California ski resort changes offensive Native American name

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-58563002

I always have mixed feelings when this kind of thing happens. I certainly never considered the word "squaw" offensive, not when I use it anyway. But I did look it up in Wikipedia and apparently lots of people do consider it offensive https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Squaw . Guess I will try not to use it anymore. Squaw Valley is no longer...

Apparently it is derived from the Algonquian language, and was not originally offensive. Not sure when or why that changed.
 

Bellbird

New Member
Location
New Zealand
This from "Indian-Country today. Languages being 'taken over' has become common throughout the World.
Bruchac wrote the following excerpt about the meaning of squaw.

“The word has been interpreted by modern activists as a slanderous assault against Native American women. But traditional Algonkian speakers, in both Indian and English, still say words like ‘nidobaskwa’=a female friend, ‘manigebeskwa’=woman of the woods, or ‘Squaw Sachem’=female chief. When Abenaki people sing the Birth Song, they address ‘nuncksquassis’=‘little woman baby’.”

“I understand the concern of Indian women who feel insulted by this word, but I respectfully suggest that we reclaim our language rather than let it be taken over,” wrote Bruchac.
 

“I understand the concern of Indian women who feel insulted by this word, but I respectfully suggest that we reclaim our language rather than let it be taken over,” wrote Bruchac.
I like that, is it possible to "reclaim" words like squaw as non-offensive? I suspect most people who use the word do not mean it in any derogatory sense. Probably like me most did not even know it could be offensive. As Lara says this kind of trend could end up taking a whole lot of our language away from us.
 

senior chef

Member
Native Americans consider Mt. Rushmore and the carvings of 4 presidents to be offensive.

The Washington Redskins are no more. They now have no name at all.

By law, any skeleton that is older than 600 years is assumed to be Native American, and therefore sacred. Thus, all anthropological diggings which uncover skeletons, must be stopped. Numerous diggings have permanently been stopped. So much for learning about human history prior to 1500.

It is generally accepted by anthropologists that the stone arrowheads , called Clovis points, are the absolutely earliest made by Native Americans (13,000 years before present). Unfortunately, due to the forced stoppage of some diggings, we may never know if there are any older.

There is/was an old German woman anthropologist who claimed that she had evidence of human habitation, in South America, as old as 130,000 years ago. Maybe yes. Maybe no. I don't recall her name or what evidence she had. If she was right, that would push back the time line by 117,000 years.
 
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senior chef

Member
What if science contradicts it? What is the reasoning behind that law, it does not make any sense!
Oh, I agree with you. It is all about "correctness"

By the way, there was a skeleton found in California that is many thousands of years old. Before Native Americans took possession of it, and denied science any chance of further examination, DNA showed it to be a red-headed caucasion. Very , very strange.
 
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ohioboy

Senior Member
Location
Ohio
senior chef, I did find this but it states the opposite of your statement. Younger than 600 could be native American, but not older, if I am correct.

Glynn Custred, an anthropologist at Cal State Hayward, argued in a recent paper that since no community in North America can be traced back earlier than 500 to 600 years, ancient remains like Kennewick Man should presumably fall outside the provisions of the law.


https://www.berkeley.edu/news/berkeleyan/2000/06/07/bones.html
 

senior chef

Member
senior chef, I did find this but it states the opposite of your statement. Younger than 600 could be native American, but not older, if I am correct.




https://www.berkeley.edu/news/berkeleyan/2000/06/07/bones.html
I read that article a bit differently. The article seems to support what I said.
What anthropologist Glynn Custred said makes no sense. Everyone knows full well that Native Americans can trace the heritage back LONG, LONG before 500-600 years. Since Europeans did not land on North America until the late 1500's, it is extremely unlikely that bones found which are older than that date could be other than Native American.(except for Norse men in Canada)
Hey, guy. I don't wish to argue with you but we do read/understand that article differently.
 
