A Guide to Discussing Native American Culture on Thanksgiving by Rachel Dolezal
As a native American woman I often feel invisible. Thanksgiving really intensifies the feeling. People celebrate the genocide of my ancestors like it's a warm family affair. I really think it's important to know how to navigate discussions about native culture to be sure you're not making light of historical tragedies.
Call the party a pow wow
When you receive an invite to a Thanksgiving gathering respond with something fun like, "What time is the pow wow?" This shows you really know native culture. People will be impressed and excited to have you as a guest.
Bring a dream catcher
A dream catcher is always a great ice breaker. It shows that you know about and support native crafts.
Wear an ornamental headdress to the dinner table
If you really want to dazzle your hosts wear traditional native clothing or accessories to the big table. Flexing your knowledge of native clothing demands respect.
If for some reason other people at the party aren't impressed you can always play the wild card. "I'm 1/16th native." Say it in a matter of fact tone and people won't question your authenticity.
I hope this helps you on your holiday. Now go be the life of that pow wow!
November 19th 2021, Rachel Dolezal
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