Thursday, 16 January 2014

Native American Rights Fund

The Native American Rights Fund, or NARF for short, is an organisation that describes itself as "dedicated to asserting and defending the rights of Indian tribes, organizations and individuals nationwide." It aims to preserve the existence of the native American tribe and culture and to protect the ethnicity from discrimination. It is non-profit, so it relies on donations to continue existing.

It is interesting that the original inhabitants of North America have become enough of a minority to require an organisation like this one, and especially interesting that their issues are not as widely known or discussed as those of other groups such as African-Americans or LGBT Americans (especially considering the greater scale of the oppression they faced). The organisation's work includes the "tribal supreme court" project (meant to strengthen tribal litigation strategies against the supreme court) and setting up the National Native Arts and Cultures Foundation to combat what they see as "Government suppression of Native American language, religion, and culture". The promotion of a non-normative culture to the USA, and a focus instead on the traditional culture of the people in question, could be seen as asserting the idea that a Native American should identify as a Native American first and an American second. Certainly, the idea presented is that it is important to retain Native American culture & identity so that it is not wiped out and replaced entirely by contemporary mainstream American culture.

1 comment:

  1. A decent post Michael. How many Native Americans are there? How numerous as a minority?