Indigenous Tribes

Navajo, native, indigenous

Firstly, Native Americans are not a homogenous group or people, they are many tribes with their own cultures, practices, and history’s. The Ojibwe people are not going to have the same culture as the people from The Oglala Sioux Tribe, yet throughout history, all indigenous people have been treated as one people and they have all suffered very similar crimes against them at the hands of colonizers and/or the north American government(Kramer, 2018). Thus, their practices, religions, and culture are for the most part closed in order to keep control over their own culture.

Besides the general genocide that the colonizers and pilgrims committed, the long list of atrocities against the native people is ongoing with the most recent egregious display of racism being the treatment of the Navajo Tribe during the Covid 19 pandemic. While the states received relief funds and hospitals in the surrounding areas got funds and supplies, the United States government sent the tribe body bags instead of oxygen tanks and protective gear for medical workers(Walker, 2021). This was done in face of the fact that The Navajo Nation had the most deaths of any US state at the time(including Florida and New York), which is far too many for a small area that is a fourth the size of Arizona(Grantham-Philips, 2020).So it isn’t like the times of smallpox blankets are far behind, given how many pipelines have gone through sacred land and ruined the only source of water for certain tribes in the recent years(all of these violating the treaties between the US government and these respective nations).

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Grantham-Philips, Wyatte Usa Today. “On the Navajo Nation, COVID-19 Death Toll Is Higher than Any US State. Here’s How You Can Support Community Relief.” USA TODAY, 24 Oct. 2020, eu.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2020/10/24/covid-native-americans-how-to-help-navajo-nation/3652816001.

Kramer, Lauren. “Need to Know: South Dakota Tribes.” Native Governance Center, 6 Sept. 2018, nativegov.org/south-dakota-tribes.

Walker, Mark. “Pandemic Highlights Deep-Rooted Problems in Indian Health Service.” The New York Times, 3 Jan. 2021, www.nytimes.com/2020/09/29/us/politics/coronavirus-indian-health-service.html.