, Richard Pratt, founded the first of these schools. He based it on an education program he had developed in an Indian prison. He described his philosophy in a speech he gave in 1892.

“A great general has said that the only good Indian is a dead one,” Pratt said. “In a sense, I agree with the sentiment, but only in this: that all the Indian there is in the race should be dead. Kill the Indian in him, and save the man.”

Read the Post NPR Reports on the Strange History of Native American Boarding Schools

May 5, 2008 / / Uncategorized

by Latoya Peterson

I am really starting to become a fan of these Live Journal carnivals. The PoC in SciFi Carnival 9 is out and here are my two favorite pieces.

Untrue-Accounts provides a ridiculously great analysis of race, sex, and gender in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. And it comes with a video!

1. The story of the coat

I had the line “It’s Nikki Wood’s fucking coat” long before I had a song or a vidder or a title.

Spike wears the long black duster from his first appearance on Buffy, but we only find out its history in S5’s “Fool for Love.” Spike relates his history to Buffy (in, it’s strongly implied, somewhat unreliable terms) and the viewers see how he came to adopt his Johnny Rotten persona in a series of flashbacks. Spike starts out as a young aesthete in Victorian London; after his romantic overture is rejected by the woman he’s in love with, he accepts vamping by Drusilla. Once turned, he adopts a tough, lower-class persona, which reaches full expression once he kills a Slayer during the Boxer Rebellion and literally consummates his triumph by sex with Dru over the Slayer’s corpse. Two of Spike’s physical identifiers — the scar through one eyebrow and the coat he wears — are souvenirs of the Slayers he’s fought and killed: the Chinese Slayer slashes his face during their final battle and he steals the coat off the body of a black Slayer in the ’70s subways of New York after he kills her. Spike responds, ultimately, to rejection by a woman by the murder of other women and by stealing their identifiers–their identities, their stories–for his own. Read the Post Link Love – PoC in SciFi Carnival #9 – What I Heard About You and What it Meant For Me