HUNTING DEER WITH NED HATATHLI  IN THE CINDER HILLS OF NORTHERN ARIZONA -- AND OUR ANASAZI CONCERNS [HUNTER GRAY  1/27/03]  WITH POST FROM SALT LAKE TRIB ON NATIVE DNA TESTING CONCERNS

NAMES AND NAMING:  AND REMEMBERING MARTIN MANY WOUNDS [HUNTER GRAY 1/28/03]   ADDED MATERIAL  2/09/05

 

HUNTING DEER WITH NED HATATHLI  IN THE CINDER HILLS OF NORTHERN ARIZONA -- AND OUR ANASAZI CONCERNS [HUNTER GRAY  1/27/03]  WITH POST FROM SALT LAKE TRIB ON NATIVE DNA TESTING CONCERNS

Note by Hunterbear:

This is simply another of virtually countless indications that the Native
nations and cultures have their own unique, deeply rooted and primary
identities. Many Anglos understand and respect this -- but many still do
not.

Concern about DNA tests and related matters is broadly held in Indian
Country.  This news story from the Salt Lake Trib quotes a Paiute's view:
"Among Brewster's own Northern Paiute tribe, he said, "We're not even
supposed to go near burials . . . the whole idea of disturbing a burial is
serious business."

This concern, for example, is extremely and very, very widely pronounced
among the Dine' [Navajo] where the Chindee [a powerful taboo] mandates
avoidance of the dead and all things directly related thereto.  Violation of
Chindee requires extensive cleansing and harmony-restoring ceremonies by
Navajo medicine men -- who train rigorously for about 17 years before they
are considered full-fledged practitioners in the totally interrelated and
pervasively blended spheres of spirit, body, and Cosmos.

Our own family's ties with the Navajo are extremely close in the deepest and
most personal sense.  When hunting -- say, at various points from
north/northeast and east of Flagstaff up and away into vast Navajoland -- no
Navajo I have ever been with or known would even go close to one of the many
hundreds of old [around 800 years old] Anasazi ruins whose burial grounds
are always just to the east and south of these ancient pre-Hopi villages.

The late Ned A. Hatathli [Hatathali] [1923-1972], who came from a very
traditional Navajo sheep-herding family near Coalmine Mesa, was one of my
father's top art students ever at Arizona State College, Flagstaff -- having
come there on the GI Bill via World War II.  Some many years later, at the
end of the '60s, Ned played the key role in founding and launching Navajo
Community College [now Dine' College] -- the very first of the now many
Indian-controlled tribal colleges. He was NCC's first president. Far more
than all of those major dimensions, however, Ned Hatathli was a very close
family friend throughout his life.  And he was someone who would often take
me deer hunting when I was a kid still without a vehicle. He used a
conventional 30/30 Winchester Model 94 lever action -- and I had an ancient
Winchester 1892 44/40 lever action which had served a venerable Basque
sheep-herder very well for decades. The jutting edge of its steel
saddle-ring-holder was worn down from an already long, long life in a tough
leather saddle scabbard. And when I got that good old rifle -- my first ever
for big game -- I was even given some black powder cartridges, but I
generally used the smokeless powder ones.

I remember an interesting -- but for me quite unsurprising -- scene where,
in the eastern edge of the Cinder Hills [a major volcanic region mostly just
east and north of Flagstaff, going back to upheavals around 1065 A.D. which
also involved the super-high and very spectacular San Francisco Peaks
immediately north of town], Ned and I spotted a very large buck mule deer.
It was difficult to get a clear shot in the cedars that were around it.  As
we moved stealthily and hopefully toward it, the deer's keen senses jerked
it to attention.  Aware of something, but not sure where we were, it
retreated slowly into some heavier cedars.  We followed, very slowly, very
carefully.

And then -- shrewdly, coincidentally, or psychically -- The Quarry was going
literally into the midst of a large and obvious Anasazi ruin: several large
piles of rocks partially covered with cinders and sand and sage. Even from
some distance, we could see some broken pieces of pottery sprinkled
about --shining in the bright sun.

As one, Ned and I stopped, turned -- and went on to other game trails.  Big
Buck could not have been safer.

Hunter [Hunterbear] Micmac/St Francis Abenaki/St Regis Mohawk
www.hunterbear.org
Protected by Na´shdo´i´ba´i´
and Ohkwari'

American Indians Wary of DNA Tests

BY TIM SULLIVAN THE SALT LAKE TRIBUNE
http://www.sltrib.com/2003/Jan/01272003/utah/23782.asp

Ever since the arrival of white colonists, American Indians have been tapped
for their resources -- most recently their genes.

And with an eye toward past abuses, some of them are growing wary of
geneticists and anthropologists taking their blood, hair or ancestors' bones
for research purposes.

In Utah, tribes don't have as much experience with these exchanges as in
other parts of the Americas, but officials with the Skull Valley Band of
Goshutes and the Northwest Band of the Shoshone feel they should be
prepared.

On Friday, the two tribes sponsored a day of lectures and discussion at the
Indian Walk-In Center titled "The Evils of Biocolonialism: mtDNA Research
and its threat to Native Americans."

"For us, the concept of biocolonialism is an extension of the colonialism
process," said Jackie Swift, program director of the Indigenous Peoples'
Council on Biocolonialism in Wadsworth, Nev. "They still exploit the land
and the people, only at a microscopic level."

For scientists, the information encoded in DNA can provide clues about
health patterns, migration, cultural affiliation and a number of other
characteristics.

But Swift said she believes researchers often do not obtain informed consent
from American Indians when they extract genetic samples. And when the
samples leave the tribes, she said, scientists can use them for other
purposes.

She cited a 1983 study of native people in British Columbia where a
researcher asked his subjects to participate in an arthritis study, then
used the blood samples for a project on migration.

These problems are symptoms of what some American Indians see as a
fundamentally disrespectful practice. Melvin Brewster, the Skull Valley Band
of Goshutes' Tribal Historic Preservation director, takes particular issue
with the study of skeletal samples.

Among Brewster's own Northern Paiute tribe, he said, "We're not even
supposed to go near burials . . . the whole idea of disturbing a burial is
serious business."

Swift, a Comanche originally from Oklahoma, says it is almost as serious to
remove living tissue. "To us, our bodies are sacred."

Swift and Brewster acknowledge positive benefits from genetic research, but
said many of the academic studies that use genetic samples, like migration
studies, do not benefit American Indians.

"As native people, you know where you come from," Swift said.

Consequently, whether or not they want to allow researchers to study blood
or bone samples within their people, she said, tribes should be ready to
make scientists play by their rules.

"It's important that we think in these proactive, sovereign terms of
protection," Swift said. "We have to talk about our world views in relation
to what is happening."

The Indigenous Peoples' Council on Biocolonialism, a nonprofit group devoted
to protecting American Indians from negative effects of biotechnology, has
developed a document called the Indigenous Research Protection Act, which is
designed to allow tribes to monitor research within their community more
closely. Tribes can adopt all or part of it as legally binding.

In Utah, Brewster has sent his own resolutions that would ban DNA research
in the tribe and oppose participation in the Human Genome Diversity Project
to the Skull Valley Band of the Goshute Tribe executive and general
councils.

And Northwest Band of the Shoshone Cultural Resource Manager Patty
Timbimboo-Madsen said she is taking a similar stand with her tribe, and is
trying to inform other Utah tribes of biocolonial issues. She said she wants
to hold several more discussions similar to the one held Friday.

 

NAMES AND NAMING:  AND REMEMBERING MARTIN MANY WOUNDS [HUNTER GRAY 1/28/03] ADDED MATERIAL  2/09/05

NOTE BY HUNTER BEAR:

This is a big excerpt repeat-post with the initial introductory portion
omitted here. [The full piece is all on our website.]  This introductory
note -- February 9th 2005 -- is, of course, new.

Certain contemporary discussional rivers in some quarters are presently
focused  on Native matters which may be confusing to those new to Indian
sociology and politics.  And, believe me, those are always highly, highly
complex dimensions.  If this were, for example, my old course on Intro to
Indian Studies and some others of mine, we could get into at least some
innards.  But space here is short and I do want to talk about an old, late
activist buddy of mine, Martin Many Wounds [or Martin Eder],
Assiniboine/Sioux.  This of mine is not just motivated by the Churchill
thing -- but, in large measure by the fact that Martin's former wife,
herself an old old friend, Donis [Dawn] Mitchell of the Meskwaki Nation, is
facing imminent cancer surgery at Iowa City.  Donis calls, writes, e-mails
with frequency.  She could really use everyone's prayers and good thoughts.

They were married in the winter of 1973 at Chicago.  At that point -- and
this had been the case for two previous years -- our local and almost twenty
year old American Indian Center [the first of its urban kind in the United
States],  was caught up in turbulent factionalism.  Donis and Martin were
well known and broadly popular young people. When the marriage ceremony
occurred at a small storefront church in the multi-ethnic Uptown district,
with Martin's uncle, a clergyman from the Fort Peck res in Eastern Montana,
officiating, the basic unity that almost always ultimately pervades and
prevails among Native peoples was much to the fore.  An older, good friend,
Bill Redcloud [Chippewa] gave Donis away; I was Martin's best man.  A major
factional foe [Chippewa] played the piano. Susan Kelly Power [Yanktonnai
Sioux] from "our side" was present.  Another factional foe [Chippewa] sat
with his large family.  An Oneida family aligned with us was much to the
fore.  And there were many others.

The wedding was a pleasant affair and, afterward, "our side" gathered at our
Uptown apartment for a kind of ad hoc reception.  Pizza was ordered and some
folks had wine.  We sat at a very long and accommodating walnut-with-inlay
table [which we still have, of course] that had been recently given to us by
an apartment neighbor, Mrs Geller, widow of a druggist. [It had recently
helped accommodate a large reception for Floyd [Red Crow] Westerman, the
noted Sisseton Sioux singer.]  My youngest son, Peter [Mack], probably still
in diapers, had secured a small goblet of wine which he was sipping like an
old street veteran.  The pizza man arrived, to be greeted joyously by Mack
at the door who, waving his glass, yowled, "I yike wine."  Visibly stunned,
the case-hardened pizza person quickly turned over the food and fled.

[I should add that, as soon as Mack graduated in Journalism from UND in '92,
he joined Lee Enterprises which quickly made him State Editor of its
Bismarck Tribune.  Then, off to Anaconda Montana, with the chain -- and then
to Lincoln where he is presently a key editor in Lee's very large Lincoln
Journal Star.  In one of our long phone conversations the other day, he
casually told me that he now has 22 reporters and five editors under him.
[Remembering the diapers, this is somewhat mind boggling.] Lee Enterprises,
which now owns papers all over [many in the West], has just bought those at
Flagstaff and Tucson.  When I asked Mack, reasonably enough, "When are you
folks going to buy the New York Times?" he didn't exactly discount that
possibility, adding -- reasonably -- "It's better to buy than to be bought."

Well, can't really argue with that.

The factional fight at the Indian Center wound up in a state court where,
finally, a visibly weary and somewhat confused judge ordered a new board
election.  He also mandated that all sides decide on one person, and one
person only, who was a full [Indian] member of the Center -- to serve as
election judge.

And all sides chose me.

Pluckily, I took it on.  I asked our good maintenance man, Harry Culich, on
the South/Southwest Side where I directed large scale community
organization, to make us a ballot box.  He lived in the Bridgeport [Daley]
ward and, of course, knew all about elections and voting.  [He was, in fact,
a Walking Anthology of voting regularities -- and otherwise.]   And he made
a great and wonderful box:  three feet tall, clear plexiglass sides -- so
the ballot dropper could see his Wish actually make it to the bottom.
Voting Day was March 17 1973, cold and rainy.  At the Center very early on,
I ordered all newspersons off and away and stationed polite guards at every
entrance.  Voting began about 8 a.m. when I cast the first ballot,  and
hundreds of Indian members -- some coming from adjoining states -- voted.
Each side had witnesses and its lawyer.  Aside from a couple of very quick
restroom trips, I remained at the Box until 8 p.m.  When the ballots were
finally counted, all sides agreed it was a completely honest election.  In
fact, it was so damn straight that our side lost.

Martin and Donis remained married for some time.  When they did divorce, it
was truly a no-hassle process from a procedural perspective, since Martin's
minister uncle had forgotten to file the papers.

And now, here's Martin in the immediate aftermath of Wounded Knee '73:


NAMES AND NAMING:  AND REMEMBERING MARTIN MANY WOUNDS


The history of Humanity -- and certainly the odyssey of Left Radicalism and
Rebel America -- abounds with the usage by dissidents [and all sorts of
others] of all sorts of names.  In the dangerous world of the Deep South of
the '60s, I often used the name, "John Gray" -- that of my Family Culture
Hero [my ggg/grandfather], the extremely effective Akwesasne Mohawk activist
in the Far Western fur trade of the first several decades of the 19th
century.  In those days, the White Knights of the Mississippi KKK and the
United Klans of America were widely distributing a Southwide death list in
which my photo and name [John R Salter, Jr] was one of a handful featured.
I also carried a .38 Special S &W revolver. And many years later, right
after I left University of North Dakota, I legally changed my name to John
Hunter Gray -- returning to the family name with which my Native father
[Frank Gray] had been born before it was changed [in a not very satisfactory
adoption] by the well-meaning William  Mackintire Salter and Mary Gibbens
Salter [Ethical Culture Society, with primary homes at Cambridge, MA and
Silver Lake, NH.]

