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Thursday, April 11, 2024

#60sScoop | Understand The Suffering | #Reunion

👆Brothers meet half century after being separated by 60s Scoop

 

 

ARE YOU IN REUNION? WANT TO SHARE YOUR STORY?

EMAIL: tracelara@pm.me

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

#60sScoop - How did he end up in Connecticut?


CT man taken from First Nation family as child finds purpose in sharing story: ‘I’m not the only one’

WILTON,  CONNECTICUT — Ripped from his sister’s arms and taken to a new country over a half-century ago, Canada native Taber Gregory said he’s still reconciling with how and why he wound up in Wilton.

About 20 years ago, the longtime Wiltonian and owner of Gregory’s Sawmill on Pimpewaug Road said he learned he was one of thousands of survivors of what’s known as the Sixties Scoop.

The Sixties Scoop refers to a decades-long period in Canadian history, from about 1951 and until as late as the 1990s, marked by the mass removal of Aboriginal children from their homes — in most cases without the consent of their families — into the child welfare system.

Many of the children were placed in non-Indigenous households in Canada, while others — including Taber Gregory, who was born Henry Desjarlais in the Canadian province of Alberta in 1968 — were relocated and adopted out to families outside the country. 

Gregory, now 55, said he always knew he was adopted but didn’t know about the early years of his life until connecting with biological family members in his early- to mid-30s.

“I started getting some random calls saying somebody wanted to talk to me, and the person claimed he was my father,” Gregory said. “I was a little confused and didn’t accept the phone call because I didn’t know what to think about it.”

The calls kept coming, and Gregory said he kept refusing. 

Then one day, he finally accepted and learned that the person calling was, in fact, his biological father, Louis Desjarlais. Gregory said his biological father has since died, but he has stayed in touch with one of his biological siblings in Canada.

Through telephone conversations, Gregory said he learned he was the youngest of seven children and had been taken from his family’s home in Canada when he was about one-and-a-half years old. He said his adopted parents had been unaware that he had been forcibly removed from his biological family. 

“My sister walked me through everything, and it kind of snowballed from there,” he said.

Gregory showed Hearst Connecticut Media an August 2001 letter from the Cold Lake First Nations, verifying his Cold Lake First Nation Registry List membership and identifying his biological parents, as well as their own membership. The letter said that since his biological parents were “of 100% North American Indian Blood Quantum,” Gregory “has at least a 100% North American Indian Blood Quantum” himself.

One of Gregory’s four biological sisters, Alicia Minoose, claimed to have been holding him when social service workers came into the house, took him out of her arms, put him in a vehicle and left.

“She told me she ran out the door, chasing after me, and that was the last time she ever saw me,” Gregory said. “She was the last one to hold me.”

According to Tony Merchant — a Canadian attorney whose law firm was involved in a Sixties Scoop survivors class-action lawsuit several years ago that Gregory benefited from — government-funded social services agencies involved in the removal of Indigenous children from their homes were not closely supervised and “intensified their search for likely candidates/victims for adoption” over time. 

“Grabbing children became a need-for-supply phenomenon, and this was particularly true for boys,” he said, noting that they were “significantly more popular for adoption than girls.”

According to Gregory’s sister, two of their siblings were taken as well. She said they were placed with foster parents and eventually brought home — but the family couldn’t find Gregory, whom she still refers to by his birth name of Henry.

“Somehow, mom found David and Margaret ... but they couldn’t find you,” she said over the phone during Gregory’s interview. “They didn’t know what happened to you. We were searching and searching, but there was no information.”

Gregory said he was told that his biological mother, Bella Desjarlais, “cried and cried” after he was taken and he believes stress and heartbreak from what happened may have contributed to her death — which he said occurred before he reconnected with his biological family.

Later learning what he and his family in Canada went through, Gregory said he “went into survival mode.”

“I went through some depression, but I was able to get help and kind of turn that around and stay motivated and positive,” he said. “I did have to take a step back and kind of digest everything.”

Adoption and life in Wilton

Wilton has been the only home he knows — or at least remembers. 

Gregory said he has no recollection of his time in the Canadian foster care system, traveling to the U.S. or when his name was changed from Henry to Taber — but he knows he ended up at an adoption agency in Pennsylvania. 

