November 21, 2006

Zagar not so horrible?

"Why do you look so hard for rascism or stereotypes especially when its not there?"


Rob said...

See The Harm of Native Stereotyping: Facts and Evidence for several answers to the question of intent. For instance:

"I contend that American racism as we inherit it today is a social construction of reality. Prior to Columbus, the world functioned for millennia without the race construct as we understand it today. Therefore, we must understand that racism is the primary form of cultural domination in the United States over the past four hundred years. It is cultural construction by social scientists and other students of group life as well as the mass media. Together with schools, legal systems, and higher education institutions, these forces participate in a major way in legitimizing and reifying the invalid construct. Consequently, the race construct is now internalized by the world's masses. All these voices together have helped to perpetuate this ignorance and distortion."

--Dr. Cornel Pewewardy (Comanche/Kiowa), "Why Educators Can't Ignore Indian Mascots"

Rob said...

"Rare citings and quotings" is putting it mildly. At least I cite and quote sources for my claims.

Opposing a gaming operation would suggest Pewewardy is a traditionalist, which would add (rather than subtract) credence to his views on racism and stereotyping. In fact, being anti-business does nothing to discredit his PhD or his expertise on cultural issues.

Here are two more quotes from Native experts. If you can't dispute the quotes themselves, perhaps you can (try to) discredit their credentials too:

"It's really advantageous for...power people not to know anything about the culture. [If they know] they're going to have to do something about the Indian situation."

--James Welch (Blackfeet/Gros Ventre), quoted in "Who Gets to Tell Their Stories?," New York Times Book Review, 5/3/92

"[If people learned about Indians, they] would have to say, yes, and agree and press the Supreme Court and US Congress to give the Black Hills back to the Lakota say, yes, the Native American people do own Arizona."

--Simon Ortiz (Acoma), quoted in "Who Gets to Tell Their Stories?," New York Times Book Review, 5/3/92