“…Big words do not smite like war-clubs,
Boastful breath is not a bow-string,
Taunts are not so sharp as arrows,
Deeds are better things than words are,
Actions mightier than boastings…”
(Song of Hiawatha by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, 1807-82, American poet)
It is November, Native American Heritage Month in the United States of America. The month of November was declared National American Indian Heritage Month in 1990 by President George H.W. Bush. “This was a landmark Bill honoring America’s Tribal people. This commemorative month aims to provide a platform for Native people in the United States of America to share their culture, traditions, music, crafts, dance, and ways and concepts of life…” (Wikipedia) Nativism.
Webster’s dictionary defines nativism as: “The policy of protecting the interests of native inhabitants against those of immigrants. The policy or practice of preserving or reviving an indigenous culture.”
Too many non-Native Americans forget or ignore the fact that Native Americans (Indians) inhabited the land that became the United States for eons before Europeans arrived. Americans who try to rally Americans against new/current, non-white/non-Christian immigrants/citizens with slogans that suggest that America be returned to its European origin should be seen as acting in ignorance and/or bigotry. One can only hope that nativism will enlighten Americans. Nativism, please.
“Between individuals, as between nations, peace means respect for the rights of others.” (Benito Juarez, 1806-1872. Zapotec tribe; indigenous pre-Columbian civilization that flourished in southern Mesoamerica)
“Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.” (Chief Seattle, 1780-1866. Duwamish tribe in western Washington; indigenous people of metropolitan Seattle)
“We will be known forever by the tracks we leave.” (Dakota tribe, also known as Sioux)