It ain’t easy being Indian… (July 2016)

By Ricey Wild
News From Indian Country

I went to the annual Fond du Lac Veterans Powwow and the flags were at half-staff. A Blackhawk helicopter buzzed over the grounds to honor the Veterans. I knew it wasn’t going to drop bombs but I still shivered because it could happen; anywhere anytime because the police forces all across the Untied States of Fascism has been acquiring military hardware and using it against innocent civilians who protest police killing civilians and using blatant brutality.
  
All the recent shootings in which good people have died from have only increased my anxiety to the point of paranoia not just for me: all brown people. I already shared the story of how I was arrested for absolutely nothing, that the police officer pulled me out of my apartment and brought me to town where I was fingerprinted and stripped and spent two nights in jail. I found out I been arrested for ‘probable cause’ after a white woman dropped her credit card in the taxi immediately before I got in and that there charges on them that turned out to be her own. But I’m brown, born suspicious. I was going to sue the police department for false arrest but when I went to do it there was no record of my arrest. IKR?
  
I still feel animosity toward all police officers especially after the last incident involving my son. Steve had reported his car stolen, got it back and reported it to the county. We were on our way back from town when a police car followed us, turned the lights on and pulled a gun on us. It seemed all of a sudden we were swarmed by police as if we were dangerous criminals. We had to put our hands out the windows, walk backwards and kneel while they put on handcuffs. All that while having guns drawn on us.
  
The sure knowledge that the police could shoot us and not be held accountable was surreal, like it was happening to someone else or a really tense episode of “Cops”. I use a cane but didn’t dare when I got out because it’s black and shiny and from a distance could have been a weapon, an excuse to shoot me, ask questions later. I know of very few brown people who have not had some confrontation with police whether innocent or not.
  
It broke my heart to have to teach my son how to deal with racism and with law enforcement. I had to for his own safety but I know at any time that could change. No one wants that for their children but it’s tough out here when you are born brown which is the same as a target on your back in this country. Do NOT tell me that one does not commit a crime or resist the police it will save you. The entire world knows innocent brown Americans are being murdered at an increasing rate. I have a big problem with people who wear badges that they believe gives them right to do as they will to us and not be prosecuted.
  
There are police, EMT’s, medical personnel who took an oath to protect We the People but hide behind their professions and are evil, lying conniving monsters. I have personal knowledge of them and how their actions wounded me and my loved ones for their own selfish ends. I for one refuse to be silent about any abuses toward myself and others. Together we stand a better chance at making actual, lasting change. But the military equipment still worries me.
  
Yet I still have hope and love for most people and when Mrs. Keni Hanson wrote me a letter and sent a poem I cried in happiness. A lot of things have been happening, not all of it good and it’s so reassuring and wonderful to know that people like her exist in this crazy world we live in.
  
Thank you deeply and lovingly Keni, you really did make me feel better and I treasure your beautiful gesture and that you care. <3 When I’m down I take out the card and poem so it’s rather dog-eared now.  I take comfort in knowing that a stranger can reach out and make such a difference in another person life.
  
I, too, want to be that person.
  
My brother Mike Wynde came to visit and help me out around my house which has suffered due to my disabilities. Without any hesitation he’s been cleaning up around here and even got my old, flat butt up and moving about and discarding stuff…he said to me, “I’ve never seen someone with so much junk”. Yeah, okay. I hoard books, old papers, essays, columns and other printed materials because…they are still important to me. Useful material yanno?
  
Take care My People. I love you.




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