There have been many governments through history with people like Trump/Kushner in power; they just haven’t been democracies.
The portion of that Meryl Streep speech that stunned and silenced the Golden Globes. pic.twitter.com/QIcQfTqDqB
— Dave Itzkoff (@ditzkoff) January 9, 2017
All this matters because Kushner may be the single most important influence on Trump.
I wanted to share a resource that is very good if you are keeping up with news as a citizen journalist/blogger/vlogger.
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
Happy Friday the 13th – hmmm… is it Happy or just Friday the 13th? Hey, I’m always happy to read about new movies:-) xoxox LT
Wow, 2017 and 6 years since I started this blog. I became a journalist in 1996.
In those 20 years, many of us watched journalism change, but not for the better. (Think about the embedded journalists in Iraq during the Bush years. Shock-and-awe to have journalists told and shown what they report? That war cost us billions.) This loss of fair and honest reporting cost us more than money, as citizens, and as voters. We do not get impartial reporting in the US. We’re told so many lies, it’s hard to gauge/guess/judge who is more guilty – the press or the politician. We know politicians lie but it’s totally out-of-control when media is broadcasting them day and night. (That news cycle 24/7 has made us so weary, apathy and exhaustion sets in fast.) In the past year, many major news outlets and TV news were not doing their job as investigators, not even admitting their errors. A democracy demands freedom of the press. The press serves us, its citizens, its voters, its readers. What happened to the press?
— FiveThirtyEight (@FiveThirtyEight) December 21, 2016
We are heading into unchartered waters with this new Trump administration and the truth gets murkier by the hour. It’s obvious Trump watches a lot of TV, since he’s still a reality TV producer. Trump’s becoming Leader-in-Tweet. [Those Twitter people should seriously yank his account.] He has a tweet for everything, it seems.
— bennydiegø 📎 (@bennydiego) January 11, 2017
I had a good cry last night when actress Meryl Streep said, “Take your broken heart and make it into art.” She was quoting her late friend, Carrie Fisher. Streep took on Trump then a tweet storm exploded.
I’d been seriously wondering if now is a good time to give up blogging, but I quickly reconsidered. Now is not the time to stop. NOW is the time to consider and reconsider what we read, write, and how we act/react.
Our energy is not to be wasted on fluff or gimmicks or shtick. If Big Media/Social Media is failing us, then blogs will offer a new freedom, free and uncensored in the next four years. But our quest is to read the BEST blogs and hear the BEST podcasts. (I am following over 250 blogs now and plan to scale way way back. Like you, I want to be informed, educated, enlightened, and of course, amused.)
I am thankful to blogs like fivethirtyeight.com who are reporting on Trump’s many conflicts of interest here. Painter is concerned about Trump’s potential conflicts of interest and said laws should incorporate what we know from science. “There needs to be more effort to address underlying psychological biases,” he said.
I am thankful to Native News Online for constant updates from Standing Rock, like this.
Thanks to my dear friend Carol Hand for her thoughtful amazing blog and this article about our changing climate and effects on trees. And to Dr. Stuart Bramhall for her
Big thanks to Hyperallergic for a burgeoning artist movement that is gearing up for the next four years of Trump: Required Reading …good things that happened in 2016, like this Twitter photo on populism in Trumplandia, and more.] Sign up for their emails like I did.
Looking back, we had a standoff of US military EQUIPPED to wage war against unarmed water protectors in North Dakota, and Big Media barely show up?
How will BIG MEDIA ever earn back our trust? (Like when Fox News was nicknamed Bush Propaganda News.) Since when did journalists care so much about their own fame and fortune and clicks? Can’t they see past their paychecks? Does greed poison everything?
We journalists do have a hard job to do, covering politics at a safe distance, building reliable good sources, counting on the integrity of publishers and editors who don’t take bribes or succumb to threats.
Where did their integrity go? Did it do a nosedive when journalism joined up with social media, and became about who gets the most clicks and hits on their websites. Is marketing and selling and ratings priority? Social Media has become a perversion, an invasion, a monitor, sanctioned by tyrants like Trump who can dominate an entire news cycle with a single tweet.
As citizens, we need accountability of the press and the politician. I am sure that Trump Presidency will start a whole new wave of citizen journalism and blogging.
I will be writing here on this blog weekly, and sharing what I find worthy of your time and my own.
Thanks to all of you who blog/create/write so generously and read this blog.
I hope people, including bloggers, begin to speak up when shit really starts hitting the fan. Trump will affect nearly all aspects of our daily lives, and at some point I don’t think it’s going to be possible to just pretend it’s not happening.
