Manages Parisian Family Office. Began Wall Street, 82. Founded investment firm, Native American Advisors. Member, White Earth Chippewa Tribe. Was NYSE/FINRA arb. Conservative. Raised on Native reservations. Pureblood, clot-shot free. In a world elevated on a tech-driven dopamine binge, he trades from Ghost Ranch on the Yellowstone River in MT, his TN farm, Pamelot or CASA TULE', his winter camp in Los Cabos, Mexico. Always been, and will always be, an optimist.

Monday, June 19, 2023

If Indian Country Had a Father

On the airwaves today it sounds like another day letting the world know how bad it is for Americans without white skin pigmentation? You see, my skin is red, tan, brown, white and plenty of brown and black spots at my age. No one I know or that you know, chose their parents. We are what we are. Live with it. Live and let live. Simple.

This afternoon, with the markets closed, I have been listening to several broadcasts across Amazon's ALEXA and it is rather comical. The liberal, "woe is me" crowd is out in force!

I grew up in the poorest county in the United States and went to high school there. Shannon County, South Dakota, now called Oglala Lakota County on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. It's a rather rough place. Today there are far fewer FATHERS on the reservation than in 1970. More kids, fewer fathers, imagine that?

Let me tell you about life there. There are many sires;  aren't many fathers around. Probably all you need to know. Secondly, DEI is not what you think it is.

DEI, to me, stands for:

D disinformation or division

E extermination

I intimidation

Juneteenth came a day after Fathers Day this year. Let me tell you about fathers in Indian Country.

If you want to raise successful children in Indian Country do not co-parent with the United States Government. Fatherhood is the single greatest role a man could play in Native American society. I can’t think of a single greater factor than to advocate for, to uplift, to encourage, and to support fatherhood in society today. There are a lot of problems in the world, as many if not more in Indian Country. Most of them will improve when we improve the condition of a strong fatherly presence in the home. The family culture is often low level street and thug life supported by government subsidies. Often Native American actors are celebrated more than Native American fathers, doctors, engineers, salesmen, investment managers and teachers. The root cause of poverty across Indian Country is a lack of fathers among Native American girls who are paid by the government to have babies. These numbers are sobering. 70-75% of Native American children live in a single female head of household. Growing up in a single female head of household is the greatest indicator that a child will live in poverty.   Poverty steals love, hope and change. Return the father back into families and you will see a vast improvement in the generations ahead.  Remember this, CHANGED people on Indian reservations CHANGE communities.  Hope is the path to an abundant life.  Hope is what both the rich and the poor have in common.   There is no way out of that truth.  No government hand-outs, not per capita payments, no menial tribal paper-shuffling jobs, no wind power, just hard-working changed people with character.   

Having lived on a half-dozen reservations growing up and being around the "poor Indians" mantra most of my life let me throw a few ideas out.

I spent a decade as a non-paid volunteer on the Board of Directors as Treasurer of the San Diego American Indian Health Center. We helped anyone who came thru the door. Red, white, brown, yellow, black and every color in between. We didn't discriminate. Sick was sick. I saw it all. I heard it all. Hard to believe the tales of woe but believe me, they were unbelievable and many of them true. Affirmative action at work in San Diego county? We didn't look at color.

I went to 4 high schools across Indian Country. I know Indian Country. I have established a permanent endowment fund at the University of Minnesota for Native American students. For red students. For Native American students. I am a member of the White Earth Band of Chippewa. I can discriminate against black students and white students and yellow students and so I do. I try to help my own, in my own way with my own money. What do you do to help your tribe, your color, your people? Maybe you just pay taxes. Here’s the best proof that affirmative action doesn’t work: the same groups who need extra “help” to get into private high schools need it again for college, and then for professional school, and then again in the workforce. If the cycle never ends, that means it’s broken. Affirmative action on someone's "color" is a crock.

Here is a novel idea boys and girls. Emancipate children from toxic dogmas that teach them they are “oppressed” based on the color of their skin. I know it's hard to believe but never in the course of history has the Juneteenth group wanting affirmative action needed such constant affirmation and positive reinforcement.

Instead of defining themselves as individuals, most people have been taught to define themselves by their tribe, their race, their gender, their sexuality, their nationality, their affiliations, their loyalties, their team, yes, their color;  anything but define themselves by their own character.

Therefore, society devolves into pissing matches based on discriminatory self-concepts rather than judging others on their character. The ever-present soft bigotry of low expectations and the permanent claim that the solutions to the plight of Native Americans rest exclusively on the goodwill of whites rather than on Native American hard work is psychologically devastating. It can and does affect character.

Character isn't about cultural equivalency. Color is a lie. People like to talk about 'wage gaps', 'income gaps', and 'wealth gaps' yet do you ever hear talk about 'skill gaps', 'effort gaps', and 'talent gaps'? How about advancing character, competence, skill, hard work and other qualities that have nothing to do with physical characteristics?

I often hear the “Oh poor me, I'm stuck where I am through no fault of my own”.  Guess what? You are where you are and who you are based on your choices. Don't believe me, look in the mirror.  Tell yourself you aren't a liar. 

And lastly whatever you do never take  a moment to reflect on your own failures. Never own them. Never take a hint of responsibility. Remember you’re just a helpless victim of circumstances beyond your control.  So in 2023 don't forget that you have made nothing with access to everything.  You have conquered nothing.  Hell, you can't even conquer yourself.  So go tell yourself how unfair it all is, how affirmative action will help you.  But remember I said this; if only you had a father.

As for me I am blessed and lucky.  I am fortunate to have had a FATHER growing up.  We had no money growing up, my parents didn't own a house until I was in college.   I just believed.  I believed that I could, so I did.  I had no handout’s.  No rich parents.  No assistance.  No favors.  Straight ambition.  Straight hunger.  Straight hustle.  Proud of taking the money I made working on Garber Ranch in Montana and spending it on a basketball camp in Chadron, Nebraska.  More proud the coaches awarded me the "Mr. Hustle" award at that camp!    

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