Wednesday, May 04, 2005

We Don't Waste People

Good news out of the Navajo Nation. The Navajo President, Joe Shirley, vetoed a measure that would have banned gay marriage on the reservation. Mr Shirley said that gay marriage was a non-issue in Navajoland and if the tribal council, who first drafted the measure, wanted to protect "family values", they should worry about issues like domestic violence, sexual assault and gangs. He also said that "the legislation veiled a discriminatory aspect in the guise of family values, which goes against the Navajo teaching of non-discrimination and doing no psychological or physical harm."

I am very glad to hear this. Many Native cultures have traditionally had no issues with people who are homosexual or differently gendered. In fact, Two Spirits have often played a sacred role in tribes as creators, people who walk between the worlds and healers. It is a shame that some Natives, like the Cherokee, have decided to adopt what I consider mainstream Christian-influenced discrimination againsts gays and lesbians. It is, I think, one of the worst kinds of colonialism.

We would all do well to remember the words of Joe Medicine Crow of the Crow Nation, who said "We don’t waste people the way white society does. Every person has their gift."


Blogger Dr. Strangejazz said...

I think that's great that President Shirley did that.

Just being devil's advocate here but isn't homosexuality against traditional Native American vaules (pre-colonialism) no matter what tribe you're apart of? If I'm wrong please let me know.

1:42 PM  
Blogger themarigoldtrail said...

No. Go back and reread the second paragraph of my original post. Homosexuality and different gendered people have traditionally been held in high regard in many Native culture.

7:18 PM  
Blogger Sylvana said...

That post made me happy. I especially loved the quote by Joe Medicine Crow. I think that pretty much sums it up. What an eloquent way of putting it. I do not like the way societies try to separate out people who are different and say that they are bad because they are not like the majority. That is why we have racism, too.

10:10 PM  
Blogger Dr. Strangejazz said...

I just finished looking up the definition of Two Spirits. Interesting that they found a open minded way of dealing with that.

I guess that shows we can learn a lot from the past huh?

10:20 AM  

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