2016: Time to Rev Up

By Lara Trace

It’s good to be home and I’m revved up to resume a weekly schedule of blog posts. (I missed you guys [I really did] but I was reading your inspiring bad-ass blogs!) (for some weird reason I stopped getting email notice of your new posts – um, still working to fix that.)

I do hope you all made good memories this past month or so…

We traveled to Philadelphia PA twice and had a great time babysitting our youngest grandgirl (she’s a one-year-old) and of course we watched Sesame Street. We didn’t have many shows when I was a tiny kid like her, other than Captain Kanagroo. Remember him?

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Each week I may give you some of what I have been reading and these stories are truly worth a read!

Method Homes home design CREDIT Method Homes

Melissa’s story – Make It Right. It’s a Brad Pitt Project and it’s REALLY GOOD!

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How the Federal Government Continues To Victimize American Indians (no big surprise!)

…”Upfront I will stipulate that the treatment of the American Indian by the federal government has been nothing less than an egregious nightmare. It is a case study in progressive paternalism that has enriched a small coterie of privileged contractors, provided a bevy of bureaucrats with job security and self-importance, and reduced the American Indian population still living on reservations to a dystopic and nightmarish existence.

The Indian schools, at least in some areas, face challenges most public schools don’t face.  The Indian bureaucracy, BIA and BIE represent the very worst impulses of government: big, unwieldy, unresponsive to citizens, slavish to big contractors and the powerful, uncaring, and casually cruel. Where the BIA merely steals from today, the BIE steals the future. It is a national shame that this situation is allowed to persist.”

READ

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Aging out of Foster Care:

Photographer Aaron Fallon shared an idea with seven other professional photographers in Los Angeles. Together, the group collaborated while donating their efforts to a three-year project that will move and inspire you. In today’s Huffington Post Gay Voices RaiseAChild.US “Let Love Define Family®” series installment, RaiseAChild. US founder and CEO Rich Valenza interviews the group that now calls themselves the Image Hoarders about their recently published book called “Aging Out.”  READ

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1976: Government admits forced sterilization of Indian Women

A study by the U.S. General Accounting Office finds that 4 of the 12 Indian Health Service regions sterilized 3,406 American Indian women without their permission between 1973 and 1976.  The GAO finds that 36 women under age 21 had been forcibly sterilized during this period despite a court-ordered moratorium on sterilizations of women younger than 21.  Two years earlier, an independent study by Dr. Connie Pinkerton-Uri, Choctaw/Cherokee, found that one in four American Indian women had been sterilized without her consent.  Pinkerton-Uri’s research indicated that the Indian Health Service had “singled out full-blooded Indian women for sterilization procedures.” SOURCE

and watch this horror story :

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sheepRacism, Class and Adoption

An Oldie but Goodie from my friend (who I call a Thought Leader on Adoption) :

“…The mother in question has published her own book, which promotes itself as a “guidebook” for white adoptive parents of black children. Whatever her intentions, wherever her heart may lie, this should, in and of itself, set off a million alarms.” via Racism, Class and Adoption.

“…For starters is the myth that adoptive parents have some kind of unique agency and free will outside of the society in which they acculturate the children temporarily in their care. By this I mean to say that adoption, as an institution born of and reflecting its roots in indentured servitude, racism, and class warfare, does not suddenly “shift” into a tragedy based on the adoptive parent’s “awakening”. It is a tragedy, and a criminal one at that, from the start…”

“Something much more sinister is transpiring, and this shows up how unequal our words are when spoken on corporate-sponsored platforms equally bent on painting a Happy Gotcha Day for all involved…”

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…

(the power of propaganda is immense when it comes to the trafficking of children for profit…)

READ HIS ESSAY: The New Adopter Narrative: https://danielibnzayd.wordpress.com/2015/12/15/on-the-new-adopter-narratives/

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pass-system-card-1Another Dark Secret: The Pass System

Filmmaker Alex Williams decided to dig into this dark chapter in Canadian history for his first documentary, The Pass System.

