July 30, 2008

"You guys actually exist still?"

Jamesburg Intertribal organization looks to educate residents on American Indians in New JerseyThe Intertribal American Indians of New Jersey have a clear goal—to show people American Indians still exist and to right the wrongs they say are still perpetuated in American society today.

"I think the images that come to mind when people think of Indians are warriors in war bonnets descending on a group of wagon trains," said group member Mary Anne Ross. "They just don't have any idea what modern American Indians are like."
And:Ross's daughter, Rebecca Shield, is now 19 and still an active member of the organization fighting to educate people about her culture.

"I've had one person say, "Native Americans? You guys actually exist still?' People don't realize we're still here," Shield said. "Mostly because we're in New Jersey. Out West there's a lot more Native Americans."
Comment:  Shield could've responded, "Shouldn't that be 'youse guys'? If this is New Jersey, aren't you an Italian mobster"?

By now most people should've heard of Indian gaming, at least. But perhaps what they've heard is that Indian casinos are owned by shifty-eyed pretenders who don't deserve to be called Indians. I.e., "Indians" who are little different from welfare cheats or mobsters. That is the propaganda being spewed by the conservative white establishment and its shills, after all.

As I've said many times, every Native stereotype contributes to Americans' ignorance about Indians. People like Kenn and Ken don't know what they're talking about when they say mascots are the only things informing people about Indians. Mascots are one of the main things misinforming people about Indians. According to the Ken(n)s of the world, Indians are either dead and gone or they're greedy casino owners.

For more on the subject, see Stereotype of the Month Contest.

Below:  A New Jersey Indian pretending to be an Italian mobster?

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