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Balancing the Raven and Eagle

November 25, 2013
Native American, First People, Alaska Native, Tlingit. All of these words describe me, and none of them describe me. I am a tribal councilwoman, a mother, a daughter, a modern Native woman. I am a fighter, defender, and advocate for my people. As a Native woman, life for me is about balance just like I was taught by my elders. Day and night, Raven and Eagle, there needs to be balance. I currently live in urban Washington, DC – far away from my home in Alaska. Far away, but not far from my heart. Honoring my culture is a daily priority and I am always aware that I am a Native representative to...
Jacqueline Pata's picture

Native American Month Family Story: My Mother: 5 Foot Tall Super Hero

November 25, 2013
Most people have heroes. Some wear spandex and wear a cape. Some have super human strength. Mine is 5 foot tall and I call her Mother. I honor my mother for her desire to create the best opportunities for me, my three siblings and 8 grandchildren. My mother is Navajo. She lives on the Navajo nation and recently turned 73. She is born for the Black Streak through the Woods clan, which is symbolically the Bear Clan. Mother has the force and strength of the bear when she is cornered, especially, when she is protecting her cubs. Mother may be a little person in stature but never say “no” to her...
Randella Bluehouse's picture


November 25, 2013
A Q&A with Sarah Howard,’s Executive/Fundraising Coordinator, as told to Social Media Fellow Connie K. Ho What is your family’s story? Both of my maternal grandparents had Native American ancestors--Blackfeet on my grandfather's side of the family and Iroquois on my grandmother's side. I remember my grandfather fondly and appreciate the time I shared with him and my grandmother. Though I was curious when growing up, I really didn't know much at all about my Native American heritage. How do you celebrate your heritage? To celebrate my heritage now, I learn and...
Sarah Howard's picture

Native American Day & Columbus

November 25, 2013
This blog post originally appeared on the National Relief Charities Blog . Living in South Dakota you learn a lot of things. For example, I learned that in 1990, South Dakota was the very first state in the nation to recognize Native American Day instead of Columbus Day — sending a significant message to all. This was done through state legislation by then Governor George S. Mickelson, who declared 1990 as a year of reconciliation between whites and Native Americans. The South Dakota statute states, in part: “Native Americans’ Day is dedicated to the remembrance of the great Native American...
Murray Lee's picture

“Indians are Persons” Under the Law

November 25, 2013
This blog post originally appeared on the National Relief Charities Blog . Would you ever question whether American Indians are people? Of course not… and yet, this was actually argued in a court of law. It all started with the forced exodus of the Ponca Tribe to Oklahoma, after their homelands were ceded to the Sioux under the Fort Laramie Treaty of 1868, forever changing the course of the Ponca people. I want to tell the whole story, so let’s start at the beginning… In the 1800s, Lewis & Clark first encountered a Ponca band of about 700 members who had separated from the rest of the...
Helen Oliff's picture

A Trail of Togetherness for Hopi Elders

November 25, 2013
This blog post originally appeared on the National Relief Charities Blog . In 1974, the US government re-designated some of Hopi’s land to the Navajo, forcing many Hopi people to abandon their long-time homes, yet another trail of tears. Some of the Hopi resettled in a new community – Yuwehloo Pahki Village (YPV), also known as Spider Mound. Only 24 people live there, including 10 Elders. YPV is extremely isolated and essentially cut off from the rest of Hopi. Because of the forced relocation, the Navajo community of Jeddito separates YPV from the rest of Hopi. Also standing between YPV and...
Kelly Gibson's picture

Native American, American Indian or Indian?

November 25, 2013
This blog post originally appeared on the National Relief Charities Blog . Recently, I was in Maryland for my father’s 60th birthday. It was the first time in almost a year that my entire immediate family was together. As a souvenir for my two young nephews, I brought them t-shirts from where I work: St. Francis Indian School . After I gave the shirts to my nephews, my father chimed in asking them whether they knew they were “Indian.” Their mother replied that they did, and that she used “Native American” instead of “Indian.” Knowing that I would be writing about that very topic soon, I...
Andrew Bentley's picture

Getting to Know Lori Favela

November 25, 2013
This interview with Lori Favela (Yanton Sioux) originally appeared on the blog Native Voices @ the Autry . What is your favorite thing about playwriting? Playwriting offers me the opportunity to be creative. What is your least favorite thing about playwriting? There are hurdles to overcome with characters, etc., which are challenges, but there’s nothing about the process that I dislike. What is your favorite play? I am a big fan of Culture Clash , a Latino writing and acting trio. They weave politics, history, and current events into very witty, poignant, and humorous productions. To me they...
Kirsten Easton's picture

Spotlight on First Look Series: Measure for Measure

November 25, 2013
This interview with Randy Reinholz (Choctaw) originally appeared on the blog Native Voices @ the Autry. Excitement is in the room as we begin our second First Look Series workshop of the season. Described as "Blazing Saddles meets Shakespeare," Measure for Measure: A Boarding School Comedy is Native Voices founder and artistic director Randy Reinholz's adaptation of the William Shakespeare play, Measure for Measure . The original Shakespeare piece, written around 1603, deals with Catholicism's contradictions and asks serious questions about who should have moral authority. Who gets to decide...
Jessica Ordon's picture

Anger Turned Inside: The Fight For Native Families

November 25, 2013
This blog post originally appeared on the blog lara (author-blogger) . I am honored to take part in the Moms Rising Blog Carnival and bring awareness to "Raising the Voices of Native Americans." I wrote a blog post "Anger Turned Inside: The Fight for Native Families" to coincide with a documentary that aired on Al Jazeera Fault Lines in November. (They are now creating a webpage with some of my adoption search and reunion and photos.) My blog "Lara" exposes issues of Human Trafficking in 2013 and Indian Country. I am 57 years on the long road as an adoptee warrior. In the past year, my...
Trace DeMeyer's picture