Traditional Native Americans often keep their hair long. This includes both men and women. They usually wear their hair in braids. Not only does this keep their hair neat, but it is also a tradition. The Native American headdress is also tradition, but not worn as often as the long hair.
Why Wear Their Hair Long?
Many people wonder why the Native Americans wear their hair long. Sure, it is traditional, but there is a reason for it. The Native Americans believe that their hair provides their sixth sense. They think that their hair is an essential part of their nervous system, which allows them to be ultra-aware of their surroundings and the things moving around them. Native Americans believe that if you cut off their hair, you are also cutting off their ability to use their superpowers.
Is This Truth or Myth?
Some people believe that it is just a myth or a legend that a Native American’s hair holds superpowers. During the Vietnam War, this legend was tested, and the results were shocking. This is the truth behind Native Americans’ long hair, and why it led to an odd experiment in the Vietnam War.
The United States Army recruited Native Americans because of their incredible tracking skills. Like all soldiers, the new recruits had to cut their long hair before going into battle. It wasn’t long before the Army officials discovered that Native American recruits weren’t doing any better than the American soldiers were. When the officials questioned the Native American soldiers about their lack of tracking skills, they told them about their hair. By cutting off their hair, they cut off their incredible tracking abilities. The Army decided to find out if this was true, so they planned the experiment.
Native American Recruitment
During the Vietnam War, two Native Americans were recruited. They were known as the First Nation soldiers. One of the First Nation soldiers was allowed to keep his hair long, in the traditional braids. The other was told to buzz his hair the way that the other G.I.’s did. Late at night, the two First Nation soldiers were sent out into the jungle. Because this was just an experiment to determine if the legend was true, they didn’t send the First Nation soldiers out into enemy territory. Instead, they had a few of the First Nation’s fellow soldiers play the part of the enemy. It was their job to find the First Nation soldiers in the dead of night and capture them. The solider with the buzz cut went off in one direction, the solider with the long hair was sent off in the other. When they were deep in the jungle, the “enemy” soldiers were sent out to find them. The results of the experiment were shocking.
The two First Nation soldiers were out in the jungle. The soldier with the buzz cut wasn’t out there for very long before he was captured by the “enemy.” He was quickly returned to base to wait for the soldiers to seek out the long-haired First Nation solider. The “enemies” found out quickly that it wasn’t going to be as easy to find the long-haired soldier. As he sensed them coming from far away, and was able to make his escape. This went on throughout the whole night. Time and time again, the long-haired soldier managed to avoid capture. He was able to track where the “enemy” was going, and he managed to stay far away. When the sun came up, the experiment was over.
When the U.S. Army reviewed what happened during the experiment, they found that during the night, the long-haired First Nation soldier had gone to sleep on two occasions, and was still able to sense when the “enemy” was close by. Despite the fact that he was asleep, he still managed to avoid capture. This left the non-believers in the United States Army stunned. They started to realize that what the Native Americans were saying about their superpowers was true. They had proof that the soldier’s long hair helped him avoid capture during the night, and things had to change.
After the experiment, the United States Army made a decision. All soldiers had to buzz their hair in the traditional military-style, but the First Nation soldiers were allowed to keep their hair long. The Army realized that it was beneficial to them to allow the First Nation soldiers to keep their hair long because it helped with their tracking and sensing skills. They never expected the experiment to turn out the way it did, and they were fascinated. It also helped them find new ways to destroy the enemy.