From there, Gregory said he was adopted by Steve and Judy Meier when he was around 3 years old, moved to Wilton and had two brothers — both of whom were also adopted, but from different places. One was born in Vietnam, and the other was born in Bridgeport, he said.

Gregory said his adoptive parents didn’t know he had been forcibly taken from his home.

“The Welcome House in Pennsylvania was like the first stop, and they just adopted me from there,” he said. “They had no idea how I got there, so I can’t blame them for anything like that. They had no idea what happened.”

According to the website of the Pearl S. Buck Foundation — the parent organization of Welcome House — the adoption program “matched more than 7,000 orphans and children from around the globe with adoptive families in the United States,” and was phased out in June 2014 “because of changes in international adoption regulations.”

Samantha Freis, a curator with the foundation, said the organization does not know what the adoption process was like during that period.

After his adoptive parents divorced, Gregory said his mother Judy Meier ended up working at Gregory’s Sawmill and meeting John Gregory. 

“They made a connection, and we ended up here with Mr. Gregory and kind of became a family,” he said. “We grew up on the Gregory farm (where) we had draft horses, oxen, pigs and chickens.”

After their adoptive mother died in 1985, Taber Gregory said he and his brothers stayed with John Gregory, whom he considered a father figure and legally changed his last name from Meier to Gregory at his request.

When John Gregory retired in the mid- to late-1990s and moved to Ohio, where he later died in 2006, Taber Gregory said he took over the sawmill business — which has been in the Gregory family since the 1850s — and has been keeping the family legacy alive ever since.

“I became a Gregory and have been continuing the family business,” he said.

Gregory said he never knew, nor suspected, that his separation from his biological family and subsequent adoption were forced — but he’s grateful to have learned the truth about his past, “survived the ordeal” and reconnect with his family in Canada, who he said he has not yet visited in person but hopes to see in the near future.

In the meantime, he said his sister keeps him informed about what’s going on with family members in Canada — many of whom Gregory said still reside on a First Nations reservation and speak Chipewyan. 

Class-action settlement 

Several years ago, the Canadian government reached an $800 million class-action agreement with Sixties Scoop survivors — $750 million of which was set aside for individual compensation — the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reported in 2017.

The settlement, through which all First Nations and Inuit children who “were removed from their homes — and lost their cultural identities as a result — between 1951 and 1991 (were) entitled to compensation,” was less than the $1.3 billion sought on behalf of about 16,000 Indigenous children in Canada’s Ontario province, according to the CBC article.

The settlement agreement followed an Ontario Superior Court judge’s February 2017 ruling that the Canadian government not only “breached its ‘duty of care’ to the children and ignored the damaging effect” of the child welfare program, but also “breached part of the agreement that required consultation with First Nations” about it, the CBC reported.

The judge approved the distribution of $25,000 to $50,000 in payouts to about 22,000 Sixties Scoop survivors the following year as part of the settlement agreement, through which the Canadian government also agreed to establish a foundation designed to “enable change and reconciliation.”

According to a class-action claims process website set up for the settlement, 21,208 of the 34,816 claims received by the December 2019 late claim deadline had been approved as of January 2024.

Gregory — who showed Hearst a questionnaire he filled out for Merchant Law Group LLP, one of the law firms involved in the class action — said his claim was among the ones approved.  He wouldn’t disclose the exact payout amount he received — saying only that it was over $10,000. 

“Everything I know is consistent with him being a (Sixties) Scoop survivor who received compensation,” Merchant said.

He said Gregory did not become a client “because obtaining compensation was something done directly with the claims service providers,” but said his firm did provide assistance to Gregory.

Gregory, who feels the Sixties Scoop settlement payout isn’t enough to compensate for the harm caused to those taken from their biological families, said he shares his story not for pity, but for purpose — to raise awareness about what he and thousands of other Indigenous children went through and help prevent something like it from ever happening again.

“I know I’m not the only one, and I don’t want anybody going through what I did,” he said.

SOURCE: https://www.newstimes.com/news/article/taber-gregory-wilton-sixties-scoop-canada-18672082.php

 

Friday, April 5, 2024

Eclipses have special ties to Indigenous peoples

 

During eclipses Navajo people must stay indoors, with closed windows and doors, and not look outside, limit consumption of food by fasting, not drink water, not sleep, not bathe, brush hair or groom themselves, no intimacy with families or partners, exception between mothers and children. Arts and crafts during solar eclipses are not allowed. Lightly cleaning or remote work at home is allowed. 

