Today is New Mexico’s FIRST Indigenous Peoples Day!

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The 2019 legislative session brought us the passage of HB 100- Replace Columbus Day As Indigenous People’s Day, sponsored by Representative Derrick Lente (Sandia Pueblo). Here are some really easy ways to celebrate without being a jerk about not celebrating a rapist and murderer.

  1. Buy from inspired Natives (NOT “Native-inspired”!). There are Indigenous artists and business owners from all across Turtle Island that you can support and NOT be an appropriative ass. Check out: 
    1. Milo Creations by Michelle Lowden (Acoma Pueblo)
    2. Bethany Yellowtail (Northern Cheyenne/Crow)
    3. NTVS: The Originals by Steven Paul Judd (Kiowa-Choctaw);
    4. OXDX by Jarred Yazzie (Diné)
    5. Dale Ray Deforest- Dale Deforest Illustrations (Diné) (he created IWR’s logo and is creating some graphic novels I am really excited about!) 
    6. Lisa Teparghuq Apangaluk (Siberian Yupik/Tlingit)- Mother & Child (@ken_yew_knot on Instagram!)

  1. Read history by Indigenous authors (oh, Creator, please go read)! In schools across the country, our stories are only taught up to a point. At any stage of education, our stories are electives and we are made out to be a relic of the past. Here are two lists of amazing book lists that will keep you busy for the rest of this decade so you can enter the next decade with some damn awareness. 
    1. Decolonize Your Bookshelf
    2. 25 Books By Indigenous Authors You Should Be Reading
    3. In The Courts of the Conqueror: 10 Worst Indian Law Cases Ever Decided by Walter Echo-Hawk
    4. Go visit Dr. Lee Francis’ (Laguna Pueblo) AMAZING bookstore in Albuquerque, Red Planet Books & Comics– buy local AND Native!!
  2. STOP sexualizing us- it’s dangerous to our health and our safety. We are not all headdress-wearing Natives and we don’t fit into the myths created about us and our sexualities. Our collective portrayal according to non-Natives leads to our dehumanization and many times, our murders. Check out how Shy Natives is using lingerie to help Indigenous people reclaim our bodies on our own terms. We are sexual beings in our own ways- some of us want to show more skin (anyone who knows me knows I LOVE showing skin!), and some of us are more private (and it must be said because some people don’t get it- that’s perfectly A-OK too!). 
  3. Last but not least- please remember we are not all the same. See #2. 

Have MORE questions about what you just read? Go donate $10 to the Indigenous Women Rising Abortion Fund, email me at rachael.iwrising@gmail.com, and I will be happy to chat with you. Our labor ain’t free!