Blacks and Native Americans have deep ties

Blacks and Native Americans have deep ties

Our Weekly: Our Truth, Our Voice
Los Angeles, California

Manny Otiko, Our Weekly Contributor

November is Native Heritage month

There is an old joke in the Black community about women attributing long hair to having “Indian blood” in their family. But like all jokes, there is an element of truth in this statement. There are deep ties between Native Americans, America’s first residents, and Black Americans, America’s first sizable minority group.

Los Angeles resident Phil Wilkes Fixico claims both Native American and African American roots on both sides of his family. Fixico, a performance artist and activist for Black Indian culture, says that he first started exploring his genealogy, when he got into his 50s.

Fixico said he has been on an 11-year journey to identify with his Native American roots. This has included reaching out to relatives in Oklahoma, producing a DVD about the Black-Indian experience and doing presentations about Native American culture around Los Angeles…

…Fixico said that he grew up a troubled youth, who was in an out of the juvenile system. After a stint in a correctional institution, he finally turned his life around. He received help from people of all races to do this.

Fixico attributes much of his problems to an identity crisis caused by lack of knowledge about his history. At 52, he decided to start investigating his background. He knew his mother, who raised him alone, was of Creek, White and African descent, but he later learned that his biological father was also part Seminole.

Fixico discovered that his ancestors were Seminole Maroons, slaves who opted to escape captivity and form alliances with the Seminole Indians in Florida

Read the entire article here.

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