Author Topic: Ward Churchill  (Read 43077 times)

Offline Defend the Sacred

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #30 on: June 26, 2008, 11:18:43 pm »
You live in the States or Ireland?

In the States. My mother's family was somewhat isolated along with other Irish and Scottish immigrant families in rural Indiana, so we have more traditions/customs surviving than many immigrant families, but I've also had to find my way back to a large extent. For instance I did not grow up speaking Gaelic. There was a smattering spoken in the communities where I lived in Illinois and Massachusetts, but that's not the same as growing up thinking in the language.

Offline Rattlebone

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #31 on: June 27, 2008, 12:46:36 am »
I think PODIA is only an insult to people who don't understand cultural differences. It's just an abbreviation;  one that highlights the difference between cultural immersion and cultural distance.

In general, I think mainstream white Americans really don't understand about traditional cultures. Growing up in a solid ethnic community, of any ethnicity, is very different from being raised in the American homogenized mainstream. It's about the music and language you hear growing up, the songs you know, the food you ate, the customs you kept, the beliefs you lived with, ingrained as a part of your being. This is totally different from reading these things in a book or hearing about them for the first time as an adult. To think that pointing this difference out is an insult is a red flag that someone hasn't been around traditional people enough to know there are huge differences.

Hell, I've thought of also using PODIA for People of Distant Irish Ancestry - like the American ones who think "blood" is enough, but don't speak the language, don't know the music or history, or where their people are from, let alone any of the spiritual traditions. And, funnily enough, who also don't know that "Celtic" or "Gaelic" identity is based on language and culture, not "blood".

 Though you're not a Native, you claim to have knowledge of our people. So that in mind what is your opinion or if tribes on the east coast are still Natives or not?

 Most of these people such as the Pequot were devastated by disease and warfare. So today most look black, and lack very little of their original culture.

 One thing I see a lot of Native complain about is how the non Native world expects us to "be more like them," and yet at the same time still judges us on how we were in the past.   

 This is much like the federal government itself. In many present day law suits concerning land claims etc they largely continue to swindle us due to the passage of time etc. Now at the same time in let's say recognition issues; they still base it on conditions of the past. They for one condition expect proof that a tribe has governed itself from the past, yet they themselves  made that impossible.

 Also your Irish and Scottish relations went through a lot of similar things as the peoples here did. The English did in fact try to obliterate the culture of your own people. That would be I am sure one of reasons your own family would be here on top of many others. This I feel would make your hard stance against some people almost hypocritical because you seem to be a little condemning of them for not being as fortunate as your  own family.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2014, 04:13:44 am by Kathryn »

Offline Defend the Sacred

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #32 on: June 27, 2008, 01:15:38 am »
I'm not here to "judge" whether a group of people, or an individual, is "Native or not."  Nor am I here to "condemn" someone for what percentage of their ancestry hails from which ancestors. This thread is about Ward Churchill, and perhaps the PODIA issue should be split off from it.

I think the questions about the PODIA thing have already been answered, and well, by a number of people in this thread. Most of what I would say about this would be redundant at this point.

I guess the only other point I'd reiterate is that what culture someone is part of isn't about distant ancestry - it's about how they were raised. Distant Native ancestry doesn't mean someone is a member of a traditional culture. Many outsiders to traditional cultures are confused by this. I think it becomes an issue when people of any culture who are not recognized traditional leaders in that culture presume to speak for a group, and not just as an individual. The problem is compounded by white nuagers because they're always looking for tokens to make them feel non-racist, but it seems they only want to listen to those who are saying what they expect to hear.

Well, OK, a couple thoughts on the Eastern Nations, though I'm not sure my two cents really matter on the issue, as I don't have that heritage: The Eastern Woodlands Nations have a somewhat different legacy than those whose contact with the white invaders came later. I have some friends and acquaintances with Pequot, Abenaki, Mic Mac, Wampanoag, Narragansett, etc ancestry, but most of them were raised in white communities, or their ancestors intermarried with white people so long ago that their family cultures are rather mainstream white at this point. The ones who have wanted to find their way back to their "Native roots" have had to find what remains of their traditional ways, through reconnecting with what remains of the living communities. Some, so used to the white idea that you can learn from books, have even been taken in by frauds or become frauds themselves (I'm only speaking about some of the people I know, not people in general).

