The United States and frankly the rest of the world could learn some very good lessons about the way to treat women from the Native Americans. There is a higher level of gender equality within Indian villages compared with the average small town in the United States. Part of the reason for this is when living primarily off the land everyone must contribute in order for the whole village to survive. In simple terms it is equality because of necessity for survival.
Native American women are the foundation of the village, tribe and family unit. Because the Indian women give birth they are also highly revered. The highest honor and job for an Indian woman is to raise a strong healthy family.
Native Americans are at one with nature commonly referred to as “Mother earth”. Just as Indian women give birth to new children so does Mother Earth give birth yearly. Perhaps a more accurate term would be rebirth each year.
In some tribes the women would gather nuts, berries, wild roots and also fish to provide for their families. There are also some references to Indian women doing the actual hunting. In all cases whatever the Indian mother had to do to take care of the family she would do.
Indian women could have a number of different professions within the village some examples would be medicine women, and midwife. Indian women are in most cases well physically conditioned and experienced in many outdoor related crafts.
The role of the Indian women perhaps has changed some do to “Americanization” but women living in a traditional setting still continue many of the old duties.
As with all wives one of the primary duties is to take care of the husband and children’s food and clothing. A mother is still a mother the world round.
We should take a close look at how Native Americans treat their women. Perhaps we are the ones who need to be more civilized.
Joseph Paige © 2006