Friday, September 15, 2006

Native American History

Yesterday, I was honored to host a Cub Scout Troop for a visit to my Lodge (tipi), one of the grandmothers of a member of the troop contacted me, being I know her husband and family, and asked if they could have a Troop meeting there. They were making small drums, and were studying Native Americans for a merit badge they can earn. None of the children were of Native Heritage.

What I noticed the most is the lack of knowledge about Native American Culture. It's kind of shocking to me, that so many don't realize just how much this country's history is tied to the history of Native Americans. For example, just look at the amount of state names that are of Native Americans Language and is now thought to be just English terms.

One of the mothers with the troop said she was from Kansas and didn't realize that Oklahoma had a large Indian population. That's quite the statement being Oklahoma was where many Native American Tribes were forced to relocate to during the 18th and 19th Century. In fact, before Oklahoma statehood which wasn't until the early of last century that the area was known as the Indian Territories...

Maybe, my being of native heritage makes me more aware of this history, but I'm seriously thinking now that much is lacking in our education of history for our children. At least they were trying to learn more with this exercise in this Cub Scout Troop. It's kind of sad to think that the culture of our Native American ancestors is being lost even more with the lack of such education.

Native American culture is still alive and is still here but most don't realize that or are not aware of it. Indians shouldn't be relegated to being only a piece of history. We are such a living part of this Country that we can't be separated from it's history and it should be taught to our children.

I hope this will encourage more to help in the education of such.

4 comments:

  1. You are right on. If we have textbooks, and a national holiday celebrating the virtues of a genocidal gold grubbing maniac who claimed to have "found" a place that was never lost and had been inhabited for at least 15,000 years, then why would we expect people to know better? Our need for alternative media is so great. And by alternative, I mean journalistic, as unbiased as can be. What tends to happen in my book is that the so called "alternative media" still turns into propoganda with a motive behind the reporting, rather than presenting the facts as objectively as possible and letting the audience percieve it and form their own opinions and conclusions.

    Whew. I went off. Sorry to take up so much space.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I know my generation learned very little of Native American history. Speaking for myself, most of what I know I've learned from your blog. I wonder about what they teach now. Its ironic, so many of our NJ towns have Native American names:
    Assunpink, Manahawkin, Manasquan, Piscataway, Manalapan... these places are minutes away from where I live.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I can't remember where I had heard this, but I remember reading somewhere, that Native Americans, are basically Museum pieces, to many many people. We are in the past, like cave men, and dinosaurs.
    Very sad actually, that a human race of people still living and breathing on this planet, who's young men and women, make up most of out military here in the US, and who's language, people of this country still use on a daily basis, without a clue of its origin, or meaning, feel we are a thing of the past. such a shame :o(

    ReplyDelete
  4. The modern day Native American culture has a very poor image. The History of the Native American culture was written by white men from their own self-serving bias -- and nothing has changed. It took over 500 years for histroy to show Columbus in a true light. I believe nothing in the American History books except the broadest strokes.

    ReplyDelete