Although there are no formal legal requirements that a legal name change is
necessary in order to use a name, I always advise giving a friendly lawyer a
couple of hundred bucks or so for the whole High Church ritual.  That takes
care of a variety of special records.

Native Americans frequently use several names -- concurrently.  One might
well have his/her special Indian name, given at a very early age and known
in the specific aboriginal language to only family and clan members and
special friends.  Its rough English [or French] translation might be
publicly known.  And then one has his/her "European" name -- which could
have come through missionaries, government bureaucrats -- or intermarriage
somewhere in the family tree.

The late Martin Eder -- an Assiniboine/Sioux who, although from Montana,
also grew up on the Chicago streets -- was as good and loyal friend as I
have ever had.  Martin always had an interesting retinue of names -- nicely
and appropriately chosen from his special moment of historical crisis.
Eldri and I and our older children recall vividly one midnight in the late
Spring
of '73 when there were three hard knocks on the back door of our second
floor Chicago Uptown apartment.  It was raining hard outside.  Cautiously,
with a Marlin lever action .444 rifle in one hand, I opened the door.  Like
a Transylvanian Wraith, Martin stood there in a long black coat,
wide-brimmed hat dripping rain water.  Even in the dim light, he looked like
hell.  Immediately inside, he told us he'd been shot three times in South
Dakota by Federal-sympathizing tribal police at Pine Ridge and had been
patched up by a friendly Anglo veterinarian at Mankato, Minnesota.  He also
indicated he was wanted on a Federal fugitive warrant.

We immediately put him to bed, made him comfortable, fed him well.  The vet
had done a very good job medically.  I wore several activist hats in Chicago
in those days:  Chair of the developing Native American Community
Organizational Training Center, board member of the Great Lakes Resource
Development Project of Americans for Indian Opportunity, and also Southside
Director for the Chicago Commons Association [one of the city's oldest
private social service organizations.]  In the latter context, our
agency-wide board membership included former Illinois Gov Otto Kerner
[author of the well known Kerner report on American racism] and a wide range
of other Prominents. We could mobilize Clout damn fast.

 On the turbulent and sanguinary Southside, we often needed the legal
services of various specialists -- and one of our most dependable was Tom
Hanson, then of the Orlikoff firm, son of a very liberal Federal judge in
Iowa, Bill Hanson.  I put Tom into Martin's situation immediately and very
productive negotiations followed.  There was a Federal hearing, in which
then Prosecutor James Thompson [later an Illinois Gov himself]  appeared.  I
was present in my dark suit.  The charges against Martin were quickly
reduced and there was a short probationary sentence.  It was necessary to
put him under the supervision of a "reputable" person -- and all parties
[including me] agreed I was precisely that.

So it ended well.  And Martin, for the longest time, understandably used the
name Martin Many Wounds.

As Ever -

Hunter Gray [Hunter Bear]  Micmac/St Francis Abenaki/St Regis Mohawk
www.hunterbear.org
Protected by Na´shdo´i´ba´i´
and Ohkwari'

I really hope the weird fuss in some ASDnet quarters on the Mysterious
Resident, Issodhos [Who Is He, She or It?!] can simply be attributed to the
fact that the Bushies have kept the country and globe in a state of
unparalleled super high -- to my personal recollection --  tension for
months.

Otherwise, the ridiculous fretting about Issodhos [and who he may actually
be] can only be seen as a triumph of  Middle Class [I virtually never use
the word, "bourgeois"] prejudices in some quarters on a List where
"Stalinist" and "Stalinoid" are tossed about indiscriminately by a few -- to
say nothing of occasional lapses into anti-Native ethnocentrism and
certainly endless cud-chewing about the Workers World group.  And then, of
course, there's the almost pervasive silence about these wild charges from
people who don't want to challenge the name-callers directly.  And only on
ASDnet could someone half-way seriously "opine" in hostile fashion that I --
ME -- might actually be Issodhos.

What a Nursery School!

