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Thread: Paging Gazhekwe

  1. #1426

    Default Paging Ravine

    Sending prayers to you, the founder of this thread. May your future be filled with peace and joy, and may we meet again, in this world or the next.

  2. #1427

    Default Congress puts stink bomb in Defense Budget

    Congress gives Native American lands to foreign mining company with new NDAA

    Published time: December 04, 2014 18:00
    Edited time: December 05, 2014 10:55

    Congress is poised to give a foreign mining company 2,400 acres of national forest in Arizona that is cherished ancestral homeland to Apache natives. Controversially, the measure is attached to annual legislation that funds the US Defense Department.

    This week, the House and Senate Armed Services Committees quietly attached a provision to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that would mandate the handover of a large tract of Tonto National Forest to Resolution Copper, a subsidiary of the Australian-English mining company Rio Tinto, which co-owns with Iran a uranium mine in Africa and which is 10-percent-owned by China.

    The “Carl Levin and Howard P. ‘Buck’ McKeon National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015” - named after the retiring chairmen of the Senate and House Armed Services panels - includes the giveaway of Apache burial, medicinal, and ceremonial grounds currently within the bounds of Tonto. News of the land provision was kept under wraps until late Tuesday, when the bill was finally posted online.

    The land proposed to be given to Resolution Copper, in exchange for other lands, includes prime territory Apaches have used for centuries to gather medicinal plants and acorns, and it is near a spot known as Apache Leap, a summit that Apaches jumped from to avoid being killed by settlers in the late 19th century.
    Lands included in the plan will stop 1,500 feet short of Apache Leap and will not initially include an area known as Oak Flats, though, when it comes to the oaks, contradictory legal parameters are but a minor hurdle for a company like Resolution Copper to eventually drill there.

    The House may vote on the NDAA as soon as this week with rules included that would bar the Senate from amending the legislation. On Wednesday night, a last-minute effort to strip the land provision from the NDAA failed in the House Rules Committee, which voted to give one hour for debate over the NDAA in the House.

    Terry Rambler, chairman of the San Carlos Apache Tribe, told The Huffington Post he was saddened by news of the proposal, yet not all that surprised.enator John McCain.(Reuters / Joshua Roberts )
    “Of all people, Apaches and Indians should understand, because we’ve gone through this so many times in our history,” Rambler said.

    “The first thing I thought about was not really today, but 50 years from now, probably after my time, if this land exchange bill goes through, the effects that my children and children’s children will be dealing with,” Rambler added.

    “Since time immemorial people have gone there. That’s part of our ancestral homeland," Rambler said."We’ve had dancers in that area forever - sunrise dancers - and coming-of-age ceremonies for our young girls that become women. They’ll seal that off. They’ll seal us off from the acorn grounds, and the medicinal plants in the area, and our prayer areas.”

    Arizona Sen. John McCain was instrumental in adding to the NDAA the land deal that had been pursued by Rio Tinto for a decade, according to HuffPo. Some in Congress were reportedly concerned with the deal, but it ultimately materialized thanks to economic assurances. Rio Tinto claims mining in Tonto will generate $61 billion in economic activity and 3,700 direct and indirect jobs over 40 years. [Note: Rio Tinto is the same company that got the OK to mine Eagle Rock, a sacred spot in the Yellow Dog Plain west of Big Bay, Michigan.]

    Rambler said whether Rio Tinto’s economic assertions are true or not, it may not matter.

    “It seems like us Apaches and other Indians care more about what this type of action does to the environment and the effects it leaves behind for us, while others tend to think more about today and the promise of jobs, but not necessarily what our creator God gave to us,” he said.

    Rambler said he was particularly concerned with long-term ramifications, including the company’s intent to use “block cave” mining, which means digging under the ore, causing it to collapse.

    “What those mountains mean to us is that when the rain and the snow comes, it distributes it to us,”Rambler said. “It replenishes our aquifers to give us life.”
    Resolution Copper has said its mining plan for the area has been filed with the National Forest Service and that it will comply with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) that supposedly protects federal lands.

    AFP Photo / Jeff Topping

    But Rambler said NEPA is no match for Resolution Copper’s intent.

    “This is what will happen - the law in one area says there will be consultation, but the law in another area of the bill says the land exchange will happen within one year of enactment of this bill,” Rambler said. “So no matter what we’re doing within that one year, the consultation part won’t mean anything after one year. Because then it’s really theirs after that.”

    Basically, NEPA will only protect lands that remain in federal hands. The rest is fair game, according to federal law.

    “We would only have to do NEPA on any activity that would take place on remaining federal land,” said Arizona Bureau of Land Management official Carrie Templin.
    The 2015 NDAA contains other land deals, including one that would subject 70,000 acres of Tongass National Forest in Alaska to logging and another provision that would give 1,600 acres from the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in Washington State for purposes of industrial development, a plan that has spurred tribal protest.

  3. #1428


    To Ravine,
    Walk in Beauty, Niijii. Baama pii. We will look for your fire in the night sky.

  4. #1429

    Default Merry Christmas, Apaches! US will trade your beautiful, living, sacred spot ....

    .... to Resolution Copper aka Rio Tinto et al so they can strip it for a copper mine. In return, you get dry river beds, mesquite forests, and land that cannot support life as the sacred Gaan Canyon does.

    This sweetheart deal to give a foreign company license to destroy a sacred and valuable natural area that can never be replaced was inserted into the Defense Bill in a sly move to assure its passage. It has been repeatedly shot down for a decade when floated in open air.

    Rio Tinto is the company that is currently raping the sacred Eagle Rock and the Yellow Dog Plain near Marquette, right over the top of the watershed leading to Lake Superior. The state went for the money over native rights and water protection, as usual. A sacred place has to be a building to be protected, they said. Rio Tinto says they have the safety issue covered, they said. Yeah, we believe that.

    This video is presented by . It shows the effects of strip mining copper, then lovingly showcases the beautiful area threatened by this mine. It also shows the areas offered by Resolution Copper in exchange, already stripped and comparatively barren. Gee, thanks, America, more trading valuable land for land nobody wants? We have certainly been there. A LOT.

    <a href=";set=vb.186264980 641&amp; type=2&amp;theater" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">

    Watch the progress of the 2015 Defense Spending Bill. If this stinker stays in and passes, we need our president to veto it.

    Track the Bill's progress:

    Here is a petition to stop the Apache Land Grab:
    Last edited by gazhekwe; December-10-14 at 01:44 PM.

  5. #1430

    Default Unanimously confirmed, first Native American woman Federal Judge

    A Mighty Girl

    Diane Humetewa was unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate this week becoming the first Native American woman ever to serve as a U.S. federal judge. Humetewa, a member of the Hopi Tribe, will serve as a U.S. District Court judge for Arizona. She will be the third Native American federal judge in history and the only one currently active.

    Many people, especially in the Native American community, applauded her confirmation on Wednesday. Native Americans have been calling for increased representation in the federal judiciary for many years, especially in regions of the country with large Native American populations.

    In speaking about the significance of the appointment to Arizona, former U.S. Attorney Paul Charlton said, "In this state more than any other, where we have 21 reservations and all felony offenses are tried in federal court, we do not have a bench that reflects the community it serves. And now, for the first time in our nation's history, we'll have a representative to the bench."

    A graduate of Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law at Arizona State University, Humetewa previously served as the U.S. Attorney for Arizona for two years. She became the first Native American woman ever to serve as a U.S. Attorney when she took on the role in 2007.

    A Mighty Girl congratulates Diane Humetewa on her confirmation to the bench!

    To read more about her confirmation on AZ Central, visit

    Those other two judges? Both served in Oklahoma, former Indian Territory, and one was not aware of his heritage until after he was already on the bench.

    Over the past nine generations since the Trail of Tears started depositing its survivors, the number is two. Let me repeat: Of the thousands of federal judges who have served across the nation over the past 224 years since Article III of the Constitution created our federal judiciary, there have been only two Native American jurists, according to statistics at the Federal Judicial Center, the official source of such biographical information about the federal judiciary.

    And one of those two, U.S. District Judge Frank Howell Seay, who sits today with senior status in Oklahoma, didn't even know about his native heritage until he was in his 50s and on the bench (in other words, his nomination and confirmation were based upon the presumption that Seay was a regular ol' white guy).

    The other Native American federal judge to ever serve on the bench was Billy Burrage, also in Oklahoma, who was nominated to the bench by President Bill Clinton in 1994. He resigned in 2001. To give you a frame of reference, there have been (just) 170 black federal judges in the nation's history.

    Last edited by gazhekwe; December-11-14 at 07:18 PM.

  6. #1431

    Default Another stink bomb in the Defense Bill

    Congress Approves Bill to Force Opening Access to Yakama Nation Sacred Site

    In addition to the provision to transfer 2,400 acres of Apache ancestral and ceremonial lands to a foreign mining company, the recently passed National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) contains an amendment, Section 2867 Ensuring Public Access to the Summit of Rattlesnake Mountain, to force open public access to a sacred Yakama Nation mountain.

    The summit of Rattlesnake Mountain, called Laliik by the Yakama Nation, is currently off-limits to the general public. If approved by the Senate and signed by President Obama, Section 2867 of the NDAA would allow for roads to be built to the summit of Laliik and allow for the general public to have open access to the mountain that is considered sacred by the Yakama Nation, Nez Perce and Umatilla.

    In a letter to Washington State Senators Patti Murray and Maria Cantwell, Yakama Nation Tribal Chairman JoDe Goudy states:

    Yakama Nation is even more strongly opposed to this amendment (Section 2867). Laliik (our name for Rattlesnake Mountain) is a sacred mountain to the Yakama People and promoting public access-including motorized access- would constitute and adverse effect to the spiritual quality of the Mountain and the character defining features that make it eligible as a Traditional Cultural Property under the National Historic Preservation Act. Senators, Laliik is our Mount Sinai. This is where Smohalla, our most revered prophet and teacher set forth teachings and practices that are followed to this day. When our Long House leaders feel that a young adult is ready and worthy, Laliik is where they are sent to fast and to have vision quests. This is not a place for Airstreams and Winnebagos.

    Northwest tribes, Southwest tribes and the Great Plains Tribal Chairman’s Association have all voiced strong opposition to the troubling land deals added to the 2014 National Defense Authorization Act.

    This post from Daily Kos highlights the extensive pile of stinkbombs they stuck in the must pass bill. Good strategy, hey? If the Pres vetoes it, HE is the one who shut down the government. If he doesn't HE is the one who ultimately hurls the stinkbombs.
    ... There's just one problem: The bill is absolutely packed with riders that have nothing to do with the budget and everything to do with paying back special interests and opening more channels for political money to flow directly to the two major political parties.
    Since this 1,600-page bill was released on Tuesday night and I'm not a sorcerer, I can't list every single one of those things just yet. But I canhighlight the five most awful ones I've come across so far.
    Last edited by gazhekwe; December-12-14 at 03:36 PM. Reason: Adding a post that explores more stinkbombs

  7. #1432

    Default Senate passed the Defense Bill, stink bombs and all

    San Carlos lands are endangered.

    Rio Tinto has publically stated it will work with tribes in the area to make sure their concerns are recognized and will work the U.S. Forest Service to ensure the environment is protected.

    We'll see about that. Rio Tinto said the same thing about Eagle Rock and the KB Tribe and environmental groups opposed to that mine.

    Here is what they are working on:

    And here is what it looks like, Before and Now, mine still developing.

    And here's progress...

  8. #1433

    Default I Yust Go Nuts at Christmas, so here is some food to make a good old grazing party

    This is just one of many examples of the ways to stuff a date. gives an example of a mascarpone stuffed date with a maple drizzle, link below.

    Native Cooking: Some Killer Appetizers For The Holidays

    Dale Carson 12/22/14

    Just about every Native American celebration focuses on gratitude and family, especially if it provides a chance to get together, visit, and eat!

    Now is the time when Christian and other religious celebrations either collide or blend with Native American spirituality. The world we live in today lets us mix it up without clashing due to the Internet, TV and social media. This doesn’t mean we are assimilating, just sharing our culture with others and they with us. We have so many cultural areas to share, the Southwest, Northwest, the Great Lakes and Midwest, the Woodland peoples. So I think we can agree that “the Holidays” are not about things or stuff, more about people, children and getting together.

    We all have our favorite food for this time of year, and food evokes memories. Many people have big sit-down dinners with a bunch of people, which can be too much work. The cook/chef might enjoy the work, but let us give them a break and have a potluck with only appetizers!

    That is what we are doing this year for the first time. Our family has grown so big that it’s not practical to get together with a huge table, chairs, place settings—who has the room? It’s interesting to note that the most popular appetizers in this country—salsa, corn and potato chips are Native American. I love a chance to talk about the origin of the food we are eating, it’s a great conversation starter at gatherings.

    A true favorite is clams or oysters on the half-shell. The shells themselves make nice little holders for other things like clams casino. Little cleaned out gourds, shells of all sizes, miscellaneous pottery and birchbark or other bark trays for serving are good things to keep an eye out for during the year.

    Another pretty way to present food is wrapped or rolled in colorful flour tortillas (red, green, multi-grain). Stuff figs or dateswith cheese and a nut on top, stuff celery with a bit of goat cheese and a touch of red caviar. I love Italian antipasto so much I was inspired to develop a Native American version. Antipasto is basically a variety of foods, a sampling.

    • A vegetable platter might contain marinated thin sliced Jerusalem artichokes, roasted bell peppers, sliced tomatoes.
    • A seafood and dried smoked meat version might have raw shellfish, smoked trout, smoked salmon or bluefish, ceviche, shaved buffalo sausage rollups, smoked duck, pheasant or turkey breast.
    • For some sides there should be guacamole, bean dips, bowls of pine nuts, hazelnuts, and walnuts. Chips and salsa of course, and maybe some cornbread.

    One thing that can cross cultures is bread. A nice fresh French or Italian bread, warm, toasted and thin sliced is a good little vehicle for many of the foods mentioned above.

    Dale Carson, Abenaki, is the author of three books: “New Native American Cooking,” “Native New England Cooking” and “A Dreamcatcher Book.” She has written about and demonstrated Native cooking techniques for more than 30 years. Dale has four grown children and lives with her husband in Madison, Connecticut.

    Read more at http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwor...ty-meal-158300

  9. #1434

    Default And some cookies! Thin Mints with no flour

    Flourless Thin Mints: Try These for Your Next Holiday Cookie Exchange

    Darla Antoine 12/6/13

    Girl Scout Cookie season is a few months away yet but you can satisfy any mid-winter cravings for their famous Thin Mint cookies. The best part? These cookies are grain-free, low in sugar, high in protein and delicious. Spot-on recreation. I’d even dare to say these cookies are healthy. Add these to your holiday repertoire and snack on a little less guilt this Christmas. Double or even triple the recipe and roll the dough into logs, freeze and bake up a fresh batch whenever you get the hankering.
    These cookies are delicious, but you haven’t tasted anything until you freeze them for a couple of hours after baking. Freezing seems to accentuate the mint and makes its cool, refreshing flavor stand out against the crispy chocolate cookie. But then, if you’re a fan of Girl Scout Thin Mints you probably already knew that.

    Though this is a flourless recipe I found that it could have benefited from a little bit of flour. The dough was very sticky and hard to work with. I’m trying to cut down on grains so I added a little almond flour to my second batch. It didn’t change the flavor or the texture at all but did make working with the dough a bit easier. You could, obviously, use any kind of flour you like, but I recommend a gluten-free flour.

