Today is the last day of November, the Native American Heritage Month in the United States of America (declared National American Indian Heritage Month in 1990 by President George H.W. Bush). 

“It is no longer good enough to cry peace, we must act peace, live peace, and live in peace.” (Shenandoah)

“Work together for the benefit of all Mankind. Give assistance and kindness wherever needed.” (from Native American Ten Commandments)

The Native American Commandments remind me of lines from the poem “Religion” by Paul Laurence Dunbar (1872-1906; poet; African American).

“I am no priest of crooks nor creeds, For human wants and human needs Are more to me than prophets’ deeds; And human tears and human cares Affect me more than human prayers. …With pity for mankind look ’round; Help them to rise – and Heaven is found.”   Do care.

Tomorrow, Dec. 1, is the anniversary of the 1955 arrest of African American Rosa Parks (1913-20005) for refusing to give up her seat to a white man in a section of a Montgomery, Alabama, bus designated for whites. Her arrest sparked the Montgomery bus boycott, which resulted in the U.S. Supreme court ruling that public bus segregation was unconstitutional. Ms. Parks cared about equal rights.

“Man’s law changes with his understanding of man. Only the laws of the spirit remain always the same.” (Crow)

I attended the Nov. 7 meeting covered in the article “Looking for Resolution About the Future Of Family Focus Programs and Building” (Mary Helt Gavin; RoundTable, Nov. 16).  It would seem that the Fifth Ward community (mostly black) was not respected enough to be informed months ago about the Family Focus building’s impending demise. It is no wonder attending African Americans et al were/are upset.  “Force, no matter how concealed, begets resistance.” (Lakota)  The potential removal of the Family Focus building from its history of use by the black community reminds me of the removal of property from Native Americans.