GREAT READ:  https://ictnews.org/news/eclipses-have-special-ties-to-indigenous-peoples

Wednesday, April 3, 2024

Healing the Children of Horse Nations | Season 3: Elders


Healing the Children of Horse Nations

A new multimedia package produced by The Imprint and Voices of Monterey Bay takes readers, viewers and listeners deep inside rural Oregon’s Indian Country, where elders are Indigenizing social work through equine therapy for young people who have experienced foster care and youth justice systems.

“Horses take us all the way back to our history before our land was taken away,” explains John Doug Spence, who leads equine therapy sessions across Oregon. “It’s a way of taking back our power.” 

The project, Healing the Children of Horse Nations, is a collaboration between The Imprint’s Indigenous Children and Families Reporter Nancy Marie Spears, an enrolled member of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma; podcast producers Julie and Mara Reynolds; and visual storyteller Josué Rivas, who is Mexica and Otomi.

This season, we’re hearing from elder survivors of systemic injustice and historical trauma. They’re showing newer generations what they’ve learned about how to address and prevent those kinds of harm. 
 
Our first episode for this season is titled Uncle John, and it was co-produced by Julie Reynolds, Mara J. Reynolds, and Nancy Marie Spears in partnership with The Imprint, as part of the multimedia project Healing the Children of Horse Nations.

LISTEN NOW: Episode 1 | Uncle John
READ: Healing the Children of Horse Nations at The Imprint
VIEW: The photographs of Josué Rivas

Thursday, March 28, 2024

Our Indigenous Roots

 This is a long post so please click READ MORE


This map shows you which Indigenous lands you’re living on.


 Click here to access it.


BY Rob Brezsny (SUBSTACK)

Our Indigenous Roots

Even if our forebears arrived in what we now call Americas in the 1600s, and our predecessors have lived on the continent for the last 14 generations, we can all trace our ancestry back to some group of Indigenous people.

Maybe your people were Celts who lived in what’s now Austria during the ninth century BCE. Or perhaps your biological line was Jewish Egyptian three millennia ago, or Chinese as far back as the ancient Xia Dynasty, or Mycenaean in the Aegean area of what we now call Greece circa 3200 BCE.

One fact is indisputable: In a literal sense, every one of us has Indigenous roots. At some point, our ancestors fit the official definition of Indigenous: “a culturally distinct ethnic group that is native to a particular place.”

Let’s go further. Mythologist and storyteller Michael Meade tells us that whether or not we know our own Indigenous past, we can and should strive to be in close touch with our inner Indigenous person.

What does that mean? Meade says we can benefit from seeing the world through an Indigenous perspective, with a reverence for nature and receptivity to the teachings available to us from the non-human intelligences of animals and plants as well as the spiritual realm.

Here’s the sticky part. Even if we have not personally participated in damaging the Indigenous cultures of the land we now live on, our destinies are defined and shaped by the fact that those cultures were damaged. Everything we do is built on the results of the damage.

When most of our fellow Americans came of age, our education included little about the calamity committed against the native people. If the evidence for the desecration appeared in our history textbooks, it was dealt with cursorily. We grew up with a carefully cultivated amnesia about the tragic origins of the United States. The story of African American slavery was almost equally suppressed.

Our hypothesis is that this amnesia, this failure to fully acknowledge the roots of our civilization, dampens our ability to be, as Michael Meade recommends, in close touch with our own inner Indigenous person.

We may not feel guilt, remorse, and shame on a conscious level. But like all suppressed emotions, they churn and burn in our deep psyches, alienating us from the Indigenous perspective we all need.

And yes, we need that perspective if we hope to reverse the juggernaut of humanity’s ecocidal ways—and preserve our earthly paradise for the generations to come after us.

On a personal level, we need a full, generous communion with our inner Indigenous person because it has tremendous power to keep us grounded. It potentially provides us with essential support in our lifelong labor to ensure our mind is anchored in earthy practicality.

Wednesday, March 27, 2024

3-Part Series: NEW rules under the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act.

 INDIAN COUNTRY TODAY : FANTASTIC SERIES

LINK

Read ICT's entire NAGPRA series:
NAGPRA Part 1: A sea change in federal regulations
NAGPRA Part 2: ‘A state of Gozhoo
NAGPRA Part 3: A model for future Indigenous exhibits

Blood Quantum use is controversial

 



"Blood quantum" is a U.S. colonial notion to identify whether someone is Indigenous and to which tribal band they belong. Its use is controversial.

READ MORE

 

👇

More: Wisconsin’s story doesn't start with Jean Nicolet. A brief history of forced relocation and 'landcestry.'

More: 28 site names that slur Indigenous women are being removed in Wisconsin. Here's what's happening next.

Indigenous academics argue that all First Nations in the U.S. will soon have to address blood quantum to deal with declining enrollments.

Quick Note: Google is harvesting data - but as far as we know, there is not another platform to use for this blog... STAY TUNED!

Tuesday, March 26, 2024

[Birth Mother] First Mother Forum: Link between Adoption and Suicide is Real

[Birth Mother] First Mother Forum: Link between Adoption and Suicide is Real: photo: Daughter Jane and Lorraine 

Link between Adoption and Suicide is Real

Daughter Jane and Lorraine
It was a bracing morning being brought back to reality about how the world see the woman who gave up a child for adoption. Not nicely is the short answer. 

A ten-minute morning interview for drive-to-work radio show in the New York/New Jersey area led to be being mentally whacked for having a relationship with a married man, which I did, and his having an Irish Catholic background was another reason to pile on the  criticism.  She gave the listeners advice--don't have an affair with a married man, look where that led for this stupid person I'm interviewing.

We did cover that I found her, that her adoptive parents had already tried to find me, that her epilepsy was almost certainly caused by the birth-control pills I took when I was pregnant but did not know...and then she asked how my relationship with my daughter was today.

I had to say that she died.  Since the next question was going to be about that--I told the truth.  She died by suicide.  Mincing words is not my style.  I was able to say some more but since people listening today might come to the blog to read about suicide, 

I'm excerpting a small section of Hole In My Heart below: 

    While there are no good statistics on adoptees who actually commit suicide, research on adopted populations shows that a disproportionate number are likely to. No matter how you slice the numbers, adoption increases the probability of suicide, no matter how many adoptees never have a thought of it, no matter how many adoptees are successful, smart, and may one day end up on the Supreme Court. It is unlikely there will ever be good statistics on how many adoptees commit suicide because “adopted” is not noted on death certificates. 

    What we do know is that more adoptees than non-adoptees think about suicide quite often.  Google “suicide and adoption” and what pops up is an entry from the medical journal Pediatrics, “Adoption as a Risk Factor for Attempted Suicide during Adolescence.”  That study unequivocally states, “Attempted suicide is more common among adolescents who live with adoptive parents than among adolescents who live with biological parents.” The connection between adoption and suicide persisted even after the researchers adjusted for depression, aggression, and impulsive behavior.  Not surprisingly, “family connectedness,” whether among the adopted or non-adopted, did decrease the likelihood of suicide attempts. 

    Researchers at the University of Minnesota reported that adopted teens were almost four times more likely to attempt suicide than those who lived with their natural parents, even after adjustment for factors associated with suicidal behavior, such as psychiatric disorder symptoms, personality traits, family environment, and academic disengagement.  Girls were more likely than boys to attempt suicide.  About 75 percent of the adopted teens in the study (more than 1,200, all living in Minnesota) were adopted before the age of two and were foreign born—mostly from South Korea.

    This deep dive into suicide and adoption followed a study by the lead researcher and others who concluded that being adopted approximately doubled the odds of having a disruptive behavior disorder and having contact with a mental health professional. Interestingly, international adoptees were less likely to exhibit behavior disorders.

B. J. Lifton wrote that at a seminar for adoptive parents when she brought up the fact that the percentage of adoptee suicide was statistically high, a prominent psychiatrist asked if that nasty bit could be deleted from the tape, which was to be later sold as a record of the talk.  Lifton agreed but later wrote she was sorry she had. --from Hole In My Heart.

