Chills, Race, Chin Tattoos, The Powerful’s Brain Damage, Really Old Fossils, Racial Imposters

WONDERFUL CHILLS! A 400-year-old gourd that Grand Chief Membertou gave to his French godfather has returned to Nova Scotia.  GOOD READ: Mi’kmaq curator gets ‘chills’ from rediscovered Membertou artifact – Nova Scotia – CBC News

 

When New Zealand was colonized in the 1800s, the ancient Māori practice of moko kauae—or sacred female facial tattooing—began to fade away. Now the art form is having a resurgence. Here’s what it means to stamp your identity on your face.  READ: ‘It’s Transformative’: Māori Women Talk About Their Sacred Chin Tattoos – Broadly

Over time, leaders lose mental capacities—most notably for reading other people—that were essential to their rise. [So the further you get away from personal poverty to wealth – your brain stops caring about the welfare of others…] READ UP: Power Causes Brain Damage – The Atlantic

The 300,000-year-old bones and stone tools were discovered in a surprising place—and could revise the history of our species.

Source: Scientists Have Found the Oldest Known Human Fossils – The Atlantic

 

 

By Lara Trace (Me-Searcher and Researcher)

Howdy Everyone! So glad you are here reading my refreshed blog.  (I hope the new template is easy to navigate too.) Every Friday or as news breaks, I’ll be posting. This is a long post so please forgive me for sharing so much.

Lots of important news happened (some posted above and below).  You might remember I wrote months ago about historical events (click>) We’re not supposed to Know.  Of course I was writing about local issues but they morphed into national issues.

There is a whole lot we are not supposed to know.  Like The Civil War! Most people hated history in school or opted out or obviously skipped class. American History is not exactly a quick easy study. I believe it was historian Eric Foner who wrote something like, “America’s history starts in 1865.”  Well, that is a BIGLY problem, even for the current President. As George Orwell said, the best way to destroy a people is to destroy their history.

On Facebook in August I posted that I am the descendant of Slave Owners. Monsters. I am still wrapping my mind around this (as a Me-Searcher) — in light of current events in Virginia and a bloody (un)Civil War we are re-experiencing now.  When I was writing One Small Sacrifice and digging through ancestry files, I found that a Kentucky great-great-grandmother Lettice Bland left a will leaving her slaves to her heirs.  Human beings sold to benefit the slave holder and family, my own ancestors did that.  Since no one ever told me this story, I wasn’t supposed to know. (But thankfully we have the internet to help us dig.) Yes, I am multi-racial, and accept my ancestral complexity with open arms and with horrified indignation. I noticed in the Bland genealogy, they were careful to leave slave-holders slave’s names absent (though many still carry the Bland name)…. hmmm.

Here’s a link to Natives talking Race (Many are mixed and proud)

“Slavery and Its Legacies” podcast launched here

Have you dug up the ghosts in your family tree? I am still learning LOTS listening to the Yale podcasts.

Many who read this blog will remember I covered the Osage Murders and then this happened: The Rare Archival Photos Behind ‘Killers of the Flower Moon’ – Atlas Obscura (TOP PHOTO)

Slavery (and Native history) as our history is not taught well.  Remember the lack of truth-filled history in textbooks had a purpose. Thus we have a 2017 problem.  And we have a president (for now) who thinks out loud on Twitter.  His grasp of history is so very poor. He’d fail a basic history test like many Americans.

A human person cannot grow spiritually until they see injustice all around and stop it in its tracks. It starts now, here, with me, and with you.

Would we have all these racism problems if we had a good grasp of our own American history and what really happened here? and What is happening now?

How many people know their ENTIRE ancestral make-up?   Check out:  With the rise of spit-in-a-cup genetic testing, there’s a trend of white nationalists using these services to prove their racial identity. Read: White nationalists flock to genetic ancestry tests. Some don’t like the result…

 

What is a Me-Searcher Code Switch on NPR One | 29:33

Listen: A Prescription For “Racial Imposter Syndrome” : NPR One

Alison Fornes, an education consultant based in Salem, Massachusetts, wrote to us wanting to speak with her mother, Julia, as part our “Uncomfortable Truths” series.  Talking to your mom about identity may not seem like a conversation most people would classify as “uncomfortable,” but Julia largely kept the story of her upbringing from her daughter. In 1956, at just six years old, Julia was sent from Puerto Rico to an orphanage in Connecticut. Because of racial tensions in the area in 1956, Julia was discouraged from carrying on her traditions from back home in order to be viewed as a more desirable adoptee for a family. She spent much of her life trying to pass as anything but Puerto Rican. As Alison got older, she started to wonder why she didn’t know more about her mother’s childhood traditions back in the Caribbean. So she sat down to ask Julia about why she felt compelled to hide her Puerto Rican identity, and how she eventually came to embrace it.  LISTEN: A Family Comes Out of the (Racial) Closet – The Takeaway – WNYC

One last thing to consider about knowing your history:

Come back next Friday for more! Thanks for reading this blog! XOX

Uncracking local his-story

By LT

Hey everyone…

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.

OPEN FORUM: School Board Meetings on mascot issue
OPEN FORUM: School Board Meetings on the mascot issue in Turners Falls, Massachusetts

P.S.

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: