June 28, 2011

Natives attack "Indians" showband

Here are some of the comments posted on the "Indians" Facebook page after Natives learned about it:Fáilte, I am an Irish-American who honors my ancestors, but also lives among the American Indians here in the US. I think perhaps because Indians are not real people to you, because you do not share your lives with them, that you are not understanding the hurt and outrage you are provoking. Real Indians have been oppressed, and are still oppressed by pale people like us. We have no right to dress up in outfits that mimic their sacred regalia, or to take the names of their ancestors. I have dear friends who are family members of the ancestors whose names you have taken. They don't think it's funny, or entertaining, and neither do I. Please get some new kit and change your name. Find a new gimmick. If your music is good enough, you won't need a gimmick at all. Slán.

How is this any better than blackface? Shame on you.
Your music can surely stand on its own without this kind of racist nonsense, right?

I do not think you intentionally mean to offend the Indigenous people of N. America who were mistakenly thought to be Indians when an Italian man was lost. Please do not commit cultural theft by mimicking our regalia. Please watch this video and consider ways you can entertain without reinforcing racial stereotypes. We are working hard to heal our historical trauma and unresolved grief.

Wow. Most racist band ever. You guys should be ashamed of yourselves.

That's not funny. You guys are from Ireland right? I don't think you'd like it if there was an band of Native Americans who called themselves "The Micks," dressed up in leprechaun suits, then pretended to drink & fight as part of their act.

You're about as funny as you are creative. May the wind knock you on your asses, may the road rise up and slap the shit out of you, and the hurricanes of destiny shred your silly costumes to bits.

Custer died for your sins.

Is this a joke?? This is a racial portrayal of Indigenous people. Do you not understand?

Hey--You don't see us playing white people do ya. It's not a joke, its our culture that is very sacred to us. It's very offensive to my race, my culture, my ancestors, No--we don't understand...play someone else A**hole!

What the fuck is this? You guys are white and exploiting Native Americans names with cheezy ass costumes? And why am I not THAT surprised?

You guys are so terrible at being Irish you had to mock another culture to justify your own sad, culturally depleted, sorry asses, didn't ya?

This is far from humorous. It is a clear act of disregard for the honorable names you have chose to attach to your idiotic, insensitive, spirits. All of you have displayed your ignorance and racist views. You have no honor. You are just a bunch of sorry imbeciles who should be slapped with a stupid stick. Now that you have been brought to attention, you will suffer the consequences of you bigoted routine and be held accountable wherever you show up at. Get ready, we are coming!

You bring dishonor and shame upon your own people with this ridicule. Our ways, our songs, our feathers, our tribes, our chiefs are sacred! I must wonder what kind of folks you entertain with this tasteless misrepresentation!

Native American here. I linked you to a note I wrote about the difficulties growing up Native American with people making racist mockeries of my culture. Please know, it's not flattering or harmless. What you're doing is harmful, ignorant, and if you continue after hearing heartfelt pleas and angry urging, malicious. Please choose a different name and theme for your band.

I'm sure you were raised to have respect for your culture and ways and I'm sure kids are being raised as such also, well it's very difficult as parents to raise our kids with strong self-esteem and confidence when people like you openly disrespect and further oppress a culture by mocking who they are. THINK ABOUT IF THE TABLES WERE TURNED!!!

This is so upsetting. I'm so used to my Irish friends being respectful of my culture. It has been my experience that many Irish people are in solidarity with us indigenous peoples. This is just disrespectful....It brings great dishonour to the relationship between our nations.

Dumbest...shit...ever...you racist fucks...

What an awful way to get attention towards your band!! I hope after reading the many comments of the people your band has offended you will be enlightened!...to change not only your name and the way you are dressing; but also to change your outlook on this proud race and their traditions. Your ignorance towards the Native people and their culture is sickening. And if this is intentional ridicule, and not ignorance, shame on you all! What goes around comes back around, karma will see you fit.