    For the cookies:
    • 1 cup almond butter
    • 2 eggs
    • ¾ cup sugar (coconut sugar is great in this recipe!)
    • 1 tsp baking soda
    • ½ cup cocoa powder
    • 1 tsp vanilla extract
    • 3 or 4 T almond flour (optional)

    For the glaze:
    • 1 ½ cups chocolate chips
    • 4 T milk of choice (I used half-and-half)
    • 1 tsp peppermint extract

    In a large bowl blend all of the ingredients (minus the almond flour if using) until well blended. If you are using a flour add it 1 tablespoon at a time until the dough is a little less sticky but still moist.

    Plop the ball of dough into the freezer for an hour or two—the colder it is the easier it will be to work with.

    Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

    Take the dough out of the freezer and, using your fingers, break off small balls of dough and place on the parchment paper.

    Bake for 10 minutes. Don’t worry about flattening out the cookies, they will flatten out on their own.

    Meanwhile, fill a small saucepan halfway with water. Place a glass or stainless steel bowl over the saucepan and heat the water to simmering. Add the chocolate chips, milk and peppermint extract and whisk with a fork until smooth and glossy. You may need to add more milk to achieve the right consistency.

    After the cookies have baked spoon the peppermint glaze on top of the cookies and cool.

    Sit down with a cold glass of milk and enjoy! Santa probably won’t be getting any of these cookies this year.

    Recipe adapted from: Primal Cravings by Brandon and Megan Keatley, published by Primal Nutrition Inc, 2013.

    Darla Antoine is an enrolled member of the Okanagan Indian Band in British Columbia and grew up in Eastern Washington State. For three years, she worked as a newspaper reporter in the Midwest, reporting on issues relevant to the Native and Hispanic communities, and most recently served as a producer for Native America Calling. In 2011, she moved to Costa Rica, where she currently lives with her husband and their infant son. She lives on an organic and sustainable farm in the “cloud forest”—the highlands of Costa Rica, 9,000 feet above sea level. Due to the high elevation, the conditions for farming and gardening are similar to that of the Pacific Northwest—cold and rainy for most of the year with a short growing season. Antoine has an herb garden, green house, a bee hive, cows, a goat, and two trout ponds stocked with hundreds of rainbow trout.

    Read more at http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwor...xchange-152595

  10. #1435

    Default Unsung Veterans -- Post 1

    Legendary Ojibwa sniper unsung hero of WW I

    Francis Pegahmagabow experienced poverty and racism on return to Canada

    By Reg Sherren, CBC News Posted: Aug 01, 2014 4:39 PM ET Last Updated: Aug 08, 2014 5:24 AM ET

    Francis Pegahmagabow: Canadian War Hero

    He was the most decorated First Nations soldier in the history of the Canadian military, but very few people have ever heard of Francis Pegahmagabow.

    From the time he signed on in September 1914, until the war ended on Nov. 11, 1918, Francis fought. In fact, of the over 600.000 Canadians who served, he was one of only 39 in the Canadian Expeditionary Force to be awarded the Military Medal and two bars for valour.

    In a quiet corner of the old cemetery on Wasauksing First Nation, his military stone stands alone, But the legend of Cpl. Pegahmagabow has lived on this reserve now for almost a century.

    81-year-old Priscilla Pegahmagabow visits her father-in-law's grave with the help of her daughter, Teresa McInnes Pegahmagabow. (CBC)

    “He was a good man,” says his daughter-in-law, 81-year-old Priscilla Pegahmagabow, visiting the cemetery with the help of her daughter, TeresaMcInnesPegahmagabow.

    “[It’s] very sad, that I didn’t get to know him,” says Teresa, who was born just a few weeks after Francis Pegahmagabow passed away.
    He was a proud member of the Wasauksing First Nation, a musician who, as a young man, also worked on the lake boats as a marine fireman. On one trip, as legend goes, an Ojibwa medicine man told him he would face great danger and gave him a leather medicine pouch to keep him safe..

    Then came the First World War, and the call to arms. Early in the war, the Canadian government decided to exclude native Canadians from military service but Pegahmagabow somehow managed to slip through. He was one of the first to sign on with the 23rd northern Pioneers overseas contingent.

    He would quickly learn just how brutal this “war to end all wars” would be. Trench warfare, deadly German gas attacks, horrific shelling. Through it all the young warrior’s reputation grew.

    “He believed that nothing could happen to him,” said Adrian Hayes, the author of the definitive biography of Pegahmagabow. “Whether you believe these stories about medicine pouches or not, he believed it, and I think that’s why he acted the way that he did...and how he got through it.”

    As a sniper, he was deadly accurate, and although difficult to substantiate, he was credited with 378 kills, as well as the capture of 300 prisoners.

    His first military medal came in 1916, for facing enemy fire repeatedly to dispatch critical messages. There would be another at Passchendaele in 1917 and yet another for climbing out of a trench under gunfire to resupply ammunition.

    Shot once in the leg, downed by pneumonia, he kept on fighting, even when shellfire practically buried him alive.
    'When he was in uniform he was considered an what he could do. When he came back, he just went back to being an Indian. Indians at that time were not even Canadian citizens'- Adrian Hayes, biographer.

    When it was over, Francis Pegahmagabow had become the most highly decorated aboriginal soldier in the history of the Canadian military. He returned a hero, but it wouldn’t last.

    “When he was in uniform he was considered an what he could do. When he came back, he just went back to being an Indian. Indians at that time were not even Canadian citizens. They were treated like children and the Indian agents wanted him to basically sit back and shut up and not say anything.”

    It’s not something his family likes to talk about now. The war hero faced poverty and persecution, usually at the hands of Indian agents who controlled even his pension, and seemed to block every attempt he made to get ahead.

    Twice, Francis Pegahmagabow was chief of his band, always sending letters to Ottawa - including the prime minister - demanding better treatment. (CBC)

    He had six children with his wife, Eva. Twice, he was chief of his band, always sending letters to Ottawa — even to the prime minister — demanding better treatment. Eventually he helped to form some of the first national native rights movements in Canada.

    Francis Pegahmagabow died at 64, his lungs damaged so badly that he had to sleep in a chair to keep them from filling with fluid. On Aug. 5, 1952, a heart attack finally claimed the man his enemies never could.
    'I like to think of him as being a warrior in the First World War for Canada, and then he came back and because of the way he was treated, he became a warrior for his own people, and he suffered greatly in both capacities'- Sgt. Peter Moon, CFB Borden

    But decades later his legacy lives on in his granddaughter, Teresa, who serves on Wasauksing's band council, and in the many young people who have gone on to sign up to serve.

    In 2006, over 80 years after he served, the military finally decided to recognize him, erecting a monument at CFB Borden, and with full military honours, named the building of the 3rd Canadian Ranger Patrol group after him.

    “I like to think of him as being a warrior in the First World War for Canada,” said Sgt. Peter Moon of CFB Borden, “and then he came back and because of the way he was treated, he became a warrior for his own people, and he suffered greatly in both capacities.”

    “He was standing for equality, not just for natives, but for all Canadians,” said his biographer, Adrian Hayes.

    He was a real Canadian hero, but to Teresa he’s the grandfather she never knew, and yet, she says he’s somehow been with her all her life.
    “I’m sure he’s watching over his family as we do his story … he thought a lot of this First Nation and I’m sure he’ll be watching over us.”

    [Wasauksing is inland from the eastern shore of Georgian Bay. -- Gazhekswe]

  11. #1436

    Default How the Supreme Court gets it wrong

    Say What? Four Dumb Things Supreme Court Justices Wrote About Indians

    Steve Russell, 1/6/15

    This report started out titled “Eight Dumbest,” but I have retreated from that claim. In the midst of roiling rivers of absurdity, picking a few to be treated as superlatives could be nothing more than a matter of taste. I am reminded of when I thought I would name the “worst” Supreme Court decisions and Walter Echo-Hawk did the same. There was overlap in our picks, but to call the differences right or wrong is difficult.

    Therefore, the superlative is gone from my title, because there are plenty of Indian lawyers who have equally valid opinions and there is plenty of Dumb to choose from.
    I’ve perhaps handicapped myself by giving Chief Justice John Marshall a pass. While much of what he wrote about Indians put the D in Dumb, we must realize that the man was pulling all of federal Indian law out of his backside. You can’t make up that much law in one career without swimming in Dumb. Besides, I have already had my swings at Chief Justice Marshall, and I do not wish to be greedy.

    RELATED:Meet The Father of American Indian Control Law: John Marshall

    There are patterns to all this Dumb, and picking out the patterns requires no law degree.

    Dumb legal writing relies on stereotypes about Indians without regard for the Indians in front of the Court.

    Dumb legal writing disregards U.S. history, and so winds up blaming Indians for puzzles in fact constructed by the Court’s own decisions.

    Dumb legal writing reaches for a result and then tries to gin up reasons. The daylight between the reasons and the result often appears Dumb.

    Without further ado, and in no particular order, let’s look at how a selection of Supreme Court Justices from all ends of the political spectrum have been caught awash in Dumb.

    1. Ex Parte Crow Dog, 1883, Justice Stanley Matthews
    It tries them not by their peers, nor by the customs of their people, nor the law of their land, but by superiors of a different race, according to the law of a social state of which they have an imperfect conception and which is opposed to the traditions of their history, to the habits of their lives, to the strongest prejudices of their savage nature; one which measures the red man's revenge by the maxims of the white man's morality.

    Crow Dog might appear on the dumb list because I, a citizen of an Indian nation, resent the remarks about “savage nature.” No, that’s not it at all. After all, the case upheld tribal authority.

    Leaving aside the stereotyping, the Dumb comes from the case in front of Justice Matthews, where the tribal court decided that Crow Dog should make apology to the next of kin of the man he killed and give them substantial property to show sincerity of both the apology and the promise of future behavior (not as restitution). Both Crow Dog and Spotted Tail (the victim) had many relatives and followers, and the tribal court was trying to avoid a Hatfield and McCoy style feud that could do untold harm to the peace of the reservation. That was, “the strongest prejudices of their savage nature.”

    In contrast, “the white man’s morality” decreed that Crow Dog should hang by the neck until dead, without regard to whether he posed a continuing threat to the peace of the community or the effect his death would have on the community.

    Tell me again which judgment reflects the “strongest prejudices of savage nature?”

    2. Oliphant v. Suquamish Indian Tribe,1978, Justice William Rehnquist
    Citing some of the very words above from Crow Dog, Justice Rehnquist wrote for the Court:

    Until the middle of this century, few Indian tribes maintained any semblance of a formal court system. Offenses by one Indian against another were usually handled by social and religious pressure, and not by formal judicial processes; emphasis was on restitution, rather than on punishment.

    While it’s refreshing that “the white man’s morality” in this case recognized that there is more to justice than punishment, Rehnquist deployed these remarks as part of a “history” made up to justify taking away tribal court jurisdiction over non-Indians who commit crimes on Indian land.

    Republicans in the last Congress gave us a replay of this battle when they held up reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act over allowing tribal courts to try non-Indian men who come on Indian land and abuse Indian women. (That was not their only objection to VAWA, but it was the one that made the most noise.)

    3. Lone Wolf v. Hitchcock,1903, Justice Edward Douglass White
    To uphold the claim would be to adjudge that the indirect operation of the treaty was to materially limit and qualify the controlling authority of Congress in respect to the care and protection of the Indians, and to deprive Congress, in a possible emergency, when the necessity might be urgent for a partition and disposal of the tribal lands, of all power to act, if the assent of the Indians could not be obtained.

    The claim Justice White feared upholding was that the government had no authority to take Kiowa land without complying with the treaty that governed the relationship between the U.S. and the Kiowa Nation.

    Am I missing something when I call “Dumb” a hypothetical plea that there might be an “emergency” requiring that Indians have their land taken away more quickly than could be done in compliance with treaties?

    What would be the nature of such an “emergency?” Space aliens demanding land titles?

    It’s the prospect if this “emergency” in the imagination of the Court that justified the allotment of the Kiowa Reservation over the objections of Chief Lone Wolf and in violation of the Medicine Lodge Treaty.

    The real emergency that placed Indians in dire danger was the holding in Lone Wolf that the Congress could abrogate Indian treaties without reference to the existing international law of treaty abrogation.

    4. Cotton Petroleum Corporation v. New Mexico,1989, Justice John Paul Stevens
    It is, of course, true that the total taxes paid by Cotton are higher than those paid by off-reservation producers. But neither the State nor the Tribe imposes a discriminatory tax. The burdensome consequence is entirely attributable to the fact that the leases are located in an area where two governmental entities share jurisdiction.

    If ever a pretend argument was caught chasing its own tail, this would be the time. This case placed tribal mineral leases at a competitive disadvantage by allowing the state to stack a severance tax on top of a tribal severance tax. And there’s no discrimination because the minerals just happened to be located where they were, presumably by God.

    Couldn’t the Court just order God to pay the state tax on minerals under tribal land? Such an order would be no dumber than the one they made.

    The weight of Dumb we have picked up so far is staggering. The SCOTUS has told us that failure to kill a man without necessity is “savage” and that it would be dangerous to allow tribal courts to try white people because Indians only became civilized enough to punish people recently.

    Then we learn that it’s OK for Congress to take Indian property in violation of a treaty because an emergency might come up that requires taking Indian property really quickly. Even when Congress does not take Indian land, the SCOTUS says states can tax the minerals under what little land we have left and making the minerals cost more than the same minerals off the reservation is not an act of discrimination because, you know, that’s where God put the minerals.

    Whew. That’s a heavy load of Dumb. Let’s rest a bit before looking at the other four selected dumb things Supreme Court justices have written about Indians.

    Coming tomorrow: Say What? Four More Dumb Things Supreme Court Justices Wrote About Indians

    Read more at http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwor...indians-158559

  12. #1437

    Default Four more wrong-headed zingers from SCOTUS

    Say What? Four More Dumb Things Supreme Court Justices Wrote About Indians

    Steve Russell 1/7/15

    The first half of eight selected dumb things Supreme Court justices have written about Indians left us breathless. It will take your breath away when tribal courts are called so “savage” that white people have to be protected from them because they don’t punish enough.

    Then we learned that it’s OK to take Indian land because some emergency might come up and states can tax minerals under the land Indians get to keep because, well, that’s where the minerals are. No discrimination involved.
    (See above post for the prior article -- Gazhekwe)

    We take up our burden of Dumb again looking at a case where Indians tried to get their land back in the manner of white people. The Oneida Nation, newly become prosperous, bought back some of its traditional land at market value. Oneida Indian Nation (OIN) attempts to reconstitute a shattered land base and reestablish sovereignty ran smack into the intellectual leader of the liberal wing of the U.S. Supreme Court, and she was packing the Court’s usual load of Dumb.

    5. City of Sherill v. Oneida Indian Nation of New York, 2005, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
    The wrongs of which OIN complains in this action occurred during the early years of the Republic. For the past two centuries, New York and its county and municipal units have continuously governed the territory. The Oneidas did not seek to regain possession of their aboriginal lands by court decree until the 1970s. ... And not until the 1990s did OIN acquire the properties in question and assert its unification theory to ground its demand for exemption of the parcels from local taxation. … This long lapse of time, during which the Oneidas did not seek to revive their sovereign control through equitable relief in court, and the attendant dramatic changes in the character of the properties, preclude OIN from gaining the disruptive remedy it now seeks.

    Did you catch the D that stands for Disregard of history to get to Dumb?

    How, pray tell, was the Oneida Indian Nation supposed to assert its rights in court before it had the resources to do so? And, speaking of resources, the Oneidas bought the land they were trying to take off the tax rolls. Does Justice Ginsburg have a clue how long since their land was taken by swindlers the Oneidas have been prosperous enough to buy some of it back and so have necessity to bring a lawsuit?

