What a whirlwind. Who knew that one doctor appointment could turn into several and then a major surgery and cancer diagnosis?
I will be getting a second opinion on that diagnosis (Stage 1A grade 3 uterine cancer) on June 26th in Boston. One can never be too careful. (Radiation was suggested as one follow-up option.)
It’s weird I have not been sick, or felt sick. I do have sharp pangs in healing this humongous scar from the bellybutton and south. (30 staples in my gut was no joke) I’m healing the insides now. It takes time.
As for how I feel, I feel it’s over. I am done with oncologists, surgeons, and doctors for now, even if I have to visit them over the next few months.
I was up and walking the night of surgery at 1:30am on May 14, and the nurses were kinda shocked at how fast I was recuperating. They let me out on the 16th and all my vitals were/are good. Even my blood pressure is spectacular. Which is a very good thing.
From here on out… I will be taking big doses of Vitamin D and Zinc now that I am a cancer survivor. And of course my holistic doctor Dr. Lynch has been with me every step of the way. (I highly recommend you see a holistic MD, if you can find one. They have a whole body, patient-centric approach and use more than western medicine to help your body heal and recuperate and be the best you can be…)
Sadly, my darling husband looks like he needs sleep. He was with me at every appointment and of course, was worried and I love him for that, knowing his love, care and concern helped me heal this so well, so fast.
All your thoughts and prayers really worked, too, my blog family. I am living proof. Love moves mountains and heals what it touches…
I may not be blogging as much since I am supposed to be walking, not sitting. Dang, that’s no good. I have blogs to read and research to do and books to read….
BUT… I’ll be back as soon as I can 🙂
(I have so many new posts to share with you… but they’ll have to wait…)
“T.C. Cannon retrieved Native American people, as a subject, from cardboard-thin caricatures spawned by old photos, kitschy paintings, and western films. The men and women he painted are arresting and complicated.” — The Boston Globe
:::AT THE EDGE OF AMERICA::: One of the most influential, innovative, and talented Native American artists of the 20th-century, T.C. Cannon embodied the activism, cultural transition and creative expression that defined America in the 1960’s and ‘70s. Cannon’s work — as an artist, poet, and aspiring musician — is deeply personal yet undeniably political, reflecting his cultural heritage, experience as a Vietnam War veteran, and the turbulent social and political period during which he worked.
Cannon preferred bold color combinations, mash-ups between Native and non-Native elements and never shied away from the complexity and nuance of identity politics. Cannon interrogated American history and popular culture through his Native lens, and exercised a rigorous mastery of Western art historical tropes while creating an entirely fresh visual vocabulary. T.C. Cannon: At the Edge of America celebrates Cannon’s creative range and artistic legacy through nearly 90 paintings and works on paper, as well as poetry and music. READ: pem.org | T.C. Cannon: At the Edge of America
But as Scientific American reported at the time, the museum’s scientists did not consult modern tribes before extracting DNA from the remains because the museum deemed the bones impossible to link to any specific group. They should have invited input from tribes, both out of respect for their overarching concerns about ancestors and because collaboration might have enriched the study—through the addition of tribal knowledge about kinship systems, for example, or through comparative DNA samples from any modern tribes interested in providing them. Source: Indigenous Remains Do Not Belong to Science – Scientific American
When will all the Pilgrim graves be ripe for the picking – when will scientists start to dig them up and put their bones on display? Will we have weekend digs of their graves too? Just askin’ for a friend…
NO JOKE! Historically, immigrants were given special rights to take Native land. If Trump says we are no longer a nation of immigrants, that has consequences… (poor guy never thought about this!) The young American republic preserved this European doctrine. The US supreme court formalized the Doctrine of Discovery in three famous cases of 1823, 1831 and 1832. Chief Justice John Marshall took for granted the obvious fact that America was the homeland of the Native Americans, “the rightful occupants of the soil”. By the logic of “discovery”, Native Americans had no rights because America was their homeland: “Their power to dispose of the soil at their own will to whomsoever they pleased was denied by the original fundamental principle that discovery gave exclusive title to those who made it.” (and don’t forget those Papal Bulls!)
(It should be: The theft of Art from numerous Tribes now on display and we interpret it for you!) Opening April 2018, the first exhibition, “Collecting Stories: Native American Art,” explores the range of perspectives, motives, and voices involved in building the early holdings of Native American art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, including those of indigenous artists and communities. (big fancy words). See EXHIBIT
By LT (not feeling well)
I have been reading Injuns, Native Americans in The Movies, trying to figure out when most of us in North America were duped into believing that Indigenous First Nations, my people, my relatives were ignorant savages. MOVIES (and dime novels) were the perfect method to create a tidy version of America’s history that wasn’t factual. When exactly did Injuns become less than human and their entire tribal communities expendable? And remember it wasn’t murder. No. It was Massacre. (AH, take a deep breathe, a sigh of relief, all those Injuns are dead.) Was that a safe way to make the Pilgrim colonists feel less guilty and not portray them as serial killers?
As I was taking notes, I wrote:
How hard would YOU fight if this land was invaded in 2018? Would YOU fight to the death to protect your family and your nation?
Would you run or would you fight and risk death?
When this was all over, now all of us conquered, Empire writes about it, not you. Empire makes movies showing us as dumb ass people who couldn’t figure out how to fight back and win. Ah yes, some noble people tried diplomacy but the majority died in battle.