By LT (wearing my heavy history hat)
My cousin Charlie is saying he’s in the fourth stage of grief – “If we can laugh it means we are in the Kubler-Ross 4th stage.” I do think we need to laugh and cry.
Last weekend I watched a live feed history symposium at Brown University in Rhode Island. First, I was overwhelmed and overcome with information. I took copious notes. I was very pleased how Native American Slavery was talked about, too. I was happy to see people of color from around the world giving presentations on their own history truths. (I even posted a few photos on Instagram since this was historic!) Then I got so angry. Several things hit me like bricks!
Last Real Indians published my op-ed on Tuesday.
Here it is:
History Snobs ask Why Now? #SlaveryPublicHistory
“The great force of history comes from the fact that we carry it within us, are unconsciously controlled by it in many ways, and history is literally present in all that we do.” ― James Baldwin, The Price of the Ticket: Collected Nonfiction, 1948-1985
By Trace Lara Hentz for Last Real Indians
This Snobs headline ought to get me a few gasps and new readers. No, I’m not a history snob. I’m a lover. I can’t get enough of what I call His-Story: where/there, when/then, what/that.
I watched (with baited breath) the live feed of the history symposium at Brown University. Official title: SLAVERY AND GLOBAL PUBLIC HISTORY: New Challenges. It’s about: Universities across the United States and the world have been forced to confront connections to slavery throughout their histories. From Brown to Yale, Oxford and in South Africa, students, faculty, and administrations wrestle with how to expose, conceal, honor, or memorialize the legacies of slavery. LINK: https://www.brown.edu/initiatives/slavery-and-justice/global-public-history/schedule
Abolitionists were not popular at first or everywhere, but were willing to risk injury or death for what was right. They challenged an “inevitable” norm with a coherent moral vision that challenged slavery, capitalism, sexism, racism, war, and all variety of injustice. They foresaw a better world, not just the current world with one change. They marked victories and moved on, just as those nations that have abolished their militaries could be used today as models for the rest. They made partial demands but painted them as steps toward full abolition. They used the arts and entertainment. They created their own media. They experimented (such as with emigration to Africa) but when their experiments failed, they never ever gave up. – David Swanson
Top Photo: Veterans from across America from all branches of the United State military celebrated with water protectors on Tuesday afternoon this week.
Over 150 artists, writers, curators, gallery workers, and other activists showed up outside Ivanka Trump’s Manhattan apartment in a protest organized by Halt Action Group.
TOP PHOTO: Instagram’s Halt Action Group @dearivanka
***Kelly Hayes Blog: The language that any oppressed people use to describe the violent decisions Trump voters have made is not the problem.
The problem here isn’t that we need to narrow our notions of racism, in order to collectively build forward. It’s that we need to broaden those notions to encompass racism’s varied manifestations.
Living in Relativity – Tiokasin Ghosthorse
In Native communities and indigenous thinking, water is much more than a resource. Water is part of the “body” of the universe and Mother Earth. It covers more than 70% of the Earth’s surface and also is the major make-up of almost all life forms. Water is life. There are many compelling issues that have come to the forefront in the last few months. Some have drawn worldwide attention such as the Standing Rock Sioux struggle to protest the Dakota Access Pipeline and protect the North Dakota watershed and its people. Others are not as well known such as protecting the everglades from new fracking and drilling techniques in southwest Florida that pose risks to groundwater, from which the Seminole tribe derive their entire source of water. There is a saying in Native Hawaiian culture that says Mohala I ka wai ka maka o ka pua, which means Unfolded by the water are the faces of the flowers. The flowers are the metaphors for all life. People thrive where there is clean water and good living conditions. Tiokasin Ghosthorse is one of Native Arts and Cultures Foundation’s 2016 national music fellows and wrote a beautiful article on an indigenous Lakota perspective of water that I highly encourage you to read here.
Lulani Arquette, NACF President and CEO
By Winona LaDuke
Special to News From Indian Country and Everybody Else
Standing Rock is an unpredicted history lesson for all of us. More than any moment I recall since Wounded Knee, the Vietnam War, or the time of Martin Luther King, this moment stands as a crossroads in the battle for social justice. It is also an economic issue, in a time of economic system transformation, and profoundly a question of the future of this land. The world is watching.
As the US Army Corps of Engineers issues a December 5 eviction notice for thousands of people gathered on the banks of the Missouri River, we face our truth. Those people at the Oceti Sakowin and Red Warrior Camps, along with the 550 people who have been arrested so far, are really the only thing standing between a river and a corporation that wants to pollute it. That we know, because absent any legal protections, and with a regulatory system hijacked by oil interests and a federal government in crisis, the people and the river remain the only clear and sentient beings.
