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Being Me

~ Louise Hills

Everytime "Native American Month" comes

through I grow angrier every year.

Native people's books are 1 shelf.

1 shelf and this country called America

is on the soil walked on by our native 

ancestors first?

Oh this makes me so angry,

Especially when I hear blacks saying things like "We are the Native American people.  Those people who claim to be  Native  American, are the bastard result of white and Asian blood". Look at these people, they are Europeans.

Making me much angrier because  I know what my great grandparents,  and my grand mothers looked like.

"What you doing, trying to push me into a box where I  must choose black ?"

I  have  very little exposure  or even desire to have exposure  to the  black side.

For clarification  I am  tribal  African people,   Xhosa, tribal people from Algeria  as well as hunter gatherers in other parts of South Africa.  We do not share West African  blood, my folks were not slaves.  Our experiences in some ways, is very different.  Some the same.
I also carry Ainu & Salish blood. Let's not forget the Scots or Irish they too are part of us.

So exactly yow do I feel? I am not the girl who hid from other black kids kicking me because my mother was red & "chunky eyed". I got in more fights than I  can count, because my mother was called stink  and filthy.

The doors slammed shut in us "we don't serve dogs or Indians".

My experience is my experience.  There are more of me, who have to "pass" in ways by other blacks  to keep from being beaten up.

My daughter now suffers the same in a group home  that African women work in.  Her father is Apache/ Blackfoot /White and black, his mother Tsalagi (Cherokee) and white.