The old fart’s top news story of the day is about the limited paid employment training that’s offered to Indigenous people. Now don’t get me wrong, a job when there is none is a beautiful thing. And I certainly have nothing against providing Indigenous people with economic opportunity. But what I do have, is a real bad attitude toward educationally stunting the growth of people by trying to force occupationally square pegs into opportunistic round holes. For instance, I did a little online surfing about the indigenous training that’s available, and found that it fell into one of three basic categories; hospitality, trades or secretarial.
Educational Forms Of Racism And Slavery
Now that’s great for all the lads and lasses who love construction, paperwork, flipping burgers, making beds, and such. But to those who have no aspiration to live a life of menial labor, those ‘economic opportunities’ are forms of economically enforced slavery. Now I did find the occasional mention of funding to help someone start a business and work for themselves, but that was pretty rare. It’s almost as if government is telling Indigenous people that the best the vast majority of them will ever be, is a dishwasher, ditch digging grunt, or a glorified typist. To me, the training ‘options’ have become educational forms of racism and slavery, and the training shackles to dead end careers. It’s government portraying manual labor as if it’s a godsend that First Nations should embrace and be grateful for. And that pisses me right the hell off.
Everyone Has Abilities, But Not The Same Abilities
You see, everyone has abilities, but not the same abilities. Far too many Indigenous people are being led to believe that they must pursue careers that they aren’t cut out for, that they hate, and that they’re not really good at. It’s pretty much educationally putting a bucket over their brilliance, and setting them up for failure. It’s something their very soul rebels against, and it’s something that I consider the scholastic abuse of people who’ve had a whole belly full of abuse. Beautiful people. Incredibly intelligent people. Wonderfully talented people. People who love to laugh. Dignified people who are being disgustingly treated with indignity. People who sure as hell are capable of more than manual labor. And, people who deserve a damn sight more help than they’re getting.
Are Aboriginals Unworthy Of Riches?
So I ask, how come we’re not helping them to become writers, actors, comedians, weavers, painters, interior decorators, dancers, dentists, doctors, professional athletes, sculptors, carvers, musicians, story tellers and more? Is it because those are all occupations that people have become fabulously rich and famous doing, and persons of aboriginal descent are undeserving of such notoriety and riches? Is waiting tables, running a cat, typing a letter, or pounding nails their perceived limit? Why does no one value the careers of hunting and fishing to feed the people? Why is there such a concerted effort to limit their opportunity to working for others, and so little effort to help them excel at what the love to do, what they were born to do, and what they are culturally needed to do? Why? Well it’s because non-Indigenous people are making all the decisions about ‘what’s best’ for Indigenous people.
Indigenous People Have Been Employmentally Oppressed
There’s an old saying that says “Give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.’ Now that all sounds real good, but I ain’t never seen the sense of teaching someone how to fish without also teaching them how to acquire the stuff to fish with, otherwise that lifetime ends about the first time fishing line gets lost. Perhaps it’s time to change the educational model from school rooms to mentors, from memorization to realization, and from idolization to individualism. We live now in a vocational world, so it’s time we become vocationally focused. We live in a social world, so it’s time become socially focused. It’s my belief and opinion that Indigenous people have been employmentally oppressed by people who look down upon them, and the time has come for that crap to change.
Limited Thinking And Opportunity Shrinking
For education, regardless of all else, should be about individual growth instead of social homogenization. The equality that we need to strive for is an ancient First Nation practice called ‘respect’, and respect demands personal recognition, not personal surrender. I hope to live long enough to see an end to limited thinking and opportunity shrinking, and for Indigenous people to be set free to be all they can be, not just what industry needs them to be. It’s time to put the ‘fun’ in funding once again, and throw open the door of possibility by investing in people. And it’s time for us to learn that some of the worst things that have ever been done to people, were things done with the very best of intentions. So let’s can the damn intentions and all their preventions, and get about some new inventions. It’s time to bust a rut and blaze new roads to a wondrous place called ‘Reconciliation’, which apparently ‘somebody’ forgot the map to.
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