In short, this is a moment of extreme corporate rights and extreme racism confronted by courage, prayers, and resolve. This moment has been coming. The violence and the economics of a failing industry will indeed unravel, and this is the beginning.
The Deep North
North Dakota did not become Alabama – or the Deep North, as it is now called – overnight. Native people in North Dakota have been treated poorly for more than a hundred years, whether by the damming of the Missouri and the flooding of millions of acres of tribal land, or by poverty and incarceration, North Dakota is a place of systemic and entrenched racism.
Two of the poorest counties in the country are on Standing Rock, Native people comprise almost a fourth of the people in prison, Native suicide rates are ten times that of North Dakotans, infrastructure (like the fifty year old hospital with four doctors for 8000 people, and a now blocked Highway l806, without a shoulder) is at an all-time low, and people freeze to death and overdose in the shadow of the Bakken Oil fields.
That’s the first layer of abuse, aside from the day to day racism, emboldened by Morton County and the incoming Trump government. It is visible for the world to see now.
For many who come, North Dakota is something unknown. Americans fly over the state, talk about how the movie Fargo was funny, and wonder sheepishly about how it’s working out in the Bakken. Very few visit, and there is almost no civil society to advocate for the environment or the people.
Let me put it this way, until this year, the Sierra Club had one staff person in North Dakota, and the American Civil Liberties Union had one staff member covering both North and South Dakota. It is as if North Dakota is just too uncomfortable for a progressive movement to visit or work in. Instead, we have watched.
After all, the sex trafficking, violence, and corruption has overwhelmed most of the state’s capacity to address it, and a recent study by the National Academy of Sciences found widespread groundwater contamination in the fracking fields.
For North Dakotans it has become just how it is… That is to say: accommodating corporations is the North Dakota way. This last year, North Dakota health officials excused more oil spills without penalty, and increased the allowable levels of radiation in municipal and county dumps to accommodate the fracking industry. The corporations direct state policy. It’s been easy to put it out of mind because after all, it seems so far away when we view the world from our television or smartphone.
In the midst of this, we find ourselves facing a larger set of forces. As of November 18, the Morton County Sheriff’s Department inventoried their troops at 1,287 deputies, including police from 25 North Dakota counties, 20 North Dakota cities, and 9 states (Indiana, Louisiana, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin and Wyoming). Over 550 people have been arrested, many of them strip searched and cavity searched for misdemeanor charges, and a number of them held overnight in dog kennels. Now the state has fired on unarmed people who want to protect the water from contamination.
After all, that’s what this is about. To serve the convenience of a deadline for Energy Transfer Partners’s corporate profits, the police have fired teargas canisters, water hoses, concussion grenades, rubber bullets, tasers, and bean bag rounds at unarmed people trying to protect their water supply. Most of them are Native, and the North Dakota media has continued to portray the water protectors as outlaws.
When 21 year old New York resident Sophia Wilansky’s arm was blown off by a concussion grenade, Morton County Sheriff Kirchenmeir suggested that the water protectors caused it. KEEP READING: The Beginning is Near: The Deep North, Evictions and Pipeline Deadlines – Indian Country News
Let’s add this to the last post about mascots
The debate over whether Turners Falls should keep its Indian mascot was brought to the field on Thursday at the annual Thanksgiving Day football game between Greenfield and Turners Falls when the team did the “Tomahawk Chop” and a waterboy wore a Native American headdress. The “Tomahawk Chop” is when the participants moves their arm in a downward chopping motion, as to mimic a Native American use of the particular type of hatchet.
The Gill-Montague Regional School Committee banned the Tomahawk Chop, and its accompanying chant from sporting events in 2009. While fans occasionally do the Tomahawk Chop, it hasn’t been done by the football team since the ban. Michael Sullivan, superintendent for the Gill-Montague Regional School district, said the administration is reviewing what took place at the game.
Read the full story in the Greenfield Recorder.
We made it through Native American Heritage Month and National Adoption Awareness Month. Whew. If you watch twitter or facebook, there was plenty to see and read.
I gave a talk about the new anthology STOLEN GENERATIONS at the college here on Nov. 16. There were many people who sincerely want to understand what is truth, what really happened around here, what they didn’t learn in school… from an Indigenous perspective. I told the audience my talk should have been titled: “We’re not supposed to know.”
His-story – that is the division we are seeing everywhere. There is plenty we are not supposed to know.
