Mic Checks the Headdress

Music.Mic has a great post on the cultural appropriation of wearing tribal headdresses in the lands you’re not a tribe of. Bass Coast festival in Canada have banned headdresses.

According to a Facebook announcement posted Wednesday, the organizers have banned Native headdresses, a decision that’s drawn praise from indigenous advocates across North America.

Why? “For various reasons,” the announcement reads, “Bass Coast Festival is banning feathered war bonnets, or anything resembling them, on-site. Our security team will be enforcing this policy.”

Plus: “We understand why people are attracted to war bonnets. They have a magnificent aesthetic. But their spiritual, cultural and aesthetic significance cannot be separated.”

Victoria’s Secret model Alessandra Ambrosio. Image Credit: Instagram

The announcement concludes: “Bass Coast Festival takes place on indigenous land and we respect the dignity of aboriginal people. We have consulted with aboriginal people in British Columbia on this issue, and we feel our policy aligns with their views and wishes regarding the subject. Their opinion is what matters to us.”

Simple as that: It’s troubling that “respecting the dignity” of indigenous people remains such a rare occurrence, but in truth, few other festivals have taken this step. California’s Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival still receives special heat for documented instances of Native appropriation, to the point of being widely associated with the practice. 

Image Credit: Twitter

Ian Campeau, aka “DJ NDN” of the Ottawa-based aboriginal EDM collective A Tribe Called Red, has spoken at length about tribal headwear at his own concerts.

“We, as First Nation people, have never had control of our image in colonial media since its birth,” he said. Such practices therefore create “a false idea of what it means to be Indigenous today … robbing the First Nations of their nationhoods and nationality … [and] making us all ‘Indian’ instead of recognizing me as an Anishnabe or Ojibway.”

The Lightning in a Bottle Music Festival in Bradley, Calif., came close to barring the practice this year. But it stopped short of an outright ban, instead devoting a section of its website to discussing the issue and its implications.

Part of it reads, “Taking off the headdress is about respecting the realities faced by Native Peoples today,” and goes on to describe how “sporting that headdress means being a walking representative of 500-plus years of colonialism and racism, perpetuating stereotypes that Native people have been fighting against for just as long. 

Image Credit: Twitter

Lightning in a Bottle takes place on Chumash land, lending extra weight to its attempts to discourage the habit. But its ethos should be universal: No matter who you are, the traditional attire of indigenous groups — or any group, really — is not your personal invitation to play “dress-up.”

The example set by Bass Coast and its organizers should be emulated across the cultural spectrum, from high-profile celebrities to professional sports organizations and anyone in between. Native appropriation practices have persisted far too long. It’s time to wake up.

The Guardian said:

As feather headdresses have become popular fashion accessories at concerts and EDM festivals, they have become an increasingly important site for conversations about First Nations relations and cultural appropriation. Pharrell Williams and the Flaming Lips’ Wayne Coyne both recently apologised for treating war bonnets as innocuous, whimsical headgear.

Canada’s award-winning Tribe Called Red have been particularly vocal on the headdress issue: “It’s ‘redface’. Just like blackface,'” Ian Campeau told the Huffington Post last year. “We’re in the middle of our civil-rights movement right now, today. So hopefully, in a couple decades, redface and terms like ‘Redskin’ and ‘Indian’ will go the way of blackface and terms like ‘nigger’ and become tabooed.”

Big props to Canada’s Bass Coast and America’s LIB for stepping up to address the issue, Burning Man should do the same, especially since the event takes place on sacred Paiute lands.

Feathers were banned and then unbanned. Playa chickens persist.

Next on the ban list may be the cultural appropriation from Hollywood, particularly Star Wars, Mad Max, and the Wicker Man.


The SPIRIT of Burners.Me

animal communicatorWe like to move forwards. Backwards, in reflection, sometimes helps; usually, not. Looking forwards, then…here is some Monday inspiration for you. Coming from, where it is we’re coming from. The pulsing heart of Infinite Love of Gaia, the earth. The true heart.

The story of Spirit. And “Animal Communicator” Anna Breytenbach.

The story of making the impossible, possible. See it for yourself:

Burners, you don’t need to join our cult, you don’t need to send us money, but we suggest: do this. Permaculture, Nature engineering. Animal communication, hey, why not, human communication? Universal physics. It’s so much better for everyone than “social engineering”, or “profiteering”, or “DJ rules“.

Rockwall DudeThis is how we do it.

There is a spirit here, advancing humanity throughout the Ages. It should be celebrated. These tribes sure knew how to bring it to the desert, for a long, long time. Sustainability is a better goal than any of the Ten Principles of Burning Man.

Oh, was that an #encore I heard? <=> Maybe I just gifted it to myself. Maybe Yothu Yindi gifted it to all of us. Recommend you turn this one up…(Aboriginal people this might contain…you know what I’m saying)


Persistence and Determination


Let me ask you a rhetorical question. What would you rather be: blindly following the 10 Principles and all the other rules of The Man as if you were a sheep? Or, this guy…

#nailedit! In this case, quite literally.

If I told you all the best quotes I know, you’d probably gain too much power. Since the purpose of my social engineering is to repress Burners and make it so that they can create nothing of value for themselves (only we the B.ME-Org can profit!), then I’m only going to share one morsel of a quote with you today. To succor you in, it’s a good one. [“</sarcasm>”] …although, gotta say…Be – More – G – I’m liking it!

My favorite quote, which I’ll gladly share with you for free, for the purposes of enriching everyone with enlightened wisdom…comes from one of your “Dead Presidents’…

“Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan Press On! has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.”

– Calvin Coolidge

You think that’s the first time this monk ever threw that needle?

We’re not the BMOrg here, people. We represent for Burners, from our hood of BRC and beyond. We don’t make cyber-warfare ad-hominem attacks, on BMOrg or anyone else. We don’t have “talking points” that we use to tear others down on online forums. We just write this blog to share our opinions with you about Burning Man. Got your own opinions? Please come here and share them, comment. We welcome healthy debate. Got “talking points” from the BMOrg, that add nothing to the discussion, that you read on JRS or ePlayer?  Ummm, get fucked, go back there. Burning Man existed before BMOrg, and it will live LONG after BMOrg too. You think Black Rock City, LLC were the world’s first Burners? Yeah right. We were rocking it out in way more extreme conditions than that, before then. As were others. The Playa ain’t nothing on the Outback.

This has nothing to do with BMOrg, but everything to do with Burner culture.

Purity. Practice. Concentration and letting go. At the same time. Mastery. The mind of no mind.

If you can’t understand this post, don’t worry, you weren’t one of the ones meant to get it. If you’re confused, watch the video again. Keep watching, until you get it. Is he a monk, because of some gimmick with the needle? No, of course not. There’s magic out there. Just ask these sheep!