The Feds Rename Offensive ND Landmark Mitigomizh Neyaashi
The government officially renames a point in North Dakota Mitigomizh Neyaashi.
Well, it seems like a good time to circle around a story I first wrote in December 2021. You can read that below if you like. But the Federal Government has tasked itself to cleaning up offensive language that has been used for location names for years all across the nation.
In this round of renaming, the word going away is..."Squaw"
There are 650 instances of the slur in use all across the country. 650! California had 80 instances and Arizona had 66. North Dakota was at the low end of the squaw chart with just six locations. At least six were originally reported, you can see those below. But it looks like only five have been changed.
What was Squaw Creek is now renamed Tepee Creek
What was Squaw Creek is now renamed Sakakawea Creek
What was Squaw Creek is now renamed Long Creek
What was Squaw Creek Bay is now Sakakawea Bay.
What was Squaw Point is now Mitigomizh Neyaashi.
Never did see a name change for the former Squaw Gap in McKenzie County
Beware of Not Safe For Work content below...it contains the word "fart"
As a Norman Lear/Richard Pryor child of the '70s, I resist canceling terms that were cyclical to the transformation of America...even often as a bigoted nation.
These terms were used instead as points of enlightenment through humor.
I'm not going to make this a George Carlin list of words you can't use on TV...let's let the MASTER do that. Thanks here to Carlin on YouTube (NSFW!!!!)
I just wrote an article about not being afraid of "sticks and stones", but when the use of such words or phrases is seen as institutional and overtly offensive, I'm open to the idea of at least eliminating them from public recognition.
The Washington Redskins should have been gone decades ago.
So where do you stand on the United States Department of the Interior planning to replace historical North Dakota locations because they contain racist and sexist slurs? Now we're not talking about the "N word" we're talking about the "S word". Shoot, I don't want to seem like I'm fanning the flames here, but the Inforum article I'm referencing has no problem throwing around the word...so let's do it.
It seems "Squaw" has gotta go...
The Interior Department isn't asking if the word needs to go, they are asking North Dakota what word or term should replace it in six different locations across the state. Months back I did another story about the use of the term "Rez" and another different story about Native American mascot names across the country and how a North Dakota group was attempting to stop the white-washing of Native Americans impact on history itself.
Somehow the comment section went off on the usage of the word squaw (which was never used) and comments were quickly shut down.
Reading through the still burning comments, it wasn't readers responding to an institutional use of the word (like say Lady Holsteins or Lady Beavers), it was because readers had experienced the casual usage of the "S word" amongst their friends and neighbors. I'm not "brave" enough to pick that fight.
So regardless of how you feel...maybe you think the "S word" is just a part of history, the Department of the Interior is going to reclaim the naming rights of six sites in North Dakota and are asking for your help anyway.
|1032267||Squaw Creek||Stream||Hettinger||North Dakota||46.4475057||-102.6543305|
|1032268||Squaw Creek||Stream||McKenzie, Dunn||North Dakota||47.6213982||-102.4724048|
|1032269||Squaw Creek Bay||Bay||Dunn||North Dakota||47.6041755||-102.4337921|
|1032270||Squaw Point||Cape||Bottineau||North Dakota||48.9886217||-100.3504184|
|1035181||Squaw Creek||Stream||McKenzie||North Dakota||47.5922379||-103.331303|
|1035183||Squaw Gap||Populated Place||McKenzie||North Dakota|
Nobody likes your silly new "gap" submissions, so let's keep it super serious...again here are the ground rules and it's no joke. So, maybe we should stop using it as a punchline.
Still, I miss Richard Pryor, George Carlin, and yes, even Archie Bunker. But wrong is wrong and let's go make some simple changes in the name of civility.