Category Archives: Social

Buffy Sainte-Marie’s New Film: “Carry It On”

“A new documentary celebrating the unparalleled life of Buffy Sainte-Marie kicked off the Toronto International Film Festival Thursday, with her dynamic life of music and light keeping the audience enraptured by her story, personality, wisdom and joy.” M. Morrisseau, ICT (formerly: Indian Country Today) Sept. 9, 2022

Excerpt: Buffy Sainte-Marie kicks off Toronto festival with ‘Carry It On’ Miles Morrisseau,  ICT, Sept. 9, 2022

“The film, ‘Buffy Sainte-Marie: Carry It On,’ played its world premiere to a packed house at the Bell Lightbox Theatre on the opening day of the international film festival.

At the screening, the 81-year-old Cree legend told the audience she always wants to lift people up with her music, even after facing hard truths.

Legendary Cree musician Buffy Sainte-Marie, left, was greeted by iconic filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin after the premiere screening of a new documentary, “Buffy Sainte-Marie: Carry It On.” They are shown with the film’s director, Madison Thomson, Ojibwe/Saulteaux and Russian/Ukrainian. (Photo by Miles Morrisseau/ICT)

‘Some of my songs, like ‘My Country ‘Tis of Thee’ or ‘Now that The Buffalo is Gone,’ they are painful,” she said. ‘They’re painful for both what happened to us and the people who are descendants of the people who did these things in the world. And when I sing a song like that, I always follow it with something super positive. ‘ I really believe that music can really hurt you, but it can also really be healing and medicinal,’ she said. ‘And so I’m always very careful to follow one of those hard-hitting songs with something like ‘Starwalker’ or ‘Carry It On,’ or ‘You Got to Run.’

Anger wells up inside as she talks about being abused as a child, being blacklisted from American radio because of pressure from FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, and losing the publishing royalties to her song, “Universal Soldier” as a young artist… Yet the hurt is balanced by her inimitable spirit and undeniable success on her own terms.”

For More Information for Buffy Sainte-Marie Film “Carry It On”

Fashion Faux Pas We (Still) Need to Avoid at a Pow Wow

“At a pow wow, wardrobe choices often depend on your role at the event, but whether you’re dancing, singing or just watching, there are fashion faux pas to avoid.” A. Landry, ICT, July 2022 

Excerpt: 10 Fashion Faux Pas to Avoid at a Pow Wow By Alysa Landry , ICT, [Updated 2018] Original Mar 21, 2015

“Some universal standards apply at all pow wows, regardless of location, weather or purpose. Here are some tips to keep you from committing embarrassing – or offensive – fashion blunders:

Ripped, ragged or sagging pants

Pow wows represent a mixture of the social and the spiritual, said Reno Charette, a women’s traditional dancer and director of American Indian outreach at Montana State University Billings. If you’re not dancing, casual attire is appropriate, but it should fit properly and be in good repair. ‘Our young men go around with their pants hanging low,’ said Charette, who is Crow and Turtle Mountain Chippewa. ‘That’s especially bad when they’re in the drum group and they lean forward.’

Shorts or miniskirts

Showing too much leg is inappropriate for anyone in the arena, including spectators, Charette said. Even in 100-degree weather, Daisy Duke-style shorts or miniskirts should be avoided.

Swimsuits, halter tops or bikini tops

Regardless of where they are in the arena, women should avoid tight clothing or anything that shows cleavage, Charette said. That includes halter tops, bikini tops and spaghetti straps… ‘We know it’s hot, but please cover up,’ she said.

Bare feet

Wearing shoes isn’t just a fashion statement, but also a safety precaution, Charette said. She recommends spectators wear closed-toed shoes to keep feet clean and safe…’For singers, regardless of how hot it is, wear long pants and nice shoes,’ he said. “The general rule is that you don’t want to show skin, so a long-sleeved shirt is also appropriate.’


Just as styles that are too casual or revealing should be avoided, so should clothing that is too dressy or formal. ‘There’s a line between too casual and too dressy,’ said Sammy Tonkei White, a Kiowa emcee, who has been working with pow wows since 1959. ‘Just as young people who are not dressed appropriately should leave, it would look funny if an Indian got up and danced in a tuxedo.’

