Repost: Morning Edition Profile of Charlie Hill

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Perhaps not surprisingly, Hill has mixed feelings about the concept of the American dream. He believes he’s attained his — but that it’s been out of reach for most Native Americans.

Take the fact that Native Americans have been the source of endless mockery, he says. “They make fun of the way we dance, we sing, our drum, our names, our religion, our rituals — you name it.”

So one of Hill’s dreams was to turn that humor around. “My whole thing is to get people to laugh with us, not at us,” he says.

Hollywood stereotypes have offered Hill a deep well from which to draw jokes. He re-creates the dialogue from old Westerns, but always gives the Indians the last laugh.