October 20, 2006

Getting ready for AI month

Resources Offered for American Indian Heritage Month

Blue Corn Comics Provides Quiz, Articles, Contest

It's that time of the year again: American Indian Heritage Month, when Americans celebrate Native people in all their diversity and complexity. To that end, Blue Corn Comics has gathered several of its resources for the media, schools, and the Web in one handy spot. Editors, teachers, and bloggers can come here for content they can use to acknowledge the country's first inhabitants.


Anonymous said...

You do good work, homedog. Thought I'd be nice enough to say so:)

The Local Crank said...

Here, here! I agree wholeheartedly. Rob is my new favorite white man!
Seriously, though, Rob, you are to be commended for your sensitivity, your cultural awareness and your tenacious defense of NDNs in the culture. You may not have had a cherokee princess in your background (which would make you damn near the only white man who doesn't), but if you'd been around 160 years ago or so, we'd have totally adopted you. Wado!

The Local Crank said...

It's a national holiday that first began as a state holiday in New York. George HW Bush made it national and expanded it to an entire month in 1990. Since it's in November, I wonder if it's supposed to make up for Columbus Day?

Rob said...

It's more of an observation than a holiday. You don't get the day off or anything.

It's like African American Heritage Month (February), which has been around longer. I think they chose November to add some context to Thanksgiving, since Indians aren't necessarily thankful for what happened.

Congress passes a joint resolution every year to authorize it, but that's just a designation--like declaring the groundhog your state mammal or the slug your state mollusk. It doesn't cause the government to do anything except promote the concept to schools and the public.

See http://www.ihs.gov/PublicAffairs/Heritage/Heritage_History.cfm for a brief history of the event.

Curiously, sources are evenly split on whether it's called Native American Heritage Month or American Indian Heritage Month. Even branches of the government use both names. I believe the link above has the official name.

Rob said...

Since Congress passes the law and the president signs it, it's a national event. But again, it's a period of recognition or acknowledgement, not a holiday. It's akin to School Principals Day, Be Kind to Animals Week, or Correct Posture Month, all of which you can find on this calendar of promotional events: