Martin Luther King, Sinofsky Chambers, Washington, D.C. discussed on Native America Calling


National native news is produced by colonic broadcast corporation with funding by the corporation for public broadcasting. Support by sinofsky chambers law, championing tribal sovereignty and Native American rights since 1976 from opioids litigation to treaty rights to tribal self governance, with offices in Washington, D.C., New Mexico, California, and Alaska. Sanofi chambers law. A historical master trauma class taught by doctor ruby Gibson and staff provides tuition free online training to tribal members who are therapists, counselors, social workers and traditional healers enrollment deadline is march 24th, 2023 at freedom lodge dot org, who support this show. Native voice one the Native American radio network. This is native America calling. I'm Sean spruce. In a notable college essay, Martin Luther King Jr. wrote that the purpose of education is to prepare one's mind for absorbing knowledge with an immoral framework. Schools across the country have spent time leading up to today's federal holiday named in his honor to teach facts about king and instill his legacy in American history. Native educators have an opportunity to also include additional intersections among king, the civil rights struggle, and the parallel drive for Native American equity. There is a shared oppression between blacks and Native Americans and both suffer ongoing racism. But there are many significant differences as well. Differences that remain on a bridge. On today's show, we'll get an idea of what native students might encounter in a lesson plan about Martin Luther King and the civil rights struggle. If you'd like to add to our conversation, you can do so by calling in the number one 809 9 6 two 8 four 8. That's one 809 9 native. Joining us first from lacy Washington is Jared KIPP. He's a native student program specialist and the 2022 Washington state teacher of the year. He's chumney. Jared, welcome back to the show. Thanks for having me, Sean. It's great to be back. Jared, we certainly don't need a holiday to teach Martin Luther King in this civil rights movement, but does today present an opportunity for a heightened understanding of that history? Absolutely. Doctor king provides such a wealth of opportunity to connect not only more to black history in America, but also how our communities have been inextricably linked to the legacy and ongoing structures of settler colonialism. Well, do native students have a different take on MLK than students of other races? Well, I think in most of most education, everyone kind of gets a similar version of doctor king's history. But I think when we have opportunities to tie in these connections, then what native students can get out of it is how because we're so tied through these settler systems of oppression, we can see how we've been able to intersect how we've been able to collaborate and co conspire for social justice. Doctor king spoke early on about militarism, capitalism, and racism, effectively speaking early to these ideas of the impacts of settler colonialism. And he spoke quite often about native people in at a really pivotal time in Native American history and resistance. The times he was speaking were at peak terminate termination and relocation, the birth of the American Indian movement, the rise of the taking of Alcatraz that led to so much of the red power movement. So when we take doctor king's story and we see just how much intersection that all oppressed peoples have, then we can find the richness and the connection that we need to keep that work moving forward. Well, you really highlight the significance of Martin Luther King's teachings and how they correlate with what Native American students might find within their perspectives. But I'm also curious, some of the other aspects of Martin Luther King's teachings, his legacy, when he was very, very closely aligned with his Southern Baptist roots and how do you address some of those spiritual issues in the classroom working with native students? Well, spiritualism is a big part of his life and a lot of people that worked with him. I think maintaining spiritual strength is really important in social justice movements. And I think that's something that has native people has always sort of led the way that whatever movement we've engaged in, we have our spiritual leaders brought into the circles. We have our women, our sisters, brought into the circles. And we have our two spirits bringing in for that spiritual strength because that's what we need for strong social justice to make sure that we have that balance that an inclusion, but we also resist how much of that traditional spirituality has been institutionally taken from us or has been attempted to be taken from us. So I think there's a lot of opportunities to have those conversations, but I think if we're looking in a more sort of critical indigenous studies lens, then we can get into some more complex conversations about how Christianity can often play such a really complicated role and impactful role in native oppression. Well, Jared, are there any aspects of Martin Luther King that are problematic or that you specifically maybe stay away from, especially when working with native students in particular? Well, I think one of the things that's important and one of the things that I've always taken away from our leaders is that no person is perfect, right? That we are all fundamentally human. And we can look at any great leader and find fault. But I think the vision in the hope and the actions of social justice teach us a lot. But also not shying away from the areas that are problematic, can help inform us to realize that as we speak for a more dust and equitable society that the work starts inside first and that we try to live up to our ideals as best as possible. What about the timeline? Because so often when we think of historical figures, we think, you know, many years ago, we might be thinking about somebody like an Abraham Lincoln or a sitting bull, but yet MLK, I mean, as we shared in the show, if you were alive today, he would be 94. It's very likely if he hadn't been assassinated. He might still be alive today. And there are many people alive that remember when he was still alive. And is that something that you have to approach differently with native students for somebody who's in some ways still a contemporary of some people that are alive today? Well, yeah. We see that a lot. America has a really short attention span. As people who face the ongoing struggle in public education of being persistently historicized or made episodic, doctor king's story

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