Monday, March 25, 2024

The Great Divider: How the Baby Veronica case was the sign

 REBLOG from February 24, 2014

By Trace Hentz

OK, as promised, I have more thoughts after I went to the hallowed halls of Yale Law School last Friday to hear a review of the Baby Veronica Case - and to hear what NCAI, NARF and the Tribal Supreme Court Law Project at Yale were doing while this major case was going on... and I reported to you yesterday what they said essentially…

There weren't any surprises for me unless you count how these panelists didn't use the time to discuss the genocide that actually occurred prior the passing of the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 and the child abductions by social workers and missionaries - nor did they mention human trafficking and the Nightlight Adoption Agency dealings with Maldonado, the birthmother.  They did mention boarding schools.

So, I was truly upset. From what I heard, it appears American Indians are eons behind in civil rights and we can't seem to win a case in the Supreme Court.  I’d heard that warning years prior but this time at Yale was a bit more in my face. This case was about adoption by non-Indians, something I lived myself.

We had Justice Alito writing an opinion that Veronica is 1.2% Indian.  NARF attorney Joel West Williams asked the Yale audience, "Who in America is 1/16 or 3/256th anything?"  Yet we have a judge issuing his opinion by measuring an Indian for their Indian-ness which equates to measuring a child’s blood? This is still happening?

·        JUSTICE ALITO delivered the opinion of the Court:
This case is about a little girl (Baby Girl) who is classified as an Indian because she is 1.2% (3/256) Cherokee. Because Baby Girl is classified in this way, the South Carolina Supreme Court held that certain provisions of the federal Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 required her to be taken, at the age of 27 months, from the only parents she had ever known and handed over to her biological father, who had attempted to relinquish his [**736]parental rights and who had no prior contact with the child. The provisions of the federal statute [*2557] at issue here do not demand this result.


 

·        Jun 25 2013: Judgment REVERSED and case REMANDED. Alito, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which Roberts, C. J., and Kennedy, Thomas, and Breyer, JJ., joined. Thomas, J., and Breyer, J., filed concurring opinions. Scalia, J., filed a dissenting opinion. Sotomayor, J., filed a dissenting opinion, in which Ginsburg and Kagan, JJ., joined, and in which Scalia, J., joined in part. Read more here
·         

I couldn’t sleep ... Dusten Brown never had a chance. He went to Iraq knowing the Capobiancos had his daughter but he had to serve a year and a JAG lawyer took his case.  The puzzle remains why Maldonado mysteriously breaks up with him and severs all communication. Was she punishing her high school sweetheart Dusten by selling his baby or was she manipulated by the adoption agency to take their money?

Then it hit me - keeping America ignorant of Indians, culture, actual history - this all works to take Indian children.  Judgment is easy.  Third World poverty (which we didn’t create) somehow equates to abuse of children.  Add their general ignorance of sovereignty and culture, what it means to be Cherokee or Lakota or Navajo or any tribe - and it means you can't win public opinion polls or cases before the Supreme Court? 

Ignorance about Indians? Exactly!

It's been going on since colonial contact.  Please, let's not call them settlers anymore but invaders.  America has always been the Great Divider, building its fences, writing its laws, counting on classism and racism to divide us. 

America wins every time when it perpetuates this ignorance of Indians.  Do Indians do a good job of educating others about culture, or what's important to us?  Not really.  We're way behind in any civil rights movement.  We've had movies romanticizing us over 100 years and it's hard to kill those "savage" “redskin” stereotypes drilled into all our heads!  

What do Americans know about Indians? Nothing.  Practically zilch.

America's "taking care" of Indians only works to create HATE among Americans who view us as privileged in some way that they are not.  Like why do we even have a law that keeps nice white people from adopting Indian babies?  Trust me, ICWA is under attack.

I do know that Indians are way ahead in surviving every broken treaty and then fighting each other over small scraps of power.  Some tribes even subscribe to "blood quantum" as if they need to purge their citizen rolls of those who may be too white or too black.

We have Supreme Court Justices using the blood quantum argument and you see that is not entirely their fault (they all went to law school but didn’t even have a course on Indian Law at those Ivy League schools) but it tells me - do not go anywhere near them.  They are not even aware of their ignorance.  Dusten Brown didn't have a chance, not in that court.

