Historical trauma

I am not an expert on this subject. But I have read and heard lots of information on this issue –

the fact that American Indian families and cultures still suffer very negative results today from their treatment by Euro/Americans for the past 400 years. It makes sense that dislocation (relocation by “trails of tears” for example), massacres and warfare, starvation, devastating diseases, boarding schools, and active and virulent assimilation would affect families and cultures for generations.

A recent article in the Billings Montana Gazette addresses this issue and says in part: “It’s not hard to believe that historical trauma still colors the lives of American Indian people.

Statistics help prove the point. For American Indian males alone, the risk factors for substance abuse, violence, depression and suicide are three to six times higher than all other races in the United States.

The trauma comes from the forced colonization of a whole race of people in the early days of the country — people robbed of their land and their identity, children separated from families and sent to boarding schools, and crushing poverty that survives until today. . . .

That’s why Clayton Small helped develop a curriculum to help heal Native men and, in turn, put Native families and tribes on a new path. . . . called “The Good Road of Life: Responsible Fatherhood.”

Small, a Northern Cheyenne, earned his doctorate at Gonzaga University. The focus of his dissertation was the wellness challenges American Indian men face.

Out of that he founded NATIVE PRIDE (Prevention, Research, Intervention, Development, Education) as a healing model to help men turn from their self-destructive toward health. . . .”

Click the link to get the full story.

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