Anyway, on Names and Naming -- and aside from the fact that Issodhos has
been a part of the ASDnet scenery even longer than I:

The history of Humanity -- and certainly the odyssey of Left Radicalism and
Rebel America -- abounds with the usage by dissidents [and all sorts of
others] of all sorts of names.  In the dangerous world of the Deep South of
the '60s, I often used the name, "John Gray" -- that of my Family Culture
Hero [my ggg/grandfather], the extremely effective Akwesasne Mohawk activist
in the Far Western fur trade of the first several decades of the 19th
century.  In those days, the White Knights of the Mississippi KKK and the
United Klans of America were widely distributing a Southwide death list in
which my photo and name [John R Salter, Jr] was one of a handful featured.
I also carried a .38 Special S &W revolver. And many years later, right
after I left University of North Dakota, I legally changed my name to John
Hunter Gray -- returning to the family name with which my Native father
[Frank Gray] had been born before it was changed [in a not very satisfactory
adoption] by the well-meaning William  Mackintire Salter and Mary Gibbens
Salter [Ethical Culture Society, with primary homes at Cambridge, MA and
Silver Lake, NH.]

Although there are no formal legal requirements that a legal name change is
necessary in order to use a name, I always advise giving a friendly lawyer a
couple of hundred bucks or so for the whole High Church ritual.  That takes
care of a variety of special records.

Native Americans frequently use several names -- concurrently.  One might
well have his/her special Indian name, given at a very early age and known
in the specific aboriginal language to only family and clan members and
special friends.  Its rough English [or French] translation might be
publicly known.  And then one has his/her "European" name -- which could
have come through missionaries, government bureaucrats -- or intermarriage
somewhere in the family tree.

The late Martin Eder -- an Assiniboine/Sioux who, although from Montana,
also grew up on the Chicago streets -- was as good and loyal friend as I
have ever had.  Martin always had an interesting retinue of names -- nicely
and appropriately chosen from his special moment of historical crisis.
Eldri and I and our older children recall vividly one midnight in the Spring
of '73 when there were three hard knocks on the back door of our second
floor Chicago Uptown apartment.  It was raining hard outside.  Cautiously,
with a Marlin lever action .444 rifle in one hand, I opened the door.  Like
a Transylvanian Wraith, Martin stood there in a long black coat,
wide-brimmed hat dripping rain water.  Even in the dim light, he looked like
hell.  Immediately inside, he told us he'd been shot three times in South
Dakota by Federal-sympathizing tribal police at Pine Ridge and had been
patched up by a friendly Anglo veterinarian at Mankato, Minnesota.  He also
indicated he was wanted on a Federal fugitive warrant.

We immediately put him to bed, made him comfortable, fed him well.  The vet
had done a very good job medically.  I wore several activist hats in Chicago
in those days:  Chair of the developing Native American Community
Organizational Training Center, board member of the Great Lakes Resource
Development Project of Americans for Indian Opportunity, and also Southside
Director for the Chicago Commons Association [one of the city's oldest
private social service organizations.]  In the latter context, our
agency-wide board membership included former Illinois Gov Otto Kerner
[author of the well known Kerner report on American racism] and a wide range
of other Prominents. We could mobilize Clout damn fast.

 On the turbulent and sanguinary Southside, we often needed the legal
services of various specialists -- and one of our most dependable was Tom
Hanson, then of the Orlikoff firm, son of a very liberal Federal judge in
Iowa, Bill Hanson.  I put Tom into Martin's situation immediately and very
productive negotiations followed.  There was a Federal hearing, in which
then Prosecutor James Thompson [later an Illinois Gov himself]  appeared.  I
was present in my dark suit.  The charges against Martin were quickly
reduced and there was a short probationary sentence.  It was necessary to
put him under the supervision of a "reputable" person -- and all parties
[including me] agreed I was precisely that.

So it ended well.  And Martin, for the longest time, understandably used the
name Martin Many Wounds.

As Ever -

Hunter Gray [Hunterbear]  DSA Anti-Racism, Solidarity, SPUSA, CCDS
www.hunterbear.org
Protected by Na´shdo´i´ba´i´
and Ohkwari'

In our Gray Hole, the ghosts often dance in the junipers and sage, on the
game trails, in the tributary canyons with the thick red maples, and on the
high windy ridges -- and they dance from within the very essence of our own
inner being. They do this especially when the bright night moon shines down
on the clean white snow that covers the valley and its surroundings.  Then
it is as bright as day -- but in an always soft and mysterious and
remembering way. [Hunterbear]


 

 

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