With so much faux-Native behavior out there—from sporting a sacred headdress at a party, to wanton hunting—it can get dicey telling Native people apart from mainstreamers.
Wait, what? Let’s try that again.
Truth is, the differences are legion, and there is a virtually unending supply of things that you’d never catch a Native doing or saying. Back in March we posted some of them and reached out via ICTMN’s Facebook page. Tons of additional things that in all likelihood you’d never catch an indigenous person doing poured in. In the same vein, here are 10 MORE Things You’d Probably Never Catch a Native Doing or Saying.
Smiling while studying U.S. history
Whether it studying is about a bunch of people that have nothing to do Native history or the onslaught of settlers into a world that wasn’t too happy these lands were already occupied, the chances of ever finding a Native person with a big grin studying U.S. History would be a fairly impossible task.
“Sorry Professor, I don’t find this book very inspiring.”
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Disrespecting an Elder
Thanks to many of our Facebook and other social media followers who noted that being disrespectful to our elders is just something we will not do. Being taught the values of respect and honor to those who have been on this earth longer than us, we know that elders are people whom we respect.
Rocking mocs labeled “Made in China”
Let’s give a big shout to traditional Grass Dancer Danny Garneaux, who came up with this gem. Danny you got this one right, no rubber soled, plastic beaded mocs for us brother, HOKA!
Not knowing how to place a good hickey
Okay, Jayson Brave Hearrt—you got us on this one. Let’s admit it, Native people know how to decorate the neck. Yes, hickies are something that just make sense.
Dressing up as a stereotypical Native American for Halloween
No, No, No, we will not be buying that latest irritating “Pocahottie” or “Hunky Warrior Brave” costume this or ANY Halloween. This is the bane of almost any Native person’s existence, and when Halloween rears its head, we all brace ourselves for those series of frustrating costumes that undermine traditional regalia.
Turning down a free T-shirt
HUGE kudos to Mariah Cuch, who called us out big time on this one. Does it matter who is giving it away or what the t-shirt says? Nope. In fact, as Mariah said on ICTMN’s Facebook page, you’d never catch a Native “Turning down a free t-shirt even if it meant going to a diabetes fun run walk around the gym.” She’s not the only one.
Refusing to feed a visitor or guest
Our Facebook friend Quintina Morgan of Albuquerque called this one right when she said how Natives would never refuse to feed a visitor or guest.
“Natives are well known for their hospitality,” she said.
In fact, anyone who has gone to a Native house party or visited Native friends has probably run into this problem: “Where do we put all of this food?”
Asking a non-Native person, “What’s your blood quantum?”
Great work to Tachini Pete, who wrote this on our Facebook page. Yes, of course we as Natives are often asked our Native percentile of blood, but we would surely get the “hairy eye” if we asked the question right back at a non-Native person.
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Killing animals for sport
Many readers posted this on our Facebook page, so it certainly merits a mention. Yes, Native American culture often involves the activity of hunting, but in almost every aspect of hunting, alongside those teachings are the teachings of the sacredness of our winged, hooved and reptilian earth partners that are thanked and treated as sacred. When there is hunting, there is also an appreciation and honor for the animal that gives its life for our benefit on earth.
Feeling honored when yet another celeb dons a sacred headdress
Considering Pharrell, Khloe Kardashian and now Usher amongst many others in the recent past have worn sacred feathered headdresses as their “Native hipster” fashion statement, Native People aren’t too likely to be exclaiming how excited they are that another celebrity is wearing something sacred as “fashion.” In fact, we want them to plain knock it off rather than sport a knockoff.