Totally not cool ...nor entertaining...what your so called attempt at dressing in "regalia" and naming band members as such is clearly a demonstration that represents total ignorance based on prejudice and discrimination!!!!

Report all of the pictures, and the page as racist content.

I am totally disgusted. I lived a life of racism. Hasn't time changed!!! This answers my question. There are always some ignorant people out there. What you do will come back on you.....believe me!!

I'm also thinking of starting a new band, I can't find a name for it maybe the honkeys, the niggers, spics or jews? I don't know let me know.

RACIST VERY RACIST I'm 100 percent Ojibwe and I'm outraged at this.

Should be called I stole everything from the Indians even the name the Indians!

I hate that I had to like this page in order to leave a comment. Do y'all think you are honoring American Indians? Do y'all think calling your band The Indians, giving yourselves the names of respected warriors, dressing in fake regalia is showing respect? You're wrong. What y'all are doing is insulting, disrespectful, and borders on identity theft. Think about what you've done. Rename your band. Now, as soon as I hit share, I will dislike this page.

I do not believe this is racist as much as it's ignorant. Yes, your stupidity is inadvertently a form of racism but what really shows is your ignorance. Why didn't you call yourselves "The Klansmen"? Is it because that would be considered in bad taste?
Comment:  It's ignorant and it's racist. Most if not all racism is born of ignorance.

If you think something has to be hateful or malicious to be racist, wrong. Regardless of the intent, if it singles out one race for special treatment, it's racist.

For more on the subject, see "Indians" Showband Gets Attention and Most Racist Musical Group Ever?

P.S. I fixed minor errors in punctuation and capitalization.


Anonymous said...

I think everyone is missing the point here. There seems to be an acceptable and even tolerated amount of edge when racism is soley aimed at natives, but when you pull in African and Irish Americans, everyone comes at you with a lit torch beneath them.

Am I reading this wrong?

Kevin said...

The Irish showband The Indians have been around for about forty years. I remember them when I was a kid. Not the kind of music I was into but they were popular in the various Irish ballrooms and dance halls. It was a way for them to earn a living and more power to them. They have harmed nobody. Why has it taken you that long to whinge and whine about a stupid name. This is PC gone mad.

dmarks said...

Just like blackface minstrel shows never harm anyone, right?

Easy to say if you are not in the ethnic group being bashed.

dmarks said...

These were the same sort of thing as the Indians showband. They were around for more than 40 years.

They are gone, for the same reason that people object to the "Indians" showband.

PC gone mad?

Kevin said...

For Dmarks ..
I am Irish, therefore I am a fully paid up member of an ethnic group that has been slandered world wide throughout written history. I have been called a paddy, mick, bog man, and other names I can not/will not print, when we choose to fight back against our main oppressor we were then labelled as terrorists. I have yet to see the complainants asking the Washington Redskins to change the name of their American Football team. I recall that Native American/First Nations were called Redskins and the team logo of the above mentioned team is a caricature of a Native American. So yes the is still PC gone mad....

Jaine said...

Kevin, the complainants have long been asking for the Washington Redskins to change their name.

This isn't PC gone mad, it's about respecting other cultures and not misappropriating them or reinforcing stereotypes - as Irish one would think you would understand that.

As someone of Irish descent I've copped my fair share of name calling, that doesn't justify me supporting a group that commercially exploits another maligned group of people.

Being a "fully paid up member of an ethnic group that has been slandered world wide throughout history" doesn't mean one can slander other ethnic groups, or be dismissive about what they have to say about how they are stereotyped.

Rob said...

I've written that Indians win the "Oppression Olympics," Anonymous. That may address your point.

I wrote about the "Indians" showband last year, Kevin. If I'd heard about them 20 or 40 years ago, I might've written about them then, too.

FYI, we uncover several "new" Native stereotypes here every week. It's impossible for any of us to track more than a fraction of them.

A Native challenge to the Washington Redskins made it to the US Supreme Court before it was turned down for technical reasons. So much for your ridiculous claim that no one has protested the Redskins.