I have been watching 20/20 tonight and it has me so moved

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by DammitJanet, Oct 14, 2011.

  1. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    It is about the Lakota and Sioux Indians on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation that is in the shadows of Mt. Rushmore.

    It was absolutely inspiring. I have no idea what I am ever going to complain about again. I will certainly tell anyone around me that wants to gripe about "their indian problems" dont have a leg to stand on compared to what I just saw.

    Alcoholism is rampant. Probably averages almost 70% or higher of males. Drop out rate is higher than 70%.

    The elders decided to vote and make the reservation Dry so no one could sell alcohol on the reservation but the only thing that did was it made this tiny little town next door that has all of 14 people in lots of money. They have 14 people, 4 bars, and sell 4 million cans of beer a year. Its not all beer. Some is stuff calles Joooze and it comes in flavors like cherry or watermellon so kids will like it. Some kids as young as 5 will pick the stuff up. This joouze stuff is like 20 proof.

    Saw some of the cutest kids. One wants so badly to break free. He is studying really hard in the back bedroom of his grandma's house. He wants to be President someday. It was in his house I heard someone call one of the little girls keyana. No idea how they spelled it...lol. There were about 10 people in a little run down single wide mobile home.

    I wont forget this show.
  2. buddy

    buddy New Member

    One of my dear friends is Lakota and she is a Mormon who homeschooled her kids and was a midwife and finished her degree, now working on her masters. Her mom, is a (the) tribal attorney and she too got her degree later in life.
    This woman is my hero. She was a foster parent to many (besides having her own kids) and her last is adopted (also Lakota) and he has a genetic disorder (they know now) and is in life threatening situations constantly. He is also autistic, rages, can be aggressive, etc. difficult child and I flew to visit them after meeting them online in an adoption support group. There are lovely traditions in their tribe and she said that adoption is valued almost more than birth children and they have a beautiful ceremony to name the children and bring them into the family. I contacted her on FB too to watch it.

    She sent a funny cartoon on Columbus day....it showed a bunch of native americans building a huge wall next to water....pilgrims were rowing boats toward the shore....the caption said something like, "we have to build this wall to keep these people from coming in here illegally"

    i thought that was great
  3. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Omgosh...hilarious! I would have loved that one. All Tonys buddy's at work would too. I will describe it and maybe he can tell it well. Tony is Lumbee but they arent like thee prairie Indians. He has the high cheekbones and the red skin but he has kinky hair. if you see a Lum with straight hair, its met a chemical process...lmao. Now his hair has calmed down considerably since he was young but its still wavy.
  4. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    I saw it too, Janet, and I thought it was one of the most moving things I've ever seen on TV! All those beautiful young kids with so much ambition and talent and hope. And they have so many strikes against them already just because of who they are and where they live! I won't forget it either and I hope they do a follow-up.
  5. buddy

    buddy New Member

    Just saw the FB posts from my Lakota mommy warrior friend....her little difficult child is from that res. Her native american friends are talkng about their impressions and why they work so hard to set a better example for their kids. Really is amazing that these young/middle aged parents can remember things like being sent to boarding schools and not being allowed to be a part of their families just for being native american. It is a recent scar on our American history. They liked the show. There are links for information and how to help if you go to abc.com
  6. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    The problems experienced by these people are very similar to those suffered by the Australian aborigines. Their ancient, rich culture based on profound respect for their natural surroundings was broken apart by the incoming whites through many acts of persecution and repression. The traditional reserves barely exist any more and alcoholism and unemployment is rife. The Australian government and people have tried to redeem the situation in various ways but it is basically too late. Aboriiginal culture in its pure form has been all but lost.
  7. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    The native american counsel I belong to has been taking them truck loads of school supplies and clothing for years. They also raise money to purchase computers and programs, as well as beg for any decent used ones for educational purposes ect. The man who spoke at husband's memorial is the one who started it, he's from Pine Ridge. The program started with Pine Ridge, but has since spread to 3 other rezs we're now trying to help.

    It's appalling the levels of poverty on many of the Indian reservations. Work has always been hard to come by in many areas, and racism is still rampant in most, especially near the rezs. (not to mention certain areas of the country)

    My grandparents and their siblings attended those boarding schools (which were living nightmares).

    I didn't get to see the program. I wonder if it's possible to catch it online somewhere?
  8. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    I actually worked with a woman in the past decade who thinks what was done to those people was just fine. She was 25-ish and probably never met a person of any color. Her attitude still makes me reel...
  9. buddy

    buddy New Member

    all you can do is feel sorry for someone like that. she was probably brain washed her whole life. Like those folks who talk about not believing there was a Holocaust. Really? Ask my 95 year old neighbor who got called into the SS and was told to pack her stuff because her hubby had been educated in Germany and she married him (Chinese). Thank heaven it turned out he was a genius who was working for the Germans (as a scientist, they escaped thank God) and so the SS had to send her an "apology" letter and she didn't have to leave with her two babies. She still has the letter.

