by Alexa Peters
Any Native American powwow performer, artisan, staffer, or organizer will tell you that a powwow — rich with intricately-beaded regalia, the dust of dancing moccasins, and the call and response of traditional songs — is a celebration of life itself; it’s a chance to honor the drum that beats in us all.
While nothing can stop the beat of this drum, the ways of celebration must adapt during the COVID-19 pandemic, which disproportionately affects Native Americans. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that in 23 selected states, the number of laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases among American Indian and Alaskan Native people “was 3.5 times that of non-Hispanic whites.”
Continue reading Native Communities Seek to Keep the Spirit of the Powwow Alive During the Pandemic
by Marcus Harrison Green
For too long, Colleen Echohawk says that Seattle politics has lacked a “people-first approach.”
With a vow to bring one to City Hall, Echohawk officially announced her mayoral run on Monday morning.
Continue reading In Announcing Mayoral Run, Colleen Echohawk Promises “People-First Approach” to Seattle Politics
by Ashley Archibald
In a video posted to YouTube, a woman in a blue surgical mask stands in the corner of a walled-off yard, a puffy, slate gray jacket zipped against the cold. To her right is a table draped with a white cloth holding 19 votive candle holders. Slowly, deliberately, the woman reads a list of names.
In the silence following each name, a man lights a candle.
Continue reading A Hard Year for Those Without Shelter: Death Rates Rose and Pressures Increased for the Homeless During the Pandemic
by Matt Remle
“Within these late years, there hath, by God’s visitation, reigned a wonderful plague, the utter destruction, devastation, and depopulation of that whole territory, so as there is not left any that do claim or challenge any kind of interest therein. We, in our judgment, are persuaded and satisfied, that the appointed time is come in which Almighty God, in his great goodness and bounty towards us, and our people, hath thought fit and determined, that those large and goodly territories, deserted as it were by their natural inhabitants, should be possessed and enjoyed by such of our subjects.”
—King James I, The Charter of New-England
The Great Dying
Every Thanksgiving, classrooms across the country learn about a group of religiously persecuted Christian reformers fleeing England in order to worship freely in the New World. These Pilgrims likened themselves to the Israelite exodus from Egypt, a people chosen by God to be guided across the Atlantic to find, conquer and lay claim to their promised land. Upon arrival in what would become Plymouth Colony, the Pilgrims found a “promised land” that did not need to be conquered like that of Canaan, but rather a ghost town littered with untended fields, empty villages and skeletal remains of the original inhabitants. For the Pilgrim colonizers this was proof of God’s divine plan.
Continue reading COVID-19 in Native Communities: Recalling Past Trauma and Present Hope