You see, we are ALL Indians. Depending on the Empire that invades us, everyone left alive will be forced to join their religion – whether you like it or not. That’s the missionary’s part of the plan. (though I’m sure murder isn’t condoned in this religion) (and of course, the Empire imposes new taxes and tithes…) Your old religion is illegal, too, so don’t even balk!
In order to build the new Empire, some of us become worker slaves. And if we don’t work fast enough or efficiently enough, well that’s simply not acceptable. There is punishment for that. Rebellion? Hell no, we get declared terrorists and off to prison we go… Or maybe this happens again: Ida B. Wells and the Lynching of Black Women
How should we react? Invaded, hunted, displaced, colonized? Yes, we are all Indians when this happens.
I did get some bad news on my health on May 2. It’s an aggressive cancer. That means I won’t be blogging for awhile. Keep good thoughts for me. My email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Be back as soon as I can.
Surgery is May 14 at noon in Springfield, MA. Send prayers.
Something interesting in going on in Canada’s parks in 02018:
Mohawk curator and scholar Lee-Ann Martin has participated in all of these modes of support in the past. But this summer, she is taking a very different approach—namely, putting the art of 50 Indigenous women artists on 167 billboards from coast to coast to coast.
Coast to coast to coast… 01 June 2018 – 01 August 2018… Interactive map and full website launch on 01 May 2018
How do you make the work of First Nations, Inuit and Métis women artists in Canada more visible? Some people write research papers. Some people build collections. Some people advocate for funding. Mohawk curator and scholar Lee-Ann Martin has participated in all of these modes of support in the past. But this summer, she is taking a very different approach—namely, putting the art of 50 Indigenous women artists on 167 billboards from coast to coast to coast.
“Having Indigenous women’s art writ large in public…along the country’s roadways and in urban centres” is vital, says Martin. “I really see the project as synonymous with Indigenous women’s work as defenders of the land,” she notes, with “the other, more practical intent [being] for people to realize the breadth, depth and diversity of Indigenous women’s art and how important it is today.”
A Complete List of the 50 Artists in “Resilience” : KC Adams, Kenojuak Ashevak, Shuvinai Ashoona, Rebecca Gloria-Jean Baird, Mary Anne Barkhouse, Christi Belcourt, Rebecca Belmore, Jaime Black, Lori Blondeau, Heather Campbell, Joane Cardinal-Schubert, Lianne Marie, Leda Charlie, Hannah Claus, Dana Claxton, Ruth Cuthand, Dayna Danger, Patricia Deadman, Bonnie Devine, Rosalie Favell, Vanessa Dion Fletcher, Lita Fontaine, Melissa General, Tanya Harnett, Maria Hupfield, Ursula Johnson, Bev Koski, Nadya Kwandibens, Mary Longman, Amy Malbeuf, Teresa Marshall, Meryl McMaster, Caroline Monnet, Lisa Myers, Nadia Myre, Jade Nasogaluak Carpenter, Marianne Nicolson, Shelley Niro, Jeneen Frei Njootli, Nigit’stil Norbert, Daphne Odjig, Jane Ash Poitras, Annie Pootoogook, Sherry Farrell Racette, Sonia Robertson, Pitaloosie Saila, Jessie Short, Skawennati, Jackie Traverse, Jennie Williams, Terri-Lynn Williams-Davidson, Gid7ahl-Gudsllaay Lalaxaaygans
Writing in all its forms is a scary act; it makes us vulnerable and exposes our softest parts to a world not known for its gentleness. But there’s magnificent power in that vulnerability, and it’s deserving of acknowledgment. And I’m filled with such deep joy each time another powerful voice joins the Indigenous literary world. I hope you’ll think of these words as an honoring and a hope for the important work you’re about to undertake.
In both Canada and the US the mainstream literary scene tends to hold up one or two Indigenous writers at a time, while leaving the rest to fend for themselves. It’s important to help one another, to uphold one another’s work, to celebrate successes and grieve losses, to engage in this beautiful struggle together.
I’m sure you have had enough of the political news (no joke) so I humbly attempt to bring you something new and different like the stunning billboards above. Of course there is lots going on, including more and more conspiracy theorists online, end days scares, A.I. has won (crapola), and what is up with all the mermaid stuff (dear god no no no). OK, some days I don’t even want to sit at a computer.
I do follow many many many blogs but I do want you to read Asshole Watching Movies and their latest coverage of SXSW: Isle of Dogs.
And just as the fighting was privatised, so too was the propaganda. In 2016, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism revealed that the Pentagon had paid around half a billion dollars to the British PR firm Bell Pottinger to deliver propaganda during the Iraq war. Bell Pottinger, famous for shaping Thatcher’s image, included among its clients Asma Al Assad, wife of the Syrian president. Part of their work was making fake Al Qaeda propaganda films. (The firm was forced to close last year because they made the mistake of deploying their tactics against white people). (No Joke!)
The GOP tax plan would allow generations of the super wealthy to live tax-free. It is a plan so outrageous that one of America’s top experts in helping the wealthy avoid taxes finds it abominable. Read our explanation from David Cay Johnston.
American media is turning a blind eye in regards to the Paradise Papers. Could be that many wealthy conservatives,the real owners of power within the media, will be found to have been cheating the government on their patriotic taxes.