    some people are just happy to stay ignorant. Makes them feel better about themselves in some sick way. I dont get it.
  10. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I'll keep my eyes open for a rerun of the program although I have seen similar but less moving shows. Just recently I watched a Diane Sawyer special on the families in Apalachia. Either during the Kennedy or Johnson administration there was great focus on helping those families. In 2011 it doesn't seem like there has been any progress. A few outstanding teens were featured in their journey to reach the outside and excel in the "outside" world. Two had good grades, avoided drugs/alcohol, with at least one getting a football scholarship. There was great community support for them and they both sounded so confident. Subsequently they both were released from college because they just didn't have the basics down, the study habits, and the skills to compete. They returned to their families (one going to work in the mines he swore he would never enter) and the other getting a fast food job in a neighboring town.

    It drives me nuts when people put down the lack of achievement in minority groups, the use of drugs or alcohol and in some groups the high criminal rate. Becoming an Abe Lincoln is just no possible in the society we have today. If all your friends and neighbors live an X lifestyle...that is the norm. The bonds of neighborhoods and family norms dominate choices. Your "comfort zones" are set at such an early age and breaking free is rare. It is all so sad and in my humble opinion almost hopeless. I'm sure I'll be moved by the program you saw, Janet. I might shed a tear or two. I know I will carry the emotions with me for quite some time. How I wish I could be optimistic. DDD
  11. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Actually, over the years I've come to realize that people like this poke their heads firmly in the sand because of subconscious fear ( in my opinion ) that if it could happen to one group of people, or several, then someday it could also happen to them. They can't face the face that people can be so cruel or that a society can latch on to such cruelty under the right circumstances and feel like it is the perfectly logical thing to do. Which is why History so often repeats itself.

    The ones I just love are the ones who firmly believe that Indians are filthy rich because the govt pay them monthly for all the land they took, so they're determined that some great great grandmother in their family tree was a "Cherokee Princess". :rofl: Which of course just using that term shows their ignorance as there were no "princesses" in any native nation.

    Oh, and I mustn't forget the other ones who attempt to claim native blood to get free cash for college. I nearly decked my Chemistry Instructor, a brilliant sweet man who evidently is also dumb as a box of rocks. He was going to try to claim heritage (he doesn't have any) so that the govt would give him double the cash for his research. He wanted to know why I wasn't using the govt to pay for my school. I told him those fund are set aside to help native people who can't go any other way, and I sure as Hades wasn't going to take a dime from those who needed it when I could manage to go to school just fine on my own. Then I had to spend 3 hours explaining that to him. Did I succeed? Who knows. :groan:
  12. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Lisa...about the princesses. I beg to differ. My great, great, great grandfather married the daughter of the Chief of the Penobscot Indians, so she was the princess. Now if we bring that down the line...I am however very very very little...part penobscot indian princess...lmao. And of course, Keyana is about 1/2 or slightly less, Lumbee Indian and at least our Princess.

    Now oddly enough, we have had quite a few Lumbee Indians who have become quite successful. Several have become sports stars on either football teams or baseball teams. We even had a man who had gone through the same elementary school as my boys and ended up working for Bill Gates. He came back to talk to Cory's Kindergarten class and promised them all that if they finished school on time without failing a grade and graduated, he would pay their 4 year college degrees. I have no idea how many actually got that.
  13. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Janet, native leaders were chosen by the people. It was not a birth right, therefore, it sort of kills the whole princess thing. Now south americans might have been different.....I don't know much about their cultures as I haven't had much than passing interest.

    That doesn't mean you great how many greats wasn't married to the daughter of the chief, just means she wasn't a princess in any sense of the word. She was just like everyone else, just her dad had a leadership position. Just as chief, was just as equal to anyone else, he just had a position of leadership. This is one of the areas where the two cultures differ so greatly that it's actually really hard to explain.

    There is two ways to look at it. From the European point of view, your great grandmother was a "princess" because they viewed her as the daughter of a "ruler", but from the native point of view, she wasn't. Europeans just assumed every culture worked the same as theirs, but they don't. So it depends on who is looking at the facts. Know what I mean?? Not trying to ruffle your feathers, just trying to explain.
  14. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Part of this whole "princess" thing comes from the original confusion... when Columbus thought he had reached East India... which is why he thought they were "Indians". (Nobody expected a continent to get in between!)

    The East Indian culture was somewhat known to the "West". And that culture did have the equivalent of heriditary leadership, and thus some form of "princess". Its a whole different culture than North American First Nations...
  15. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Lisa...I was joking. I think the whole princess thing actually has become more popular recently because their are so many pageants and so so is voted Miss Cherokee Princess.