We Indians shouldn't go anywhere near that court or any court with that level of stupidity.  No, you can't tell Americans they are stupid.

What the panel did say was each and every tribe needs to create and have their own child protection network. I agree since it's pretty evident that you can't trust any non-Indian social worker to go to the reservation and use their mother- father “family unit” example.  Only Indians can decide who the right people are to care for its children.  That person might be an auntie, grandmother or another relative, depending on who in the tribal family is willing and able.

And the panel said we need more American Indian lawyers who become judges - because the way it is now - Indians can’t win.

For many years Vine Deloria and others did try very hard to educate others (with their brilliant books) on the white man’s level, even earning degrees in white man’s colleges like Yale and Harvard, but it all comes down to this:  whites don’t really care.

And if we really think about it, this is a very dangerous situation to be in.


Footnote:  I attended white schools like most everyone else - Really nothing I learned was true or real about Indian culture or history. I learned more sitting at the kitchen table of my friend Ellowyn who is Oglala Lakota, who gave me an education about Indians not written about anywhere.  Then there was my one adoptive aunt (a first-born American) who calls me a liar when I told her there were Indian Boarding Schools, and this was right after I visited Haskell in Kansas.  No, Americans are not learning about Indians or the truth of our history. 
The Baby Veronica case is the sign, whether we wish to see it that way or not - but we can no longer ignore the ignorance or the danger surrounding this case. 
 
THIS BLOG HAS MANY POSTS ABOUT THE BABY V CASE... Yes, she was adopted out...
 
BLOODISM? READ THIS

Friday, March 22, 2024

REMINDER


Hey Adoptees:

We are still doing the COUNT 2024.  Have you filled out a survey? go to:

https://thecount2024.blogspot.com/

encrypted email for Trace (private)

tracelara@pm.me

REQUEST FREE PDF: Almost Dead Indians (+The Count 2024)

Interview:

I have received a small amount of surveys... please fill out and mail one SOON! 

Trace

BAD RIVER - MOVIE Trailer #protectgreatlakes

Bad River Trailer - Quannah ChasingHorse and Edward Norton Narration from 50EGGS on Vimeo.

 


Please see this FILM...

BAD RIVER is a full length documentary that takes us into the heart of an epic battle the Bad River Ojibwe are waging to save Lake Superior. Acclaimed New Yorker writer, Bill McKibben calls the film "a powerful chronicle… and a hopeful picture of the emerging possibilities for power” Narrated by Quannah ChasingHorse and Academy-Award nominee, Edward Norton. Opening in select @amctheatres across the US MARCH 15. 

For ticket and venue information https://www.badriverfilm.com/dates/ #badriverfilm #environment #water #waterislife #nature #socialjustice #indigenous #firstnations #river #greatlakes #protectgreatlakes


 

Tuesday, March 19, 2024

Seed Beads and Porcupine Quills


OUR HISTORY: Lost Children of the Indian Adoption Projects: Seed Beads and Porcupine Quills: the first pair of earrings I made 

REBLOG from 2011   (BACK UP BLOG)

No one knew what ancestry I had growing up. It mattered more to me than it did to the family who adopted me. As adoptees grow up, we realize we are a mystery; sadly our adoptive family may not know anything or share anything with us about our true identity. That is a hard way to live, not a good way to live. It hurts when people call you a bastard or orphan. It happened to me often – I was asked why I was adopted. I didn’t know the answer. How could I know? I was relying on lies and half-truths, like it was better I didn’t know the truth about me and my mother. I hated the way I was treated: like I was someone who did not deserve to know the truth, as if it should not matter to me!

I did follow my spirit when I started to make beaded jewelry, long before I knew I had any Indian blood. I still have the first pair of earrings I made when I was 20. Something drew me to seed beads and porcupine quills. Blood is embedded with our genetic code. No one can alter that. I didn’t know about my Shawnee ancestry until I was almost 40.

Here is a something else to consider: “…Before Europeans arrived, Indian education taught children how to thrive. Social education taught responsibilities to the extended family and the clan, band, or tribe. Vocational education taught about child rearing, home management, farming, hunting, gathering, fishing, and so forth. Children learned about their place in the cosmos through stories and ceremonies. Traditional Indian education emphasized learning by application and imitation, not by memorizing information…” This is from Path of Many Journeys, The Benefits of Higher Education for Native People and Communities, published in February 2007.