Williams said the pass system came into effect after the North-West Rebellion in 1885.

“It was an illegal… system that was put in place as a temporary ‘security measure’ after the events of 1885 that stuck around for over 60 years,” he said.

“Its intent was, in the words of one historian, to keep [Indigenous] people out of the towns and cities.”

READ The pass system: another dark secret in Canadian history | Warrior Publications.

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AMAZING FIND!

Dr. Amy Helen Bell:  Recently my excellent colleague Tom Peace and I found out that among these rich sources are dozens of rare prayer and hymn books in Indigenous languages, written and used by both European and Indigenous scholars, missionaries and priests. The Diocese Archives also holds personnel files on six Indigenous men who graduated from the Theological College in the nineteenth-century and went on to work in churches and parishes in both indigenous and settler communities. And exposing the darker side of the Christianizing mission, the archive also holds some records of the Mohawk Institute, a residential school run by the Anglican Church in nearby Brantford. Along with hundreds of other punitive institutions, the school sought to assimilate Aboriginal children into Euro-Canadian culture in a process the Truth and Reconciliation Commission has described as “cultural genocide.” And nobody at Huron has ever looked at these sources.

Source: Rare Books and Reconciliation – Dr Amy Helen Bell

 

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favorite words?The MIX e-magazine is up and running for its second year.  Go take a read!  Send us some writing on your mixed ancestry and ethnicity! Carol Hand and I are expecting more writers in 2016… The topic is timely and important – we are all related – really truly we are –  INFO

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And if you missed this post, it’s one of my MOST popular – about HEALING HERE – it doesn’t surprise me we ALL want healing in this crazy world!

I am working on a brand new anthology STOLEN GENERATIONS with first person narratives of First Nations and American Indian adoptees in 2016 – should be out in April 2016. It’s the fourth book in this series on Lost Children of the Indian Adoption Projects and I am so excited to have many new adoptees in this book!

I’ll be back with MORE of everything soon … Happy New Year! xoxoxoxoxox

[I have a page on Facebook – posts will be here]

 

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do you know your richest neighbor and invader?

  • The wealthiest American in every state (that 1% we keep hearing about)

    The geography of wealth inequality doesn’t get much attention. But it’s stark. There are about 450 billionaires with American citizenship — and almost 200 of them live in New York and California. The result is this map. In some states, the richest people are well-known names, like Bill Gates or Sheldon Adelson. But how many of you know Leslie Wexler, CEO of the L Brands corporation and, with $5.7 billion, the richest man in Ohio? How about Anne Cox Chambers, who holds a controlling interest in Cox Enterprises and, with an estimated net worth of $15.5 billion, is the richest person in Atlanta?

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  • The British have invaded almost every country on earth

    In the book “All The Countries We’ve Ever Invaded“, British historian Stuart Laycock writes that “out of 193 countries that are currently UN member states, [the British] invaded or fought conflicts in the territory of 171. That’s not far off a massive, jaw-dropping 90 percent.” But a lot of those incursions are relatively obscure. For instance, the time British troops took the Ionian islands doesn’t make it into many non-Ionian history books. Laycock’s methodology is broad — he includes British pirates, privateers, and armed explorers whose activities were blessed by the government — and his research goes all the way back to the beginning. In a review, the Telegraph notes that “the earliest invasion launched from these islands was an incursion into Gaul – now France – at the end of the second century. Clodius Albinus led an army, thought to include many Britons, across the Channel in an attempt to seize the imperial throne. The force was defeated in 197 at Lyon.”

    SOURCE  (please go look at all the maps then come back.)

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    By Lara/Trace Hentz

    I don’t know about you but I love maps and history and this new VOX map collection above is not to be missed.  I was ranting and raving about these maps for more than a few days! There is plenty we mysteriously (or not so mysteriously) missed in our high school history class, such as England planting its flags just about everywhere (and a new king or queen collecting a tax on those unlucky folks including the early invaders to Turtle Island.)

