When Fry Bread is Not Powerful

Franzia © Power!

Imagine if I had a shirt that celebrated boxed wine and sold it in Indian Country. What type of response would I get? My sense is I would be castigated for promoting something that is “not traditional” and has created so many issues in our communities. But…isn’t that what we are doing when we celebrate fry bread? Open the floodgates…

Don’t get me wrong. I love to indulge and down some fry bread from time to time. I prefer mine simple with butter. If I’m at home, slather on some huckleberries, please. But it is not earth shattering to say that it is not really part of  “traditional” cultures.  Or rather, it has been incorporated into our modern version of our culture (another blog post). But, for several reasons, I do not consume it regularly. Among those reasons, I realized many years ago that it is not traditional, so I do not feel compelled to eat something on a regular basis, that while delicious, is not healthy or traditional.

What’s more, while substance abuse is a high profile, tragic disease, my guess is that there are far more people suffering from diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure and other effects of unhealthy foods than from alcohol.

I am not saying that we should abolish fry bread or recognize its place in our modern lives. I love Frybread Power shirts. I know that fry bread was all that many had for many, many years. It’s probably one of the many reasons we are still here.  My point is that perhaps it is time to start interacting with it in a more healthy manner. As we work to reclaim our indigenous knowledge, our economic power, our health, maybe we should reevaluate our celebration of fry bread.

Maybe this post should simply have said “all things in moderation?”



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