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senior chef

Member
What's the earliest known skeleton found you are aware of?
I assume you mean in North America ? Its been a long time since I read it, but I do seem to recall one found in North or South Carolina that is 13,000 years old.

Personally, I have a feeling that man crossed the Bering land bridge OR crossed an ice bridge thousands of years prior to that. No reason I can think of that man could not have hunted (seals, walrus, etc) along the edge of the ice pack during the last ice age.
 

Shero

Member
The law states that "…any person or descendant of a person who lived in North America before European settlement, generally 500 years ago, is considered legally native American."

A reconstruction of Kennewick Man sculpted to resemble the Ainu people of Japan, considered by some at the time to be his closest living relatives. Now, a link to Native Americans has been confirmed.

https://www.npr.org/sections/codesw...tle-over-9-000-year-old-bones-is-finally-over
 
The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act requires returning human remains and related artifacts to descendants. It applies to federal agencies and those receiving federal funds (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Native_American_Graves_Protection_and_Repatriation_Act ). Kennewick Man is a long complicated story but in the end he was given to Indian tribes and buried (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kennewick_Man ).

This has always bothered me, I think it hinders legitimate scientific investigation without any real logic. Showing respect does make some sense, but destroying materials that are or can be the basis for scientific research does not. So far as I know similar logic has not been applied to remains other than Native Americans. Now that we know a lot of us are genetic descendants of the Neanderthals should those remains be reburied? I don't think so.
 

win231

Well-known Member
Location
CA
It's become rather crazy:
"Brushing aside the pleas of some teachers, parents and alumni to keep cherished traditions, the Los Angeles Board of Education voted Monday to eliminate all references to American Indians in the names and images of school mascots.
The 6-0 vote, followed by a Native American victory drum ceremony, gives three high schools and one middle school a year to replace their current Indian mascots. It also provides district funds to pay for paint to cover up Indian images and to buy new school uniforms, if necessary.
“Any group that feels hurt, we have to say, ‘I will help you,’ ” said board member George Kiriyama, trying to mollify critics of the ban. “You have to be sensitive not just to the Native American but all people of life.”
The policy will require replacement mascots for the Braves of Birmingham High School in Van Nuys, the Mohicans of Gardena High and the Warriors of University High in West Los Angeles and Wilmington Middle School."
 

Packerjohn

Packerjohn
Location
Canada
We got the same problem here in Canada. All the English names are getting changed to aboriginal names that I can't pronounce. It has something to do with what the white man did to the Indians 400 years ago. No one ever feels guilty like a white guy for being white. MMMMMMMMMMM!
 
“Any group that feels hurt, we have to say, ‘I will help you,’ ” said board member George Kiriyama, trying to mollify critics of the ban. “You have to be sensitive not just to the Native American but all people of life.”
Wow, that is a pretty broad view. If we were to ban all things people feel might hurt them it's a pretty long list. see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_phobias

Never realized calling some one brave or a Brave might be hurtful...
 

Murrmurr

Well-known Member
What if science contradicts it? What is the reasoning behind that law, it does not make any sense!
Native Americans lobbied congress to create that law. It says that tribal leaders of any given area that's being dug and studied must be notified if an archeology team comes across skeletal remains and artifacts suspected to be native. The team must stop digging until a tribal leader examines the find and the area. If the tribal leader points out evidence that says it's native, it's accepted as native, and the native nation gets ownership of the site.
 
Native Americans lobbied congress to create that law. It says that tribal leaders of any given area that's being dug and studied must be notified if an archeology team comes across skeletal remains and artifacts suspected to be native. The team must stop digging until a tribal leader examines the find and the area. If the tribal leader points out evidence that says it's native, it's accepted as native, and the native nation gets ownership of the site.
Yes, that is right, it is the law. However, I don't think the law makes much sense. I could see requiring respectful handling and limiting display of any human remains, but removing them from scientific study makes little sense to me.
 


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