Sunday, October 21, 2012

Hannah Gets Mad

This Sunday I was asked to write about something that makes me mad. I had a hard time with this, I don't usually get very angry. I had to think back to the last few times in which I was really frustrated.

Kotzebue, my home.
Kotzebue, which you spit on. You don't deserve to be here.
You have been here 8 weeks, 3 months, 9 years.
You have 3 birch bark baskets which you keep your car keys and extra change in. You have tried the local delicacy of muktuk once. You spit it out.
You comment on the children, how sad. They run ammock in the muck with no shoes. Where are there parents?
You condemn the streets littered with pepsi cans after snow melt "if people around here knew how to take care of this place."
You walk to work everyday with your synthetic fur ruff covering your eyes. Keep your head down, wouldn't want to damper your day with their poverty.
You will never be a part of this community which you judge through the window of your government housing.
What really grinds my gears, boils my blood, and gets me fired up: we are the same.
But I am different.
Kotzebue, my home. I will not let you spit on it.
You have been here 8 weeks. You refuse to open yourself to any part of this community.
There is bad here, but there is also good.
You wouldn't know. You can't judge what you haven't lived.
Pull yourself up by your boot straps bullshit
I will not let you talk about my best friends brother, my ex lover, or the guy who cheated off my tests in high school like losers.
You remain ignorant to your privilege. Ignorant to the systems built for you and forced on them.
You don't deserve to be here. You don't want to be here.
Go back to the lower 48, you aren't cut out for this.

-Hannah Atkinson


  1. I get mad every time I meet a vegetarian who buys their gas at the Shell gas stations. The offshore drilling controversy didn't seem to open my eyes until they recently announced the beginning of their journey.

    All I can think about is the sacrifices we have already made when we became a part of the United States in 1959. We have switched our cultural education to Western education where we not only lack the right resources in almost every single rural community, we're also restricted in the standardized tests such as the SAT and ACT. The cost of living is ridiculously high but we have the right to bear arms in order to continue our reliance on the year-round land resources for food on the table. However, we're now raising the oceanic resources to Shell and waiting for a threat to these animals, our food.

    How much longer until we realize how small our voices have been? How much longer until our voices are silenced?

    Not to mention, the isolation of these rural communities may handicap the potential of a student. Where are the outside resources to help them have hope for the future?

    How can we say the youth is tomorrow's hope when we've barely given them some to begin with? How can Rural Alaska and Urban Alaska(or America) compromise to prevent the loss of our voice?

    How is it possible that a group of native americans who've stayed in the same spot they were meant to be and kept to themselves long enough to survive today are now being ruled out by a country that has been stripping natives of their lands for just over 500 years?

    We read about these things in history books and think "hmm, how sad" but are we not realizing that it's happening right now and someday this can be another chapter our great-grandkids would be reading about in US History class?

    How can we educate the youth on our own to keep from that happening?

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