So Indian Country taught by example. Children watched and learned. I wanted to learn the peyote stitch, so I call this an interest by instinct and blood. When I think back, I prayed while I beaded. Each bead I strung, I would pray. No one in my adoptive family ever said to do this. No one taught me or encouraged me to bead. My first husband actually discouraged it since he said I wouldn’t make money selling them. He missed the point. I made this jewelry to give away as gifts. Edie, my adoptive mother, often wore hers to church.

I did a radio interview on Sunday Sept. 25 (See Interviews & Readings 2011 on the left sidebar) and a friend asked me to answer this on air: “If you love someone you want to know everything about them… Why don’t adoptive parents want to know everything about their child?” (Since we ran out of time, I was not able to answer this.)

Here is my answer: I think some adoptive parents did and do want to know. I know some were told personal details in meetings with social workers and lawyers. (For example, Edie saw paperwork on my brother and saw his real name in the 1950s.) Before the 1950s, the adoption system believed in openness so adoptive parents had more details about blood and the child’s birth family; this was the era of eugenics and fears of “Bad Seed” in certain children put up for adoption. Openness changed when the adoptive family started to demand total privacy in adoption, obviously to calm their anxiety and fears of losing a child they adopted. To seal the deal, adoption records were closed in most states so baby and birthmother would never meet or be able to know each other. We know some parents spent thousands of dollars to adopt a baby (or babies) and didn’t want to ever lose that child. We also know social workers created stories and myths so adoptees would appear perfect and very smart. Imagine the disappointment if a child starts to act anxious or traumatized and “acts out” over this mystery they are forced to accept for life. A few adoptees told me they heard details growing up that were later found to be lies, especially about ancestry.

Another question was: Do adoptive parents disown children if they open their adoption and find their birthfamily? 

Yes. It happens frequently.

State systems and religion-based adoption groups still control information and secrecy with sealed records. Secrecy prevents future reunions. Secrecy would also protect some birthmothers from future judgment or scandals concerning their immorality. We also know that information collected was purposefully vague to prevent adoptees from finding their birthparents or vice versa.

Why adoptive parents do not tell adoptees anything is simply their preference, and their belief that we are theirs legally. They don’t believe blood matters. This is a very flawed way of thinking. I am living proof that blood matters greatly.


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They Took Us Away

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You are not alone

You are not alone

To Veronica Brown

Veronica, we adult adoptees are thinking of you today and every day. We will be here when you need us. Your journey in the adopted life has begun, nothing can revoke that now, the damage cannot be undone. Be courageous, you have what no adoptee before you has had; a strong group of adult adoptees who know your story, who are behind you and will always be so.

Diane Tells His Name


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60s Scoop Survivors Legal Support

GO HERE: https://www.gluckstein.com/sixties-scoop-survivors

Lost Birds on Al Jazeera Fault Lines

Lost Birds on Al Jazeera Fault Lines
click to read and listen about Trace, Diane, Julie and Suzie

ADOPTION TRUTH

As the single largest unregulated industry in the United States, adoption is viewed as a benevolent action that results in the formation of “forever families.”
The truth is that it is a very lucrative business with a known sales pitch. With profits last estimated at over $1.44 billion dollars a year, mothers who consider adoption for their babies need to be very aware that all of this promotion clouds the facts and only though independent research can they get an accurate account of what life might be like for both them and their child after signing the adoption paperwork.

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Original Birth Certificate Map in the USA

Why tribes do not recommend the DNA swab

Rebecca Tallbear entitled: “DNA, Blood, and Racializing the Tribe”, bearing out what I only inferred:

Detailed discussion of the Bering Strait theory and other scientific theories about the population of the modern-day Americas is beyond the scope of this essay. However, it should be noted that Indian people have expressed suspicion that DNA analysis is a tool that scientists will use to support theories about the origins of tribal people that contradict tribal oral histories and origin stories. Perhaps more important,the alternative origin stories of scientists are seen as intending to weaken tribal land and other legal claims (and even diminish a history of colonialism?) that are supported in U.S. federal and tribal law. As genetic evidence has already been used to resolve land conflicts in Asian and Eastern European countries, this is not an unfounded fear.

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