Native America Calling

Weekdays 11:00AM - 12:00PM
  • Hosted by Tara Gatewood

Native America Calling is a live call-in program linking public radio stations, the Internet and listeners together in a thought-provoking national conversation about issues specific to Native communities. Each program engages noted guests and experts with callers throughout the United States and is designed to improve the quality of life for Native Americans. Native America Calling is heard on 52 stations in the United States and in Canada by approximately 500,000 listeners each week. 

Update: Disputed Mine Proposals

Feb 6, 2017
Mining excavator by Vic Tor/Wikimedia/CC

Tue. 02/07 11a:  Since taking office, President Trump, has taken action on promises to cut environmental regulations and advance energy industry projects from coal to oil pipelines. With that in mind, we’ll take a look at two proposed mines that could also get caught up in the pro-industry momentum. The Back Forty Project in Michigan promises large deposits of zinc and gold. But the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin opposes the project for environmental reasons and because of its close proximity to sacred places.

The Columbia River near Kennewick, Wash. (Photo: -Flickr: Ken Lund via Flickr/CC)

Thu. 2/2 11a: We’re within weeks of the Ancient One, also known as Kennewick Man, of returning to tribes in Washington state. It’s been a 20-year battle to get to this point. The argument between archeologist and tribes was finally settled by a DNA test and several court rulings. We get an update on the status of the 9,000-year-old remains and find out how tribal leaders in Washington are preparing for their return.


Tue. 6/2 11a: The sun is shining right now across Native America. Is your tribe taking advantage of this form of renewable energy? There are many ways that individuals and tribes can access solar power, but it costs money to establish a system to capture that energy and use it in homes and businesses. Would you like to see more solar systems in your community? Join our conversation about the solar industry in Native communities.


Retire Chief Wahoo?

Apr 27, 2015
Jim Chambers via Flickr

Thurs. 04/30 11a: This year marks the 100th year that the Cleveland baseball team has used the “Indians” name. The Cleveland Indians mascot, Chief Wahoo, has often been criticized because of its cartoon-like caricature of a Native American. With all of the attention on the Washington DC Football Team’s trademarks, where does the Cleveland Indians fit in the mascot fight? Are you offended by Chief Wahoo? Do you think it’s time to retire the mascot? Or do you feel that the mascot is not offensive to Native Americans?

Do You Powwow?

Apr 27, 2015
Sharon Sperry Bloom via Flickr

Wed. 04/29 11a: Some say powwow is more than just the dance and the gathering – it’s a way of life. Today we take a look at what powwow means to Native America and the people who hit powwow highway each year. Does religion play a big role when you step into the powwow arena? Has powwow lost its original meaning over the years or is it as vibrant as when you first danced? Is powwow a true representation of our tribal nations? How do the events on the powwow trail compare to our Native traditions? Join us as bring you voices from the 2015 Gathering of Nations Powwow.

Generation Indigenous

Apr 27, 2015

Tues. 04/28 11a: Native communities around the nation have been talking about Generation Indigenous – a big push by the Obama administration to support Native youth – that focuses on “removing the barriers that stand between Native youth and their opportunity to succeed.” Sounds good, and the White House is playing up the projects being completed, networks being built, and the listening sessions and gatherings designed for youth. But what exactly is Generation Indigenous? Is it funded? Are its impacts measurable? What do it’s participant have to say?

#NotYourHollywoodIndian Goes Viral

Apr 27, 2015
www.GlynLowe.com via Flickr

Mon. 04/27 11a: Hollywood has always known how it likes its Indians: drunk, dressed in feathers, or getting killed off by the cavalry. But late last week nearly a dozen Native actors walked off the set of a western parody starring Adam Sandler, citing racism, sexism and derogatory jokes about Native people in the script. Within hours #NotYourHollywoodIndian began trending on social media, sparking a national conversation on what it means to be an Indigenous person in front of the camera.

Indigenous Reggae Rhythms (Part II): Turtle Island

Apr 20, 2015
Al Burque via Flickr

Fri. 04/24 11a: Today we pick back up on our Indigenous reggae journey. This time we hear from Native music makers from North America like Casper, Quese IMC and the band Native Roots. Over the years, these Native reggae musicians have joined us in Studio 49 to talk about their connection to reggae music. In this pre-recorded edition of Native America Calling, we take a look back at two decades of Native broadcasting and the influence reggae music has had on our tribal nations.

Mister Native American Pageants

Apr 20, 2015

Thurs. 04/23 11a: If you think about pageant royalty, you probably imagine smiling young princesses, queens and misses looking their best and wearing a crown and sash. In Native America, Mr. Indian pageants may be gaining in popularity. What do their pageants look like? Who are the men running for these titles? What do you think about the idea of young men representing our schools and tribal communities with a crown and a sash?

Sainthood for Junipero Serra

Apr 20, 2015
Rogério Tomaz Jr. via Flickr

Wed. 04/22 11a: Junipero Serra has been called “the evangelizer of the west” for his legacy founding missions in California. In January, Pope Francis announced that he will make the 18th-century missionary a saint. But for tribes in California, Serra represents colonization, the eradication of Indigenous language and culture, and a religious system responsible for death and destruction of tribes and their members. Are the experiences of Native people at the hands of Catholic missionaries being swept under the rug by the church?

Emotions And Language Revitalization

Apr 20, 2015
Travis via Flickr

Tues. 04/21 11a: We all agree that it is important to speak our Indigenous languages. Learning a language is hard work and it’s even harder to for an entire community to start speaking again. Some feel that it is critically important to continue a language with only a few speakers left. But not everyone is able to spend the time learning their Indigenous language. This can lead to a range of emotions, including guilt. Is feeling guilty for not speaking your language a good thing? Can it motivate you to get moving? Or does it create an overwhelming feeling of fatalism?

Indian Child Welfare Act Update

Apr 20, 2015
Seema Krishnakumar via Flickr

Mon. 04/20 11a:A proposed new rule and ongoing lawsuit may lead to changes in the Indian Child Welfare Act, or ICWA. The Bureau of Indian Affairs proposed last month that a new subpart of ICWA be created to improve the law by updating regulations for state courts and child welfare agencies. A lawsuit, Oglala Sioux Tribe vs. Van Hunnik, is moving to trial. The plaintiffs (Oglala Sioux Tribe) received a favorable ruling when a federal judge, Chief Judge Jeffrey L. Viken, agreed the state was violating ICWA.

California Drought

Apr 13, 2015
Bert Kaufmann via Flickr

Fri. 04/17 11a: California is in their third year of a drought that has cost the state billions in agriculture revenue and thousands of jobs. On April 1, California Governor Jerry Brown, speaking from a dry patch of dead grass, issued an executive order to implement mandatory water restrictions across the state. Communities are now required to reduce water usage by 25 percent, although some cities and towns will have to cut current usage more than others. How has the drought affected California tribes? Are tribes required to enforce the mandatory reduction in water use?

Honor Runs

Apr 13, 2015
Adam Singer via Flickr

Thurs. 04/16 11a: Some Native Americans remember violence experienced by their ancestors through journeys across the lands where those events took place. They remember the Fort Robinson outbreak and Sand Creek Massacre with healing runs, the Wounded Knee Massacre with a horse ride and the Trail of Tears with a bike ride.  What is the purpose of remembering these events through walks and rides? Do you think it is healing or harmful to retrace these trails and remember those atrocities?

Amy McMullen

Wed. 04/15 11a: Trevino L. Brings Plenty (Cheyenne River Sioux) started writing when he was a teenager. Over the past 10 years, his writing has evolved from a hobby to published works of poetry.