Any fourth grade student in the Northwest worth his or her salt knows the term “potlatch.” It comes from Northwestern Native American tribes, and it means a gathering, bartering time, a feasting and sharing occasion. The key word is “reciprocity,” which means fairness and equality – you get want you want and need, and give to others what they want and need. Fairly simple concept, and apparently worked so well it was banned by Canadian and U.S. authorities at times in our collective North American histories. Because any student of history worth his or her salt knows that if a group is functioning, another bigger group must come along and control it.
But this post isn’t about that.
It’s about what we all bring to the party.
We North, Central, and South Americans are constantly reinventing ourselves, make-over capital is in the U.S. Lots of heated debate over immigration laws, what it means to be free, and what it means to be responsible.
Here’s my challenge, my diverse, intelligent young leaders: What are YOU going to bring to the party? What are you proud of in your ancestors’ past, and what gifts and talents can you share to create the nation, the future, that you want?
I’ll see you at 8:25 AM. Dress casually.