*** November is National Adoption Awareness Month #NAAM
By LT (adoptee, top photo from my memoir book cover)
I have written on this blog about my story, my own search, my reunion, my work to help other adoptees, and the Lost Children Book Series. So MANY times. And I appreciate you have all hung in here with me on the adoptionland coverage, and the human trafficking issues. (If you have not read the coverage, use the search bar on this blog, or the Category tags.) There are so many stories, after meeting so many adoptees. Not just Native adoptees – adoptees from everywhere.
Where are we now? Not far at all… I wrote this a few years ago:
Now more serious stuff…. It’s National Adoption Awareness Month. I call it Be-Wareness Month. Why? The billion dollar adoption industry tries its best to recruit new people to adopt. Few want to adopt a child(ren) from foster care. Why? They are too old, come with baggage (not just luggage), or already talk. Foster care kids are the ones who truly are in need of good parents, definitely.
It is a crazy world out there as more people are waking up to the reality of adoption myths (like “babies are blank slates”)(and some of these orphans are not orphans). As an adoptee I am in favor of legal guardianships for children who cannot be raised by their first families, and their kin. Children need their own name, ancestry, medical history and names of both parents, never erased but part of their legal records.
No more fake amended birth certificates that follow us our entire lives. PLEASE!
Ignorance of biological ancestry has had devastating consequences for some. In the U.K. in 2008, twins that were separated and adopted at birth unknowingly married each other. This year, a Brazilian couple found out after they were married that the same biological mother had abandoned them as infants. Random meetings amongst half siblings are not uncommon, as many have reported in the news, and on the DSR. One mom realized that a distant relative, one whom she and her children had spent time with at family gatherings, had donated sperm and was in fact the biological parent of her children.
From my friend Amanda:
Adoption Statistics That Matter. Right now, private adoption agencies are figuratively peeing their pants about the Adoption Tax Credit because they can charge more when the tax credit is in tact and as high as possible. They claim that the numbers of adopted children will drop drastically as a result (no they won’t, BTW). Blah. Here is some gross stuff that matters more:
-Black and Native children are disproportionately more likely to be taken into foster care than white children.
-Black children, specifically black boys, are less likely to be adopted.
-Adopted children are more likely to become foster children than any other child.
-It costs more to adopt a white female infant, privately, than any other child. The “fees” to adopt a boy of color are at least half of this.
This is an industry. Racism, sexism, adultism, and classism fuel it.
p.s. THANK YOU for reading this long post and watching the videos. YOU ROCK!
Rebecca Roberts describes the theft of Attorney General William Wirt’s skull from his crypt in the Congressional Cemetery.
But no one ever accused Robert White of being a thief. It’s safer to bet that White bought Wirt’s skull for his collection. Perhaps surprisingly, it is entirely legal to sell and possess human bones in the United States. There are some exceptions; the bones of Native Americans are federally regulated, for instance, and certain municipalities (like New Orleans) and states (New York, Georgia, and Tennessee) have local restrictions. But by and large, when human skulls are for sale, it’s legal to buy them. Most buyers seek skulls for educational purposes, so price is driven more by quality than the identity of the skull. When Robert White was buying, a skull could be had for $100-$600. Since then, prices have tripled, because the two biggest sources of human bones, India and China, have both banned exports. If White discovered the existence of Wirt’s skull through his connections in the ‘head hunting’ world, he could have simply purchased it legally, and without breaking the bank.
5 ***** Must-read –> The Atlantic’s Ta-Nehisi Coates has an eloquent essay on Donald Trump’s core ideology: “White supremacy, in all its truculent and sanctimonious power.” (audio too)
History repeats like a cycle, a chugging churning wheel. And we can’t seem to grasp or adequately process this. Why? Maybe we are too busy surviving, working our butts off at minimum wages, maybe too tired to notice how this “repeat cycle” is centuries in the making. (Picking up a history book? I don’t think many people would know where to start, what century or what account or story to trust.) If we know the truth, all of it, then we can see the cycle…
I woke up with this thought: When did we become elephants with chains around our feet? When did we get tricked into not knowing our own past, and America’s earliest days, the plant-the-flag mentality, and our own ancestors in its making? See the book description for Fantasyland below. (DNA is still news and Ancestry(dot) com is making millions for the Mormons – with slick TV ads and blood quantum charts. WOW! People are apparently driven by concern over blood and ancestry? Really?)
Photo (left): Seated L-R Dr. Thomas Augustus Bland (1830-1908) and Oglala Chief Red Cloud (1822-1909) Standing: Dr. Mary Cornelia Davis “Cora Bland” (1834-1919), interpreter Randall. Courtesy of Daniel G.
My cousin Charlie and I started writing a research paper on the editors of Council Fire, a radical publication read by Native people [and our cousin and its editor Dr. Thomas Augustus Bland] – well this paper has grown to almost 200 pages (with footnotes). History is like that. It grows and grows once you start digging and chasing ghosts. (And you send emails to helpful historians who knew more than we did.) I will let you know when we get this novella-book done and how to read it. I never expected to feel so desperately sick in this process, doing research. It’s been a few years of work (but not every day.) I admit it was and is hard to sleep when some chapters are so brutal, violent, graphic and ultimately tragic (all researched and true accounts). I told Charles we might want to put a warning label in the introduction.
