I have followed the circus we call City Hall with much disdain. But The Star’s article “Warding off evil spirits” (12/13, Local) compels me to come to Gloria Squitiro’s defense. The burning of sweet grass, sage, cedar and tobacco is a Native American custom used to cleanse and purify.
Before our color guard presents the colors, they are smudged. The color guards (I am one of them) bathe their bodies in the smoke. When we pray, everyone in the prayer circle bathes their bodies in the smoke to cleanse and purify.
I do not know whether Gloria Squitiro is Native American, but she certainly has some knowledge of our customs. I have smudged my home and office. I take offense that former mayoral aide Joe Miller seems to think this very sacred ritual is hilarious. A little respect on both sides could have prevented a lot of this disgrace we call city government.
Citizen Potawatomi Nation, Legislator, District 1