June 09, 2014

Coyne presents man in headdress

WAYNE'S WORLD: Native American appropriation continues unabated

By Louis FowlerThis weekend, hundreds of Native Americans gathered in Oklahoma City for the historic Red Earth Festival, celebrating not only Native history, but Native futures as well.

Meanwhile, at the Wakarusa Festival on Mulberry Mountain in Ozark, Arkansas, hundreds of mostly Caucasian hipsters, many in mocking Native headdresses themselves, gathered as Flaming Lips frontman Wayne Coyne continued his “artistic” assault on the American Indian by having a man dressed in Native regalia on-stage.

The Wakarusa Music and Camping Festival, featuring four days of music and activities for people of all ages, has gained in popularity, especially for Oklahomans, considering how close it is to the Sooner State.

While eyewitness reports have been scattered, the most consistent anecdotes from attendees have been that this was all part of an on-stage wedding. Why the male needed to be in the warbonnet to be married is still anyone’s guess, but what is perhaps the most perplexing question to many Natives who’ve seen the photos is, if Coyne was serious about his label-mandated Rolling Stone apology (and many activists believe he truly wasn’t), why would he continue to add fuel to an already raging fire by allowing something like this on-stage?

The reaction from Indigenous activists on Twitter and Facebook has been one of continued hurt, disappointment and burgeoning anger, while many fans of the offensive rockers continue to defend the antics of the crackpot Coyne and crew under the guise of “art.”

“Maybe Coyne thinks he is the only one that can disrespect Natives and be the best at it? I don't know, but his apathy and lies know no bounds,” civil rights activist Jennie Stockle posted on social media. “I'm sure he will claim ‘innocence’ by blaming the headdress being on stage with him on that person wearing it. However, it is HIS show and knowing full well how Native Americans feel, he could have not allowed it to be on stage. He could have easily forbid it during his performance. The truth is he didn't give a second thought to the example he set to his young fans or harm he is doing to Native Americans and their honored family members.”

“Folks, Wayne Coyne is a liar and has now commonly engaged in racism against Native Americans to boost his own name-infamously so,” she added.
Comment:  For more on the subject, see Fallin Suffers Fallout from Stereotyping and Coyne Apologizes for Dog Headdress.

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