Description Native alcoholism is a serious issue. The highest incidence of alcoholism in the U.S. are among Native Americans groups. Beginning in colonial America, the myth of the drunken Indian persisted throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries. This belief regarding Native American culture adds to the stereotype of genetic inferiority, which continues to influence racism among some white Americans.The educated explanation for the high incidence of alcoholism among Native Americans, concludes that since they were introduced to alcohol suddenly by white settlers, they were genetically unprepared and, consequently, have little genetic immunity. Research conducted by the Indiana Research Center and the University of California indicates that some Native Americans do carry a genetic risk factor for alcoholism. They tend to be low responders rather than high responders. Rather than handling alcohol poorly, they handle it too well, requiring more alcohol, not less, in order to feel its effects. This low response is a risk factor for the development of alcoholism in all populations. The most urgent health problem faced by Native Americans is alcoholism according to Indian Health Services; the rate is six times the U.S. average. 75% of all Native American deaths are linked to alcoholism! Fetal Alcohol Syndrome rates among Native women are two times higher than the national average.Genetic risk factors alone, however, do not account for the high rates of alcoholism among Native Americans. The litany of offenses perpetuated on Native peoples by the white culture is well documented. Poverty, unemployment, lack of education, and family dysfunction are highly associated with increased alcoholism. In addition, a fractured cultural identity, isolation from the larger culture as well as their own as they leave their communities to obtain education or find employment, racist attitudes and stereotypes held by the general population, and inconsistent and often abusive governme
I.M. Spadecaller, Tampa Bay Member Since March 2010 Artist Statement Matthew Schwartz (AKA Spadecaller) is a grateful survivor who conveys his convictions and serenity through visual art, poetry, and video.
As a child, he was trained in traditional oil techniques and later attended The School of Visual Arts in New York City (1970-71). During the 70's up until the late 80's he exhibited acrylic and oils in New York, and presently resides on the west coast of Florida.
Since the advent of image editing software, he has turned more to creative digital hand painted images and photos striving to fuse these into an art form worthy of the distinction traditional painters deserve.
Spadecaller showcase his digital paintings, poetry, and other mixed media images by creating videos; these are available for viewing at: http://www.youtube.com/user/Thespadecaller.