Anything that sends the wrong message

Pow wows often are open to the public and outsiders are welcome, [Erny] Zah  a singer and emcee who has traveled the pow wow circuit all over the country said. But the burden to educate the masses falls on participants – the organizers, emcees, dancers and singers – who are tasked with providing an authentic Native experience in an inauthentic world.”

“Join Sister Mimosa Romero as she talks Pride 2022 with other GCSPI Sisters!”

Event by The Grand Canyon Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence and Sean Smith

Public: Anyone on or off Facebook

Join Sister Mimosa Romero as she talks Pride 2022 with other GCSPI Sisters!

We invite guests to join us in Zoom for the live discussion. If you are interested, please email by Friday, 6/3 at 6:00pm!

As always, we will take any and all donations and ensure they go back out into the community. You may donate directly here, now or as you enjoy the live event!:

NOTE: Reposted from  Radmilla Cody

Category: Culture, Social | Tags:

A Two-Spirit Couple Breaking Barriers on the Rez…And Off

“In the summer of 2019, at Minnesota’s Prairie Island Indian Community, photographer and filmmaker Tomás Karmelo Amaya took a portrait of a couple kissing while wearing colorful regalia. The couple, Nevada-based dancers Adrian Matthias Stevens and Sean Snyder, were visiting the reservation to dance in the Tinta Wita Wacipi powwow, a tradition that brought them together — and a tradition in which they are now making history.”J. Palumbo, CNN, February 3, 2021

Adrian Matthias Stevens and Sean Snyder in their own beadwork. Brass work by Jeremy Dial. Photo- Ceylon Grey


Excerpt: The Native American couple redefining cultural norms — By Jacqui Palumbo, CNN, February 3, 2021

Stevens, who is of Northern Ute, Shoshone-Bannock and San Carlos Apache heritage; and Snyder, who is of Southern Ute and Navajo heritage, are a Two-Spirit couple that have been together for seven years. Within North American Indigenous communities, Two-Spirit refers to people who possess both masculine and feminine spirits, but it can also be used to represent LGBTQ+ Indigenous people more broadly.

Adrian Matthias Stevens and Sean SnyderPhoto- Tomás Karmelo Amaya

‘It’s not biological, it’s spiritual, and it ties back to what I was taught growing up,’ Stevens told Vogue in 2020. ‘My aunties recognized me as a Two-Spirit individual way before I even recognized it.’

Through his images of the pair, Amaya shows their bond and the beauty of their movement. When Stevens and Snyder met, they were both dancers on Utah’s powwow circuit but it took years for them to perform couples routines — called ‘sweetheart specials’ — together.

Adrian Matthias Stevens and Sean Snyder in their own beadwork. Brass work by Jeremy Dial. Photo- Ceylon Grey

That category was exclusively performed by male and female dancers until 2018, when they became the first Two-Spirit pair to do so, after being disqualified from a dance the year prior.

‘Because our styles are so different, we had to find a way to dance together,’Snyder is quoted as saying in Vogue. ‘And for us being two men, it was surprisingly difficult. You don’t grow up going to dances and learning to dance with another same-sex partner. We had to learn how to lead and how to take direction.’

Since then, their routines and matching regalia — each embellished with their own handmade beadwork — have brought them widespread attention.”

Celebrating Gay Pride Month:

Frank Kameny

Franklin Edward Kameny (May 21, 1925 – October 11, 2011) was an American gay rights activist. He has been referred to as “one of the most significant figures” in the American gay rights movement. n 1957, Kameny was dismissed from his position as an astronomer in the U.S. Army‘s Army Map Service in Washington, D.C., because of his homosexuality, leading him to begin “a Herculean struggle with the American establishment” that would “spearhead a new period of militancy in the homosexual rights movement of the early 1960s”. Wikipedia

Category: Culture, Pow Wows, Social | Tags: ,

COVID-19 Is Destroying the Livelihoods of Native Artists

“The coronavirus outbreak has had a devastating impact on the livelihoods of Native American artists. But they are responding with a creative resolve born from centuries of adversity.” P. Leigh, The New York Times