Re-reading DIPLOMATS IN BUCKSKINS (author Herman J. Viola) and OUR HEARTS FELL TO THE GROUND: Plains Indians views of How The West was Lost (primary documents collected by Colin G. Calloway), I found the best word to describe many tribal leaders of the last century: resilient. (My own heart falls to the ground knowing what happened in North America.) That one word “resilient” defines the First Nations in North America in both mentioned books and in our research. Not all history is bad, of course but there are many heroes we’ve never heard of, as they are rarely mentioned in any history textbook or classroom… So if the material in these remarkable books and in our own research makes a tiny dent in the wide world of history, I’d celebrate and invite you all to a big party.
Here is a brief look at our research:
As previously mentioned… this was made possible in the dismal final years of 1888-1890, by the liaison between Thomas and Cora Bland with Catherine Weldon who acted as an intermediary with Sitting Bull. Through Weldon, Bland had flyers in the Sioux language distributed urging total resistance and Thomas Bland asked Red Cloud to not even meet with the (BIA) commissioners. Weldon provided maps and documents that explained the implications of these acts for the Sioux and is probably the reason Sitting Bull held out until he was killed in December 1890. These documents undoubtedly made their way to Red Cloud as well, though by then his health was failing, he was losing his hold on the Oglala and was more inclined to conciliation with the U.S. authorities.
(Michael Greyeyes and Jessica Chastain will play Sitting Bull and Catherine Weldon in Woman Walks Ahead, a movie forthcoming in 2017.) (I did read Eileen Pollack’s fantastic book Woman Walking Ahead: In Search of Catherine Weldon and Sitting Bull (2002) which gave us a very good look at Thomas Bland’s activism on behalf of Native people.
The Media Is the Villain – for Creating a World Dumb Enough for Trump
Matt Taibbi writes: “We learned long ago in this (media) business that dumber and more alarmist always beats complex and nuanced. Big headlines, cartoonish morality, scary criminals at home and foreign menaces abroad, they all sell. We decimated attention spans, rewarded hot-takers over thinkers, and created in audiences powerful addictions to conflict, vitriol, fear, self-righteousness, and race and gender resentment…. There isn’t a news executive alive low enough to deny that we use xenophobia and racism to sell ads.” Read: The greatest reality TV show on Earth
Fantasyland book description:…What’s happening in America today is not uncharted territory, but the flowering of the DNA that has defined our country from its inception. From an acclaimed, New York Times bestselling author and razor-sharp cultural critic, comes a new paradigm for understanding our post-truth world. There’s a tendency at this moment – this alternative-facts moment – to see our situation as an aberrant new American phenomena. In fact, it is the logical progression of our national character. America was created by wishful thinkers and true believers, by hucksters and their suckers. Fantasy is in our bones. From Manifest Destiny to witch hunts to P.T. Barnum to Joseph Smith and the Scopes Monkey Trial, from Walt Disney to Billy Graham, from the birther movement to, yes, Donald Trump, we have proven, again and again, to be uniquely susceptible to magical thinking, delusion, illusion, conspiracy, and bullshit. In other words: what do you get when you mix epic individualism with extreme religion, show business, and everything else; run it through the Great Awakening and the Great Delirium, the anything-goes Sixties and the internet age; and let it ferment for a few centuries? You get Fantasyland, a place where reality and fantasy are dangerously blurred and mingled.
“This is an important book – the indispensable book – for understanding America in the age of Trump. It’s an eye-opening history filled with brilliant insights, a saga of how we were always susceptible to fantasy, from the Puritan fanatics to the talk-radio and Internet wackos who mix show business, hucksterism, and conspiracy theories.” – Walter Isaacson
This is a moment in history where the free flow of information is critical. Indian Country needs a vehicle of Indian intelligence. As Elias Boudinot wrote in 1832 (as he was losing his editorship of The Cherokee Phoenix) “I do conscientiously believe it to be the duty of every citizen to reflect upon the dangers with which we are surrounded; to view the darkness which seems to lie before our people— our prospects, and the evils with which we are threatened; to talk over all these matters, and, if possible, come to some definite and satisfactory conclusion.”
That is why.
[Mark Trahant (Shoshone-Bannock) is an independent journalist and a friend.]
Excerpt: All of our well-publicized problems, including obesity, depression, pollution, and corruption are what it costs to create and sustain a trillion-dollar economy.
For the economy to be “healthy,” this world has to remain unhealthy.
(Read that again – for the economy to be healthy, the world has to remain unhealthy? WHAT the_?) (People have perfected marketing their services and telling us what we need …ie. big weddings, funerals, etc.)
…Here in the West, a lifestyle of unnecessary spending has been deliberately cultivated and nurtured in the public by big business. Companies in all kinds of industries have a huge stake in the public’s penchant to be frivolous with its spending, and in the documentary “The Corporation,” a marketing psychologist shows just how easy it is to increase sales by targeting nagging children, and the effect that nagging has on the parents’ spending.