So, what is truth?
I sent a letter to the Turners Falls Mascot Committee so they might reconsider its use:
Dear School Board:
I have just a few things about the Turners Falls mascot issue and local history.
This issue is not a surprise. The community near Great Falls doesn’t know the history. Who exactly wrote the account of what happened in Turners Falls? Let’s be clear. It was not the Pocumtuck or Wampanoag or any of the other tribes who lost their lives on that fateful day.
Time after time, war after war, history is told (or not told) by the victor, the winner of the conflict.
When I interviewed leaders of the Eastern Pequot years back, I wanted Connecticut to know its own history, largely unwritten, hidden. Marcia Flowers said, “we’ve been cleaning people’s houses for the past 300+ years.”
Indian people knew it was best to be invisible. Many still feel this way: invisible.
Pequot scalps? The bounty was $100 in colonial times. $100 is like a million dollars today, right?
Why don’t we all know this?
We’re not supposed to know.
This issue over mascots makes it clear. We argue over history. If it creates conflict, this is exactly how the oppressor and oppression works.
We in North America are literally educated to be ignorant of the true history. It’s a blood-soaked path in the pioneer valley and westward. Fictions were crafted by the nation builders who used war/massacre/colonization on the First Nations Indian People yet these facts were diminished or erased. Hiding truth and history only perpetuates continued racism and intolerance. Your Indian mascot doesn’t honor anyone but reveals our ignorance.
I understand people here think that their Indian mascot is their version of honoring the past or a sincere form of loving Indians. Your mascot offends us? It does… deeply.
for more on the Dakota Access PipeLine and #NoDAPL for more on the water protectors… go to twitter or watch Facebook
CLICK TO SEE:
Roelie works with integrity and empathy. She is the only civil servant that families of adoption-loss trust to protect children. She has the knowledge and expertise. She must be allowed to work on children´s rights, so that families are protected and laws are kept-because children’s rights are Human Rights.
My name is Janine Vance and I am one of the Vance Twins. When my sister and I were sent to the United States from South Korea in 1972, the pioneering adoption agency gave our adoptive parents a document called “Certificate of Orphanhood.” This piece of paper gave the impression that we were orphans. Because this document implied that we had no Korean family, we wore whole new identities without question and never thought to look for people who we were told did not exist. The idea of a Korean family did not enter our consciousness while we were young.
It was not until my sister and I were 32 years old that we learned that most children are not truly orphans but were merely giving the label of orphan in order to be processed overseas for intercountry adoption. What?!? We felt like we had been living a lie for more than three decades! This discovery was the catalyst that motivated me to investigate intercountry adoption and how exactly children are obtained by so-called “ethical” adoption agencies.
“Poverty is no reason to take children away. Poverty is NOT a disease and international adoptions are NOT the solution.” — Roelie Post, Former EU official
After a decade of listening to numerous accounts from global families of adoption-loss—families who have been unnecessarily separated for adoption (but dismissed and ignored because of the public’s love affair for adoption), we’ve met one woman who has truly fought for the proper implementation of children’s rights for the European Commission since 1990. The name of this hero of ours is Roelie Post, civil servant of the European Commission since 1983. She is someone, we—adopted people and parents of loss—can trust to truly protect children from being trafficked for intercountry adoption. We applaud Roelie’s work specifically for the stand she took in respect of Romania’s Child Protection.
Devastatingly, a ferocious adoption lobby made up of adoption agencies, lawyers, NGOs, adopters and their allies have given themselves the authority to decide the fate of vulnerable families worldwide. Adoption facilitators have ignored the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) a legal binding agreement that was originally created to protect the natural-born rights of children all over the world. Perfectly fine methods set forth within the UNCRC such as temporary care and guardianship care, sponsorship, step-parent adoption, kinship care have been ignored for too long – methods that would keep children with their families.
This “adoption lobby” has even built their own legal agreement—a modern day cemented and sanctioned freeway—that has taken precedence over the fate of children from other nations and people. These agenda—driven individuals have enforced their own ill-conceived belief system—their own definition of Child Protection and The Best Interest of Children (intercountry adoption) via the Hague Adoption Convention (HAC) onto innocent families who could have cared for themselves if given the chance. The victims and survivors of this system—trusting and naïve families who still live and grieve parent/child separations every single day—have no recourse to seek justice.
Adoption trafficking continues at an alarming rate and no one except for Roelie Post has been courageous enough to fight against the lobby. In fact, she has been followed, her home office was broken into and ransacked, a plastic gun was left on her doorstep and strange men gestured toward her as if drawing a gun! Despite being intimidated, she continues to fight for children’s rights. Roelie Post needs to be held at the highest regard and protected!
