ASK YOUR RELATIVE QUESTIONS

Tags: 11 - Activism, 4 - Non-Native Allies

what is the number one cause of death in youth?

Hey there! Thanks for writing in. I’m guessing you might be doing a school project. In any case, I’m happy to help! Here what I could find: Among AI/AN ages 1 – 19 years, the four leading causes of death in rank order are unintentional injuries, suicide, homicide, and cancer. Check out this IHS link. You may not have given…

Culture is not a costume!

Hi there! I’m Auntie Jane and I’ve thought a lot about your question. Your friend thinks dressing up like a Native for Halloween is harmless. At the end of the night, she can take off that costume and get dressed in her normal clothes and for her, life goes on. Cultural appropriation actually causes harm though. Like, real people are…

Hi Auntie Manda and Uncle Paige, both my husband and I are Native and work in the helping field with Indigenous communities. We wanted to create a presentation piece that can be presented to our volunteers for going above and beyond. I know the teachings of the ribbon skirt but I’m not familiar with teachings of the ribbon shirt. Can you share a teaching that we can offer to go with our presentation piece? Miigwetch, Niawen, Marsii and Thank you. Sharon

Hi Sharon! Thanks for writing in! I love this idea! What a beautiful representation of your appreciation. I had to check with a couple of my friends who make ribbon skirts and shirts. My friend Ryan shared this really cool article from the Milwaukee Public Museum, which talks more about the beginning history, as far as how styles changed after…

Hi I was wondering if you guys have any stories that relate to the environment?

Great question! To give you a short answer. Absolutely. We have stories, legends, and mythos and continued teachings that are centered on the environment. What an amazing and exciting question. Some reminders when looking into these stories. When looking into stories you will learn that they are usually born from the type of environment that they exist in. i.e. plains,…

Why are Native Americans offended by the use of school Mascots like “Indians” where it’s used as a symbol of pride, strength, good luck, and lifelong connection among alumni? No disrespect is, or was, ever intended. Some schools have had mascots like this for over 50 years and now there are efforts to destroy them and the memories and history they represent. Why?

Thanks for writing in! This is such a great and timely question. For me, it’s a matter of individual perspective. When we group people and say that all Native Americans are offended by mascots it is incorrect. When we see people as a group, it takes away from knowing that everyone has their own perspective based on their experiences and…

Dear Auntie, why do white people hate indians (people from india not natives?)

Well, most minorities around the world tend to be marginalized due to the effects of colonization, which is the establishment of control over a group(s) of occupiers of land. Be critical about where or who you are getting this information or feeling from. What is the background to that story? Are these people and channels of information included in your…

Dear Auntie, what are you grateful for this year?

I love this question! In reflecting back on this crazy year, one thing that stuck with me was when we first started hearing and preparing for COVID, I, probably alongside most of the world, was looking at the world infection maps. Maps that showed varying sizes of red dots indicating how many cases each country had. Over the course of…
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