    6. Tee-Hit-Ton Indians v. United States, 1955, Justice Stanley Forman Reed
    Every American schoolboy knows that the savage tribes of this continent were deprived of their ancestral ranges by force and that, even when the Indians ceded millions of acres by treaty in return for blankets, food, and trinkets, it was not a sale, but the conquerors' will that deprived them of their land.
    * * *
    In the light of the history of Indian relations in this Nation, no other course would meet the problem of the growth of the United States except to make congressional contributions for Indian lands rather than to subject the Government to an obligation to pay the value when taken with interest to the date of payment. Our conclusion does not uphold harshness as against tenderness toward the Indians, but it leaves with Congress, where it belongs, the policy of Indian gratuities for the termination of Indian occupancy of Government-owned land, rather than making compensation for its value a rigid constitutional principle.

    In making her contribution to Supreme Court Dumb, Justice Ginsburg might have noticed Justice Reed’s Dumb above from 50 years earlier, where Alaska Natives were attempting to do exactly what the Oneidas got hammered for not doing.

    The result, as I read it, is that Alaska Natives can be stripped of property they have occupied from time immemorial but Congress really ought to leave a tip (“Indian gratuities”).

    7. Hodel v. Irving, 1987, Justice Sandra Day O’Connor
    Justice O’Connor’s contribution to Dumb requires some advance explanation so that non-lawyers can see how Disregard of history once more devolves into Dumb, in this case blaming the victims for a plight created by the SCOTUS in the case already listed as No. 3 in the parade of Dumb.

    Indians argued against having their property stolen every chance they got.

    In Tee-Hit-Ton, they tried to assert aboriginal title and were shot down.

    In Lone Wolf, they tried to assert the government’s own written promises in treaties, and they were still shot down.

    The Fifth Amendment’s guarantee against having property taken without due process of law did not, you see, apply to Indians.

    As a result, the reservations were split into individual allotments among people with no tradition of land titles or wills or access to lawyers. Every time an allotee died, the ownership of the allotment was split among the children by intestacy laws. Likewise the children’s children, and the children’s children’s children.

    Tiny, uneconomical tracts were created by this “fractionation” and much reservation land stood idle because the owners either could not be identified or could not agree on what should be done.

    Congress, having created the fractionation mess, tried to fix it by a law that returned what used to be tribal land, held in common, back to tribal land when a piece was 2 percent or less of the original allotment or it produced less than $100 in a year for the “owner.”

    It’s not what Justice O’Connor wrote below that put the D in Dumb, but rather what she did with these facts:
    Tract 1305 is 40 acres and produces $ 1,080 in income annually. It is valued at $ 8,000. It has 439 owners, one-third of whom receive less than $ .05 in annual rent and two-thirds of whom receive less than $ 1. The largest interest holder receives $ 82.85 annually. The common denominator used to compute factional interests in the property is 3,394,923,840,000. The smallest heir received $ .01 every 177 years. If the tract were sold (assuming the 439 owners could agree) for its estimated $ 8,000 value, he would be entitled to $ .000418. The administrative costs of handling this tract are estimated by the Bureau of Indian Affairs at $ 17,560 annually.

    After showing she understood the immediate problem, Justice O’Connor then led us to wonder whether she understood the cause of the whole thing was keeping Indians outside the protection of the Fifth Amendment.

    Allowing tiny, uneconomical slivers of land to return to tribal ownership would, she decided, violate the Fifth Amendment.

    The best you could say for that is that Justice O’Conner finally shut the barn door after the cow was nothing but a cloud of dust in the distance.

    8. Adoptive Couple v. Baby Girl, 2013, Justice Clarence Thomas (concurring)
    Because adoption proceedings like this one involve neither “commerce” nor “Indian tribes,” there is simply no constitutional basis for Congress’ assertion of authority over such proceedings. Also, the notion that Congress can direct state courts to apply different rules of evidence and procedure merely because a person of Indian descent is involved raises absurd possibilities. Such plenary power would allow Congress to dictate specific rules of criminal procedure for state-court prosecutions against Indian defendants. Likewise, it would allow Congress to substitute federal law for state law when contract disputes involve Indians. But the Constitution does not grant Congress power to override state law whenever that law happens to be applied to Indians. Accordingly, application of the ICWA to these child custody proceedings would be unconstitutional.

    Why pick on poor Justice Thomas in a concurring opinion, when this is the case that left the Indian Child Welfare Act in bloody tatters on the courtroom floor?

    Because of the “parade of horribles” argument he uses here to claim that Congress had no legitimate power to pass ICWA. The Constitution has in fact been held to “grant Congress power to override state law whenever that law happens to be applied to Indians” ever since Chief Justice John Marshall created federal Indian law from nothing.

    Every hypothetical exercise of power Thomas puts forward in the service of reductio ad absurdum has in fact happened at some time in the history of federal Indian law with the possible exception of monkeying with state criminal procedure. Why monkey with procedure when great gobs of state law simply cannot be applied to Indians on Indian land? That’s how we got casino gambling in the face of a California law. This is Justice O’Connor’s belated closing of the barn door applied to, well, everything.

    Supreme Court Justices, conservative and liberal, may be Dumb only like the proverbial foxen. Were the Thomas view to prevail, the SCOTUS would, over 200 years after Chief Justice John Marshall erected the house of cards that is federal Indian law, huff and puff and blow the house down in a cyclone of Dumb.

    We could then ask whether the gale of Dumb was unleashed “on purpose,” but it’s hard to imagine a purpose lasting over so many generations in people with radically different political philosophies.

    All the remarks of Supreme Court Justices I have labeled Dumb seek to answer, in one guise or another, whether the same law applies to Indians as applies to everyone else. The answer has not been consistent. Those of us hammered by legal reasoning in law school are taught that which is not consistent is Dumb.

    The only rationale that explains conflicting results that otherwise seem terminally Dumb is that the answer could go either way, depending on what is necessary to separate Indians from their property or, worse, their children. (My emphasis -- Gazhekwe)

    Read more athttp://indiancountrytodaymedianetwor...indians-158560

    Gazhekwe commentary -- I really think it is unbelievably dumb for Ginsberg to accuse the Oneida of being "disruptive." She, of all people, should be fully aware of the disruptiveness of a power taking over all aspects of an entire community's life, having witnessed the same in her own ethnic community in her lifetime. Economic recover from that atrocity has taken the combined might of the world's powers, while the Oneida have had to do it all on their own, fighting the largest of the world's powers.

    The atrocity of removing children from their community has been a huge disruption in all our lives. We have lost many over the generations of forced removal, from the Indian schools to the state social welfare conspiracies that still exist today.

  13. #1438

    Default How cold is it?

    acebook screen capture

    Rob Fairbanks' Leech Lake [MN] weather report

    It's so cold my paajagaan have become ovaries!

    'It’s So Cold… ' Jokes, Indian Style

    Vincent Schilling 1/7/14

    With temperatures in the low negatives all over the country, we thought it would be appropriate to address these issues… Indian Style. We know things are cold, so cold in fact, longhouses have now shrunk to shorthouses, it’s so cold, geese are flying American Airlines, it’s so cold tipis are falling off, it’s so cold Native Canneries are serving fishsicles… well, you get the point.

    We checked around Indian country directly and online and asked some of the tribes feeling the cold about their thoughts. Here’s what we found.

    Carole Ross, the language instructor for the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe, whose tribal territory is sitting on the New York and Canadian border is currently feeling a -17 degrees with wind chill. According to Ross, her daughters always played the “It’s so cold” game.

    Suzy Ross of the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe came up with some good ones.

    “It’s so cold the hair froze off my toes.”
    “It’s so cold when I turn on the shower, it snows for 20 minutes.”

    “It’s so cold we saw chiefs with hands in their own pockets.”

    At the Crow Nation in Montana Ben Cloud of the Crow Agency’s newspaper and the receptionist agree,

    “It was so cold last week at 30 below zero – this week at 25 degrees, we are having a heat wave!”

    Tani Gordon at the Rosebud Sioux Tribes Communications Department also mentioned the tribe is having a bit of a reprieve at 20 degrees today.

