Issue 4 5/98

FolkWorld's The Critical View

The Critical View is FolkWorld's place for discussions about problems etc. from the folk music world. The views expressed here might be presented in an exaggerated or satirical or subjective manner. You are all welcome to contribute your thoughts about the theme presented here; or write your own critical view!

By Sky Walkinstik-Man-Alone; Native American Flutist:

The Death Knell Of International Culture

Germany - Not a paradise for Folk Musicians; A response

I have spent most of my life sharing the Ancient Culture, Music and Traditions of our People { The Native American ) all over this world as a musician and storyteller as was taught by my Great Grandfather, Eskiyadoka { Man Alone } of the once Great Choctaw Nation. I have shared these gifts with all ages from the youngest to the oldest students on the campuses and in the classrooms of this world. I have done this mainly at my own expense and with the help of many. It is a labor of love for all people and for the preservation of History, both modern and ancient. It is my 50th year sharing the gifts that I have.

Sky Walkinstik-Man-Alone I read now that even this gift to others, as well as many others, is in danger as the greed of politics, laws, and money slowly erase Cultural Exchange in Germany returning it to the Isolationism that happened during WW I and WW II. Is history repeating its self again?

I can only say that many of the most memorable and cherished memories in my life are in Germany. I hold a very deep love for the Customs, Traditions, Music, Food and particularly her People. In so many words, I love Germany. I have even considered immigrating to Germany but have resisted because I have no idea where I would fit in and do not want to place a burden upon others.

2. It is also very troubling to I and many other Native Americans to see our Sacred Customs, Art, And Music exploited by many throughout Europe and particularly in Germany, being passed off as the "TRUE NATIVE AMERICAN EXPERIENCE" for profit by those who have respect for nothing but what they can cash in on at our expense and suffering. Now, even the way to expose these abuses and share the true experience are damned to politics. Are we to remain damned to duplicity. I find it hard to believe that the distinguished Finance Minister Waigel would make it a point to deprive the people of Germany and destroy World Cultural Exchange by taxing it to death thus endorsing the rampant exploitation, abuse, and destruction of other ethnic cultures at the same time.

For those of you in the Folk Music world, regardless of ethnic backgrounds, you are the "Keepers of the Knowledge" and it is your right and duty to keep the history of this world alive. No part is too small and no political machine is too big to enforce ignorance at the expense of its people. It is time to hear from the PEOPLE!!!

It is a sad note that as I enter my 51st year on the road, the world of politics abuse the very laws of International Hospitality and Diplomacy. I have seen it first hand in Canada where racial prejudice by Govt. Officials used it as a excuse to destroy sacred instruments and artifacts, to abuse and insult people because they were from an indigenous culture, ironically, the very cultural people they stole the land they were standing on from.

3. I wonder now, should I carefully bury these ancient flutes of love and peace and let the ancient music die? Should I deprive the children, the people of this world of this sacred gift of beauty like Canada has? Seriously, I would like to hear from the People!

In Peace, "Sky" Walkinstik-man-alone,

Native American Flutist, Flute maker, Historian and Educator.
International performing and recording artist.

This is our first feature in the series 'The Critical View'. The Critical view is thought as discussions forum; so please feel free to send your thoughts and comments on this Critical View to FolkWorld and Sky.

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© The Mollis - Editors of FolkWorld; Published 5/98

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