#SouthDakota seizes children for “neglect” at a rate 18% higher than the national average. Many #Lakota testify that non-Native state workers see poverty as “neglect”.
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Namibians wearing Vellies (Shoes)
“Velskoen, pronounced “fell-skoon” and known colloquially as “vellies,” are the ancestor of the modern-day desert boot. Vellies were first made in the 1600s, inspired by the footwear of the Khoikhoi tribe and crafted using raw materials. Later, our vellies were adapted by British travellers, packaged and renamed to be what we now know as desert boots.
(Brother Vellies) are made in the coastal town of Swakopmund, Namibia. There, a small group of eight Damara gentlemen assemble every shoe by hand, turning out just 20 pairs an afternoon.
…Vellies are made of vegetable-dyed Kudu leather. The Namibian government mandates the culling of these large native antelope to control their population. Kudu skin yields amazingly durable leather and suede that ages exceptionally well. Because these hides are taken from wild animals they often show scars or other “imperfections” that domesticated hides do not.”
Today in history: February 19, 1942 - President Roosevelt signs Executive Order 9066, leading to the incarceration of almost 120,000 Japanese Americans in concentration camps during World War II.
The war-time measures applied to Japanese Americans in a sweeping way, uprooting entire communities particularly on the West Coast. Afterward, Japanese Americans fought a legal battle against the concentration camps all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. The original Supreme Court decision which upheld the camps in the interests of ‘national security’ was later vacated (overturned on a technicality), but the Supreme Court never ruled that the camps were unconstitutional. After a decades-long battle, in 1988 the U.S. government was forced to formally apologize for the internment, admitting that government actions were based on “race prejudice, war hysteria, and a failure of political leadership.”
The U.S. government eventually disbursed more than $1.6 billion in reparations to Japanese Americans who had been interned and their descendents. Today Japanese American organizations on the West Coast organize an annual Day of Remembrance to mark this date and to continue to raise consciousness so that such attacks on civil liberties never happen again to Japanese Americans or oppressed groups.
(image: sign ordering Japanese Americans to concentration camps)
Via Freedom Road Socialist Organization (Fight Back!)
Filing under “but merica never does anything wrong”
In India, when a girl is raped, because the stigma is so enormous, nobody is allowed to disclose her name. So all the various newspapers and media outlets, in their excitement, kept giving her different names. So someone called her Damini and somebody called her Nirbhaya, which means the fearless one, though I don’t know how they assumed that she was fearless. What a strange thing to do to a young girl who was murdered in that way.
But John Kerry recently wanted to honor her on Women’s Day or something in the United States because he seemed so moved by this story. And that I found so grotesque, because in the last few years the Americans have in terms of what they’ve done to the women of Iraq, what they’ve done to the women of Libya, driven whole countries, millions of women back into purdah, back into the most inequitable lives—women who were poets and writers and doctors and scientists being pushed back against their volition. It’s not that they were women who chose to be like that, but the situation that was created by these wars has pushed them back. And then you pick up a young girl who was raped and honor her, when you’re pushing millions of women backwards and putting the hands of the clock back for millions of women. You come and pick up this one case, which is completely unpolitical. What happened to her was a criminal act. What happens to the women of Libya and the women of Iraq and the women of Afghanistan is political. You’re not committing a criminal act on one person but a criminal act on countries of women.
Arundhati Roy, Corporate power, women, and resistance in India today
Interviewed by David Barsamian for International Socialist Review.
National Geographic November 1999
New York 1960s
Most likely 34th Street
By Tom Riggle