WASHINGTON — A federal judge seems to think Native Americans offended by the Washington Redskins team name are properly being sued by the NFL franchise.
Judge Gerald Bruce Lee in Virginia said Friday that it would be unprecedented if he agrees to dismiss the team’s lawsuit against a group of Native Americans who filed a complaint with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
The office decided to cancel some of the Redskins’ brand protections, citing federal regulations against protecting trademarks that are disparaging or offensive.
Now the team is suing the Native Americans in Virginia as part of its legal efforts to overturn the ruling.
This essay was written by Jonnie Taté Walker. She prefaces it with this:
NOTE: This wasn’t an easy post to write. There are layers and layers of oppression here, and I’ve chosen the one I’m most familiar with: How the misrepresentation and misappropriation of Native culture hurts our youth. I’m not condoning the violence perpetrated by Jaylen, but I’m not condemning him, either. I see a beautiful boy who loved his culture, loved his parents, and loved his peers. And I also see a kid society failed miserably. We can do better. Prayers for all the families involved.
I found it from her Tweet:
Jaylen Fryberg Is Not Your Indian Savage http://t.co/paxovRKFDz
It didn’t take long for news outlets to turn real-life tragedy into some spaghetti western hopped up on Shakespeare Friday.
Jaylen Fryberg, a 15-year-old freshman at Marysville-Pilchuch [sic] High School in Washington state, shot and injured four students and killed a girl and himself Friday during lunch.
Fryberg was Native American, and a citizen of the Tulalip Tribes active in his people’s culture.
Images of Jaylen used in the media move from his normal teenage wear (you know, the clothes that render him a “thug”), to him in his traditional regalia, to him with the weapons he used to hunt and fish. These aren’t just random photos news outlets are exploiting from the social media accounts of an underage kid (problematic in and of itself). They are purposeful and part of a long history of system racism pervasive in mass media.
For those of us who have spent years studying the effects of mascots and Native representation in mass media, it’s no coincidence that Jaylen turned to violence when his own football team was the Marysville-Pilchuck Tomahawks, a nickname that came under fire several times over the past couple of decades as school boards across the country became hip to the fact Native-associated mascots are damaging in ways that utterly dehumanize and erase Native youth identities.
Please read the rest of her essay here: Jaylen Fryberg Is Not Your Indian Savage
This is from the New York Times:
This month, Jaylen got into a fight at football practice, punching a student and breaking his nose over a racial slur against Native Americans, Josh said.
That day, ShayAnn Wolf, 16, a junior, was in a sports medicine class. “The kid that got his nose broken came in with a bloody nose — it was gushing blood,” she said. “He told our sports med teacher that Jaylen just came up and grabbed him and started punching.”
ShayAnn, whose boyfriend is a football player, later also heard that a racist joke had started the fight, and said Jaylen had been briefly suspended from the football team.
This is from almost a year ago in the Tulalip News. It was linked in Walker’s essay. It is unknown whether or how Stephanie Fryberg is related to Jaylen Fryberg.
As a former student at Marysville-Pilchuck High School, home of the Tomahawks, Dr. Stephanie Fryberg remembers seeing a fellow student clad in a headdress of feathers and watching as other kids participated in the Tomahawk Chop.
Fryberg, a Native American and member of the Tulalip Tribe, said she always found those displays disturbing.
“I was an athlete in Marysville and I was definitely part of the sports culture, but I always felt weird about that,” said Fryberg, who received a PhD from Stanford University in 2003 and is today an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Arizona, where she is also affiliate faculty for American Indian Studies (she is on leave in the current academic year).
According to Fryberg, those nicknames and mascots also demean the people they are purported to esteem. “People say they are honoring Natives,” she said. “No, they’re not.
“Given the difficulties Native students have had being successful in mainstream schools,” she went on, “I just don’t think it’s a place where we need to add one more stereotype and one more barrier for Native students to (overcome). … Negative stereotypes are playing with people’s identity, and at the end of the day, how many Native students have to say it bothers them before we care?”
Zach Heltzel over at Liberal Bias has an excellent idea for all those white nationalist, white supremacist racist wingnuts out there in the Republican Party.
To those who actively explore anthropology, history and genetics, the whole speculation and debate on race topic might be irrelevant altogether, and additionally, loaded with misinformation. Most scientific discussions on race seem to have to do with the physical structure of the human body, rather than skin pigmentation, and in particular, the human scull. Excavations and research of ancient tombs have brought a lot of new discoveries into light, challenging a lot of previously recorded history.
A commonly discussed example of what genetics can do in one generation are the biracial twins Kian and Remee Hodgson. Born to mixed race parents, one of the girls is black, while the other sister is white. The girls’ parents were both reportedly born to a black father and a white mother. A source stated this case to be a one in a million chance.
Among the many mysteries are the reported presence of Y-chromosome Q at a high level in Iceland and Norway. The paternal Q lineage, suggested to have originated in Central Asia, is said to be the predominant Y-chromosome among Native Americans and is also found at high levels among tribes in Central and Northeast Asia. Another “rogue” lineage in Iceland is the Mitochondrial DNA (X chromosome) C1E, whose other identified C1 relatives are among Native American populations as well. Some have suggested that it could be traced to the Viking era, while to others, when looking at certain mutations, there might be an even more complicated story.
