Prompted by Bethany’s post. Linkage aboundage.
I read an article recently on Slate.com. Written by Native author David Treuer, he ponders why so many writers pretend to be Indian*. He suggests that it might be because anyone can be an Indian these days as the stereotypical Indian look: long black hair, black eyes, reddish-brown skin, prominent nose…is no longer the norm. Treuer compares himself to Opie Taylor, and when I look him up and view his picture on his website, I note that he is indeed a pale fella. One of the people he references in his article is Chief Buffalo Child Long Lance, a writer who claimed to be the son of a Blackfoot chief, but turned out to be the son of a black man (who was part Cherokee). He ended up killing himself when the truth came out.
*The man told some tall ass tales, but I don’t see how he’s not an Indian, as he had Cherokee blood and was even adopted into the Kainai Nation (Blackfoot). *slaps forehead* Oh right! I forgot about the one drop rule. If you have one drop of black blood, you’re black. And if you’re white and have one drop of Native American blood, then you’re rich.
Then there’s Margaret B Jones. This story is just delicious. White woman lies about her heritage (claimed that she was Native, natch) and her childhood, truth comes out, her “memoir” Love and Consequences: A Memoir of Hope and Survival, is pulled from the shelves. Her own sister was the whistle blower. Hi! Don’t post pictures of yourself with a red bandana (courtesy of a fallen homie) trying to look gansta and not think that someone from your REAL life is going to pull the rug out from under your ass.