natives!

treacherousgodswrites  asked:

Seeing as you already received an ask about Until Dawn, I wanted to ask you what your general opinion about the game and its use of the Wendigo is? I understand if the question has little to do with writing but I'd like your opinion before buying it in case it is offensive.

Until Dawn Game and Use of the Wendigo

From what I’ve gathered about the game, they didn’t have Algonquian people giving input to the story. While Wendigo legends have spread much farther West in modern times because of how much ecological destruction is happening, it’s spreading amongst Natives and is still staying mostly within Algonquin territory (the Cree are an Algonquin speaking people, and their nation is absolutely gigantic). 

While the game pays lip service to the original locations of the Cree, and it is remotely possible the Cree owned mountains, the thing about the bordering Cree nation is they are called Plains Cree for a reason. If you look at a map highlighting the Rockies, and you look at a map highlighting the territory of the Cree, the two barely overlap if they overlap at all.

Disclaimer: I am not Plains Cree— I am Mohawk, Mi'kmaq, and Wyandot— so I could be wrong. Plains Cree are more than welcome to correct me about ancestral lands.

However, the concepts taken from the game make me uneasy.

The Wendigo is not a random horror creature, as I have said before. It has been stolen and repurposed (before anyone comes at me saying that it’s part of their local mythology so it’s free for white people to use, allow me to explain that Native people were not free to practice their religions in Canada from 1884 and the ban lasted about a century; there was no room for there to be equal sharing of religions, because Natives had no ownership over their own). As soon as I see any Native ‘scary creature’ used, I am extremely wary. It is possible to use them respectfully, but more often than not, it’s just appropriation.

Even though the game pays lip service to keeping the Wendigo within the Cree, I cannot find a single piece of information that says the Cree were actually consulted for the game. And that’s a huge problem. The thing about the proper use of Native American mythology is it stays within our control, like the aforementioned Skinwalkers usage. It seems to me that they simply used the Wendigo for the old school horror tropes, which are inherently racist.
I can’t seem to find any Native-written pieces about the game, either, which I would love to link to (followers, if you provide opinions, make sure they are either linking to Native-written works or you yourself are Native). 

But from my own glance at it, I don’t like their use of the Wendigo and I don’t like how I can’t seem to find any Native voices anywhere around the project.

~Mod Lesya 

astronomicallytired  asked:

since shiro is for sure and obviously japenese.... can he speak japanese? fluently?? not at all? just a bit?? idk this has been pondering in my head for some time lmao

Hi @astronomicallytired! Thanks for the great ask! 

First off, I’m not sure it canonically ever states that Shiro is Japanese. However, Shiro’s full name, “Takashi Shirogane”, means “white” in Japanese. This along with his obviously slanted eyes and tan skin certainly point to an Asiatic heritage. 

 Sven Holgerson, the black paladin from the 80’s Voltron Lion Force, was Norwegian. Sven was a mash-up of two characters from Beast King GoLion: Takashi Shirogane (the original blue lion paladin) and Ryou Shirogane, Takashi’s brother who replaced him after he died in episode 6. 

 So, based on past characters that Shiro is an homage to, he could be a mix of races. However, most of us seem to agree that Japanese is most likely. As for how well he speaks the language? I like to think that he’s a polyglot. Not only does he speak Japanses and English fluently, but he picks up other languages as easily as he pilots a new spaceship. He was a favorite among the prisoners because he would pick up words and remind them of their home. This trait kept him alive when they would sneak him extra meals or warn him to hide when certain guards came looking for him. 

Shiro loves it when his new family learns a few words of Japanese, even if their accent is terrible. It reinforces that even an immeasurable distance away from Earth, he’s still home.

youtube

“Science can make us smarter, but we believe native intelligence can make science smarter also,” explains Hanohano Na’ehu. 

Hanohano and Keawanui Fishpond in Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary are using science to confirm the stories that native Hawaiians have used for generations to guide how they care for nature and interact with the environment – watch our video to learn how.

theguardian.com
Native American teen faces a year in prison for possessing one gram of weed
By Sam Levin

An Oregon teenager could be sentenced to a year in prison for possessing about one gram of marijuana in a federal case that has sparked widespread outrage about the ongoing “war on drugs” – even in US states that have fully legalized cannabis.

Devontre Thomas, a Native American 19-year-old, is accused of possessing a small amount of weed – enough for about one joint – and will face a federal trial that advocates say is a waste of resources and a stark reminder that US law enforcement agencies continue to target people of color for low-level pot offenses.

The one-count charge brought by the US attorney’s office – which could also result in a $1,000 fine – is the latest illustration of growing tensions in US laws on marijuana. The drug is sold recreationally in four states but remains outlawed at the federal level.

The government’s decision to file charges against Thomas, which criminal justice experts say is a perplexing move that directly contradicts federal guidelines, has also raised questions about how the US Department of Justice enforces laws on Native American territories.

“I can’t figure out why they are going after this youth. It literally makes no sense,” said Mat dos Santos, legal director at the American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon. “I find it really hard to believe this should merit the concern of the US attorney. It’s really heartbreaking.”

The misdemeanor charge, outlined in a one-paragraph document filed in April, says Thomas “knowingly and intentionally possessed marijuana” on 24 March 2015.