While Iceland has a highly advanced registry of genealogy, there are still unsolved puzzles. Many cultures might also have secrets attributed to relations that were or are considered inappropriate, perhaps illegal, denied paternities, illegitimate children, secretly being with someone from an enemy country.
by John Timmer - Feb 12 2014, 6:04pm PST
The peopling of the Americas via the Bering Sea land bridge is one of the more confusing events in recent history. Some of the earliest signs of human occupancy are actually in Chile. After that, the first distinct toolmaking culture, the Clovis people, appeared in the interior of North America and rapidly swept across the continent. There are also indications that a separate migration occurred down the Pacific Coast, possibly associated with people who had distinctive skeletal features, while the Inuit seem to be relatively recent arrivals.
The sudden appearance of the Clovis toolset has caused some people to suggest that the Clovis were a distinct migration by a passage between ice sheets directly into North America’s interior. Others have even suggested that they arrived from Europe, brought by people who crossed the ice through Greenland (an idea that’s favored by a certain Bigfoot researcher). Now, researchers have completed the genome of an individual who was buried with Clovis tools in Montana 12,500 years ago. The results suggest that the migration into North America was more unified than some thought.
small patch of prairie sits largely unnoticed off a desolate road in southwestern South Dakota, tucked amid gently rolling hills and surrounded by dilapidated structures and hundreds of gravesites _ many belonging to Native Americans massacred more than a century earlier.
The assessed value of the property: less than $14,000. The seller’s asking price: $4.9 million.
Tribal members say the man who owns a piece of the Wounded Knee National Historic Landmark on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation is trying to profit from their suffering. It was there, on Dec. 29, 1890, that 300 Native American men, women and children were killed by the 7th Cavalry in the final battle of the American Indian Wars.
James Czywczynski, whose family has owned the property since 1968, is trying to sell the 40-acre fraction of the historic landmark and another 40-acre parcel for a total of $4.9 million. He has given the Oglala Sioux Tribe until Wednesday to agree to the price or plans to open it up to outside investors.
Earlier this month Czywczynski said he had three offers from West Coast-based investment groups interested in buying the land for the original asking price. He didn’t return calls this week to The Associated Press seeking information about the prospective buyers.
These images are utterly beyond “worth a thousand words”
Native Americans: Portraits From a Century Ago
Apr 8, 2013
In the early 1900s, Seattle-based photographer Edward S. Curtis embarked on a project of epic scale, to travel the western United States and document the lives of Native Americans still untouched by Western society. Curtis secured funding from J.P. Morgan, and visited more than 80 tribes over the next 20 years, taking more than 40,000 photographs, 10,000 wax cylinder recordings, and huge volumes of notes and sketches. The end result was a 20-volume set of books illustrated with nearly 2,000 photographs, titled “The North American Indian.” In the hundred-plus years since the first volume was published, Curtis’s depictions have been both praised and criticized. The sheer documentary value of such a huge and thorough project has been celebrated, while critics of the photography have objected to a perpetuation of the myth of the “noble savage” in stage-managed portraits. Step back now, into the early 20th century, and let Edward Curtis show you just a few of the thousands of faces he viewed through his lens
Dozens of Native Americans wore the traditional garb of their ancestors, sang songs and beat drums on a western Connecticut farm Saturday in celebration of the birth of one of the world’s rarest animals — a white bison.
The miracle calf was officially named Yellow Medicine Dancing Boy at the elaborate ceremony at the Mohawk Bison farm in Goshen in the state’s northwestern hills. It was born June 16 at the farm of fourth-generation farmer Peter Fay.
Many Native Americans consider white bison a symbol of hope and unity; some consider their births sacred events. Experts say white bison are as rare as one in 10 million.
Yellow Medicine Dancing Boy is not an albino, and Fay said DNA testing confirmed the animal’s bloodlines are pure and there was no intermingling with cattle.
Lakota tribe members from South Dakota were among the hundreds of people who gathered at the celebration. Other tribal elders from the Mohawk, Seneca and Cayuga tribes participated.
Crowds patiently waited by the roadside before slowly marching into the pasture and lining up alongside a fence as the ceremony began. Children squeezed up against their parents and peered through the fence.
A hundred years ago, archaeologists thought Native Americans came to North America only 5,000 years ago. That belief changed in the 1920s and 1930s as researchers started finding stone projectile points associated with the fossils of mammoths and giant bisons—animals that went extinct more than 10,000 years ago. For decades, the oldest known points dated to 13,000 years ago. Called Clovis points, they contained characteristic “flutes,” or long, concave grooves, where a spear locked into place.
More recent evidence reveals humans reached the New World, via the Bering Strait, by at least 15,000 years ago. These early Americans weren’t making Clovis points. Last week, archaeologists announced in Science another example of pre-Clovis technology.
The tools come from Oregon’s Paisley Caves. Dennis Jenkins of the University of Oregon and colleagues determined people were living in the area by at least 14,000 years ago based on the radiocarbon dates of human coprolites (fossilized dung) found in the cave. They also found projectile points of the same age or slightly older than Clovis points. Known as the Western Stemmed Tradition, these points are narrower, lack flutes and require a different chipping method to make than Clovis points.