    Listening to recent radio programs on where we are headed in 2015, some suggest America (not England) has been taking the colonizer role. It seems this “invader mentality” goes in cycles and is bound to repeat itself somewhere else. (Not like we have Russia to worry about… oh wait, Mother Russia just promised China they’d help them prosper the next 30+ years. READ MORE)

    I hate to say it’s American to be taking more land and resources but in reality America has aggressively placed 800 military bases around the globe. (Click on military bases to read: America’s Secret War in 134 Countries.) We have always been worried about Russia, but now its 70% of the world?  … “Since September 11, 2001, U.S. Special Operations forces have grown in every conceivable way, from their numbers to their budget.  Most telling, however, has been the exponential rise in special ops deployments globally.  This presence — now, in nearly 70% of the world’s nations — provides new evidence of the size and scope of a secret war being waged from Latin America to the backlands of Afghanistan, from training missions with African allies to information operations launched in cyberspace….” (Someone is making money, like a military contractor like Halliburton).

    This doesn’t seem new to anyone Indian/Indigenous who has lived on an Indian reservation or on reserves in North American like me.

    Reserve?  Doesn’t that sound like a big game park, where you pay admission to see wild things trapped in captivity. As the reserve managers (the gov’ts of America and Canada), you just throw a few dollars at them and hope they’ll do OK.

    On new years eve and day, I was entranced watching hours of TWILIGHT ZONE.  Genius Rod Sterling had an astronaut captured on another planet, put on display behind bars as a species of human.  It felt oh so familiar.

    I have a few ideas about how I’d change the world and the boundaries, but that list isn’t ready for publication, not just yet.

    Next week, I have a new interview with the poet-author Kim Shuck and a few more surprises. Stay tuned to this blog.

    (and hop on over to THE MIX, a brand new blog about our global mixed ancestry)

    LASTLY:: How much of America is uninhabited? I had no idea! See the MAP!

    wow

In the News: THE MIX emag, Mary Beard, Storyteller Irving Howe, Richmond Slavery, Redneck Racism

Mary Beard, an intellectual genius

By Lara/Trace

If it wasn’t for the doctor’s office who had a recent issue of the New Yorker, (I borrowed it) I never would have fallen head-over-heels for (a reported intellectual genius) British Professor Mary Beard, her site TLS and her blog A DON’S LIFE (http://www.the-tls.co.uk/tls/), and twitter account, which lead me to this: http://www.the-tls.co.uk/tls/public/article1474017.ece about starting a magazine.

See? Sometimes we are lead by visionaries and great thinkers, by the New Yorker, by chance, by synchronicity, by WAKAN TANKA (GOD).

This January, it’s time to start something fresh, new. THE MIX (web-blog – emagazine – whatever you want to call a digital magazine/blog) is that fresh egg, that mind-hatching idea for me.  We (Patricia and I and friends who blog) plan to invite writers to write about ancestry in a new way, in their own way, with a look at how “mixed” we are as humans. None better than the other.

[My opinion: Race doesn’t exist. It’s constructed by people who oppress others deliberately and subtly. We are all people of color.]

Once we see how related we are to everyone else, we have a fighting chance as humans to refresh/change/reboot the planetary awareness and change our/your/their views as humans – how we are ALL related. (The Lakota phrase MITAKUYE OYASIN speaks to this – and it is a great honor/compliment to be told “we are all related.”)

So, my friends-relatives-readers, please share this post with your circle of writer friends and let’s kick this off in a good way. Here’s to JANUARY! THE MIX!  Start writing! Email me: larahentz@yahoo.com and let me know if you are interested in contributing. It’s open to EVERY HUMAN who can type and email!  [Future site: http://mixemag.wordpress.com%5D

In December an extended interview with Anishinabe Scholar Professor Carol Hand will run over several weeks.

I will be back in January with more about THE MIX…

Thanks for a great year, all you wonderful subscriber-readers! THANK YOU ALL!