But again, I see the traditional culture, cultural representatives and spiritual leader issues as separate from the "Who is Indian?" question.  Despite any assumptions to the contrary, in my years of participating in the NAFPS communities, I don't think "Who is Indian?" is really the debate.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2014, 04:14:14 am by Kathryn »

nighthawk

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #33 on: June 27, 2008, 01:41:13 am »
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Offline Rattlebone

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #34 on: June 27, 2008, 01:45:40 am »
I'm not here to "judge" whether a group of people, or an individual, is "Native or not."  Nor am I here to "condemn" someone for what percentage of their ancestry hails from which ancestors. This thread is about Ward Churchill, and perhaps the PODIA issue should be split off from it.

I think the questions about the PODIA thing have already been answered, and well, by a number of people in this thread. Most of what I would say about this would be redundant at this point.

I guess the only other point I'd reiterate is that what culture someone is part of isn't about distant ancestry - it's about how they were raised. Distant Native ancestry doesn't mean someone is a member of a traditional culture. Many outsiders to traditional cultures are confused by this. I think it becomes an issue when people of any culture who are not recognized traditional leaders in that culture presume to speak for a group, and not just as an individual. The problem is compounded by white nuagers because they're always looking for tokens to make them feel non-racist, but it seems they only want to listen to those who are saying what they expect to hear.

Well, OK, a couple thoughts on the Eastern Nations, though I'm not sure my two cents really matter on the issue, as I don't have that heritage: The Eastern Woodlands Nations have a somewhat different legacy than those whose contact with the white invaders came later. I have some friends with Pequot, Abenaki, etc ancestry, but most of them were raised in white communities, or their ancestors intermarried with white people so long ago that their family cultures are rather mainstream white at this point. The ones who have wanted to find their way back to their "Native roots" have had to find what remains of their traditional ways, through reconnecting with what remains of the living communities. Some, so used to the white idea that you can learn from books, have even been taken in by frauds or become frauds themselves (I'm only speaking for some of the people I know, not people in general).

But again, I see the traditional culture, cultural representatives and spiritual leader issues as separate from the "Who is Indian?" question.  Despite any assumptions to the contrary, in my years of reading and participating in the NAFPS communities, I don't think "Who is Indian?" is really the debate.

Well I know for sure I am not Indian, have never visited Bombay or Calcutta, nor do I have any ancestors there. j/k

Since you brought up the point about Native Americans use of the word, when I hear people using that word to describe themselves, I kind of wince, but if nothing else it's an indication that they are Status Indians (in "Canada") or whatever it's called with the BIA (enrolled? registered? I honestly don't know) in the USA.

Most Indigenous people I know refer to themselves by their Nation and location, i.e. James Bay Cree, Mi'kmaq from Listiguj, etc.

And by the way, not all Indigenous peoples (Native North Americans) became dependant wards of colonial states as it were, and agreed to be labelled "Indians" by said colonial states, the Anishnaabek and the Haudenosaunee come to mind.

 To be completely proper yea we should identify by our tribal names. Thing is sometimes I get to lazy to spell Native American, and so I just use Indian, or NDN.  Just saying Native works too.

 I don't usually mind being called Indian though as long as it is not done in a bad way. Most my friends in the Native community around here call themselves Indians so I don't really have a problem with it.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2014, 04:13:07 am by Kathryn »

nighthawk

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #35 on: June 27, 2008, 01:55:10 am »
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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #36 on: June 27, 2008, 02:07:29 am »
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Offline Rattlebone

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #37 on: June 27, 2008, 02:18:49 am »
The Haudenosaunee, and the Anishnaabek to this day refuse to vote in federal elections, and refuse to be counted in the "Canadian" census (these facts are for people who aren't aware of this). There are estimates that seventy-five percent of North American Natives in "Canada" are non-Status.

I believe that because I have an Odawa friend up in Canada that works for the census. She always says how the Natives won't cooperate.

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #38 on: June 27, 2008, 03:08:26 am »
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Offline Moma_porcupine

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #39 on: June 27, 2008, 05:05:02 am »
I also have seen families recorded as some other race than what they were, and I think it is a mistake to take one record and say "See this record says your ancestor was ( whatever the paper says )" 

Probably every family occaisionaly got recorded wrong. But in most areas if you look at ALL the records left by parents, aunts, uncles , siblings and how native people were normally recorded in the area,  it seems the true picture usually emerges.

