In Indian Country Today, MIA Blogger David Walker argues that, for indigenous peoples, the modern mental health system in North America often represents little more than a new form of colonialism and domination.
“What’s truly remarkable is that this is not the first time the mental health movement in Indian Country has helped to destroy Native people,” writes Walker. “Today’s making of a Mentally Ill Indian to ‘treat’ is just a variation on an old idea, a fitting example of George Santayana’s overused adage: ‘Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.’ The Native mental health system has been a tool of cultural genocide for over 175 years — seven generations. Long before there was this Mentally Ill Indian to treat, this movement was busy creating and perpetuating the Crazy Indian, the Dumb Indian, and the Drunken Indian.”
How the US Mental Health System Makes Natives Sick and Suicidal (Indian Country Today, June 18, 2015)