Monday, May 17, 2010
Hey you F*ing Wagon Burners
Been over to my sisters place in the Reserve for a BBQ today. It was a nice day. I like the Reserve and the family. The Reserve sure has some great aspects, like knowing who people are. Even the people in the nearby town. When we were kids we used to go to town and walk around, maybe a little shop lifting for small junk. I was one of those guys that didn't think anything of my actions. Just did what my mind said to do.
The thing was in town, even though we look white, the town folk knew who we were, we were Indians. Which is fine, it's the best that way. You belong with who you are. You knew were you stood. There was a line both figurative and literal as to who you belonged to. In the hospital we had the two waiting rooms, one for Indians and one for Whites. It wasn't racist, it was just the way it was and it was comfortable.
We were not town folk and they were not Indians.
I remember it was normal to walk along the road in the Reserve and White people would drive by and yell at us, "hey get the f**k off the road you f**king wagon burners". It was just the way it was. I remember we used to throw rocks at cars or the big semi-trailers going through the Reserve. Dumb I know. It was the way it was.
Been thinking about that a lot lately, 'the way it was'. I remember as kids with games played,we use to do the 'e-ni-mi-ne mi-ne mo, catch a n****r by the toe' rhyme. It was not right but it was the way it was. But that's the thing, it doesn't have to be just the way it was, the way it is. We have the ability to change it.
Doesn't matter if we are ignorant of the fact, it is not right. We need to get informed, to learn, to educate ourselves. It never occurred to me as a kid that the Jew in the Bible was related to the Jew used as a metonymy for cheap. It is wrong and there is no excuse for it. I don't want my kids growing up and saying that's the way it was. We need to be better than that.
I want my kids to live better than I did. To be better than I am.