I got this interesting comment to my post “Do People Really Not Want to see the Happier More Successful Side of Indian Country? – See more at: http://rezbomb.com/blog/?p=714#sthash.T5WxzXUj.dpuf”
July 1, 2013 at 8:19 pm · Edit
Yes, and I deal with it all the time, especially here in Europe. They often want you to be stereotypical replicas of 200 years ago, so it can fulfill their fantasies and imaginings. They do not like you or outright reject you if you are dressed in modern clothing, may have a “modern” profession, and rebuke you if you do not only work in “traditional” roles as a singer, dancer, or something similar. They don’t get that we are not compartmentalized like that. I am a publisher, a psycho-therapist but I know my culture, traditions, history, dances, songs, etc. but I don’t have to or will display them on demand just because they want me to.
Many want to think of us only as “past tense” because it is easier for them. In that way, they may not feel any need to try to help or contribute to causes, or even just acknowledge the long wrongs done without the benefit their being the clause: “Those people are no more”, so they won’t feel guilty/obliged to do anything now really. Not that we ask that. Just be honest.
In Europe, such as in the article I wrote publish in Indian Country Today Media Network, there are so many European non-native hobbyists who feel they have read enough books, bought enough true regalia sold online or they learn how to make it, and they feel they are demonstrating native life because it is failing due to so many issues among real natives. That is one cause, but also some just want to copy another culture because they’ve lost or don’t feel comfortable in their own, or they just want to copy for amusement.
Those especially don’t want to see successful natives. They just want to focus on the past, and/or focus on what they want to present.”
Many thanks to him for sharing this with us.