Excerpt: …I arrive in a sparsely lit room where the Latvian artist Voldemārs Johansons’s “Thirst” (2015) is showing. A video of a stormy North Atlantic Ocean filmed in the Faroe Islands, the work is a single-shot visual capturing the sea in all its fury. Coupled with the waves’ frightening roars, the video truly envelops the visitor; it is threatening and immersive, drawing you in, spitting you out, relentlessly pulling and pushing. It is a powerful experience and I know my memory of it will endure. READ
TALK OF WORK WORK WORK and THE RAT RACE
By Lara Trace
Hungry Ghosts? …Nagging from media (esp. those horrible drug ads I mute or shut my eyes). The rat race reminds me of the book The Reinvention of Work by Matthew Fox which I still think about now, many years after reading it!
Time and Life is too short to be a hungry ghost, modern slave or in any rat race… In Fox’s book, “in four highly provocative chapters, Fox presents his ideas on the reinvention of work as related to family, politics, education, youth, health care, psychology, art, economics, business, and science. (Brilliant MAN!) As a critic of the old way of looking at the professions, he makes it clear that good work contributes to the extension of justice, compassion, and social transformation.” Read a book REVIEW
Are any US companies reinventing the 40-hour work week? Hardly. But do read this
Zappos is also turning traditional management on its head. They announced at their All Hands meeting in November 2014 that they are becoming a Holacracy. Holacratic organizations are organized in circles. Workers are members of several circles depending on what they are working on at the time. Decision authority is distributed throughout the organization, with everyone focused on the core purpose and strategy.
If you worked 30 hours or less each and every week, wouldn’t you be more productive, creative and rested? Wouldn’t you spend more time with your kids, friends and family? Wouldn’t you do more of what you love to do?
“…In the indigenous story, Earth is our Sacred Mother, a living being and the source of our birth and nurture. Her care is a sacred responsibility and cannot be compromised no matter how much money may be at stake. The significance of the indigenous perspective hit me full force when Karma Tshiteem, secretary of Bhutan’s Gross National Happiness Commission, summed up his presentation on Bhutan’s development philosophy with three words: “Time is life.”
[I was raised to believe that “Time is money.”] QUOTE SOURCE
I hope you seriously consider this for you and your life and your kids and how much time you allot for work and play.
My last salaried position, I worked 60+ hours, including weekends. (An earlier journalism job was pretty much the same.) I punched in at 8 am every weekday. We had two 15 min. breaks and a 30 minute lunch. I was salaried so I could leave work at 5 pm but the work often required more time, more hours and weekends. In my fifth year there, I consulted a therapist for stress-related issues (even a rash on my face!) The stress was affecting every aspect of my life, including my health (and my skin!). I had to make a choice, and I chose to leave.
Now I make my own hours for writing/editing/blogging so I will work when I have the good energy to do the work. I may work at midnite or all weekend. Some weeks, it’s 30 hours+ on book formatting and publishing other people’s books. I am doing blog consulting locally too. Charles and I are wrapping our academic writing on Dr. Thomas Augustus Bland, Red Cloud and Council Fire. Some afternoons I watch a movie or check out VIMEO (do watch Thirst). I often read blogs on weekends and usually Mondays. I blog in more than one place… BOOM! I often use Pinterest to inspire me as I write a fiction story about two elderly Oregon women I knew in Tillamook, particularly the one who rescues dogs.
I’m doing too much, says my hubby. “Make time for you. Shut off the media for awhile.” This is important. He’s right.
I’m taking time off social media, Facebook, Twitter, and not blogging …
I plan to single task (aka write the book about dogs). Two Worlds has been edited and will be republished as a second edition soon.
You will see me visiting your blogs (wouldn’t it be something to meet up in person!?) Your comments and blogs have meant much to me and you have given me many many things to think about and consider, so thank you!
(You can read the blogs I read (My Community) by clicking around in the sidebar.)
I admit I will struggle to be single-tasking (Over-work has been an addiction for too many years. Yes, I get a lot done but at what cost to my own brain?)
See you in the fall. (Yes, I’ll be taking months off)
You might want to do this, too. SERIOUSLY, give your brain a nice long break. I need more ocean, rocking chairs and books and long walks. You too?
My review of Andrés Reséndez’s The Other Slavery: The Uncovered Story of Indian Enslavement in America is up on JOTWELL: Equality. I highly recommend the book. It’s a dense and emotionally difficult read but well worth it for the knowledge you will gain. One of the things I was struck with was that the removal of Indian children from their homes by social services agencies has its roots in hundreds of years of stealing Indian children into slavery.
Another key historical antecedent to these removals was the genocidal boarding school system, which came to the forefront in the late 1800s.
Footnote By LT (writing a new book) (one novella fiction about dogs and Tillamook, OR)
In coming months/years I plan to be researching/writing on how American Indian history was deliberately colonized in print, in news, in movies…as propaganda and poop. This is a form of war. More of “What we are not supposed to know…”
Thanks to everyone for your comments and reading this blog ❤
By Lara Trace Hentz (poet-writer) (founder of Blue Hand Books)
I am remiss in mentioning I’m in the new poetry anthology IN THE VEINS (released 2-1-2017) and last year I did mention the poetry book TENDING THE FIRE by Chris Felver that is coming out in 2017. Louise and I are both that book. NICE!