As for all those supposed Cherokees who intermarried but weren't recorded - I also thought there was a lot more intermarrige in the early days than ever got written on paper , but looking at mtDNA research results i was really suprised to see almost no reports of people being surprised to find a indigenous mtDNA from some long forgottten intermarriage , and for every mtDNA result that confirmed the story grgrgrandma was Cherokee , there seems to be 9 people saying they were told their matrilineal line was Native - and the evidence is most of them are not.  So, it seems a lot of those stories were just stories.

Some of those mtDNA results are discussed in the thread below ...

http://www.newagefraud.org/smf/index.php?topic=1375.0

I personally have seen thinblooded people who grew up with a strong cultural influence > They seem to me to be primarily Native people with a lot of non native blood. I also know equally thin blooded people who consider themselves to be entirely non native except for some distant ancestry which means little to them. Personally I don't think there is a blanket statement that can be applied to all PODIAs or all Native communities. It's too complex to conform to some simple formula. But I am always amazed when someone who's family hasn't lived in a a Native community for a couple generations or more says they are Ndn. As i know many slightly mixed blood people who are not Ndns by any stretch of the imagination , when people do that it just seems silly.  I saw Ward Churchill's family tree and even if there had been some Native ancestry in the branch of his family tree where his relatives mtDNA test showed there was none, just that he would claim a Native identity for himself on the basis of such a distant connection amazed me.  That sort of claim to a Native identity based on such a distant connection usually just seems exploitive to me.
« Last Edit: June 27, 2008, 05:24:45 am by Moma_porcupine »

nighthawk

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #40 on: June 27, 2008, 06:54:07 am »
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Offline educatedindian

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #41 on: June 27, 2008, 06:17:03 pm »

 Do you call everyone that does not agree with something you say to be a PODIA?

I do not meant to be rude, but your usage of the word "other" in that sentence would indicate to me that you would be accusing me of such.


Both of us were talking in the third person. And I don't see how PODIA could even be an "accusation" since it's not a bad thing.

Offline MikePutfus

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #42 on: June 27, 2008, 07:18:04 pm »
A drop of blood only makes the person human. Not of a race or culture. Having Served in the Army for more than twenty years I often ran into persons that claimed to be part this and that. My standard answer was to say which part of your body is that part? Just because someone said your Great GrandMother was bedded by a Native man doesn't make a person a NDN. Or a member of any Nation or Tribe.
Because I live or have lived off my reservation does not make me a Anglo or as a few say an Apple. We live in many worlds to include our  families, and in most cases have to just to survive.

Offline Rattlebone

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #43 on: June 27, 2008, 07:30:46 pm »

 Do you call everyone that does not agree with something you say to be a PODIA?

I do not meant to be rude, but your usage of the word "other" in that sentence would indicate to me that you would be accusing me of such.


Both of us were talking in the third person. And I don't see how PODIA could even be an "accusation" since it's not a bad thing.

 Okay then I apologize for my remarks there.

 I respected since I first started reading your posts in this group, and I like what this group is about.

 I hope to move on and away from this and help contribute to this group.

 Personally I see a lot of words like that as some bi- product of colonialism. Cause like the issue of BQ such things are often used for people to "Indian up" on each other regardless of back grounds, or how they were raised.

 The whole " I am more Indian then you thing," which I think is just another colonial tool to cause division.

 Of course if your not using it in a bad way then I guess will have no objections to it.

I think words like that also put me on edge at times being a mixed blood cause people always seem to be judging you, with hatred coming from both sides cause you are t oo this to be that, and at the same time too much of that to be this.

 I have had my own relations get drunk and want to fight me because I am Native, and at the same times get the poor treatment from more full blooded people for being mixed.

 It is a hard road to walk sometimes, and I often see some that try to some how hide who they are. I often refer to that as "the cowards road." I am not ashamed to be a mixed blood, and often times being as such allows me to help promote understanding between NDN's and NON's. Since I am in between they feel it's easier to speak with me. Then often times I hear things people say and I explain why they are that way if the cultural barriers they have prevent them from knowing.

 I suppose that using a word like PODIA is not a bad thing, and explains things in simple to relations as well.

