Sulustu - Where the Worlds Come Together
Friday, March 10, 2006
Sulustu - Where the Worlds Come Together
Thursday, March 09, 2006
Still catching up; the other day I gave my aunt a ride to Wellpinit from Loon Lake. It was a beautiful day, though a new winter storm was just beginning to settle in.
I haven't posted in a few days, so I"m catching up. I stopped by Little Falls Dam the other day and stood amazed at the power of the river pouring over the spillway. Our tribe has a lot of history at this place. Some of my earliest childhood memories are of my family driving over the old bridge by the dam.
Tuesday, March 07, 2006
This information is quite shocking, especially during a time when so many Americans worry about losing basic constitutional rights and protections. Ironically, I’ve heard people from both sides of the political divide accuse the other of undermining American values, and yet I wonder, if so few people can actually name our basic freedoms (about 0.1%), how much of the national debate is based on a reasoned interpretation of the United States Constitution, and how much is based on emotion?
By the way, as a social studies teacher and a Simpson’s fan, I am one of a few Americans who can name all five Simpsons AND the five freedoms guaranteed in the First Amendment of the United States Constitution.
For review, I present the First Amendment in its entirety:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
The McCormick Tribune Freedom Museum operates a website and offers an interesting First Amendment quiz. Check it out by clicking below:
Monday, March 06, 2006
Sunday, March 05, 2006
Saturday, March 04, 2006
My wife and I attended a benefit banquet for ARMS, Abuse Recovery Ministry and Services, a non-profit organization dedicated to addressing issues of domestic violence and abuse from a Christian perspective. It primarily serves women, but it also offers services for men who become perpetrators of violence against women and children. It helps everyone affected by abuse to stop the cycle of violence.
Rhonda's longtime friend Ophelia Araujo-Islas is the director for the Northeast Washington region of the organization.
The banquet featured testimonials from women who survived abusive relationships and found inspiration and strength from the organization. It also featured music and a video presentation. I was very moved by the power of the message and the power of Ophelia's faith in God. ARMS is growing and will one day reach many thousands of women and men nationwide.
My sister-in-law Angela Merchant played the harp for tonight's ARMS Banquet while eveyone ate dinner and visited with one another. I think she must have felt a little insecure. At one point she asked me if everyone could hear and if people noticed her mistakes, but I think everyone loved her music. I heard rants and raves from several people. Angela playing the harp truly is a heavenly sound.
Friday, March 03, 2006
Kateri Caron of the Spokane Interfaith Council invited me to attend Spokane's Diversity Breakfast yesterday morning. The event took place on the campus of Gonzaga University, across the way from Saint Aloysius Catholic Church. Several local businesses and organizations took part, including Interfaith Council, the City of Spokane, Spokane Public Schoold District 81, and others. In addition to several thoughtful talks on diversity, interculturalism, and personal leadership, I reconnected with important people from my life, including Gordon Watanabe (who spoke at the event), Esther Louie, and others. I even got to hear a short presentation from Spokane's new mayor Dennis Hession.
I visited the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture in Browne's Addition, Spokane. I've been working with the museum to complete a kind of internship in Plateau Salish curriculum. I'm very excited about the project as a possible creative outlet for my limited cultural knowledge.
After I set up my work space at the museum, I took a few minutes to visit some of the current exhibits. I was especially impressed with the David Thompson exhibit, which featured an authentic birch bark canoe, handwritten journal entries from his exploration of the Pacific Northwest, portraits of Native people he met along the way, and taxidermied samples of animals he observed. I felt a spirit in that place, perhaps something from the people he encountered who would have been forgotten to history if he hadn't written about them.
During the lunch hour, I walked from the museum to the Elk Cafe. I really wish Rhonda could have joined me for lunch. The Elk Cafe is a wonderful little place to eat. It has such a cozy, friendly atmosphere; it's just someplace I love to go.
Wednesday, March 01, 2006
On my way home from work this afternoon, I took my time and stopped in Chewelah to take a few pictures. I stopped along the roadside and photographed this really weird brick structure that looks to me like it used to be a giant bread oven, or something like that. Who knows what it really is? Whatever the case, I find something vaguely appealing about it.
I also stopped at the Chewelah Cemetery and photographed this statue of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. I'm not Catholic, but something about Catholic religious art moves me. I think perhaps I relate to it on an ancestral level, from when Catholicism blended with ancient Native American religion.