Assimilation of Native Americans: Wilson vs Bordenwich

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Issues regarding the assimilation of Native Americans holds two major camps. Wilson aligns with the side feeling Native Americans should resist assimilation and preserve their culture. In contrast, Brodewish and others like him support the assimilation of Native Americans, to an extent. Wilson’s argument rests mainly in the definition of a Native American, which to Wilson is based on culture. He points out the growing respect for the Native American culture on the part of Americans. This is evident in the label that is given; Native American rather than Indian. This recognition leads to pride throughout the Native American community resulting in increase of population on U.S. census readings, an increase of well-known Native American writers, and more victories in court cases. Not only does Native American pride increase, but white Americana are increasingly interested in the fashions and art of Native Americans. Wilson asserts that this is all evidence of a prospering culture. Therefore, why should Native Americans assimilate into a Euro-American culture, that he claims, is going downhill? Not only is the culture flourishing, but Wilson also points out the negative issues that would accompany assimilation into the Euro-American culture. A major aspect of Euro-American culture is private enterprise. Wilson claims that private enterprise will only worsen the situation of Native Americans. Their first stab at private enterprise, casinos, has caused a divide within the community; Traditionalists against casinos and Warriors supporting casinos. This ideological conflict has transformed into various violent conflicts, including arson and murder. Wilson predicts that as assimilation continues, so will conflict. While Wilson believes there is no need for Native Americans to assimilate, as it would in fact be worse if they did, Brodewich sees the need for Native

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