IS WRITER TOO SENSITIVE?
Deb Peterson’s request (letter, Sept. 5) that we “stop taking inconsequential things so seriously” really brings up a good point about “our present PC cases.”
Where does sensitivity to others stop and the politically-correct thought-police start?
For Peterson and many others, such as fans of the Cleveland Indians, Washington Redskins, etc., sensitivity stops and unnecessary PC starts just before it reaches them.
The feelings of minorities that are offended by what they see of negative portrayals of their culture is of no consequence to Peterson and others. That is just political correctness run amok.
Yet, I am willing to bet that these same people find the voluntary use of the greeting “Happy Holidays” by retailers and other businesses, in an attempt to include those that may not celebrate Christmas, is not just a silly case of foolish PC but is instead offensive and a slight to their traditions and culture.
If you believe in Fox News’ trumped-up, phony war on Christmas, maybe you should stop to consider how others feel when their traditions and cultures are used for the amusement of others.
In addition, “If you are going to complain about something …” let’s stop and think before complaining about something you had complete control over.
Yes, fairgrounds can be noisy places. Besides noise, they can create bad traffic and a lot of dust. Who was there first? Did the fairgrounds move next to you, or did you move next to the fairgrounds? Complaining about a few hours of noise from the fair?
Aren’t you being just a little overly sensitive?
TREAT CUSTOMS WITH RESPECT
The Republican Party handing out headdresses at the fair wasn’t about honoring Native Americans. It was about supporting the Republican Party.
Apparently, Deb Peterson and Barb Rice (letters Sept. 5 and Sept. 6) are more determined to defend Republicans and their political points-of-view than defending Native American cultures.
They offer misguided reasons why it is appropriate to wear cheap factory-made headdresses that are nothing more than an act of racial stereotyping.
“Headdresses are something that is earned,” said Cherokee Nation member Keene. That’s completely lost when it’s this cheap chicken-feather thing given to children at the Republican Party fair booth. If one wants to wear something native, buy it from a Native American.
White Americans living in the United States benefit from the history of massacre and herding of Native Americans into reservations. Contrary to Rice’s claim that handing out cheap headdresses is a trivial issue, headdress misuse is a major issue for Native Americans, reminding them of the severe crimes and dishonor suffered over the past 500 years.
Wearing headdresses should not be political fashion statements for the Hancock County Republican Party.
According to Native American customs, eagle feathers are presented as symbols of spirituality, honor and respect that are earned — not for kids at a fair.
Some Native American communities give them to children when they become adults through special ceremonies, others present the feathers commemorating an act or event of deep significance.
War bonnets especially are reserved for respected figures of power as well as for men in Native communities. The image of a war bonnet and painted Indian is one created and perpetuated by Hollywood showing little similarity of native tribes.
It supports the stereotype that Native Americans are one culture, when there are hundreds of distinct tribes with their own cultures. Wearing headdresses places native people in the historic past, hiding difficulties Native Americans live with today.
We need to understand what it is like walking in the shoes of Native Americans, treating their cultures with respect, dignity and compassion.
SHAME ON YOU AMERICA!
I am ashamed of how this country idolizes and reveres overpaid, vulgar-mouthed comedians, actors, singers and sport players, yet lacks compassion and thanks for those that truly deserve it.
What about our service people who voluntarily go to war knowing they may die, so that our freedom is protected?
What about the farmers who work around the clock and in all weather to assure you are fed and clothed? What about the medical personnel who do everything they can to assure we have quality of life?
What about our clergy who assure we are taught love, kindness and forgiveness?
What about the people who dedicate themselves to education so that the children of the world learn how to become productive adults? What about those in construction who assure we have shelter and safe roads?
What about the factory workers who assure everything we need to build and repair, these things are available?
What about the plumbers that keep our water running, the electricians who provide electricity in our homes and at work, the heating repair personnel who keep our environment warm and/cool, or the auto repairmen who assure we are able to go to work and get to our families?
Comedians, actors, singers and sport players do nothing to meet any of my needs. Do they yours? You may say they entertain you, but I say, we are all equipped to entertain ourselves.
Those of us who are considered the older generation used our imagination and creativity and always had things to do and things that kept us entertained. Our most precious gifts are not from overpaid entertainers, but from our family, friends, health, food and shelter.
I, for one, revered my parents, my grandparents, and now my children and my grandchildren. When I face death, I will not ask to watch TV. I will ask for my family.