February 24, 2008

The positive side of stereotypes?

Facing and fighting the stereotypeNative American stereotypes have affected my life, negatively and positively. The most important and perhaps the most offensive stereotypes are of the “drunk Indian” and of Indians as drug users. And some people refer to us as “wagon burners.”

Growing up, I‘ve been surrounded by the often harsh interplay between stereotype and reality. Some of my family could easily be classified as stereotypical Native Americans, being aggressive drunks.

My uncle’s death symbolizes the cost of alcoholism. A few years ago, I found out my uncle had been drinking. He ended up going for a walk, got hit by a car and later died. I had rarely seen or spoken to my uncle, but I was devastated to know that his death could have been prevented. I truly think if he hadn’t been drinking he would still be alive.

I don’t want to end up like my uncle and go down that path. I want to change how people see us by keeping myself healthy and helping others do the same.
Comment:  A person doesn't need a stereotype as a reason to eat and drink in moderation. It's the best thing to do whether your relatives are immoderate or not.

1 comment:

writerfella said...

Writerfella here --
Yes, eat and drink in moderation, thou shalt not steal nor take the name of the white man's god in vain, but go forth and multiply, and remember the Sabbath and keep it holy. And certainly one must not covet thy neighbor's wife nor his ass (pre-King James text, no brag, just fact). Hmm, writerfella will have to think about that last one for a while...,
All Best
Russ Bates