February 24, 2017
Great People Doing Great Things: Inupiaq Student Advocates for her People
As a teen, Caitlyn Tozier heard her mother talking about some of the problems Alaska Natives face. Eventually, Tozier realized she wanted to do so something to help solve those problems.
Last week, Tozier traveled to Washington, D.C., as a student member of the National Indian Education Association. She met with Sens. Dan Sullivan and Lisa Murkowski and Congressman Don Young to secure Title VI funding for Indian education among other things.
Education for Alaska Natives and sexual assault are two issues Tozier wants to tackle in her advocacy. She also wants to bring more cultural relevance to education for Alaska Natives.
Smithsonian Highlights Native Fashion in Traveling Exhibit
“Native Fashion Now,” which debuted at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts, last year and runs in New York through Sept. 4, is the first large-scale traveling exhibition of contemporary Native American fashion. Celebrating indigenous designers from across the United States and Canada from the 1950s to today, the exhibit looks at the interstices of fashion, art, cultural identity, politics, and commerce, as well as the struggle of appropriation and misuse.
“New York City is a fashion capital of the world and the works shown in this exhibition belong on this stage,” wrote Kevin Gover (Pawnee), director of the National Museum of the American Indian, in a press release. “Native voice is powerful and Native couture is a megaphone. These designers’ works demonstrate to visitors the contemporary strength of Native iconographies and sensibilities.”
Standing Rock is on Fire
With just hours to go before they are reportedly due to be evacuated, some protesters outside the Standing Rock Sioux reservation began burning their camp, which has been home to thousands of people during the months-long standoff over the Dakota Access pipeline, to the ground.
Some of the protesters, who call themselves water protectors, told The Seattle Times that the fires are part of their ceremony for leaving the camp behind. Members of the tribe also prayed as snow fell on the camp.
And While We're On Political Issues...
Members of the Tohono O'odham Nation southwest of Tucson talk about their opposition to the proposed physical border wall which would split their land in half.
Finally, on a lighter note, some fun weekend reading
In 2007, Starr was approached about contributing to Native Voices, a radio theater program at the Autry Museum in Los Angeles. That was the start of what would become “Super Indian,” which began as a 10-episode comedy series before Starr transformed it and expanded it into a comic book series
“I loved the 1960s-era ‘Batman’ show and modeled the story after that,” she said. “It lets me show another side of Native Americans that a lot of people don’t realize, that we’re a people who love to laugh and cut up. There are some serious issues woven into the stories, but I wanted these comics to appeal to kids, as well as adults.”
As an example of Starr’s humor, her hero, a socially awkward fellow named Hubert Logan, gets a block of commodity cheese that has been tainted with some bizarre substance as part of a government plot, which promptly gives him super powers.