Thomas’s public defender, Ruben Iñiguez, told the local paper Willamette Week that the charge was for “about a gram” of weed and that the case stemmed from an incident at Chemawa Indian school, a boarding school operated by the federal bureau of Indian education.

Thomas, a member of the Warm Springs tribe, did not actually have weed on him at the school – which is located in Salem, Oregon’s capital – but he may have been involved in a $20 sale of marijuana, Iñiguez told local news station KGW-TV.

It’s unclear how or why US law enforcement officials got involved, but more than a year after the alleged incident, prosecutors pushed forward with a charge that carries a maximum sentence of one year behind bars.

In 2015, Oregon became the fourth state to legalize recreational marijuana, following Colorado, Washington and Alaska. Washington DC has also legalized recreational weed.

In Oregon, which now has a major marijuana economy, adults 21 and older can purchase and possess cannabis and are allowed to carry one ounce (which is about 28 grams).

While marijuana remains an illegal “controlled substance” under federal law, the US attorney general’s office released a memorandum in 2013 reiterating that the federal government generally relies on local agencies to address low-level cases.

Additionally, the attorney general’s so-called “smart on crime” initiative specifically directs officials to prioritize the prosecution of the “most dangerous criminals”, Dos Santos noted.

‘Significant penalties could really interfere with his future’

Even if the charge is only a misdemeanor, Thomas could still face major consequences for having a federal offense on his record.

“There are significant penalties that could really interfere with his future,” Dos Santos said. The conviction could make it harder for him to obtain scholarships, employment and housing.

“He’s very, very kind and very respectful and responsible,” said Rayvaughn Skidmore, 20, who went to school with Thomas. “He’s a young, intelligent guy trying to have a life. I don’t see why good people have to go behind bars.”

Skidmore, who is Navajo, said he felt the government was unfairly targeting Native Americans, saying: “There’s absolutely racial disparity.”

Historically, black residents in Oregon have been roughly twice as likely to be cited or arrested for marijuana as white people, according to the ACLU. Civil rights advocates across the US have increasingly raised concerns about the ways in which the booming marijuana economy has excluded people of color, particularly those who have suffered the consequences of harsh laws.

Despite legalization in Colorado, for example, marijuana arrests have gone up for black and Latino teens but down for white adolescents, a recent state report found.

Thomas’s case is also alarming given that the US Department of Justice has a poor record of prosecuting violent crimes against Native Americans, said David Beck, professor of Native American studies at the University of Montana.

“There are major crimes that occur in Indian country where the federal government has jurisdiction, and they fail to investigate, and they fail to prosecute,” he said.

In recent years, there has been growing outrage about how the government responds to sexual assaults and rapes that occur on Native American reservations.

Earl Blumenauer, a US congressman from Oregon who backed marijuana legalization, said he was shocked that prosecutors had not dropped the charges against Thomas following initial media attention.

“I’m totally flummoxed … I keep thinking that they’ll just stop. They look foolish. They will do irreparable harm to this young man for no good reason.”

Iñiguez, who is representing Thomas, did not respond to requests for comment on Wednesday. The defendant refused to plead guilty, which means the case will be heading to a trial, scheduled for 13 September.

Gerri Badden, spokeswoman for US attorney Billy Williams, declined to comment.

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Monument Valley was a weird experience. Have you ever been somewhere and had the inkling that you might not be welcome? No, I’m not talking about an instance in which a particular person made you feel unwelcome, but more so realizing that you don’t belong. That’s how I felt on the Navajo Native American reservation. 

Sure, there are plenty of other goofy white people there. However, something feels a little wrong about a bunch of goofy white people using Native American land as some sort of vacation-esque resort location to go explore and fetishize the way that other people live. 

And so I drove a few hours there and took a photo or two from the wall that 20 photographers had time lapses set up at, felt uncomfortable, and drove on. 

vimeo

Earth and Fire: Anasazi Style Pottery

“Earth and Fire” is a documentary poem about artist and primitive potter Kelly Magleby. Kelly went into the backcountry of Southern Utah with a knife and a buckskin for 10 days to try to learn about Anasazi pottery by doing it the way the Anasazi did it. Funded by Primitive Found (.org), music by Jason Shaw @ audionautix.com, check out Kelly’s art at anasazipottery.net. This the 1st video of 2016 for The Talking Fly short documentary project by filmmaker Steve Olpin, Enjoy!

Watch this more for the process in making the ceramics than perhaps accuracy. There are a few things I have issues with like the use of watermelon (Old World, domesticated in Egypt) and calling it Anasazi pottery. But it’s still neat and fun to watch. This reminds me of the Primitive Technology guy where things are shown rather than spoken.

otakoandreallife  asked:

Hello! I just wanted to tell you that i adore and worship this blog, you have an amazing art! SERIOSLY amazing art! I hope you are having a nice day ^^ and hey there Tykki! P.S. Sorry for the bad english.

Aww, thank you so much! ❤ I’m glad you’re enjoying this blog and I hope you’ll in the future!
And actually thank you for all of you who has left some nice words in my inbox or chat or tags, about the posts or my art! I’m sorry for not replying to all of them, but I read them all and I really appreciate them. You actually help me to build my self confidence which is really poor tbh. I’ll be always grateful for this.

Dziękuję.