    “It was so cold Monday at 30 below zero people today are wearing shorts and not wearing sweaters or jackets.” (A true statement)

    David Whitein theGoogle+ Native American Communitygave us a few more:

    “It's so cold we had to chisel the dog off a lamp-post.”

    “It’s so cold my testicles have become ovaries.”

    “It’s so cold, the steam off of my head created a war between two Indian villages.”

    Colleen O (@Ravensky311) on Twitter expressed her appreciation at not being part of the cold weather.

    Perhaps best expressed is a series of Leech Lake Weather reports recorded by Rob Fairbanks on Facebook who expressed just how cold the weather was to his tribe. (We added the “It’s so cold”)

    “It’s so cold – Don’t pee outside tonight, it will burn the buckskin right off of your drumstick.” (Leech Lake Weather Report 2)

    “It’s so cold – Someone asked me directions to the casino, I couldn’t point because my pointer (lower lip) froze up.” (Leech Lake Weather Report 3)

    Read more at http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwor...n-style-153007

  14. #1439

    Default They're going to put us in the movies...



    An under-development full-feature independent film, entitled “Urban Myths,” is looking to work closely with American Indian elders in Michigan to ensure the authenticity of the scenes.

    The film, slated for release this fall, deals with a group of high school seniors who on a spring break camping trip explore myths they learned from a teacher. The seniors disappear as they come across an American Indian burial ground.

    Kim Marie and Shiloh

    “Urban Myths” central star is a half-arctic/half-grey wolf named Shiloh. The movie film also stars Lou Ferrigno Jr. as Mr. Mandl, a high school teacher. He is the son of bodybuilder turned actor Lou Ferrigno, who played “The Incredible Hulk” in the CBS show.

    The core theme of “Urban Myths” is the American Indian legend about how the battle between right and wrong is compared to two wolves inside an individual fighting to become manifested. One is a good wolf; the other represents bad.

    It is up the individual to ensure the good wolf is fed.

    In addition to Shiloh, animal spirit totems are used as metaphors throughout “Urban Myths.”

    “Urban Myths” is the brainchild of Kim Marie, a former police officer who left Michigan to study film in Los Angeles. She serves as writer, producer and director to her film. “Urban Myths” is being made by Marie’s company, Mirror Dog Productions.


    “Mirror Dog Productions is reaching out to the Indigenous community for elders to step up and help guide with feedback so that this production and productions scheduled to follow, truly represent and help unite all of us and to keep creating more stories like this that can make a difference in our world,” said Marie.

    Mirror Dog Productions will be casting local Michigan American Indian talent to be part of “Urban Myths.”

    To lend your support or comments, please contact Mirror Dog Productions through its webiste:

  15. #1440

    Default Tribal Names Redux

    Sioux is not even a word

    By Stacy Makes Good Ta Kola Cou Ota (Has Many Friends) Oglala Lakota Tatanka Oyate Stacy Makes Good Ta Kola Cou Ota (Has Many Friends) Oglala Lakota

    "Sioux is not even a word?" It's a partial word, a slang word; Sioux comes from two words."Nadowessi" comes from the Chippewa's and "Oux" comes from the French. The two words were put together is "Nadowessioux." Sioux has no meaning in either the Chippewa or French language.

    "Nadowessi" is the main word; "Oux" is like when you put the "s" on the end of a word to make it plural or two things (a suffix). It's like, one little serpent, you say "Nadowessi"; to say two little serpents, you put the "oux" on (Nadowessi-oux) or like adding the suffix (s) to the end of serpent. "Nadowessi(oux)" is like saying two little serpent(s).

    "Nadowessi" means little serpent; "Nadowessioux" means two little serpents; "Sioux" is a slang word meaning little devils or demons. Nadowessi refers to the Ojibwa Nation; Nadowessioux refers to the Ojibwa Nation and the Dakota Tribe; Sioux refers to the Dakota Tribe. Later the US government stuck the Lakota and Nakota Tribe in this word Sioux.

    The original translation for Sioux is serpent; it can also be translated viper, adder or snake. The Natives didn't understand these words, but they knew snake, so instead of the original words, snake was used as the translation.

    Serpent is one of the names for Lucifer (Wakansica), like Satan or the Devil is. Vipers, adders, snakes or serpents are some of the names for Lucifer's devils or demons.

    This word did not and does not come from the Lakota, Dakota or Nakota.

    Oglala Lakota Oyate is a proper name not Oglala Sioux Tribe. Tatanka Oyate (Buffalo Nation) or Oceti Sakowin (Seven council fires) is our proper name not Sioux Nation.

    This is part one, the translation and meaning of Sioux. Next week will be the origin and history.
    In all sincerity and no malice or delude of heart.

    Makes Good is a Marine veteran, retired rodeo rider, travels the pow wow circuit, artist, comic strip artist and enjoys spending time with hisfamily. His pet peeve is non-tribal members acting like Lakota medicine men and sundance leaders. He is from Allen, S.D.

  16. #1441
    Join Date
    Mar 2009


    Bringing solar lights to the Navajo nation:

  17. #1442

    Default A little depth on Plains Indians

    The Cheyenne Indians are from the Great Plains. Many people don’t know this but the Cheyenne consists of two tribes. One tribe is called Sotaeo’o and the other is the Tsitsistas.
    The name Cheyenne means “Little Cree”.

    Many Cheyenne lived in Montana and Oklahoma. Early Cheyenne lived in earth lodges and ate mostly fish to survive. It was in the early 1800′s that the Cheyenne moved into teepees and started hunting wild animals for their meals. The Cheyenne Indians then spread out, living not only in Montana and Oklahoma, but could be found in Colorado, South Dakota, and Wyoming.

    The 19th century brought on the Indian Wars. While the Cheyenne Indians were friendly with any settlers they met, the Colorado Militia and Lt Custer’s Calvary attacked and killed many peaceful Indians. After this, the Cheyenne Indians became hostile and was considered the enemy of any settlers.

    It is believed that the Cheyenne Indians along with the Lakota and Arapaho tribes gathered together near the Little Bighorn River in the late 1800′s forming the largest gathering of Indians that numbered more than 10,000. When this news reached Washington, this angered the Army and they sought to capture the Cheyenne.

    When northern Indians were captured, they were moved to the south, which caused the Indians to become ill. Many caught malaria in their new home and asked to return to their northern home. More than one million Cheyenne Indians traveled back north but the Army and many volunteers were pursuing the Indians in hopes of ridding their tribe forever.

    As the Indian group split into two groups, one made it home but the other was captured and held in Nebraska. They were held without water, food or heating and soon decided to revolt. When the Cheyenne decided to escape they were gunned down by the Army. Sadly, it was thought that only about 50 Cheyenne Indians survived. Today the Cheyenne Indian has grown to over 20,000 and has continued to retain their unique language and lifestyle.

  18. #1443

    Default Part Two: Many Cheyenne and Arapaho Killed at Sand Creek

    150 Years Later, A Formal Apology For The Sand Creek Massacre

    DECEMBER 15, 2014 4:34 PM ET

    A stretch of dry, empty prairie where the Sand Creek Massacre took place in Colorado has hardly changed in a century and a half.

    Back in December 1864, America was still months from the end of the Civil War. Gen. William Sherman was making his infamous march across Georgia. And from the Western Frontier, word of the shocking Sand Creek Massacre was starting to trickle out. A regiment of volunteer troops in Colorado had attacked a peaceful camp of Native Americans, slaughtering nearly 200 of them — mostly women and children.

    "Something comes over me each time I come out here. You can feel the spirits out here," Little Coyote says.
    The creek itself is just a curve of sand and a scattering of cottonwoods. But for Karen Little Coyote of the Cheyenne tribe, this is a sacred place.

    In 1864, Cheyenne and Arapaho chiefs brought their people to Sand Creek to wait for peace negotiations with the territorial government. Instead, the village was attacked early one morning by United States cavalry, a volunteer regiment led by a colonel bent on driving Indians out of the territory. Little Coyote's great-great grandfather Chief Black Kettle survived the massacre.