Our great-grand folks went through the Great Depression, the artist Marvin Martinez says. Now I feel like I’m reliving my ancestors. Credit-Ramsay de Give for The New York Times

Mr. Martinez creates pottery blackened by blue smoke that recalls the legacy of his great-grandmother, Maria Martinez. Credit- Ramsay de Give for The New York Times


Excerpt: On Tribal Lands, a Time to Make Art for Solace and Survival — By Patricia Leigh, The New York Times

“For over 30 years, Marvin and Frances Martinez have risen with the sun to drive from their home at the San Ildefonso Pueblo in New Mexico to the centuries-old Palace of the Governors in Santa Fe.

They arrive early to snag a prime spot beneath the rough-hewed wooden beams of the portal, a colonnade where they sell pottery blackened by blue smoke that recalls the legacy of Maria Martinez, the grande dame of Native American pottery and Mr. Martinez’s great-grandmother.

Native American vendors under the portal of the Palace of the Governors, Santa Fe, circa 1925-1945.Credit…Palace of the Governors Photo Archives (NMHM:DCA)

They are among the 70 or so Native American artisans gathering here to earn a living…This living museum of craftspeople, a program of the New Mexico History Museum, is a Santa Fe institution that draws 300 to 1,000 tourists a day. That was before the yellow caution tape went up and downtown Santa Fe became a ghost town.

The gathering of Native artisans under the portal is a Santa Fe institution that draws 300 to 1,000 tourists a day. Credit- Palace of the Governors Photo Archives

New Mexico’s 23 tribal communities make up almost 60 percent of reported cases and half the deaths, though they comprise just 11 percent of the state’s population… Last month, Indian Market in Santa Fe, the country’s oldest and most competitive market, announced that it would be going virtual this August, spawning ripples of anxiety among artists untutored in e-commerce or living in isolated areas with little or no internet connectivity.

‘Most Native artists rely heavily on the principal markets as an economic lifeline,’ said W. Richard West, Jr., president and chief executive of the Autry Museum of the American West in Los Angeles. ‘To have it all come crashing down is really tough.’

Mark Bahti, who owns galleries in Tucson and Santa Fe, noted that many artists come from large extended families. ‘When people support an artist, they are supporting a community,’ he said. At Zuni Pueblo (pop. 7600), in a hard-hit part of New Mexico, some 77 percent of households have at least one self-identified artist at home. A young cooperative called ARTZ — for Ancestral Rich Treasures of Zuni — includes Zuni fetish carvers, who sculpt small animals and other spirit world figures from alabaster and other stones. But the tour buses and visitors stopped coming after the virus outbreak.

A mural by the street artist jetsonorama on Highway 160 on the Navajo reservation.Credit…Chip Thomas

On Highway 160 on the Navajo reservation, where jewelry vendors once set up stalls, a black and white mural by the street artist jetsonorama uses the haunting image of a masked Indian in a headdress to underscore, in both Dine’ and English, the urgency of following public health protocols…The economic importance of traditional cultural practices extends to regions not widely associated with the arts. A market study of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota by the First Peoples Fund, a nonprofit that supports Native artists and culture bearers found that 79 percent of home-based businesses were in traditional arts like beadwork and quillwork.

Rolling Rez arts, a roving arts studio, credit union, internet hot spot and mini-trading post on wheels, aimed at reaching artists in far-flung settings. Credit- Bryan Parker

A solution was Rolling Rez arts — a roving arts studio, credit union, internet hot spot and mini-trading post on wheels that until the virus struck — fanned out across 11,000 square miles to reach artists in far-flung settings…The Fund, based in Rapid City, is among the organizations stepping up to provide financial relief for Native artists in 25 states, who have reported losses ranging from $150 to $38,000 since March 1.”

Resource Sites for the COVID-19:


COVID-19 Tracker in the United States: Story summaries, lists of closures, resources. Last update 06/12/20   Information Here

COVID-19 financial strain? Here are resources in 50 states Federal and state services include monetary and food assistance, unemployment benefits, and more. 

