What does it mean to be Native? Well, most would think feathers, pow wows, drumming and living in teepees. Now Natives are all different; we come from different tribes and blood quantum. But we have been letting the idea of Blood Quantum control our ideas of what “Native” is. We have been separating ourselves from each other because someone doesn’t act Native or doesn’t look Native enough. Sophomore Jeffrey Powell said he has felt singled out from an experience in a class for being a White passing, straight male — feeling like “you don’t belong here.”
Our first thought of mixed Native bullying is to always look for the White passing individuals, but what about the mixed Natives that are different tribes? Zee is a Student at Haskell who is Hopi, Navajo, Tewa, and Laguna Pueblo, and who has experienced bullying because of her Navajo and Hopi sides. It’s no secret that the Navajo and Hopi people don’t like each other a little bit, but for adults to bully a child because of her tribe is surprising. As a Navajo myself, this disgusted me. I thought the hate between the Navajo and Hopi people was just a joke. But thinking of it as a joke doesn’t help the people who are being affected by it.
If we could bring awareness of the bullying among our communities maybe we’d be able to get along better. The discrimination among our fellow students is hurting them and overall, it’s hurting ourselves. We are making it seem as though we are better than them because they didn’t grow up on the reservation or they aren’t “full-blooded”. If we help one another and lift each other up our communities will be so much better.