    "You can stand there and you can just imagine what happened out here. Women, children, screaming and crying and don't know what's going on," Little Coyote says.

    Hundreds of Cheyenne and Arapaho returned to the massacre site recently to mark the 150th anniversary with private ceremonies and a public education program. Martin Braided Hair stretched white canvas over a frame of poles, one of several teepees the tribes put up for their rituals. Braided Hair says visiting the massacre site is an important way for the Cheyenne to connect with their history — from their near-annihilation at Sand Creek to their struggles to survive today.

    "We're having a hard time with our language, with our way of life. And each time we come back, it gets stronger and stronger," he said.

    Congress made this stretch of Sand Creek a National Historic Site less than a decade ago and gave it a heavy mission. Alexa Roberts, superintendent of the site, says the goal is not just to remember the massacre but to use that memory to try to prevent future atrocities.

    "This wasn't just an event in history; it wasn't something that just happened and is over," Roberts says. "The things that could bring about an atrocity of this magnitude — those were human things, and that potential is still in people."

    Participants prep for the final day of the healing run.Megan Verlee/Colorado Public Radio

    This wasn't just an event in history; it wasn't something that just happened and is over. The things that could bring about an atrocity of this magnitude — those were human things, and that potential is still in people. - Alexa Roberts, superintendent, Sand Creek historic site

    The horror of Sand Creek didn't end with the massacre. Soldiers took scalps and other grisly trophies from the dead and brought them back to Denver for public display. The outrage of those actions prompted the tribes to start an annual healing run, leaving the site after the anniversary and following the same route the soldiers took back to Denver. Wilma Blackbear and Janet Bull Coming traveled from Oklahoma to take part this year.

    "It's to heal ourselves ... pray, and give us strength to help move on," they said.

    On a chilly Denver morning, a traditional chant followed tribe members and supporters as they set off on the final leg of the run. Their route ended at the state capitol, where Colorado's governor, John Hickenlooper, was waiting to do something none of his predecessors have done before: formally apologize for the Sand Creek Massacre.

  19. #1444

    Default 50 Shades of Aye -- Happy Valentine's Day, youse guys!

  20. #1445

    Default Perhaps the Earth has tilted on its axis -- How the natural people do science better

    The winds have shifted and the east wind is now dominant, the storm wind

    The impacts of changes in the arctic world:

    Article with more information,
    DECEMBER 5, 2014
    Last edited by gazhekwe; February-22-15 at 09:54 AM.

  21. #1446

    Default #24 -- Little River Band plans casino near Muskegon

    Tribe seeks OK for off-reservation casino near Muskegon
    Former Great Lakes Downs racetrack is site
    By JC Reindl Detroit Free Press
    A northern Michigan tribe wants to turn the former Great Lakes Downs racetrack near Muskegon into the 24th tribal casino within the state. The Little River Band of Ottawa Indians announced Tuesday that it has asked the U.S. Department of the Interior to put 60 acres of the old racetrack property in Fruit-port Township into trust for use as a future off-reservation casino that would feature 1,700 slot machines and 35 table games. The $180-million project also calls for a 220-room hotel and conference and meeting rooms. A tribal spokesman said the approval process may take up to two years. The Great Lakes Downs racetrack operated from 1999 until 2007 on the site of the former Muskegon Race Course.The tribe bought the property in 2008. The tribe currently operates the Little River Casino Resort in Manistee. “But over time, as Michigan tribes have expanded their gaming operations ... competition has eroded (the tribe’s) income,” the tribe said in a news release. The release says that Fruit-port Township and Muskegon County support the project. Contact JC Reindl: 313-222-6631or [email protected]  . Follow him on Twitter @JCReindl.
    LITTLE RIVER BAND OF OTTAWA INDIANS Arendering of the proposed casino and resort. The $180-million project also calls for a 220-room hotel and conference and meeting rooms.

  22. #1447

    Default Discussion of identity in a mainstream world

    Authenticity: Ethnic Indians, non-Indians and Reservation Indians

    Duane Champagne 1/6/14

    Authenticity is a puzzling feature of contemporary Indian life. Growing up on an Indian reservation, I rarely encountered challenges to one’s identity as an Indian person. People within the reservation community knew most of the families. If they didn’t know the family connections of a specific person they could learn with a few inquiries to elders or their own family members.

    One grows up on reservation community where there is an old and somewhat fixed family and kinship structure. There is very little doubt about who belongs and who does not, at least from a lineal descendent point of view. Tribal membership, because of blood quantum and other rules, may be more complicated and legalistic. A person whose family has lived within a tribal reservation community for as long as people can remember and who are legally tribal members usually do not encounter challenges to tribal identity from tribal community members.

    This is not so say, in the contemporary world, that every member of a reservation community has strong commitments to traditional culture and identity. Many tribal and reservation communities are composed of mixed cultural heritages. The Navajo are often recognized for retaining their language and culture. However, about one-third of the Navajo population is traditional, while one-third are Christians, and another third are Mormons.

    Living within most contemporary reservation communities often implies that an Indian person is living within a multi-cultural community. That is not to say that most reservation Indians do not share a commitment to community and Indian identity, they in fact do.

    Many contemporary tribal reservation members adhere to non-Indian worldviews, but at the same time have political and kinship ties to reservation communities and indigenous issues. While cultural views may differ among tribal members, they often share commitments to political and economic continuity of the indigenous nation. This contemporary pattern of American Indian reservation identity reflects contemporary U.S. practices of multiculturalism. While cultural views and identities may vary, there is often general agreement about national identity, purpose, and political ground rules.

    The cultural complexities of contemporary Indian communities tend to confuse non-Indians who are expecting and often demand traditional cultural expression and personas from contemporary Indian people. If a person does not look and act like an Indian—usually a stereotypical image of a Plains Sioux Indian—then many non-Indians doubt the Indian authenticity of tribal member.

    Reservation Indians usually have very secure identities, and so when non-Indians or ethnic Indians doubt their authenticity, reservation Indians often find these circumstances amusing.

    Ethnic Indians can be defined as persons of Indian descent who are not members of a tribal community and often their families have not have had contact with a home community for generations. For reservation Indians, authenticity is confirmed within the local reservation community, while for many ethnic Indians and non-Indians, Indian authenticity is determined by stereotypes and images that are common within American society.

    There are more non-Indians in the U.S. than reservation Indians, and generally the views of non-Indians prevail. Non-Indian views of Indian authenticity drowned out reservation understandings of Indian authenticity. Before the 1980s, some times Indians often conformed to U.S. images of authenticity by dressing in Plains Indian clothes and headdresses, partly because otherwise they could not be recognized as Indians.

    Southern California Indians, for example, do not traditionally have powwow dances, but have dances and songs based on their tribal creation teachings that narrate an epic migration of ancestral birds who end by establishing the homeland of the people.

    Unfortunately, much contemporary discussion about Indian authenticity focuses more on U.S. definitions of authenticity than tribal understandings, which are less well known and understood by the U.S. public and many ethnic Indians.


    Gazhekwe notes: The category of "ethnic Indians" is to broad because it eliminates those who are in close contact with their communities and have recognition there, but live in the mainstream where they struggle for recognition and to maintain their ethnicity. That is truly "Walking in Two Worlds.

  23. #1448

    Default The Concept of "Ownership"

    First, think about how you feel about the property you "own." Do you feel secure and unchallenged by strangers that you are the owner of that property? Could anyone just walk in and kick you out because they really want that property?

    Introducing the Great Catholic Church and the US Supreme Court:

    The Bogus Religious Premise of the Indian Claims Commission

    Steven Newcomb 3/15/15

    In 1974, Ralph A. Barney, Chief of the Indian Claims Section, Lands Division, in the U.S. Department of Justice, explained the concept of title that the Indian Claims Commission (ICC) had used in its work from 1946-1978. He began by mentioning “different concepts inherent in the nature of” different cultures. “The culture of the Europeans who discovered and later settled this continent was basically legalistic,” he said, particularly where land was concerned.”