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Irving Howe, 1962 Photograph: Photo by Jose Mercado/Stanford News Service © Stanford University
Irving Howe, 1962 Photograph: Photo by Jose Mercado/Stanford News Service © Stanford University

Irving Howe, storyteller of ideas

ADAM KIRSCH

Nina Howe, editor
A VOICE STILL HEARD
Selected essays of Irving Howe
416pp. Yale University Press. £28 (US $40).
978 0 300 20366 0 |  Published: 22 October 2014

When intellectuals can do nothing else, they start a magazine”, Irving Howe quipped when explaining why he founded Dissent, the independent leftist quarterly, in 1954. The Eisenhower era was not hospitable to left-wing politics, and Howe’s phrase is often repeated at the intellectuals’ expense, as if it were a confession of their irrelevance. But that is not what Howe meant. He went on to write: “But starting a magazine is also doing something; at the very least it is thinking in common. And thinking in common can have unforeseen results”.

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IN THE NEWS

History Replays Today: Slavery in Richmond

Richmond.com | November 11, 2014 

Shockoe Bottom was a center of some of the most egregious atrocities of American history, if not world history. However, the story is not discussed enough perhaps because it is not an easy topic to talk about.

Generally, the details get glossed over especially in the form of sound bites in the debates over the proposed Shockoe Stadium.

The new episode of History Replays Today, the Richmond History Podcast discusses Richmond’s slave trade with Gregg Kimball and Maurie McInnis.

Read more: http://www.richmond.com/discover-richmond/article_53629e50-66a0-11e4-bf29-0017a43b2370.html

Redneck Racism: agenda to close down communities

15 Nov 14: “The Western Australian Government’s move to close down up to 150 of 274 remote communities has been labelled redneck racism. It is the ugliest act of racism to be seen in this nation in 70 years, with many fearing that it will pale the ugly racism of the Northern Territory ‘Intervention’. Elders, advocates and former politicians are warning the State Government to not close down the communities of First Peoples, that to do so will lead to a further spiral of suicides, despair, homelessness, to irreparable trust issues between First People and Governments but also to hate.” By Gerry Georgatos, a life-long human rights and social justice campaigner, a multi-award winning investigative journalist

http://thestringer.com.au/redneck-agenda-to-close-down-communities-9063

Remember that slavery was woven into Connecticut’s fabric

Randall Beach New Haven Register 11/22/14

Ten years ago, Hartford Courant reporter Anne Farrow, acting on a tip from a friend, sat down at the Connecticut State Library and began reading three logbooks from ships that sailed out of New London in the mid-1700s.

The first ship was called the Africa. It was aptly named.

The crew was bound for West Africa to buy slaves and then sell them on England’s colonial islands in the Caribbean. Some of the “human cargo” probably stayed on board to be brought to Connecticut, where they were sold and owned by residents here.

Read more: http://www.nhregister.com/opinion/20141122/randall-beach-remember-that-slavery-was-woven-into-connecticuts-fabric

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Museum on slave trade planned for Episcopal cathedral in Providence

Paul Davis Providence Journal November 16, 2014

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — A shuttered church could soon shine a light on Rhode Island’s dark role in the slave trade.

Church leaders hope it will also help heal a divided state and nation.

The Episcopal Diocese of Rhode Island wants to use part of the Cathedral of St. John for a museum that will look at those who made money in the slave trade — and those who opposed it. Churchgoers and clergymen filled both camps.

In the 18th and early 19th centuries, Rhode Islanders backed 1,000 trips between Africa and the Americas. Newport, Bristol and Providence were among the busiest slave trade ports in North America.