    We have a huge issue at least here with everyone saying they are part Cherokee. I dont care who you meet, if you say anything at all about being Indian, they will immediately tell you they are part Cherokee. Boy those Cherokee's got around. Okay that wasnt nice. There were two sets of Cherokee's. One in the southwest and one in NC. The trail of tears. The Cherokee's do not like the Lumbee tribe. They are one reason that the Lumbee's are not recognized by the government yet. Oh well. I had no idea about my Penobscot roots until I was researching information about my last name. It was interesting and gave me a little ammo to use every time someone tells me that "my white people" did this to the Indians. LOL.
  16. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Oh.......well darn it, I've had so many people get in my face about the whole princess deal that I'm a tad touchy by it. lol

    I'm siksika via my paternal grandma and supposedly cherokee (western) via my paternal grandpa. The cherokee I dunno about. I know my grandparents spent a lot of time going from rez to rez each summer. Someone has movies and pictures of their trips. Grandpa was so ticked at his kids total lack of interest because they were busy trying to fit in to life off the rez, he kept his info to himself. I grew up in an exceptionally racist area (still is). So I don't claim the cherokee part because I simply am not sure. Some day I may check it out and see.

    I'm far to sketchy on most of my info because once she left my dad my mom was h*ll bent on trying to get everyone to forget she married an Indian. We rarely were allowed to see that side of the family. What I learned about my culture came as an adult when I went back "home" to learn.

    That make me chuckle. I tell people the side of my family that is white didn't even get here until the beginning of the 20th century. Would be a tad difficult for them to have done much. :rofl:

    Goes to show assuming is never a good idea. lol
  17. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    One of Tony's brothers is very, very witchy about this subject and when he gets going he blames all his problems in life on the white man. And there I am...the white woman. And that is what Tony's grandmother always called me...Tony's white woman. She never referred to me by name.

    It has become a family joke between Tony and I but then there are times when people like Billie say some of those stupid things about Keyana being mixed but we know she doesnt mean mixed Indian and white because that would also mean her kids are mixed! LOL. She also said this really stupid thing one time. You know how you put your fingers over your mouth and go...uhhhhhhhh and if you pat them back and forth it would sound like an Indian pow wow sound? Is that kinda clear? Well Tony started doing that to Keyana from probably a month or two old and she would do it almost on command by the time she was 4 months. By a year we could tell her to do her Indian sounds and she would put her hand to her mouth and pat it back and forth. Everyone thought it was so cute. Well Billie asked us if we thought her kids would be able to do that since they had "a tiny bit of Indian blood in them". OMG! It wasnt a trick only able to be performed by those with indian blood! LMAO. Stupid girl.
  18. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    That girl is just not dealing with a full deck, I swear.

    Fred was either referred to as "the great white whale" or "Custer". The first was actually used out of affection. People would tease him about the Custer thing because he resembled him so much yet acted so totally different. (I had to explain the whole affection thing to him over and over, he never quite got it) So actually, you might be surprised, your mother in law might have meant it affectionately.

    I'll never forget the first family reunion I took my kids to on my dad's side of the family. Now mind you up until then my grandpa had never met either husband or my kids. easy child walked into the house and he says Oh, I know who's lil girl that is! Travis followed her in and Grandpa exclaimed Well! That one must be the spitting image of his Daddy cuz he sure doesn't take after our side of the family. lmao!

    According to my mom, I'm the spitting image of my paternal grandmother. (I have no clue she passed away when I was 5 and I have no pics of her) But all 5 of us strongly take after biodad's side of the family, even the grandchildren do......and I'm already noticing several of the great grandchildren still tend to. (Aubrey and Darrin both do, and it appears Oliver might too despite his strawberry blonde hair he gets from husband)
  19. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    It was Tonys grandmother who called me that, not his mother. His mom died when he was 15 so I never met her. I have no idea how she felt about me but she tolerated me. She was a really odd woman. Full blooded Indian and racist as they come. Odd thing was she adored Billy even more than she liked our other two kids...lol. That bugged Tony to death. She always told everyone that Tony wasnt "right" because he would wander out in the woods to fish and climb trees and stuff. I think he had some attention issues as a kid and he also still has some reading comprehension problems. But he was the one who wasnt all there back then...lol. Trust me...he is the best of the bunch in his family!
  20. svengandhi

    svengandhi Well-Known Member

    I had really wanted to watch that show but was so exhausted that I fell asleep. I hope they rerun it.

    I am a Jewish girl from NYC; my H is an Irish Catholic boy from NYC. Our oldest son's girlfriend of several years is the D of an Irish-German woman from NY and a Lakota Sioux man who was adopted from the reservation soon after birth and who was raised as a Jew in NY. The dad was taken away at birth from his mom, who was an alcoholic and couldn't care for her older children. He probably had fetal alcohol syndrome because at his funeral, his adoptive dad spoke of his learning challenges and his addiction problems - primarily alcohol related. He said they didn't know when he was growing up about these things. I never met him but cried over the unnecessary death of this man who was so loved by his adoptive and birth families.

    At the funeral, it was mentioned that he was a direct lineal descendant of Crazy Bull and H and I just stared at each other. My kids are stubborn enough without being descended from a notoriously stubborn person, although at least his stubborness was well justified. We said can you imagine the grandchildren we might get if these 2 stay together?