    In Barney’s view, from the European perspective: “Land was the subject of ‘ownership’ either by the monarch or his subjects, and ‘titles’ were the capstone of such ownership.” Barney then made the unequivocal statement that “‘[o]wnership’ in the sense of a legal right [to land] was unknown to the Indian.” (emphasis added) To support this assertion, Barney quoted Justice Hugo Black in the U.S. Supreme Court ruling Shoshone Indians v.United States:

    Ownership meant no more to them [the Shoshone Indians] than to roam the land as a great common, and possess and enjoy it in the same way that they possessed and enjoyed sunlight and the west wind and the feel of spring in the air. Acquisitiveness, which develops a law of real property, is an accomplishment only of the “civilized.”

    The idea of “acquisitiveness” is “an intense desire to obtain or possess something” which one does not already possess. Justice Hugo Black’s statement rested on the impossibility of Indian nations having an intense desire to obtain lands they already possessed and were living in cultural and spiritual relationship with for countless generations. It was therefore on an impossible basis that Justice Black, for the Court, framed the Shoshone as being disqualified from a true ‘ownership’ of their lands.

    According to Black’s reasoning, a legal ownership of the land (often termed “fee title”) was only attributable to those Christian Europeans who arrived to North America with a burning desire to acquire and possess the lands of the Original Nations or peoples, or else attributable to the successors of those first Christian Europeans.

    According to Barney, Indians were excluded from the category “ownership of land” because a European perspective restricted “ownership of land” to a “monarch or his subject.” This contains the presumption that the ideas, values, standards, and beliefs of our Original Nations were also excluded from any decision about the relationship of our nations to our lands and territories. Barney wrote from the viewpoint that only European ideas, values, standards, and beliefs were relevant to the discussion.

    To further explain the rationale for excluding American Indian nations from “legal ownership” of lands, Barney turned to the idea that the Europeans had ‘discovered’ the North American continent.

    When the Europeans ‘discovered’ the North American continent they found it inhabited by the Indians and the question of their rights aroused a great moral debate. Charles V of Spain sought the advice of the theologian Franciscus de Victoria, primary professor of sacred theology in the University of Salamanca, who suggested that since the aborigines “were true owners, before the Spaniards came among them, both from the public and private point of view,” they should be treated with to secure cessions of their lands.

    Francisco de Victoria’s decision on moral grounds that the Indians were the “true owners” of their lands contradicted what Barney had previously said about “ownership” being restricted to European “monarchs and their subjects.” How did Barney escape this apparent predicament? He did so by simply ignoring Victoria and reaffirming the perspective about “ownership” being restricted to European monarchs.

    Barney specifically said: “This view [of Victoria] obviously could not prevail if the European monarchs owned the land and could parcel it out to their subjects.” In other words, Barney was of the opinion that the idea of the Indians as the ‘true owners’ of their lands had eventually been dropped in favor of the idea that the ‘discovering’ monarchs “owned the land and could parcel it out to their subjects.”

    In Barney’s narrative, this had occurred for the United States in the 1823 Supreme Court ruling Johnson v.M’Intosh, a ruling that had settled a debate over the two possible views: 1. Ownership was restricted to “monarchs and their subjects,” or, 2. American Indians “were the rightful owners of the lands of the continent.”

    As Barney put it: “From a long and detailed examination of the history of Indian relations in this country, Chief Justice Marshall concluded [in Johnson] that the legal title was in the United States Government and that the tribes had no right to sell and convey the land (at least, without governmental consent).” Notice that the phrase “legal title” matches what Barney had claimed about a “legal right” to land being “unknown to the Indians.”

    However, the Indians could not be ignored, particularly in the early days when they were numerically far stronger than the few settlers huddled along the coast. From this developed the theory that while the “legal” title was in the discovering nations and later the United States, the Indians had a right of possession based on what was characterized as their “aboriginal title.”

    The distinction above is between “legal title” and “a right of possession” based on what is called “aboriginal title,” which is defined as “occupancy” or a “right of possession.” Barney went on to state that in United States v.Santa Fe Pacific R. Co., the Supreme Court “had occasion to lay down the rule, which was later adopted by the [Indian Claims] Commission, as to what was necessary to establish Indian title.”

    According to Barney’s narrative, the issue of Indian ownership had been decided by the ruling in Johnson v.M’Intosh, and as a result of that decision the Indian Claims Commission’s focus was restricted to a concept of Indian “occupancy” consistent with the Johnson ruling. As the Supreme Court said in U.S.v.Santa Fe Pacific Railroad:

    “Unquestionably it has been the policy of the federal government from the beginning to respect the Indian right of occupancy, which could only be interfered with or determined by the United States. This policy was first recognized in Johnson v.M’Intosh, 8 Wheat. 543, 5 L.Ed. 681, and has been repeatedly reaffirmed.” (emphasis added)

    Barney then quoted the following language from the Santa Fe Pacific Railroad ruling to further explain that the Indian Claims Commission’s work—such as in the case “Indians of California”—had been limited to the issue of an Indian title of occupancy first articulated in Johnson v.M’Intosh:

    Occupancy necessary to establish aboriginal possession is a question of fact to be determined as any other question of fact. If it were established as a fact that the lands in question were, or were included in, the ancestral home of the Walapais in the sense that they constituted a definable territory occupied exclusively by the Walapais (as distinguished from lands wandered over by many tribes), then the Walapai had “Indian title.” (emphasis added)

    The U.S. concept of an Indian right of “occupancy” that the Indian Claims Commission relied on was a direct consequence of what Chief Justice Marshall called the “right of discovery” in the Johnson ruling. He further said that right was “confined to countries then unknown to all Christian people,” “notwithstanding the occupancy of the natives, who were heathens.”

    Here’s the point: The process of the Indian Claims Commission was never legitimate. Why? Because the Indian Claims Commission conducted its work on the hidden religious premise of the Johnson ruling. It conducted its work based on a bogus claim of Christian “ultimate dominion,” based on the “extravagant pretension” that a Christian “right of discovery” had resulted in a right of Christian domination (“ultimate dominion”), which in turn had supposedly reduced our Original Nations down to a mere right of heathen “occupancy” in relation to our original and national territories.

    Steven Newcomb (Shawnee, Lenape) is co-founder and co-director of the Indigenous Law Institute and author of Pagans in the Promised Land: Decoding the Doctrine of Christian Discovery (Fulcrum, 2008). He has been studying federal Indian law and international law since the early 1980s.


    Now imagine that a person or people decide that "title" or "fee simple" as defined by US Law is invalid because they do not recognize the US Government (there are plenty of people who wish they could act on this). Now do you feel so secure in your "ownership?" Your right of possession when you present your claims to a hostile government?

  24. #1449
    Join Date
    Mar 2009


    A sculpture is being erected in Ireland to thank a Native American tribe for sending what little money they could to the Irish people suffering from starvation at the height of the Great Famine more than 160 years ago.

  25. #1450

    Default Climate change is here

    It takes people who live with our Mother Earth to point it out. We need to hear them.

    Fishermen discuss warming waters in this lovely short filmBy Amelia Urry on 23 Mar 2015

    When you are tired of talking to climate deniers, it can be a relief to hear from a fisherman instead.

    “The waters are changing,” says Michigan fisherman Ed John in this short, moody video that follows a Native couple fishing the Great Lakes. “We’ve got algae, we’ve got invasive species, we got all of these pollutants we don’t know about going into the water.”

    This year, Ed and his wife Cindi noticed that the species they usually find around 5o or 60 feet below the surface are now hanging out between 80 and 90 feet deep. “That’s telling me that the water temperature is getting warmer,” says Ed. “I don’t know if that’s a good thing.”

    When your livelihood depends on the subtle details of a complicated ecosystem, you are going to notice when those things change. Whitefish are disappearing, Cindi points out, and they’re not quite sure why, but it probably has to do with the warming waters.

    We might not be able to expect fishermen (or anyone, at this point) to pass comprehensive climate legislation, but we can thank them for helping us see the changes already shaking up our climate and our daily lives.

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