Changing our names to Running Bear and White Wolf isn’t meant to be disrespectful … we respect [Native American] heritage and have a sincere acknowledgment of their beautiful culture. we would like to invite any Native American tribal leaders to meet with us to help us further understand their culture.
Note the use of “their culture”. As my friend Marjorie pointed out, “their implies not yours!!“. At least they recognize that that. But, “a sincere acknowledgement of their culture”? So, you recognize our culture, sincerely? that just doesn’t make sense (grammatically and otherwise). Also, it’s not our tribal leaders jobs to meet with you to help you “further understand” our cultures, they’re pretty busy running sovereign nations. And make note of the “s” on the end of that. cultures. nations. We are not one singular, monolithic, culture. There are hundreds and hundreds of tribes and communities–are you going to take the time to meet with leaders from all of them?
I could go on–“beautiful culture”? condescending much?–but it’s not even worth it. Heidi and Spencer, just go away.
PS-look at the image. TMZ used the logo of NIEA and the Rosebud Sioux. Like I said before, what the heck does NIEA have to do with this? Do they know TMZ is using their logo?
PPS- a commenter informed me that I missed a quotation from the Rosebud “representative” that noted the names Speidi chose (white wolf and running bear) are legitimate names in their community, making it all the more offensive. So I guess that begins to answer my question as to why TMZ decided to call the Rosebud Sioux out of every tribal community in the US.
But, I think more of the point I was trying to make by drawing attention to their choice to call a Sioux community was, to me, it just pointed back to a prevalent issue in the stereotyping of Native cultures–most of the stereotypical imagery we see around us is associated with plains tribes (tipis, warbonnets, buckskin, dances with wolves, etc), and as a result, whenever someone needs a “real Indian” they tend to look to the Lakota/Dakota communities, furthering the stereotypes that “real Indians” live in tipis and hunt buffalo. But that’s a bigger issue for another time.
Right now, let’s just sigh and roll our eyes at the ridiculousness of Heidi and Spencer.
TMZ post from today: http://www.tmz.com/2010/04/02/spencer-pratt-heidi-montag-native-americans/