 I am sorry for any misunderstandings here.

Offline Moma_porcupine

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Re: Ward Churchill
« Reply #44 on: June 27, 2008, 11:30:44 pm »
Hi Nighthawk

You have some intersting ideas- and i agree with some of what you are saying but I also disagree with some of it.

I don't like name calling. I read people get called things like "nosebleed" or "pin prick" and I agree when those names get used to describe someones connection with their Native ancestors that is really disrespectful. But i have never seen anyone use thse derogatory names on this message board, which is one of the reasons i like participating here.

It seems there is an identity somewhere in between being European colonist and being fully indigenous to this continent, and the rights , responsibilities and perimeters of this identity are not well defined.

My own belief is that a small amount of native blood can, in some circumstances bestow a sensitivity to ones ancestors, the traditions of those people, and a connection with the lands where they lived.

But that sensitivity does not , in itself, create entitlements. It seems it would be a good thing if this "connection" created obligations to treat this part of ones heritage with respect - and IMO , that starts by treating the Native communities that have managed to retain their culture, with respect.

How I see it is kind of like if there was a farm house that was built by your gr gr grandfather that your greatgrandma moved out of. In this sort of situation , it is the descendents who have maintained it and continuosly occupied it up to the present, who have a right to continue to maintain that house as they see fit. As a descendant of a family member that left , you might feel a connection with the farm and even contribute to it's up keep - but to expect an equal share of the harvest, or to move in and have refigerator rights, just because you are as much a genetic descendant of yor gr gr grandfather as the present occupants would make you wear out your welcome real fast.

Nighthawk
Quote
All descendants of other Native American people are expected to terminate themselves toute suite, disappear, and shut up and pretend they don't exist. Why is that? Isn't that European supremacy disguised......

I've thought about this and come to the conclusion that it is for the Native communities which are strong enough to have been recognized , to recognize and define who is an Ndn and who is not, and what their relationship with distant relations will be.

If this definition is not left in the hands of the strong continuosly existing indigenous Nation, it get placed in the hands of either non natives or people who's background is predominantly non native. And i do not agree that is where ths power to make these defintions belongs.

I understand the definition upheld by many Nations is not perfect and some deserving people fall through the cracks, but the alternative-  that non native or mainly non native people should have a right to define this is something I absolutely oppose as i see it as one more form of colonization- only this time it is the colonization of Ndn identity.

And this definition of identity is important, because it is only through properly defining who is a native person, that the rightful owners of Native culture and property will be recognized, and with owneship comes the right to  protect and maintain land, culture, and resources. 

Nighthawk
 
Quote
The registered or Status NDNs won't ever accept them, for one reason, they are not members of sovereign Nations, they are members of tribes .....


Actually , from what I have seen most native people are extremely generous about supporting distant realtions. What makes me crabby is I also see an extreme caution, as so many PODIAs come and don't just want a peice of the pie, they want the whole darn thing... for themself , and they don't care how this might affect the longterm soverienty or culture of the Nation they want to claim - which is so typically NON native ...

And it means the next PODIA who trys to reconnect with their People  have to deal with whatever mistrust and anger was left by the last grabby person that came through, feeling entitled,  claiming an ndn ancestor.

Some of the issues were previously discussed in the threads below... 

People Of Distant Indian Ancestry
http://www.newagefraud.org/smf/index.php?topic=1111.0

questionable ndn idenities & tribes
http://www.newagefraud.org/smf/index.php?topic=846.0

I notice this does seem to be a deeply felt issue for a lot of people and some people feel offended to be told a bit of ancestry does not entitle them to claim they are an Ndn, so maybe it would be something people would like to talk about in more detail, in one of the links above .

(it's a bit off the topic of Ward Churchill )

Or maybe a new thread could be started to discuss how it is defined who is a Native person and who isn't . It is a complicated topic and I know it is absolutely wrong to ever deny these indigenous ancestors. But I also think it's wrong to deny if people are mainly of European descent.  and both sides of peoples heritage come with duties, obligations, past debts , and some rights.   There needs to be a way to work with both , and to find a balance that realisticly acknowledges all parts of our heritage. The parts we like and the parts we'd rather forget....

Just mt opinion... but I do find the subject interesting...
« Last Edit: June 27, 2008, 11:47:43 pm by Moma_porcupine »