Outside Views

Along with the discussion of defining Native people, there comes outside views from non-native people and what they believe is the culture and identity of Native Americans. A lot of these views and interpretations of American Indian peoples culture and way of life are misleading and destructive. For example, a common stereotype is that all Native American’s have issues with alcohol. Not only is this stereotype untrue but it is a title that I am sure nobody would want especially not an entire race of people. In fact NIAA (National Institute On Alcohol Abuse) did a study and it was determined that whites, especially white males, were more likely to drink and have issues with alcohol than any other race. Despite this, the title of alcoholism still stays with Native Americans. In addition with such accusations is that these ideas don’t just define a singular person or even a group of people but rather puts all Native Americans under such titles.

Moreover, that was just one example of the many stereotypes that non-native people use to define Native Americans as a whole. There are several other ideas of Native people, but I thought that alcoholism was the most predominant. I don’t believe that all Native Americans should be defined under such inscriptions but should be looked at in a different way. To try and define American Indians as a whole is illogical because there are just so many different variations of native people with their own traditions, languages, religions and differences that set them apart. I just know that how we are defined by non-native people is not the right way, and if anything we should be characterized by our culture, tradition and so on.


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