part of me wants to write a post about cryptids and settler-colonialism, but then i think about how incredibly broken my blog is thanks to kardala meta and change my mind
basically there is a difference between “fun weird thing we made up” and “actual being from an Indigenous culture we appropriated as part of the process of destroying their culture” and that’s an important distinction to draw. like, some of the beings that get called cryptids have important cultural context that gets stripped away when they’re shoved into pop culture will-nilly. Navajo skin-walkers are beings that shouldn’t be talked about, unless you want to draw them to you (and you don’t). on the other hand, telling stories about wendigos helps us understand traditional Cree (and Anishinabek) legal orders and customs.
(sasquatch/bigfoot) stories have been told up and down the coast of the pacific northwest for thousands of years and now tourist traps run by settlers repackage culture and sell it for a profit that never makes it way back to the people they’re extracting stories from. i’m not expecting people to stop playing with “cryptids,” but i do kinda want everyone to be aware of the places and people these stories come from and that, for us, they have meaning.