Restore dignity to the pow wow


It’s hard to find Mashpee Wampanoag at it’s own pow wow anymore.  The  beloved annual celebration has watched many of its own people stay away for a variety of reasons.  One reason is because there is no respect for Native American heritage.  Ironically the Mashpee fought for almost 4 decades to be recognized as a tribe only to have the current leadership undermine that incredible milestone. Not only do they not understand it, they have failed to respect the culture that justified the recognition.

It’s a perception thing.  And the Cromwell administration is anything but a credible representative of the Mashpee. Everything is false. And contrived because he was no idea what the Mashpee are about.  He never lived it on any level, that’s clear.

It allows non Natives  to feel as though they can put on a regalia and go to our  pow wow.  Many Non Natives have talked about putting on regalia and participating because ” they look Native .” 

They think this is a costume party and Cedric Cromwell has contributed to perception. 

Stop the costume party

Cromwell plays a significant roll parking himself center stage at the pow wow, which is not done. No tribal chairman does that but Cromwell.  He is campaigning  with the core of the tribe that is not present or accounted for.  He imports tribes that are hostile to us and have been hostile, in a literal sense for centuries. He has extremely high prize money to try to attract tribal dancers and other  Natives because our reputation for having a legitimate pow wow has disappeared.

Only one thing is certain.  The Fryes are usually in charge of dancers. And they are pretty good at handling the competition.  They should ask for tribal identification when dancers register to compete. Other pow wows do it. Real identification for Grand Entry.   They can eyeball tribal members.   But people should not be allowed to participate in our  traditional cerimonies if they are not Native. Everyone who is Native has a roll number…we all know that.  Even Cedric got one in 2006. Little late but he got it thanks to Glenn Marshall and Patty Oakley.  He didn’t know what it was…but…..

We have so many groupies and Wannabees attatched to our tribe that people know are not Native.  They always claim a tribe they know is difficult to trace them to.   We know who they are.  But that doesn’t lessen the insult.

We should not go through another year of disrespect.  No more costume parties. Hopefully the Fryes will step up.