Louise’s bookstore BIRCHBARK BOOKS (top photo) in Minnesota carries some of our Blue Hand Book titles. I am very grateful to her for this. Supporting me as a small press and publisher helps me publish new Native authors.
click logo to visit them
I founded Blue Hand Books in 2011 to give back to my community, right after I did my memoir One Small Sacrifice. Since then we have published 18 books, with four volumes in the Lost Children of the Indian Adoption Projects book series. (TWO WORLDS was the first anthology.) In the Veins is Volume 4. A portion of the proceeds from this poetry book edited by Patricia Busbee will be sent to the Standing Rock Water Protectors Camps (#NoDAPL).
Here is one of my poems from IN THE VEINS
…When People of the First Light saw ships and strangers disembark
…When the conqueror ran out of the woods firing loaded guns
…When they loaded some of us onto slave boats in shackles
Then a trickle becomes a river then a flood
…When an Indigenous mother loses her child at gun point
…When her child is punished by a nun, kicked in the neck
…When her child dies in residential school, buried in an unmarked grave
Then a trickle becomes a river then a flood
…When a black sedan enters the rez and children run and hide, afraid
…When a Cheyenne adoptee is a small boy, watching westerns on TV, he is told he is Indian
…When a Navajo adoptee is taken at the hospital and disappears, raised by Mormons
Then a trickle becomes a river, then a flood ….. of tears.
The people who chained, who murdered, who hacked, who raped, who hated their way across North America… they are still here, too.
Read an IN THE VEINS excerpt HERE. My Ojibwe scholar friend blogger Dr. Carol A. Hand (who I interviewed on this blog) and my dear friend and Unravelling anthology co-editor MariJo Moore and many many other Native American and First Nations poets (some of them famous or soon-to-be) contributed prose and poems for this beautiful new book. If you love poetry, you will love this… LINK to BUY from BHB.
COMING SOON! Blue Hand Books is publishing a brand new novella by Barbara Robidoux, author of Sweetgrass Burning.
(New Yorker excerpt) …On a cool evening in early November, I rented a car in Wichita, Kansas, and drove north from the city through slanting sunlight, across the suburbs and out beyond the last shopping center, where the horizon settles into farmland. After a couple of hours, just before the town of Concordia, I headed west, down a dirt track flanked by corn and soybean fields, winding through darkness until my lights settled on a large steel gate. A guard, dressed in camouflage, held a semiautomatic rifle.
He ushered me through, and, in the darkness, I could see the outline of a vast concrete dome, with a metal blast door partly ajar. I was greeted by Larry Hall, the C.E.O. of the Survival Condo Project, a fifteen-story luxury apartment complex built in an underground Atlas missile silo. The facility housed a nuclear warhead from 1961 to 1965, when it was decommissioned. At a site conceived for the Soviet nuclear threat, Hall has erected a defense against the fears of a new era. “It’s true relaxation for the ultra-wealthy,” he said. “They can come out here, they know there are armed guards outside. The kids can run around.”
We stopped in a condo. Nine-foot ceilings, Wolf range, gas fireplace. “This guy wanted to have a fireplace from his home state”—Connecticut—“so he shipped me the granite,” Hall said. Another owner, with a home in Bermuda, ordered the walls of his bunker-condo painted in island pastels—orange, green, yellow—but, in close quarters, he found it oppressive. His decorator had to come fix it.
That night, I slept in a guest room appointed with a wet bar and handsome wood cabinets, but no video windows. It was eerily silent, and felt like sleeping in a well-furnished submarine.
In the first seven days after Donald Trump’s election, 13,401 Americans registered with New Zealand’s immigration authorities, the first official step toward seeking residency—more than seventeen times the usual rate. The New Zealand Herald reported the surge beneath the headline “Trump Apocalypse.”
“…We are clearly living in dangerous and changing times that the uninformed will never understand until the threats are evident. We cannot predict, but we can prepare,’ the company said in a statement to MailOnline. The biggest facility is in Germany – Europa One – and is ‘one of the most fortified and massive underground survival shelters on Earth, deep below a limestone mountain’ and ‘safely secured from the general public, behind sealed and secured walls, gates and blast doors’.
…Journalist Lynn Parramore visited the facility in Indiana, US – and reported the gigantic bunker was like walking into a hotel, describing it as the ‘Ritz Carlton of doomsday shelters’. The cheapest of the bunkers will set you back $35,000, while the most delux costs up to $3 million. The state of the art facilities also include a hospital, and armed guards on duty to keep the 99 percent from breaking into the hideaway. To avoid a Lord of the Flies scenario, the designers have also implemented a handbook that outlines by laws for the bunkered community….” (Top photo of Europa)
I have been wanting to post about bunkers a long time. My good blog buddy Dan who blogs at TUBULARSOCK (see my interview) has his own virtual bunker tour. It got me thinking.
I want to let you all know I’m NOT going bonkers for bunkers. Yet it haunts my sleep. I would not be any good in one… Claustrophobic? That would be me.
But a compound might work! Above-ground would be good, right?!
Many years ago, my aunt in Aurora Illinois told me she’d heard that the BUSH dynasty had a ranch aka compound in Paraguay, next door to the late Rev. Sun Myung Moon (former Head of the Moonies). I’d heard the southern hemisphere would be best to relocate on the globe if our planet took a big revolving turn.
Why Paraguay? Here’s some fun facts about Paraguay.