Where to begin? After extensive research, the most comprehensive and user-friendly website for finding assistance from a multitude of programs is arguably

COVID-19 online resources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Basic information. Indian Health Service National Congress of American IndiansNational Indian Health Board

Democratic Presidential candidate Joe Biden delivered a speech at the funeral for George Floyd on Tuesday, calling on his family to turn his death into “purpose.”

“Now is the time for racial justice. That’s the answer we must give to our children when they ask why. Because when there is justice for George Floyd, we will truly be on our way to racial justice in America,”Democratic Presidential nominee  ~Joe Biden~



Teen Finds $135,000…And Returns It!

“Jose Nuñez Romaniz, a criminal justice student, turned over the money to officials and was invited to apply for an entry-level job at the Albuquerque Police Department.”M. Padilla, New York Times

Jose Nuñez second from left, with his parents, Carmen and Jose Nuñez and Mike Geier, the Albuquerque police chief. Credit…Julie Jensen:Albuquerque Police Department

Excerpt: Teenager, an Aspiring Detective, Returns $135,000 He Found –Mariel Padilla, NYT

“Jose Nuñez Romaniz was headed to the bank to deposit money so he could buy socks online for his grandfather when he came upon a large clear plastic bag filled with cash next to an A.T.M. in Albuquerque.

‘When I first saw it, I kind of stared at it for a few seconds, not knowing what to do,’ Mr. Nuñez said of his discovery on May 3. ‘I was very shocked. I’ve never seen so much money.’

Mr. Nuñez, 19, a criminal justice student at Central New Mexico Community College, said that after the initial shock had worn off, he took a picture of the bag.

He said he noticed a tag on the outside of the bag that said it contained $60,000 in $20 bills. The police later counted an additional $75,000 in $50 bills.

‘It never passed through my mind to keep any of it,’ Mr. Nuñez said on Saturday…After calling the police, he put the bag in his car and moved it so someone else could use the machine. He then called his mother to tell her he was going to be a little late coming home.

Two police officers arrived within minutes, took the bag and took Mr. Nuñez’s statement and information. He said his parents expressed amazement and disbelief when he recounted what happened, even after he showed them the picture… Officer Simon Drobik, an Albuquerque Police Department spokesman, said on Saturday ‘I think this is the biggest amount of money found in Albuquerque and returned.’

On Tuesday morning, Mr. Nuñez was in Phoenix buying materials for his parents’ mattress business when Officer Drobik called. ‘He asked me how was it to be a hero in the town, and at first I didn’t know what he was referring to,’ Mr. Nuñez said. ‘But then he started telling me about a ceremony to honor me. He wanted me to take my family there and meet the mayor and the chief of police.’

About 50 people attended the ceremony, which was held at the Albuquerque Police Academy on Thursday.

At the ceremony, Mayor Tim Keller commended Mr. Nuñez’s actions: ‘Man, we all know that temptation. Even just to take a little, just one of those bundles off the top. I mean that had to be really hard.’

Mr. Nuñez said he had received a plaque, gift cards, sports gear and even a $500 scholarship from an electric company…When Officer Drobik learned that Mr. Nuñez was studying criminal justice and wanted to pursue a career in law enforcement, he invited him to apply for a position at the department. Mr. Nuñez said he had gone to the station on Friday and filled out an application to be a public service aide, an entry-level position for those who want to become law enforcement officers but do not yet meet the requirements. ‘I’ve wanted to be a crime scene investigator or a detective for the police since I was a kid.’ Mr. Nuñez said…“The family was very humble,” Officer Drobik said. “It was amazing to watch them. There’s a greater good there. They weren’t blown away by Jose’s actions, but everyone else was.”

Resource Sites for the COVID-19:


COVID-19 Tracker in the United States: Story summaries, lists of closures, resources. Last update 05/8/20   Information Here

COVID-19 financial strain? Here are resources in 50 states Federal and state services include monetary and food assistance, unemployment benefits, and more. The National Retail Federation also has over 70 corporations looking for workers.

COVID-19 online resources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Basic information.

Indian Health Service

National Congress of American Indians

National Indian Health Board

Category: Culture, Social