How many times have you traveled to a State Park, and heard the local Ranger giving some tour or speech to the tourists visiting about how some European Settler “Discovered” this, or “Saved” that… and left out the conversation about the land's original people?
(Owner/Blogger Dr. Kiona)
Well Travel Blogger, and PH.D holding Dr. Kiona has used her platform of “How not to travel like a basic bitch” to uplift the Native voice! She has started a series called Traveling While Native and features native writers from all over the US, talking about what they want tourists to know when traveling on Indigenous Land, which is the ENTIRE UNITED STATES, as well as First Nations Canada, and other countries where the first peoples have been colonized. Powwows writer Corinne Oestreich was also featured with an article called “How much Native are you and other offensive things not to ask.” other articles include one written by Norma Baker FlyingHorse called “Native American Oscar Dress Designer Explains Native American Fashion And Pow-wow Participation Etiquette”
(Featured Writer Norma Baker FlyingHorse)
On the website, Dr. Kiona introduces her writers:
“Native writers tell all when it comes to traveling on native lands, traveling as a native person, and advice on respecting and preserving the culture. The following native peoples are represented: Lakota, Hidatasa, Hawaiian, Chichimeca, Tlaxcalteca, First Nations Nehiyawak (Cree), Gwich’in, Māori, Y’upik (Eskimo), Mexica, Cherokee, Nüümü (Paiute), San Carlos Apache, and Diné (Navajo).”
(Featured Writer Angute’karaq Estelle Thompson)
Dr. Kiona had this to say about her site..
“How Not To Travel Like A Basic Bitch’s mission is to offer honest travel content to help other travelers feel more confident before they travel, while simultaneously checking privilege and providing a unique platform to learn about important issues from people actually impacting them. I believe that if more people traveled, the more humans would have a mutual respect for each other; making the world more about love and less about hate.”
So Dr. Kiona, why are you giving POC (People of Color) a voice on your site? Why is that important to you?
“I started wondering, “why?”, why was it [travel blogging] so popular? As I investigated, I realized that all the magazines, blogs, articles written out there were by “freelance” journalists, authors, and writers. These professionals were 9 times out of 10 White. I came to the conclusion that compared to People Of Color, many White authors have the financial freedom and privileged upbringing to have the time and space to pursue a not-always-stable literary career.”
However, while those individuals may be excellent writers, with privilege comes gaps in understanding. There was an emptiness in storytelling. They were knowingly or unknowingly crafting their own narrative without a second thought to differing perspectives. And by doing this, they were consequentially defining a country based on their own beliefs, rather than those who actually lived there.”
If you want to follow a travel blogger that truly uplifts and gets an authentic representation of indigenous peoples I would head over to ALL of her social media sites and just click “Follow” on all of them. She's won't tolerate hate, or any other person trying to step on the indigenous narrative. Check her out!
Blog: Traveling While Native
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