Read more: http://www.providencejournal.com/news/ri-life/20141116-museum-on-slave-trade-planned-for-former-episcopal-cathedral-in-providence.ece

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“Policing Sexuality”: The Mann Act And White Slavery

 By David Martin Davies | November 26, 2014 | Texas Public Radio

 Charles Manson, Charlie Chaplin, Frank Lloyd Wright and Chuck Berry: what do these men have in common?They were all charged with violating the Mann Act, also known at the White Slavery law. The progressive era law has been on the books for over one hundred years – and was used to build the FBI – enforce a moral code against sexual deviancy and promote gender roles for women. The Mann Act was America’s first anti–sex trafficking law. It made it illegal to transport women over state lines for prostitution “or any other immoral purpose.” It was meant to protect women and girls from being seduced or sold into sexual slavery. But, as Jessica Pliley illustrates, its enforcement resulted more often in the policing of women’s sexual behavior, reflecting conservative attitudes toward women’s roles at home and their movements in public.

Listen to the program: http://tpr.org/post/policing-sexuality-mann-act-and-white-slavery

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 Slaves Waiting for Sale

November 1, 2014 |Withgoodreasonradio.org

 In 1853, Eyre Crowe, a British artist, visited a slave auction in Richmond, Virginia. His painting of the scene was later exhibited at the Royal Gallery in London in 1861. In her new book Slaves Waiting for Sale: Abolitionist Art and the American Slave Trade, Maurie McInnis (University of Virginia) describes the impact this pivotal painting had on the British Public at the outbreak of the American Civil War. Gregg Kimball (Library of Virginia) talks about a new exhibition of art dealing with the American slave trade. Also: Jonathan White (Christopher Newport University) says many Union soldiers were not for re-election of Abraham Lincoln in 1864, and were in fact pressured to vote for him.

Listen to the program: http://withgoodreasonradio.org/2014/11/slaves-waiting-for-sale/

***** BONUS

FUCK Colonization by Frank Waln HERE

My family getting together to eat and celebrate our lives on a day that represents the genocide of our ancestors and culture is, in its own way, a “fuck you” to colonialisation. America’s colonial project failed. We’re still here, and we’re keeping our ceremonies and traditions alive. We’re still speaking our languages. We’re living our culture. I’m alive and I know what it means to be Lakota. For that, I give thanks every day.

Identity, Indians and THE MIX

tacosAs Adoptees we need to be flexible, open to the new, to synchronicities, to unlikely possibilities and to seeing the extraordinary opportunities we have, to deal with the losses, the traumas of adoption, to be who we want to be.  Identity, that ‘thing’ we have taken from us in adoption which is replaced by a new identity invented by our adopters, is not a fixed point in our lives. Identity is ours to create, we can be whoever we want to be, no matter who we were told we were. – Von Hughes (on Lost Daughters)

 

By Lara Trace Hentz

Identity? Oh yeah, baby. It’s so vast, so incredibly vast. In my new book Becoming I list some of my grandmothers (the ones who gave me blood and ancestry) because some are immigrants and some are Indigenous. I have so much interest in them, I can barely contain my emotions of enthusiasm and happiness that I finally know some of their names!

My cousin Cathy was asking me why some of our relatives hid the fact they are Indian. Well the past few posts I have on this blog might be a good indication. Savages? Not able to vote? Own land? Herded to concentration camps/reservations?

Cathy’s grandmother Bessie and my grandmother Lona are sisters – her grandmother claimed their mother (Mary Frances Morris-Harlow) was not Indian. I didn’t meet my grandma Lona. Yet Bessie’s father always said his mother was Indian and told his children and grandchildren.

My own dad told me his grandma Mary Frances was Cherokee. (We also have Shawnee ancestry.)

But how could a Cherokee/Shawnee be in Illinois?

After invasion, when colonies became the United States of America, Native Americans were very aware they were being denied basic civil rights. I know many readers are history teachers or history buffs, so you already know about the Cherokee Trail of Tears, etc.  Some of my ancestors were in Tennessee and Kentucky then were forced on the trail. Some made it as far as Illinois, Missouri, Arkansas and stopped. Why? Because if they married white men, or married mixed-blood men who didn’t claim they are Indian, that meant they had a future.  If they had family already in Illinois that could also be their salvation!

