Ask Uncle Gregory

Gregory Gomez receiving instruction

“Ask Uncle Gregory” started as an inside joke for volunteers and the Council of IIA. We found that several years of doing presentations, outdoor cultural events, and attending multicultural events resulted in questions from those inside and outside our cultures. Some were funny to us, “Can Indians marry someone who is not Indian?” “Do Indians smoke peyote in their peace pipes?” and others were very thoughtful and difficult to answer such as, “Why do you use the term American Indian instead of Native American?” or “Is it OK for someone to charge money to perform an Indian ceremony?” “What is a ceremony?” As an organization, we strive to follow the vision of our Co-founders, Gregory Gomez, Eddie Sandoval, and Cathy Gomez. Our job is to gather traditional knowledge, share that information with others to dispel myths and misunderstandings, and preserve our knowledge for future generations. Our organization feels it is time to speak and share. In the past, we kept our knowledge secret due to persecution on many levels. Our President, Gregory G. Gomez, is often one of the few people who can eloquently answer these questions. Gregory has been around the world, literally. He has visited Nations across the Americas and observed cultures indigenous to other parts of the world. This global, as well as Indigenous knowledge, has helped us see the similarities and diversity among people indigenous to other countries. Language, song, dance, prayer, stories, regalia, homes, geography, spirituality, and much more. This page is dedicated to knowledge Greg has shared over the many years he worked for the Federal Government, at the former Department of Health and Human Services. Some of the stories and articles shared on this page are timely even though they may have been written as far back as the 1970s. We hope you will learn and enjoy it!