Events

November 15, 2013

In honor of National American Indian Heritage Month –

Here are the facts of the day from the Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute website at https://www.deomi.org:

Day 15: Native Alaskan tribes belong to five geographic areas, are organized under thirteen Alaska Native Regional Corporations, speak 20 different languages, and have eleven different cultures.

Day 16: More than 42,000 American Indians, 90 percent of them volunteers, fought in Vietnam.

Day 17: Historically, Native Americans have the highest record of service per capita when compared to other ethnic groups. The reasons behind this disproportionate contribution are complex and deeply rooted in traditional American Indian culture. In many respects, Native Americans are no different from others who volunteer for military service. They do, however, have distinctive cultural values that drive them to serve their country.

Day 18: After World War II, American Indian Code Talkers returned to communities that were having difficult economic times. Jobs were scarce, as were opportunities for education or job training. Racism toward Indian people was common, and though they had served their country with distinction, Indian veterans could not eat or drink in some establishments—or even vote in some national or state elections.

Day 19: Tribal colleges and universities are accredited higher education institutions located on or near Indian reservations. These institutions were established and are operated by American Indian tribes to educate Native people and preserve Native ways, giving students the opportunity to work toward a college degree while embracing who they are as Native people. There are 34 fully accredited tribal colleges serving more than 30,000 students, who represent more than 250 tribes from across the U.S., Mexico, and Canada.

Day 20: During World War II, more than 44,000 Natives, out of a total U.S. population of 350,000, served in the military. In 1942, the Navajo code talkers were formed, using the complex Diné language as a basis for an unbreakable code for tactical messages. Approximately 400 Navajo servicemen were recruited into the code talkers before the end of the war. Code talkers took part in every Marine Corps assault in the Pacific from 1942 to 1945.

Day 21: President Barack Obama signed the Native American Apology Resolution into law on December 19, 2009. The Apology Resolution stated that the United States, “Apologizes on behalf of the people of the United States to all Native Peoples for the many instances of violence, maltreatment, and neglect inflicted on Native Peoples by citizens of the United States.”




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