Then it’s reported everywhere but here in America:
… astonishingly large land purchases (298,840 acres, to be exact) by the Bush family in 2005 and 2006. In 2006, while on a trip to Paraguay for the United Nation’s children’s group UNICEF, Jenna Bush (daughter of former President George W. Bush and granddaughter of former President George H.W. Bush) reportedly bought 98,840 acres of land in Chaco, Paraguay, near the Triple Frontier (Bolivia, Brazil, and Paraguay). This land is said to be near the 200,000 acres purchased by her grandfather, George H.W. Bush, in 2005.
So the Bush people want their compound to be above “WATER” which some might call the new “gold.” What? Are they planning to sell water to Texas or to the world?
WAIT! Didn’t the Nazis relocate to South America?… “…Paraguay…where Simon Weisenthal famously hunted down Nazi fugitives? The story gets wierder….”
So we’ve got panic in the rich who are relocating to Paraguay and New Zealand or buying bunkers in Kansas, Texas and Indiana plus the chaos that it’s getting even weirder with Trump at the helm. Some guy has his helicopter gassed, ready to evacuate?
Since 2013 I’ve been developing a book project on the relationship between Indian treaties and Native American sovereignty and Origins magazine asked me to write an essay on treaties, tribal sovereignty, and the #NODAPL protests in North Dakota. I’m pleased to say the article is now live at this address, and I trust my readers will find it edifying. READ brilliant Dave Nichols
Last year saw a victory for a US President running on a platform of hatred, and a UK vote to leave the EU on a platform of fear. Both campaigns painfully revealed how deeply divided both the United States and the United Kingdom are, and how conflicted our ideas of justice have become. But 2016 also marked the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare. And if anyone understood what comprises the bedrock of justice, Shakespeare did: Love.
How about this… the CIA dumped truckloads of files onto the ‘Net in early January and all of a sudden people like you and me can read just how spooky the CIA has been and could be (of course secretly). This is where our tax money goes?
If you don’t believe me – watch a clip The Men Who Stare at Goats… 🙂
CIA Docs Reveal Agency’s Longtime Obsession With UFOs, Magic
(REPORT) — The juicy bits of the CIA’s massive document dump may have centered on their overt use of torture against detainees and the internal debates underpinning that policy, but it’s far from the only thing in there that warrants a second look. The documents also include substantial information about CIA obsession with UFO sightings, policies for using invisible ink, and their determined investigation into magicians.
Reports on the UFOs described some 20% of sightings as “unexplained,” and sought more cooperation from the Pentagon in documentation of such sightings, particularly pushing to ensure that all high-ranking Air Force commanders were briefed on the rules for reporting about them.
The CIA showed concern both about the “national security” implications of flying saucers, and the intelligence ramifications of them, with the advisory committee urging “close attention” be paid both to Russian actions with respect to UFOs, and public opinion within the US about them.
With respect to magic, the CIA appears to have become intensely interested in the phenomenon in the late 1960s and early 1970s, with one 1969 document about a “self-educated magician” in Soviet Georgia who was able to perform “miracle” healings through the laying of hands.
The CIA’s interest in magic got a lot bigger in short order, and within a few years they were bringing in television psychic Uri Geller, who famously used to bend spoons on TV with the power of his mind.
Incredibly, the CIA was quickly convinced that Geller had real powers, and tried to move into remote viewing, the attempt to conduct surveillance on sites they don’t have access to via supernatural means.
By Lara Trace Hentz
So why are we hearing about all of this now? (My brain beeps… the CIA is unleashing secret files we never thought we’d see. Woohoo, maybe t-rump scared them silly…)
I am sure many of you are already FULL of news, as in brain bloated and ready to explode. Me, too.
My cousin Charlie and I have been emailing tidbits and I wanted to share a quote that I sent to him:
“…Trump’s behavior is so upsetting to his opposition that our elected representatives are willing to sign off on people they might ordinarily see as excessively radical because they’re so terrified of what Trump might do without an experienced and paternal figure like “Mad Dog” Mattis or Rex Tillerson in there to reign him in.
“…It’s classic good cop-bad cop. The more unhinged Trump appears the more comforting his generals look, the more reassuring a three or four-star general appears… And the people who need to know that know that (like the CIA who use that.)
T-rump is already 10 steps ahead of us, and it’s remarkable (and not) to see how he was (s)elected…
But I have this really sick feeling ::: they start a fire in your front yard (24/7 news, KellyAnne/Spicer weirdness) while they do their work in your backyard. We are seeing this in action now. It’s actions not words (and executive order signings) that we need to watch… Distraction is rampant…
They have used this tactic on Indians since treaty times. I learned about this from a Northern Cheyenne friend in Seattle. It really works! He used the example of the Indian Barbie doll (in the early 90s) which had people really upset while sovereign treaty rights were being violated. Now Winona LaDuke is signalling this:
Winona LaDuke: Trump's Push to Build Dakota Access & Keystone XL Pipelines is a Declaration of War | Democracy Now! https://t.co/863SGINmc8
We are dealing with a ROGUE (a real mobster with no training to be president). He could be manipulated (even blackmailed) by other rulers to commit human rights horrors (and vice versa – t-rump has cameras in his hotels too.)
This guy REALLY has the nuke codes… the most terrifying thought of all…
P.S. On another note I read an old playboy MUST READ interview where t-rump listed off men he looked up to… all studio heads and business guys from the golden age of Hollywood and show business..