Today, foreigners can apply for a license, enter a nation and then expedite precious children overseas before allowing them to be cared for by extended family or the people of their birth community, culture, and country. Perfectly fine methods set forth within the UNCRC such as temporary care and guardianship care, sponsorship, step-parent adoption, kinship care have been ignored for too long. Huge amounts of money are crossing hands, children are sold at varying prices depending on the child’s race, and children are photo listed on western websites like little pups on online catalogs. How dehumanizing! No child – not even your own – is safe from being targeted and processed overseas.
Intercountry adoption has expanded its web now onto Africa. An Ethiopian child can cost more then $64,000 but to help an Ethiopian parent and child stay together as a family, an estimate of $15 per month. Today, these agencies are claiming to be advocates for family preservation which deceptively gives them a doorway opened to set up shop within foreign nations and provide “services” – services that could have easily gone directly to the citizens of that nation. Billions of dollars are crossing the hands of NGOs. Children are being unnecessarily moved across borders.
Today more than 200,000 Korean children have been sent to foreign families. And they are NOT living “cosmopolitan” lives like assumed by many Koreans. Rather, they live daily with losses, misunderstandings, feelings of doubt and abandonment by the very country that could have protected them—but didn’t. Intercountry Adoption only ADDS to the problems a family already has. Intercountry Adoption does not solve a family’s problems. The best preventative medicine is to counsel families by organizations who do not have a financial agenda. We all know that when history is ignored, it is bound to repeat itself.
For every “forever family” created by adoption another family is forever torn apart.
All of this can be stopped!
We need Roelie Post to continue to work within the European Commission on Children´s Rights and trafficking, so that she can continue to protect children’s rights like she has done successfully during the accession process of Romania into the EU and while working for ACT- Against Child Trafficking.
My sister and I applaud Roelie Post for having the courage to carry out her job properly. She is a child’s right expert and a hero to many of us. Being “saved orphans,” we understand and appreciate the challenges the European Commission had to fight in Romania for children’s rights against a determined force.
Roelie works with integrity and empathy. She is the only civil servant that families of adoption-loss trust to protect children. She has the knowledge and expertise. She must continue to work on children´s rights, so that families are protected and laws are kept-because children’s rights are Human Rights.
Visit Roelie Post’s website here.
Trace contributed a chapter in the Vance’s book ADOPTIONLAND
For news on industry practices, go to Adoptionland.org
Adoptionland podcast listen here
You might also like these videos on the topic of adoption here.
November is National Adoption Awareness Month (#NAAM2016).
Adoptees have taken this month to blog, write and educate… thanks for reading… L/T
Despite all evidence to the contrary we still think this is simply a “war of words”; a simple changing of minds. It’s not. The “adopter narrative” is morphing and adapting in order to silence us; it is stealing the power of our words and the weight of our tropes in order to render us harmless and pointless. And the correct response is not just more words, but, at long last, union; and beyond that, words that form a framework for praxis; for action. When all is said and done, when our silly hashtags are forgotten on the dustheap of history, there will be an accounting of our accomplishments, and how successful we were in “scripting the flip”; in paving the way for a revolution of all those displaced, dispossessed, and disinherited. For it begs the question: if not now, when, exactly, do we see this happening? – Daniel Ibn Zayd
- The Journalistic Stunt of Trafficking Syrian Children
The White Savior
March 17th, 2016 by Daniel Ibn Zayd
- On the New Adopter Narratives
Parental Co-opting of Adoption Activism
December 19th, 2015 by Daniel Ibn Zayd
- Racism, Class, and Adoption
Facing Off With the “Smiling Foxes” of NPR
January 16th, 2014 by Daniel Ibn Zayd
- Adoption, Surrogacy, and Birthright
April 15th, 2013 by Daniel Ibn Zayd
- The New Abolition: Ending Adoption in Our Time
August 18th, 2012 by Daniel Ibn Zayd
- Sacha Cohen and Arab Minstrelsy
May 19th, 2012 by Daniel Ibn Zayd
- Islamophobia and Adoption
Who Are the Civilized?
April 17th, 2012 by Daniel Ibn Zayd
- Re-evaluating Adoption: Validating the Local
February 11th, 2008 by Daniel Ibn Zayd
Trace Lara Hentz (DeMeyer) (Shawnee/Cherokee/Euro) is the author of One Small Sacrifice and the book series Lost Children of the Indian Adoption Projects.