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Lies for profit

November 21, 2009

Both Glockgal and Willow pointed out that in the white worldview POC aren’t real people, but rather figments of fantasy in people’s heads. Newspaper Rock comments on the fact that when several Quileute youth are invited to take part of the opening night- most of the stars and people are shocked to find out it’s not a made-up tribe:

Comment: Let’s think about this a minute. Millions of people have read the Twilight books and seen the Twilight movie. The media has written tens of thousands of articles on the Twilight phenomenon. Yet after all that scrutiny, half the media don’t realize there’s a real Quileute tribe?!

This is what happens when you turn real Indians into fictional warriors, shamans, and werewolves. You place them in some alternate reality of mystery and magic where they never fought European invaders, signed peace treaties, or established modern governments. By equating Indians with ferocious beast-men, you deny that they have the accouterments of a civilized people: history, culture, language, religion, philosophy, and art.

The problem remains that the fiction about POC is more prevalent than the fact and, when tied with strong aversive racism and privilege, you have a power structure supported by folks who are willfully ignorant and unwilling to deal with people as people, as well as making concentrated efforts to keep us from having access to venues to tell our stories.

The argument “it’s only fiction” really can only apply if you have context to understand the difference between fiction and reality.

And it’s always interesting how one group profits in reality for making fantasy about another.

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