No on Prop 68
by B.J. Delas Armas
on 10/09/2004 10:24:00 AM
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And a yes on 70.
Prop 68 is basically a measure that would continually screw Native Americans, again.
The Yes on prop 68 have taken the angle that Indian casinos are not paying their fair share and are screwing everyone over. This position is advocated by rich white guys from out of state looking to expand their casinos all over California with the passing of this proposition.
The practical defense against prop 68 is that with casinos comes this increase in crime, prostitution, drugs near schools, suburbs, and subsequently jamming up highways. It's supported by law enforcement agencies, teachers, Native American tribes, and Arnold. I guess the Arnold thing should take care of most Republicans.
But I'm not really aiming to appeal to Republicans 'cause I'm not a politician.
Once this prop is done and hopefully NOT passed, Native Americans will still be an issue mainly because dem white guys robbed them of their land and and as insult, have tried to enforce their own great grand rules of fairness and freedom on them as if Native Americans had no sense of that before.
Sure in popular culture, native Americans have been celebrated for their humanness.
However, their histories with whites and being in America have largely been romanticized. In particular with Pocahontas the animated feature, both world views of the English and Native American were fairly well-represented with what you can expect in a Disney movie. However, it's a Disney movie. The priority is that they teach how morals solve things to 5-7 year old kids rather than educate. And so the white guys and copper-skinned guys battle was resolved when Pocahontas basically spread her legs for John Smith in the name of good will, thereby bringing closure and any wonderance about stark realities Native Americans faced when the rest of the European entourage came.
I mean, I know it's tough to represent minorities because there will be critics like me micro-analyzing things, but it's not like minorities are majorities. But again, whatever, that's for kids they don't need to know the truth just yet, just tools to deal with things.
However, nowadays back in the real life, "adult" life, there's all these Native American exhibits opening up. The Smithsonian in particular has opened one up. But one issue some Natives take offense to is that they refuse to show how the white guys continually screwed the Natives up. There would be so many less museum-goers if they did that.
Seeing a pattern ?
In politics and history, we still do not really see how Native Americas get screwed.
It's hard to see in movies, it's hard to see in museums, I'll be damned if I see anything like I described in popular tv without the initials PBS or mention of the words "educational" or "learning" and even more so if this generation that blogs and takes in too many useless information but then is so adverse to learning and intellect (not intelligence, there's a difference that Cornel West pointed out) spends a second of free time typing in "native american" on google.
So if people's mediums to Native Americans are limited and thus biased, how can people clearly see what's happening to them today ?
I mean, some schools and the internet are doing a pretty good job of letting us know what really happened, but then everything else in our American culture seems to suggest that "it really wasn't that bad. It's life. Capitalism baby. Solve your own problems with good morals."
As I quote the great Triloki Pandey who quoted one of his colleagues, "not a single one of the Native American treaties with the USA has been honored." They've been pushed around. Mountain Climbers climb what used to be the Cheyenne's, Sioux worship places in Devil's Tower (you wouldn't climb Mount Rushmore would you ? (http://home.pacbell.net/acmc/devilstwr.html). Mining companies routinely decimate what you would consider rocks but what they would consider their homes and worship places. They are still the poorest demographic in America. I have yet to come in counter with one in college, despite them apparently rolling in dough. You don't hear them complaining, because their voices are put on mute by the American honchos.
And this brings me back to the point of No on prop 68. Casinos are a way of assimilating Native Americans into American society. Some tribes like the Hopi Nation are rabidly against these casinos because they don't feel it's what represents them. However, it's hard for them to get back to their way of life namely because their traditions of farming and hunting and gathering have been cut off from them in these reserves, not to mention a whole bunch of them dying (pre-European domination, there was 10 million, and now there's just a million AFTER a growth in people identifying themselves as such) from disease, Europeans forcing them out of places, and Europeans killing them in war.
I think they do need to help California, but somewhat gradually after America has continually drop-kicked them and taken away any form of agency. (http://www.indianfairshare.com/questions/index.php#a21)
This is where prop 70 comes in. It is supported by most Native tribes as a better alternative to prop 68.
Labels: California Politics, I Advocate This