Here’s the announcement and information from the Committee of 500 Years of Dignity and Resistance, another active Native group here in Cleveland:
(http://committeeof500yearsofdignityandresistance.com/newsletter.html – a reminder that this is not an AISES-sanctioned event, but rather a community one and National social justice issue)
COMMITTEE OF 500 YEARS OF DIGNITY AND RESISTANCE P O BOX 110815, CLEVELAND, OHIO 44111 The Committee of 500 Years Presents: “100 Years is Long Enough” 23rd Annual Demonstration to Protest Racism Against Indigenous Peoples in Sports and Media and Conference
- “Please support the Indigenous Peoples”
Friday, April 10, 2015 – Demonstration
Saturday, April 11, 2015 –Conference
Friday, April 10, 2015 Mile-and-a-Half March and Demonstration 11:30 – noon – Meet to march site. Located at W. 25th & Detroit Ave.
There is a free parking lot by the meeting point. Do not park in reserved spots. Meeting spot is on the NW side of the intersection at small park and parking lot. For those who do not plan to march–a suggestion is taking the RTA Rapid from the West Side and walk to the demonstration point.
12:30 p.m. – March to Progressive Field – MILE-and-a-HALF
1:30-4:00 p.m. – Demonstration against Racism at Progressive Field – NW Quadrant on Ontario Street.
INDIAN TACO POTLUCK AFTER DEMONSTRATION
5:00 pm-8:00 pm – Socializing and strategizing among Activists.
Where: Pilgrim UCC- 2592 West 14th Street, Cleveland, Ohio 44113
If you are local here in Cleveland please bring your favorite dish to share. Call for available housing for out of town guests. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or 216-252-1622 (This is a land line.)
We ask that our supporters that join us please focus on the issue of racism against the indigenous people. We understand there are other issues that are as important, but this demonstration is for focusing on this issue only. We plan a peaceful and respectful demonstration. Those who cannot comply with our guidelines will be asked to leave.
The Committee of 500 Years of Dignity and Resistance promotes dignity and respect for indigenous peoples. We advocate for indigenous cultures and heritage through education, activism and grassroots organizing.
CONFERENCE DATE: SATURDAY, APRIL 11, 2015
TIME: 8:00 AM – 2:00 PM
WHERE: PILGRIM UCC – 2592 West 14th Street, Cleveland, Ohio 44113
Agenda: Greetings – Margie Villafane & Phil Yenyo
Opening prayers – Clyde Bellecourt
FORUM – 9:00 am to 11:00 am TBD
Lunch – 11:00 – 12:15
Speakers 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm Charlene Teters, Clyde Bellecourt, David Narcomey, Frank Sage, and more
Prayer, Closing Remarks and Recognitions – 1:30 – 2:00 – Margie Villafane & Phil Yenyo
_________________________________________________________________________________________ REGISTRATION FOR DEMONSTRATION & CONFERENCE: MAIL TO: Committee of 500 Years, PO Box 110815, Cleveland, OH or e-mail to: email@example.com Please Print NAME: _________________________________________________ E-mail:_______________________________________________ Address:_______________________________________________________________________________________________________ Attending Demonstration only ___ Attending Conference only ___ Attending both ______ Need housing: Yes ____ No____ Housing is limited. Number of folks attending: _________ Questions: ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________ If you can house out of town folks, please let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org 100 Years – Long Enough! By Michelle Jacobs, Ph.D The Cleveland professional baseball franchise adopted the “Indians” name nearly 100 years ago. As this anniversary approaches, it is important to reflect on the name’s historical and present day meanings. Much has changed with regard to U.S. race relations since 1915. In 1924, almost 10 years after the “Indians” name was adopted, American Indians were granted the rights of citizenship. Forty years later, legal racial segregation was banished with the passage of the Civil Rights Act. In addition, the way we think about and talk about race has changed dramatically in the last 100 years. As celebrities such as Don Imus and Paula Deen know well, myriad words that once were commonly used are no longer acceptable to Americans who now understand the power of language to shape reality and perpetuate inequality. Words are powerful because they conjure images and ideas. The “Indians” team name was adopted because it evoked particular meanings for sports enthusiasts – aggression, bravery, dedication, and pride. Such images of American Indians seem honorable when American history is ignored. Knowing, however, that historical references to Indian “aggression” were used to justify the genocide and colonization of U.S. indigenous peoples puts a different spin on the use of “Indians” as an athletic team name – one that exists alongside aggressive animals, like Lions, Tigers, and Bears. But calling Cleveland’s professional baseball team the “Indians” does not only equate American Indian people with ferocious animals in the symbolic realm. It affects the everyday lives of American Indians because stereotypical ideas about Indians, embedded in the culture for hundreds of years, have replaced genuine concerns for the identities, communities, and cultures of American Indian people. The treatment of American Indian protestors outside the Cleveland baseball stadium illustrates this point. Protestors witness first-hand how the purportedly “harmless” team name causes baseball fans to callously disregard the history and humanity of American Indian people. They angrily yell insults like “Go back to where you came from!” and “We won, so get lost!” at protestors. They also don feathers and face paint for entertainment purposes, although these items are sacred to American Indian people. Fans supporting their much adored “Tribe” simultaneously snub their noses at (or flip the bird to) actual Indians struggling to convey a simple message: We are people, not mascots. Despite these challenges, the Committee of 500 Years of Dignity and Resistance remains steadfast in its opposition to the use of the “Indians” name and “Chief Wahoo” mascot of the Cleveland baseball franchise. We urge you to join us in protesting a team name that bolsters stereotypes and perpetuates discrimination against American Indian people. It is time to lay these historical relics to rest and to help Cleveland become a twenty-first century city where all people are treated with respect and dignity.