Comedy Central’s Klepper show covers Native issues with Deb Haaland, Crystal Echo Hawk

Klepper Show, the new docu-series that airs Thursday nights at 11:30, will also feature Native community members from the Lac Courte Oreilles reservation

Tonight on Comedy Central’s Klepper Show, host Jordan Klepper will be featured in an episode where Klepper is meeting with U.S. Rep. Deb Haaland, Laguna Pueblo, D-New Mexico, and Crystal Echo Hawk, Pawnee, a Native businesswoman and the chief executive of IllumiNative as well as community members from the Lac Courte Oreilles reservation.

The Season 1 episode, titled "Invisible Nation -- Uncensored," is described as follows: Jordan meets with Native American activists, politicians and artists to find out why indigenous peoples’ struggles are so often overlooked and what we can do to change that.

Prior to the episode’s airing, Klepper posted a YouTube the video clip of the episode titled Rep. Deb Haaland on Elevating Native American Issues in Congress - Sneak Peek - Klepper, in which Klepper and Haaland discuss issues related to MMIW, Native representation, and politics.

The clip takes place in Haaland’s kitchen as she packs to move to Washington D.C. It's a humorous discussion between Klepper and Haaland that has already received nearly 12,000 views.

“While recording this episode was a lot of fun, we were talking about very serious issues. Since then, I’ve been working to ensure tribes have a seat at the table, and that my experience with the struggles many people face guide my work in Congress. I hope this episode sheds light on the issues in a way that folks find approachable and makes them think more about the solutions to our challenges,” said Haaland told Indian Country Today.

Haaland tweeted about the episode:

Crystal Echo Hawk also appears in the show. Echo Hawk says she really appreciated being in the episode though she first was apprehensive about comedy and serious Native issues appearing in the same instance.

"All of these stones are being thrown into the metaphorical pond that is making bigger waves of change. Native peoples, our contemporary voices, stories, issues, and contributions are starting to break through into the larger national consciousness. Initially, I was a bit worried about our research being used in a comedy format. However, comedy disarms and can open up people especially when we are inundated with news that is so often not positive."

“I love that this is what Jordan and what his producers wish to tell—they did this story with responsibility— our research, specifically the findings on the impact of invisibility on Native peoples by Dr. Stephanie Fryberg and Dr. Arianne Eason, inspired the episode. Jordan and the producers were very respectful and inclusive of our input from start to finish."

Echo Hawk cited her IllumiNative summary of research which is part of a new toolkit that will launch on June 10th. 

“We have been translating the research into more actionable tools so that people can use and share them in their work and communities to help advocate and create change with us. The action guide can be found at https://illuminatives.org/take-action/.”

Media clips on Thursday’s episode have also been hitting social media:

The Klepper show episode will air Thursday, May 30, at 11:30 pm ET on Comedy Central.

The online episode is located here: https://on.cc.com/2JITT2k

There is also an accompanying Apple podcast featuring Deb Haaland’s niece: https://apple.co/2KUaH87

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Follow Indian Country Today’s associate editor Vincent Schilling (Akwesasne Mohawk) on Twitter - @VinceSchilling

Email - vschilling@indiancountrytoday.com

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