I have many ancestors who lived and died in Pana, and that part of Illinois.  Where Illinois meets Kentucky was another Trail of Tears.  Where southern Illinois meets Missouri is the Trail of Tears State Park.  Illinois, particularly south-central Illinois is filled with street names like Nokomis, Pocahantas, Mowequa, Powhatan, Chillicothe, and many more. I do not believe this is mere coincidence. Many Indians in the East were moving and migrating as more and more colonists were encroaching – and somehow enough (mixed) Indians were in Illinois and enough settled in Illinois, enough to have an influence on place names. (The last time I drove through Illinois, my jaw dropped at all the Indian names!)

  • Illinois is an Algonquin word. Illinois – from the French rendering of an Algonquian (perhaps Miami) word apparently meaning “s/he speaks normally” (c.f. Miami ilenweewa),[13] from Proto-Algonquian *elen-, “ordinary” + -wē, “to speak”,[14][15] referring to the Illiniwek.
  • Chicago – derived from the French rendering of a Miami-Illinois word for a type of wild onion
  • Peoria – named after the Peoria Tribe which previously lived in the area
  • The name “Pana” is derived from the American Indian tribe, the Pawnee. Pawnee became “pani” or “slave” in the French patois or creole that developed in Illinois. This evolved into “Pana”,[3] now pronounced, however, [ˈpejnə].

Though I have not researched this, many mounds are also in this area! Many were plowed down but thankfully some still exist. Cahokia Mounds is located in Collinsville, Illinois off Interstates 55/70 and 255. My Miq’mac friend Alice Azure wrote a book about her visits to these ancient sacred mounds.

Why would Indians settle in Illinois?

Some were already there but during the 19th and early 20th centuries, the U.S. government attempted to control the travel of all Native Americans off the Indian reservations.  Since Native Americans did not obtain U.S. citizenship until 1924, they were considered wards of the state and were denied various basic rights, including the right to travel.[WIKI 30] The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) discouraged off-reservation activities, including the right to hunt, fish, or visit other tribes.  As a result, the BIA instituted a “pass system” designed to control movement of the Indians. This system required Indians living on reservations to obtain a pass from an Indian agent before they could leave the reservation.[WIKI 31]

If I were Indian in the late 1800s, forced to walk hundreds of miles, I’d settle down in Illinois and find a nice man, marry and have my kids. Better than moving to Indian Territory/Oklahoma reservations where you couldn’t leave without permission and a pass.

So I will continue with my family research and try to find more of my grandmother’s stories, if they exist on paper. (I am grateful to have their names!)

I decided to start a brand new e-magazine THE MIX, so more of these vast and varied family stories can be collected and published.

Salish child
A Salish Native American child in 1910
Enlarge this image

Congress Granted Citizenship to All Native Americans Born in the U.S.
June 2, 1924

Native Americans have long struggled to retain their culture. Until 1924, Native Americans were not citizens of the United States. Many Native Americans had, and still have, separate nations within the U.S. on designated reservation land. But on June 2, 1924, Congress granted citizenship to all Native Americans born in the U.S. Yet even after the Indian Citizenship Act, some Native Americans weren’t allowed to vote because the right to vote was governed by state law. Until 1957, some states barred Native Americans from voting.

 

If we weren’t citizens, what were we? …Lara

 

The original inhabitants of the area that is now Illinois included:


About Our Maps
*The Chickasaw tribe
*The Dakota Sioux tribe
*The Ho-Chunk tribe (Winnebago)
*The Illinois tribe (Illini)
*The Miami tribe
*The Shawnee tribe

 

Other Indian tribes that migrated into Illinois after Europeans arrived:

*The Delaware tribe
*The Kickapoo tribe
*The Ottawa tribe
*The Potawatomi tribe
*The Sac and Fox tribes
*The Wyandot tribe

There are no federally recognized Indian tribes in Illinois today.

The Indian tribes of Illinois are not extinct, but like many other native tribes, they were forced to move to Indian reservations in Oklahoma by the American government. You can find their present-day locations by clicking on the tribal links above.