Aaaah, that figures… (it’s insight into who t-rump really is)
RUMBLE: The Indians Who Rocked The World / Canada (Executive Producer: Tim Johnson, Mohawk) This powerful documentary about the role of Native Americans in contemporary music history—featuring some of the greatest music stars of our time—exposes a critical missing chapter, revealing how Indigenous musicians helped shape the soundtracks of our lives and, through their contributions, influenced popular culture. Category: WORLD CINEMA DOCUMENTARY COMPETITION
Until the advent of genetic genealogy, knowing your ancestry meant combing through old records, decoding the meaning of family heirlooms and listening to your parents and grandparents tell you about the “good old days.” For anthropologists and archaeologists interested in going back even further in time, the only reliable means of understanding human history were trying to interpret ruins or remnants of skeletons or other information uncovered at the site of remains.
DNA testing has changed all that, allowing us to delve far deeper into our past than before and with a much higher degree of accuracy. Although there are many issues stirred by DNA testing, none is more provocative than interpreting our family and tribal ancestries.
Nowhere is this more apparent than among the Native American tribes in the United States. I recently wrote about a large-scale genetic analysis among the American population by personal genetics and genealogy company 23andMe, using its extensive database to begin to decipher the ancestral origins of various ethnic groups in the United States.
Though the study involved more than 160,000 people, less than less than one percent of those who participated self-identified as Native American. Rose Eveleth, a journalist writing for The Atlantic suggests that this lack of participation may have a lot to do with how Native tribes perceive genetic testing:
But when it comes to Native Americans, the question of genetic testing, and particularly genetic testing to determine ancestral origins, is controversial. […] Researchers and ethicists are still figuring how to balance scientific goals with the need to respect individual and cultural privacy. And for Native Americans, the question of how to do that, like nearly everything, is bound up in a long history of racism and colonialism.
[…] for Native Americans, who have witnessed their artifacts, remains, and land taken away, shared, and discussed among academics for centuries, concerns about genetic appropriation carry ominous reminders about the past.
Eveleth references the widely publicized case where the Havasupai Tribe living near the Grand Canyon sued an Arizona State University scientist for using genetic samples collected from the tribe to conduct research outside of the purpose of the original study. The crux of the issue was the consent form, which covered a broad range of uses for the samples—a fact that the tribes claimed was not explained to them appropriately.
Although the tribe won the case, reclaimed the samples and settled with the university for $700,000, the issue captured the front page of the New York Times and put “every tribe in the US on notice regarding genetics research” as Native American tribal research ethics expert Ron Whitener quoted in an article titled “After Havasupai Litigation, Native Americans Wary of Genetic Research” published in the American Journal of Medical Genetics Part A.
Around the same time that the genetics of the Havasupai were being studied, another high profile issue bought Native American tribes in conflict with researchers. The Kennewick Man, an approximately 9,000-year-old skeleton was discovered by accident in 1994 in Kennewick, Washington. The Umatilla Tribe, who were indigenous to the region, sought to reclaim the remains under the 1990 Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act to bury it in accordance with traditions. Anthropology researchers who wanted to study the skeleton however, argued there wasn’t enough evidence to convincingly show that the remains were Native American and therefore should not be returned. This resulted in a widely publicized eight-year-long legal dispute between scientists and the government that ended in 2004 with the court ruling in favor of the archaeologists, a decision that the tribes were expectedly unhappy with.
Now, the issue has come under the spotlight once again with the Seattle Times reporting last month that preliminary DNA analyses indicated that the Kennewick Man was indeed of Native American ancestry.
Go on social media and not get somewhat depressed? Exactly! I watched Twitter instead of the Big Debate, for example. I want to gauge what others are thinking. My head still hurts. (Yelling out loud may help sometimes.)
Otherwise I cuddle up and read and crochet and do mosaic coloring so I keep very very calm. I know it’s theatrics and not politics.
Native Musician and AWARD WINNER JOSH HALVERSON (Lakota) SELECTS ALICIA KEYS AS HIS COACH ON NBC’S THE VOICE: Josh Halverson (Mdewakantonwan Sioux) who won the Songwriter of the Year Award at the Native American Music Awards in 2013 for his Cd, One Shot, earned a last minute three-chair turn during The Voice Blind Auditions as his wife and young son, Thunderbird, watched backstage. Josh, who is a cattle rancher from Texas performed a haunting version of Bob Dylan’s “Forever Young”. Once Miley Cyrus, Alicia Keys, and Blake Sheldon hit their buttons, they all turned around to fight for Halverson. Although Blake brought out his best cattle talk, Halverson chose to join Team Alicia. [www.NAMALIVE.com] I don’t watch the VOICE but I love Josh.
A notorious example: NY city planner Robert Moses designed a number of Long Island Parkway overpasses to be so low that buses could not drive under them. This effectively blocked Long Island from the poor and people of color who tend to rely more heavily on public transportation. And the low bridges continue to wreak havoc in other ways: 64 collisions were recorded in 2014 alone (here’s a bad one). READ HERE
Joseph Blue Crow discovers why he has spent his life in the shadow of the raven. And now, for the first time, he feels able to walk the good red road. He will dedicate his life to recording the personal stories of the descendants of the Lakota people who died at Wounded Knee. In the light of truth, he says, may all heal. (I’m finishing up THE ROCK CHILD by Win Blevins now)